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Wyclef Jean was on Stern this morning and the topic of his new song, "Fast Car", came up. Wyclef explained how his brother had come up with the concept, and he (Wyclef) had written most of the song out, but it wasn't until he went to a charity event at Paul Simon's house that it all came together. He said that after shaking Paul's hand and checking out Paul's studio, he got hit with the vibe for the song and decided to go acoustic. He called Paul the next day and invited him to participate, to which Paul responded with something along the lines of "I'll grab my guitar and come on over!"
Five hours later, they had the song. Wyclef explained how Paul took everything he had written, and brought it all together in four lines (the bridge), which became Paul's part of the song.
It was just cool to picture Paul picking up his guitar, running over to Wyclef's place, and banging out a song. We have things KINDA like that happen here on NG, but it would be cool if it could happen on a level more like that. Like if everyone lived near eachother, and people could just run across the street and collaborate in real time whenever the spirit of the moment grabs them. I guess that's how Hollywood became Hollywood.
synjclock (5:20:30 PM): so hey
synjclock (5:20:41 PM): there was this group of girls that came by wonder-con
synjclock (5:20:46 PM): had an interesting conversation on NG
synjclock (5:20:55 PM): they were like, so what is this game
synjclock (5:20:58 PM): i go, castle crashers
synjclock (5:21:03 PM): and they go never heard of it
synjclock (5:21:11 PM): and then they pointed at salad fingers and dad n me
synjclock (5:21:16 PM): and i am like so you guys go to newgrounds?
synjclock (5:21:17 PM): they are like yeah
synjclock (5:21:26 PM): and i go so how is it you don't know about castle crashers
synjclock (5:21:31 PM): tom fulp works on it
synjclock (5:21:35 PM): and they go, who is tom fulp
synjclock (5:21:41 PM): and i laughed because i thought they were joking
synjclock (5:21:43 PM): but they weren't joking
synjclock (5:21:49 PM): and i was like wtf, how long have you been going
synjclock (5:21:53 PM): they all said around 3 years
synjclock (5:21:58 PM): i go, do you ever read the news??
synjclock (5:22:01 PM): they all said no
synjclock (5:22:09 PM): they said they just see a bunch of stuff at the top and click it
synjclock (5:22:36 PM): thought that was interesting
synjclock (5:22:45 PM): they also said they are more interested in the games than movies
synjclock (5:23:39 PM): thought that was interesting
synjclock (5:23:48 PM): they say they go almost daily
synjclock (5:23:49 PM): for 3 years
synjclock (5:23:55 PM): and they don't know anything about the site
Next time you're on some generic Flash site with copies of all the same stuff you can find on NG, just remember, these are the kind of assholes who set up sites like that:
In case that link goes dead, the project title is "Clone of Newgrounds", with a budget of $300-1000, and the job description reads:
"Basically I would like a FULL working clone of Newgrounds.com
The clone would need to have a full administration backend to manage users/submissions.
The clone would also include all graphics and also in the form of PSD so I can easily edit the graphics and buttons etc.
I pretty much want every feature newgrounds.com has in one easily contained script that I could proceed to install on multiple sites.
The FULL project amount will be sent after the script has been thoroughly tested on both yours and my server.
An easy installation process (much like those for other online scripts such as forum software etc.) would be a fantastic bonus, and a portfolio of related work would be great as well.
I am looking for someone who would be able to get this done quickly, as the script is in need ASAP and at a low budget."
So I'm at my desk, TRYING TO MAKE THE KNIGHTS STOP FALLING OUT OF BSP LINES, when Bob calls out "Hey these guys are from Perkasie!"
He was watching a video on YouTube about two "kinetic artists" who set up a long domino chain at the Brattleboro Museum and Art Center in Vermont. I walked up and was like, "OH MY GOD! That's Mike Perrucci! I ate lunch with that guy!"
Apparently, Mike and his brother also set up the domino intro for Penn and Teller's Showtime series back in 2005. I remember Mike used to make these really exact maps of Mario levels... Good to see his methodical talents have paid off!
Never order your Valentine's Day flowers from FTD. Rather than have them delivered by a local florist as they imply, they will FedEx them the day before and your special someone won't receive them until the day AFTER Valentine's Day.
The sad thing is, I placed my order EARLY. Bob ordered his flowers from another vendor just a few days ago and his wife got them early this afternoon.
The more time I spend working on CC, the less I can sleep. It started with changing my regular work day from 8 to 8 into 8 to 12... But after working all day Sunday, I came home and caught up on PMs, then felt guilty about going to bed with so much work left to do, so I went back to the office and worked straight through until Monday night. Today was 7am to 1:30am. It's always the same, I finally come home, lay in bed... Try to clear my head... Feel like I'm about to fall asleep, but then I don't. And then I can't. So I get back up and either go back to the office or sit here on my laptop trying to put some thoughts down for the next day.
And working on CC itself is kinda like trying to fall asleep. You have that moment where you think you're almost there, but then your mind starts racing with ideas and thoughts and you just can't stop it, and suddenly you're nowhere near being there. But it has to be like that because that's what will make it great. They call it scope creep, but we really do have the scope pretty well under control right now, we just gotta follow through with everything so we don't regret leaving anything out.
