Roy Tang

Programmer, engineer, scientist, critic, gamer, dreamer, and kid-at-heart.

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Weeknotes 2020-08-30

This last week was weird. I feel like I didn’t really get much done in terms of productivity, yet I don’t feel I was unproductive. A very relaxed and chill week.

Once again a tiny bit of work done this past week, some fixes, including to side projects. I also spent some time preparing for some events next weekend. Although I wasn’t productive this week, I did outline a bit of a roadmap of new features for one of my side projects, hopefully I can get into that in the coming weeks!

We are still in a pandemic! But I did have my first dine-in meal at a restaurant last Monday. It was because I went to get blood drawn for routine medical reasons, and I had needed to skip breakfast for the test (spoiler: my blood sugar levels were very, very normal). So after getting the blood drawn I was super hungry and decided to have breakfast at the nearby Pancake House. I was the only customer since it was super early (and you know, pandemic), although a second guy came in after I had given my order. I almost subconsciously picked up the glass of water to sip from it as soon as it was served, luckily I remembered I was wearing a face mask and a face shield. I decided to hold off on removing the gear until the actual pancakes were served, to minimize the exposure time. The next day I also decided to have a snack at a Starbucks after running some errands, mainly because I had a free coffee from Globe Rewards. It was afternoon so there were a few other customers there. The cashier said it was ok to dine in, but for a maximum of one hour only.

There was a longish post I was writing, but it felt too raw to publish and might break it up into smaller posts.

We actually managed to win an online quiz night this week! It’s been a while, good job trivia team.

It feels great to no longer be following the covid19 stats regularly, even though they are still fairly terrible. UP experts are projecting that we get the reproduction rate to below 1 in like a month though, so that’s some good news, though we may still be a ways away from getting this under control.

Here are the things I’ve been watching and playing the past week:

  • Still playing a lot of SC2 Coop, trying to unlock the new prestiges. Levelling the commanders again can be a pain, but at least they managed to provide new goals/objectives for the players, breathing back a bunch of life into this game mode.
  • Still drafting Amonkhet Remastered, although the last few drafts haven’t gone well. Need to save up gems, so I’ll do one last one draft once I get enough gold.
  • Huh, I guess I kind of paused Uncharted 4 for most of the week, not sure why. I should get back to it.
  • I started re-playing Super Mario 3D Land (on the 3DS) lately, mostly to stave off my desire to get a Nintendo Switch (prices are still inflated here due to supply issues!). I had forgotten a lot about this game, so even when I finished the first 8 worlds and rescued Princess Peach, I was pleasantly surprised to find there were another 8 “special” worlds to play!
  • watched the video game history documentary High Score on Netflix. Pretty good, although there’s some Dragon Quest erasure going on in the RPG episode!
  • watched Bill and Ted Face the Music, this was a most excellent sequel. I found the start a bit clunky (I always find it awkward watching characters be awkward), but the rest of it was a fun and sweet adventure that echoed elements of both of the first two movies. A lot of the time travel stuff didn’t make any sense if you sat down and thought about it, but I was smiling through a lot of it. Little Billie and Theda are great!
  • also watched Superman: Man of Tomorrow, the first entry in the new DC animated universe (following the reboot at the end of Justice League Dark: Apokolips). Yet another Superman origin story here. Not too happy with this one. Not fond of the animated style, and the writing and plot seemed weird at many points. I felt like there could have been a better way to resolve the whole situation with the big bad that felt more “Superman”-like, and the movie doesn’t seem to earn the monicker “Man of Tomorrow” for the hero.
  • for one reason or another, I also ended up watching a few standup specials on Amazon Prime. A couple from Craig Ferguson, and one from Jimmy Yang.
  • Cobra Kai is now on Netflix! Yet another thing to add to the ever-increasing backlog.

Some tech stuff:

  • I have about three months left on my Webfaction hosting, which I’ve been planning to migrate away from. I’m currently leaning towards getting a cheap $5/mo VPS from Linode, although I’m still willing to accept any recommendations. Switching to a VPS means more effort (since it won’t be a managed service anymore), but that should provide some learning opportunities. It’s just as well anyway, my apps have been pushing the memory limits on the current hosting, and even the cheapest Linode VPS provides more RAM. I’ll probably start looking into the migration in September.
  • I wrote before about migrating away from GMail, and I’ve been using’s free tier for about half a year now. This past week, they wrote that they are sunsetting the free tier. Totally understandable, given the economy. They are also introducing a new Micro tier at $20 a year, with slightly better limits than the old free tier, so I may migrate to that near the end of September (when the free tier runs out). In theory, I could just try to run a mail server on whatever VPS I set up (see above bullet), but that’s a big hassle. This cost + the $5/mo for the VPS is still less than what I was paying for at Webfaction, so I don’t mind paying for this for a while.
  • I was notified by a local bank that their old web platform is being sunsetted and I needed to migrate to the new system, so I did that. But whenever I tried the migration steps, the process never completed, it just kept telling me it was processing. I finally had to message someone I knew on the dev team lol. Hopefully it can getr resolved next week.
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