Roy Tang

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

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Weeknotes 2020-09-27

  • October is imminent! There are two distractions I’m looking forward to in the coming month.

    • The first one is Inktober, which I’ve been doing since 2016. Basically it’s just to do 30 ink drawings in October, one per day. There are some official prompts, which I’ll probably follow. I haven’t really done any serious sketching in a while, maybe this will help me get back into the groove.

    • The second one is Hacktoberfest! Basically it’s an event where you have to submitted some number of GitHub PRs in October, and there’s some swag for people who finished. I last participated in 2018, skipped last year because I was a bit busy. I have a bit more free time this year, so hopefully I can get into it.

    • Both of these are welcome distractions, as the world continues to suck.

  • For the past week, I’ve been working on the Django-based rewrite for my personal site (this one!). It’s one of those projects where I find myself being productive not because of deadlines or anything like that, but because I genuinely enjoy working on it. When I find myself thinking of of new things that need to be done, or a new feature, or a way to solve an interesting problem, I am cursed (blessed?) with restlessness until I get it done. There are a number of challenges with the way I chose to approach this problem, most probably the subject of a future blog post.

  • I’ve mentioned this before, but I went ahead and paid for a year of the Micro plan on The email in/out limits aren’t that high, but the price is decent, and I don’t really use my personal email that much anyway (I’m no spammer!). I’ll re-evaluate next year whether I want to migrate. (Sets a calendar event.)

  • Stuff I’ve watched this past week:

    • I went ahead and watched the second season of Umbrella Academy. It’s more or less structured like the first season: each member has their own problems; five discovers an upcoming apocalypse, so he tries to bring everyone together; also, there’s people who want to kill them. The ending of this is more satisfying than S1 though
    • Enola Holmes on Netflix. It was ok, but it’s more of a young adult story, maybe a bit above the Nancy Drew/Hardy Boys level.
  • Gaming this past week:

    • managed to get in a couple more Zendikar Rising drafts. Fun format, but I continue to have a terrible record, with only one draft actually going well. I did get a refund for that last one, so let’s see if we can’t do better this coming week!
    • additional drop on the Civ6 New Frontier pass came out, giving us Gaul and Byzantium. A friend and I tried it in a multiplayer game. I played Byz and he went with Gaul; we only played for a couple of hours, but both new civs seem quite powerful.
    • my SC2 group managed to finish the Wings of Liberty coop campaign! Pretty fun, and it was fun to relive the story too, as I had already forgotten a lot of it. We started the Heart of the Swarm version the next day.
    • Saturday gaming group have been playing Blood Rage over the past few months, and it even came out with a new DLC/expansion a couple of weeks ago. The game client is a bit buggy, but we tolerate it because it’s a fun/deep game anyway. We’re looking at maybe trying out a different game next week though.
    • Trivia was meh this week, the topics weren’t really to our liking.
    • I purchased last month’s Humble Choice (or rather, let it lapse into purchase). It’s not unreasonable, there’s some games there I can try like Forager and Evoland, and given my recent streak of Mario playing, I was wanting a platformer for the PC, so Yooka Layle isn’t a bad idea
    • Late-breaking Sunday news: I have kind of impulse bought a Nintendo Switch. Well, I was agonizing over it for a while, but stores were selling it just a bit overpriced. Today I found that there was a slight price drop (around $40 worth) of the Labo bundle at one of my local stores, so I impulsively went ahead and ordered it. Maybe should have waited a day or so? regardless, it’s on the way, along with Zelda: Link’s Awakening and Super Mario 3D All Stars. No interest in the Labo personally, maybe I’ll try to sell it off?
  • We tried using Messenger Rooms for a family conf call today, in lieu of Zoom which limits us to 40-minute calls. Might have been bad luck or poor internet, but the experience was substantially worse. Disconnections, lag, poor video quality, etc. We’ll see if they want to switch back to Zoom next time.

  • It seems weird that we are so close to the end of 2020 now. Still no idea what Christmas is going to look like. I’m sure many other people are also looking forward to closing out 2020 and going to 2021, even though that holds no logical promise of things being better than they are now. But we can always dream.

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