Making the console version of Alien Hominid felt like one of those "only do this once" projects. Not that the opportunity only comes once, but that for my own mental health, I should only do it once. But here I am. After 15 months of development on AH, we told ourselves our next game would be something more simple, but it just doesn't happen like that... The next game always has to be bigger and better than the last, or else your moving backwards. And CC will certainly be big, and much better.
As the development of Castle Crashers has stretched out over a few years, I've felt a growing sense of self-loathing. After Comic-Con I finally just accepted that I will derive little joy from life until this game is finished. And that's just the reality of how it's gonna be and that's why even right now I should be programming instead of writing this. On that note...
I hate it when I have a small window of time to sleep, and I know I need the sleep or else it will completely fuck up my next day, but that knowledge causes anxiety that makes me unable to sleep, so then I'm just totally fucked. And I'm too wound up thinking about all the shit I'm working on and all the shit I have to work on tomorrow, and getting pissed off that I'm trying to sleep instead of just going back to the office and getting back to work.
Last night around 9pm, my cell phone rang with a number from the UK. I was thinking maybe it was James and there was some sort of emergency, so I answered it. Low and behold, it was Luis calling from the UK Meetup!
He was there with the likes of NegativeOne, Luka, AlmightyHans and a bunch of UK regulars like The Super Flash Bros and Mogly. The fact that so many guys flew out to the UK really made me feel like crap that I wasn't there. Not to mention I'm missing Luis' birthday.
So of course they pass the phone around, and everyone asks me what I'm doing... As usual, I was at the office, and I just happened to be working on Castle Crashers. I felt like I couldn't even take myself seriously as I said it, though. Like HAS HE REALLY BEEN WORKING ON CASTLE CRASHERS FOR OVER THREE YEARS?
And the answer is yes, I have. And there's no good way to really express what that feels like, to work on one thing for over three years and not being able to prove it until you finish... Which is why I've been working EXTRA HARD this month to finish it. I had actually been programming for 12 hours straight before the call, with a break for lunch. I had spent the past six hours programming a BALL OF SLIME, as pathetic as that sounds. :(
So in unrelated news, it was brought to my attention that John Mayer posted a rave about Justin Timberlake, in particular, the exact same part of Lovestoned that I raved about in my infamous JT post. He even goes as far as to play it on his guitar.
To quote JM: "Not so much for the "Lovestoned" part, but for the 45 seconds of ultimate sonic bliss that is "I Think She Knows. It's JT's breakthrough moment as an artist; a novel mix of Coldplay guitar lines, hip hop beats and a vocal approach somewhere in between. When that track comes on I spend the first 3:30 preparing for the awesomeness to come."
I actually think the version on the radio doesn't hold a candle to what it sounded like live on the HBO special, so to get the true experience, listen to the live performance with good speakers. I feel justified in liking it because I compare it to a Depeche Mode backdrop with something Trent Reznor might play on the piano, with some cool beats. JT just happens to be there too.
That's enough rambling for today; I've got a thieving imp to finish.
Tonight I've been browsing around NG, pecking around for neat stuff in the midst of a programming bender. And I found the perfect movie for late night viewing... A cap opener man comes. When I watch it I'm like "this is what it feels like in my brain right now!"
And the music is really cool, so I was delighted to see it came from the Audio Portal. Nothing gives me more pleasure than watching the pieces of NG come together like that. And I want it MORE and BIGGER because I'm insatiable.
The timing couldn't have been any better; just as I was struggling to figure out why some new Google ad code wasn't loading up properly from our ad server (it works now), Bob approached my desk with a box from Google. I opened the box and observed a little leather pouch (like something you would carry business cards in), so my first impression was, "Oh cute, they gave me a little leather pouch... That's a step above just sending a card." But there was more...
Inside the leather pouch was something the size of a credit card, but the thickness of a piece of cardboard. A note read, "Ultra thin 2.0 USB flash memory drive with 2GB of storage." Sure enough, a piece at the end of the card flips out as a USB plug! I've never seen one so thin before. I took a picture but I can't find the USB cable for my camera to put the pics on my computer... If only my camera had a jack to plug this card into.
The box also had a traditional holiday card containing a gift card for DonorsChoose.org, where one can choose individual school projects to donate money too! This is MUCH cooler than those "we've made a donation on your behalf" gifts, where you don't know for sure if they really DID make the donation. I loaded up the site, found a school in Philly that was trying to upgrade their computers, and donated the money myself. I was surprised to find I had $100 on the gift card!
In case anyone wonders what a Google holiday card says, I figured I might as well include that too:
"Thank you for your partnership with Google this year. To show our appreciation, Google would like to support a public school classroom of your choosing through DonorsChoose.org.
DonorsChoose.org is a non-profit organization where you can choose a classroom project to bring to life - a reading corner, a field trip, a computer lab, or whatever most inspires you.
When you redeem the enclosed gift code, you will give books, art supplies, technology, or other resources to students in low-income communities.
Thank you for taking the time to help us give back."
Those Google folks have a lot of class.