Since the end of February things have been absolutely crazy around here to the point I’ve forgotten which was is up a few times. The word “busy” doesn’t adequately describe it.

I’ve been frantically working on a new project at work involving trying to re-build a web application platfom on newer hardware and with more recent software. It’s Java based (not my area of expertise) and involves moving from a very old version of NetBSD to Linux and in the process upgrading the Java VM, Apache, Tomcat and Cocoon. Sadly the old system doesn’t come with a lot of documentation and finding the source code has been tricky at times so theres been a lot of frustration. Of course the fact I only get to work on it part time isn’t helping much.

Evenings have pretty much been taken up with work on Ham and Jam and we’ve had a massive surge of development this month. John noted that this month has seen the
largest volume of commits to our SVN repository since the project began. We recently re-organised our team structure and things have definately improved and I’m really proud of what the teams achieved this month. Thanks to our Wiki and bug-tracking system development has got much more streamlined.

Regarding this blog entry’s title, I came across it on a story at Fox news. In the tired, stress addled state of my mind, it almost describes the Ham and Jam development process at times. 😀

Other stuff. I’ve been getting a lot of e-mail regarding some my other projects so I thought I’d address them here.

The 3DS Max SMD import plug-in has been put to one side for a while so that I can get some fairly important stuff done on Ham and Jam. With the project having this much momentum at the moment, it would be foolish not to take full advantage of it. That said, the SMD importer isn’t “abandoned” and I fully intend to get back into it in a week or so. As for a when it will be finished, that depends on how development goes.

I’ve also been asked about making my VTF tools 7.4 format compatible. The answer is yes, I fully intend to support 7.4 format and in fact I have versions sat on my hard disk now that do. There has been a slight hiccup though that I’m currently not able to fix in that Nem, who maintains the VTFLib library that my tools use, has sort of “vanished” into thin air. He sent me a pre-release of the next VTFLib update with 7.4 support but then disappeared and all attempts to contact him have failed.

I could release my tools with the version of the library he sent me, but apart from the risk of version “clash” of the DLLs, I’d rather not do it out of respect for Nem and the work he does. Nem, if you’re out there man get in touch just to let me know you’re O.K.

Lastly I got asked about making my GUIStudioMDL2 compiler compatible with the Orange Box SDK beta. The answer is no, i’m not planning to. I only support official “releases” of their toolchain as it’s too much work trying to update my tools to work with something that Valve themselves are constantly changing.