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April-June 2008 (oldest-to-newest)

1 Apr 2008 - A devious bug

Game Progress I'm trying to track down a pretty crafty bug at the moment. It deals with my new background star renderer. The code works fine during the "Get Ready" screen, but as soon as it kicks into the game proper it crashes.

Dumping registers makes me think a DMA is going wrong somewhere. I figured out the reason why the main game crashes is that it draws gradiated lines, whereas the Get Ready screen does not.

So there's some interaction going on and a bug somewhere, but darned if I can find it.

11 Apr 2008 - Auctioning off my memories

Not much progress on the bug from before. I think it's due to an unimplemented Yaroze library function. RobotRon uses the 3D matrix functions and I hadn't bothered to implement them yet. As such it was returning garbage, which I think was causing the random hang. I haven't exactly pinpointed what goes wrong, but getting those functions working should fix it.

I haven't done much lately because I have decided to sell my old Magic the Gathering cards to fund other enterprises. I have six large binders full of cards - one for each of the colors plus another for artifacts & lands. I also have a ton of loose cards. I went through the loose cards and sorted them by expansion. That's what you see here.

Each stack is a separate expansion set. Top left are my betas (very well played so not worth much). Next to them are the Unlimiteds and then the big stack of Reviseds. Other big stacks are for Fallen Empires, Ice Age, Homelands, and Urza's Saga.

And that doesn't even include the ones in the binders! I'm hoping to get about $500 from all this. The big ticket items are my dual lands, of which I have eighteen. They're worth $15-30 a pop.

I'll sell the expensive ones on eBay. Then I'll put the rest up on Card Shark. It's a great site that lets you buy and sell individual cards from other collectors. In fact I just purchased a bunch of cards from there to fill out the rest of my Unglued set. I figure I'll get more for it if it's complete - I was only a few short. Other expansions I'm missing quite a few so they probably aren't worth completing.

As I sorted through the big stack of Urza's Saga I made note of the cards that were worth the most according to Card Shark. Of course, I don't have any of them. Typical.

29 Apr 2008 - I shoulda been a librarian

I'm still sorting through and organizing my MTG cards in preparation for selling on eBay. I must admit I'm having far more fun than I ought to be. Some of it is nostalgia for seeing cards that I played with over ten years ago. Brings back a lot of memories. Some of it is just my innate compulsion for organization and order. I think that tendency helps me be a better programmer.

I have just over 7000 cards now and am ordering some singles to fill in the blanks on a few sets. I'm operating on the assumption that a full set is worth more than an almost-full set. My spreadsheet contains over 30 worksheets, one for each set. For the sets that I have a lot of cards I will be splitting them into multiple lots. Usually one full set (maybe two), one set with just the uncommons and commons, one set with just commons (assuming I have enough left over), and the rest in a miscellaneous lot.

The expensive ones, as mentioned last time, are my dual lands. Twenty one of them, ten of which will be included in my full set of Revised Edition. The other eleven I'll sell loose. I was pleasantly surprised that I ended up with a card from the super rare Summer Magic set. It's just a common, Fireball, but could be worth $50 or so just because of its rarity. I also have another card, Mana Drain, from the Legends set that's worth about $60. A couple other individual cards are worth more than $10. Unfortunately I don't have any of the Power Nine nor the few other $100+ cards from other sets. If only I'd had the forethought to load up on Arabian Nights and Antiquities at the time. I suppose every old timer MTG collector says that now.

13 May 2008 - Shuffling activities

In addition to organizing my Magic the Gathering collection for selling I am also in the process of acquiring the next set of Eye of Judgment cards. Set 2 came out recently and I've bought a few booster boxes to kick start my collection.

To offset the cost I am selling off extras. Sets of commons or uncommons. Singles of rares and ultra-rares. I'm hoping I can sell enough to make back the cost and make my own set (nearly) free. It's slow going, but I'm confident I can get there eventually.

I have also been on the lookout for promo cards for EOJ. Sony gave away some recently and that made me look for others.

Ah yes the CCG addiction returns.

In NUON news I did do a spot of coding on Robot Ron. I implemented some of the 3D matrix & vector functions that were missing. That seems to fix the strange hang I was seeing.

15 Jun 2008 - My iPhone fund

I finally put up the first auctions for my Magic cards. First I had to sort 6800+ cards. Then determine what lots to create out of them, which involved figuring out what sets I'm close to completing. For those I bought individual cards to complete the sets, bringing my final total up to 7000+ cards. Finally creating all the descriptions for the 44 auctions, listing every card and general condition, breaking out the rares for easier viewing. Whew!

Take a gander here if you're in the market.

I've broken them up into five weeks of auctions just so I don't have to track 45 lots all at once. I can't wait for this to be done. I'll be using the money to replace my 5+ year old cell phone with one of the new 3G iPhones next month. I've heard one can make games for them ;)

24 Jun 2008 - Jubilant Cephalopod

A while back my email account here at DragonShadow started behaving strangely. I finally figured out that when I sent an email sometimes it just wouldn't go out. Every time I send a mail I must bcc myself at a separate account (work or other) to make sure I receive it. Fun, huh?

I contacted my web host Web.com (formerly Interland) and they looked into it. They claimed to fix it and certainly it seemed better, but I still had issues. In fact I proved to them that it was still broken. I gave them the login name & password for a dummy Yahoo account I set up for testing purposes. I showed them that only 2 of 5 mails were being received. They basically said yes they did fix it and nyah nyah nyah - sticking their virtual fingers in their ears.

Didn't leave me much choice to be honest. I'm changing providers. While looking around I was investigating the WordPress site and they have a list of recommended web hosts. That is where I found LaughingSquid, a decidedly unique web host. Whereas everyone else has their nice sterile hosting plans and web pages, LaughingSquid's site is minimalist and unique. I wasn't surprised to find that it is based near me in San Francisco - it has that bay area feeling to it.

Anyway, the switch should happen in the next week or two. Sorry in advance for any outage. Hopefully you won't even notice.

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