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Archives for May, 2009

Drax

May 30th, 2009

Power stations are amazing tourist attractions! Today I visited Drax: the largest coal-fired power station in western Europe. Amazing things I saw: giant chimney, cloud makers, slow moving coal trains, pile of coal, reclaimed ash mound. Awesome.

Balloons

May 24th, 2009

Saw two balloons over our house this evening. Have pictures! This one is Virgin sponsored.

Virgin balloon

The KitKat balloon is right behind it! Maybe they’re having some sort of race?

KitKat balloon

I really want to ride in a balloon now. Where can I get one? Does anyone know??

Train game update

May 23rd, 2009

A screen shot from the latest version of the train game. I’ve added smooth shading, water, earth, and more realistic colours for the ground.

screenshot_mountain

I’m currently trying to think of a name: “Trains!” and just “Train Game” I’ve considered. Not entirely happy with either. Unfortunately “Trainz” is already taken.

Flickr

May 18th, 2009

I’ve posted some of my photos on Flickr here.

A game about trains

May 18th, 2009

I’m currently writing a game based on driving trains. The idea is that you will be able to collect cargo, drive it around, and deliver it for profit. Winner is the one who makes the most money in the time period. You’ll be able to select the engine type: bigger engines are faster, but you need to buy more coal and water for them; and select the number of trucks: more trucks carries more cargo, but the train goes slower. Controls are fairly simple: shovel coal and adjust the throttle/regulator, but you have to be careful not to let the boiler pressure get too high or low or disaster strikes!

It’s in the very early stages of development at the moment, but I have a working map editor and you can drive the train around a bit. Here’s a screen shot of the current state:

Train game early screen shot

More info soon!

Hull

May 16th, 2009

What better way to spend a rainy Saturday than a day trip to Hull? I couldn’t think of one, so I went today. Was a bit wet and windy, but I think that suited Hull rather well. Highlight was the Humber Bridge – really awesome structure!

I’ve uploaded the pictures below. Apologies for the unimaginative captions this time: there isn’t much variety in the subjects…

Digger going for a swim

May 12th, 2009

A digger is going for a swim in the sea while its drivers are busy looking at something on the beach.

Digger on the beach

Another nice picture of some steps in Hastings old town:

Hastings steps

Can has bike

May 12th, 2009

I have a bike. Woo! This is it:

My bike

Came from York bike rescue.

Also did Leeds half marathon at the weekend: 1 hour 54 minutes FTW.

Bridges of York

May 5th, 2009

Can you believe the Wikipedia page on the bridges of York doesn’t have a picture of Naburn railway bridge? I’ve got several I could lend them…

Naburn railway bridge

Edit: it does now 🙂

Nuclear war in popular culture

May 4th, 2009

This site is a rather fantastic collection of comics / book covers / album art dealing with nuclear war.

Some of the stuff from the early 50s is wonderfully deranged, like this:

Black death grenades

Damn commies ‘ll never get their hands on our atomic black death grenades…

The collection is ordered chronologically, and the increasing pessimism towards the 80s is interesting to watch. Perhaps with the exception of The Survivalist. A while ago I found a slightly tongue-in-cheek plot summary of all 27 books… the author is a creative genius of sorts. Edit: found it.

Is environmental catastrophe replacing nuclear war as the post apocalyptic fantasy of choice? The Road is very good, and one for the kids. All a bit depressing though – where’s my global warming grenade???

While I’m on the subject, this collection of soviet posters is pretty awesome. Not updated for a few years – seems like a poster a day was a bit much to keep up with.