Monthly Archives: September 2015

Learning by Action

Helllllooooooooooo World! I am back and better than ever.

This is not going to be my regularly scheduled blog post as I do normally before the end of the month, but I decided it wouldn’t hurt to get one out beforehand. I’ll still do my regular one however that is more detailed and project-oriented.

Sooooo some updates:

  • I got to go coding with Microsoft! Not only me, but also Ram , another SIF from last year! It was an awesome experience. We got to go tour Microsoft’s campus in Redmond, Washington and look at life around Microsoft. Primarily, however, we worked on a full week of coding for SCAMP or Simple Cloud Manager Project. It is a project to help Azure Cloud Service users and subscribers (such as Georgia State) to deploy fast, easy, and cost-effective resources to people who don’t need to learn behind the mechanisms of the cloud. So a teacher that needs a website can have one at the click of a button, a student project can go live in an instant, and multiple uses for scientific computing. Exciting stuff! However, it seems as if Microsoft took the initiative and decided to go closed-source on it and want to develop it by themselves, which is totally fine. I still have the code that I want to modify and understand once I learn C# from the 3D Atlanta Project. I got to learn a lot about the Cloud, networking, encryption, and programming at Microsoft, and using my newly-learned skills with….
  • … PantherHackers! I don’t want to make this a whole shpeel since this is my work blog (However, I’m thinking about having my own personal blog. ), but PantherHackers is a student organization that was created by the person with glasses standing next to me in the Microsoft article above, Caleb Lewis. We strive to offer the students of Georgia State a way to make their ideas become reality through the skill of coding and marketing their ideas to business and users. We hold a lot of our hack nights in the CURVE, so be sure to come check us out!
  • As of this year, I am also part of the newly formed CURVE advisory board! I’m the student representative for board. We’re having our first meeting this Thursday, but basically we regulate the policies , create new ideas, and establish relations of the CURVE space to the faculty and students of Georgia State University as well as the greater community of Atlanta, and by extension other academic institutions. You can check more on that in the annual report.

Well that about covers the highlights of the summer. I also went to Jekyll Island for my dad’s annual conference at the GAPPA (Georgia Association of Physical Plant Administrators) meeting. It was okay, but the sea wouldn’t let us in for swimming. 🙁 I also went to Gatlinburg, Tennessee over Labor Day, and my family discovered we loved hiking so much we’re trying to go to local Amicalola Falls one weekend. Next year we’ll try both Canada and New York, and maybe see if we can squeeze the Blue Ridge Mountains in there too (Highly recommended, Cheap-ish cabins and open wilderness).

For work related news, I got some exciting updates. For 3D Atlanta, we have old and new SIFs working together. I realized we need a framework to accomplish what we want to do, kind of like how we did for SCAMP. I’m thinking about making every building or object a literal object (in terms of code, technically it already is within the Unity Engine) and having its own JSON properties. This would allow the Research and 3D team to work together better. The research team could update their excel file, the file would be imported as JSON to Unity, Unity’s many JSON formatters like SimpleJSON would parse it, and then code would fire off events based on the JSON to create dummy buildings (or picture-created buildings ), UI for interactions (including Did you know? sections), and populate relevant artifacts from the Planning Atlanta Collection as well as Emory’s cool objects.

Sounds big? We’ll you’d be right it’s big. What you read is practically pseudocode for what should be a database-oriented project. Emory did something similar to this and we are contemplating that after we finish the Decatur Street, Ivy Avenue, Central Ave block whether we should focus more on quantity and not quality. I’m a aesthetic-type person, so the above is what I plan on trying to do through Unity whether through a plugin or some other means because I not only want the 3D project to go smoothly and efficiently, but I want it to look and interact alright too.

Right now, we are focused on getting Oculus-ready for our next demo. We’re gonna model like crazy and even ask other people, including classes here at GSU to help us model.

I’ll have more information on where 3D Atlanta is going, but I wrote a lot of text right now and just made this huge blog post for this reason:


Now I can play games and do work at the same time!

Hahahaha no, just kidding. In case you didn’t get it Blender is now on Steam, one of the most popular gaming communities. I’m using Steam so I can see how many hours I’ve logged into Blender. Pretty cool use for everyone to chat, stream, and collaborate on Blender for Steam.

Alright then, good stuff coming soon on the 3D project. Hope to see everyone in the rotation soon!