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Topics - Deozaan [ switch to compact view ]

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DC Gamer Club / Ludum Dare 46: April 17th-20th, 2020
« on: April 02, 2020, 04:18 AM »
Ludum Dare 46 is coming up in just two weeks.

It has been two years since I last participated in a Ludum Dare event (LD41 in April 2018), and I'm gearing up to do it once again as a team effort.

Right now you can submit theme suggestions, after which the Theme Slaughter will begin. I'll try to remember to post more details to this thread as we get closer to the start (and end) of the event, but it's likely you won't hear much from me during the 72-hour jam.

Feel free to discuss any aspect of LD46 in this thread, including any games you might try out once the event has completed.

EDIT: My team made Defendeer for LD46.

See previous DC posts about Ludum Dare:

Ludum Dare 45 Reviews - A thread about LD45 games
Ludum Dare 41 - (My team made It's Not Lupus! for LD41)
Ludum Dare 2017 Thread - A thread about games from LD37 and LD38
Ludum Dare 33 - A thread about LD33 games
Ludum Dare 32 - (I made Time Bomb during LD32)
Ludum Dare 31 - (I made Worm Wars during LD31)
Ludum Dare 30 - (I made Planetary Devourers during LD30)
Ludum Dare 29 - (I made It Came From... Beneath!! during LD29)
Ludum Dare [29] topic for other games - A thread about LD29 games
Ludum Dare 23 - (I made Be Tiny, World! during LD23, and continued to work on it and improve it for years afterward!)
Ludum Dare - Game Programming Challenges

Living Room / Looking for audio merger Y-cable
« on: March 12, 2020, 10:58 PM »
I'd like an audio Y-cable that can take two audio inputs and merge them into a single audio output. My searches so far find only audio splitters rather than audio mergers, which tells me that either such a thing does not exist or I don't know what they're called and thus am not using the correct search terms to find what I'm looking for.

Does anyone here know whether or not such a thing exists, and if so, what they're called or where I can find them?

I suppose it doesn't need to be a Y-cable. But I would like something that can take two audio inputs and merge them into a single audio output which I can connect my headphones to and hear both at the same time without disturbing others near me. Preferably something small, uncomplicated (no additional power source or software, etc. required), and inexpensive.

Thanks in advance for your helpful input on the topic. :Thmbsup:

Living Room / Do good mice still exist? Looking for recommendations.
« on: February 13, 2020, 05:57 PM »
Hello all,

Sorry that this turned into a bit of a rant, but I felt I needed to explain my many years of frustrations with trying to find a reliable mouse for my computer.

I used to be a big fan of an older, wired, Logitech Trackman mouse. It lasted me somewhere between 5-10 years before it was stolen along with my computer. When I looked for a replacement, they didn't offer it anymore, and the closest I could find was the wireless Logitech M570 ($50-$60). It was basically the same design, but wireless, so I figured it was good enough. And I liked it well enough until a couple years later I started having issues which indicate that the microswitch is failing in the mouse button(s).

1. Sometimes a click doesn't register at all.
2. Sometimes a single click registers as a double click.
3. Sometimes a click & drag registers as a single click & release.

When it started happening, it was so rare that I'd think it was just user error. But as time went on the problem grew worse and worse until every few clicks would result in one of the above symptoms happening.

So I bought a new mouse of the same model. Over the course of the next couple of years, the same issue would arise. So I bought a new mouse of the same model and repeated the process again. The primary reason for buying the same model again and again was because I wanted the trackball controlled with my thumb, and it was the only model I could find that was designed like that. I was annoyed that the microswitch kept failing so quickly, but to me the thumb trackball was a must-have feature. But eventually I started feeling pain in my thumb/wrist from my use of the trackball, so I decided to go for a more traditional style of a mouse to give my thumb a rest.

So then I got another Logitech mouse which I think was similar to the Logitech M705 ($50). And within a couple of years I experienced the same issues as previous mice.

By this time I was tired of "throwing away" $50+ every couple of years on new mice when the mice I'd had in the past had lasted me longer than the computers I was using them on. So I decided I'd just go buy a crappy cheapo mouse and if it crapped out on me within 1-2 years then that wouldn't be any worse than the big brand mice I'd been using, and it would save me money along the way.

Somewhere in the middle of all this I started buying replacement microswitches and dipping my toes into the soldering required to replace them in my own mice, but of course the microswitches I bought off of places like aliexpress or Deal Extreme were cheap ones that began failing within about a year and the time and effort of doing the soldering myself made me look for the cheapest (and least time-consuming) way I could get a functional mouse again.

So I started buying the AmazonBasics 3-button wired mouse for $6-$7 and was not disappointed. They're a little small, but they're functional, don't need batteries, and they usually last about a year or so before the clicking issue becomes unbearable. Really the only complaint (aside from the expected short lifespan) is that the small size can lead to some relatively minor hand cramping.

After going through several of those over the course of several years, I decided I'd try my luck with a more expensive mouse that might be a bit higher quality and last a little longer, so I bought the AmazonBasics Gaming Mouse (~$25) advertised as having "gaming-optimized Omron mouse switches—durable up to 50 million clicks."From my perspective, this mouse was 3-4 times as expensive as the $6-$7 mouse, so it should last 3-4 times as long to be cost effective.

Within 9 months the clicking issues were already annoying me so much I wrote a negative review on Amazon about it. Then, just before the 1-year warranty was up, I got a free replacement in the hopes that the first one was just a fluke. Again, about 7-9 months after receiving the replacement, the clicking issues started becoming obnoxious again. It seems crazy to me that this "gaming quality" mouse has a shorter lifespan than the cheapest piece of junk mouse they sell!

So, desperate to find anything worthwhile, and willing to try just about anything, I decided to try the Nulaxy Vertical mouse ($12-$15). I should have known not to trust an unheard of brand like Nulaxy, but I figured if it lasted a year or so then it might be worth it for the extra comfort that would come from the more ergonomic vertical design.

But nope! In the first week of use I already experienced the clicking issues, as well as other problems that make it unacceptable as my regular, every day mouse. I'm returning it.

Where are all the good mice? How come nothing I've bought in the past decade (or longer) has lasted me at least 2 years?

Right now I'm back to the tried and true, cheapo $7 wired AmazonBasics 3-button mouse and pretty much given up hope of finding any decent mouse that will last a good 5-10 years. Is there anything that lasts even 2-5 years anymore? I can get about 18 months of life out of this simple mouse before I feel it needs a replacement. I'm willing to spend more money on a mouse, but I expect it to last me long enough for the cost to be justified. If I buy a $70 mouse it better last me close to 10 years (or maybe only 5 if it's extremely comfortable and/or has convenient features).

I'm starting to get wild ideas of just buying the $6-$7 AmazonBasics 3-button mouse, taking it apart, and putting the internals into a custom made, 3D-printed shell that is more comfortable to hold. Maybe I'll design my own vertical-style mouse shell and finally have a comfortable mouse that will last me a good 1.5 years or more before needing an inexpensive repair/replacement.

And my experience with short keyboard lifespans has been similar, though not quite as drastic. I really loved the Logitech K800, but didn't like paying $100 every 3 years when the keys started failing just after the warranty expired.

Living Room / Google Home Mini - Is yours as useless as mine?
« on: January 27, 2020, 10:23 PM »
Okay, it's not really mine, but someone I know recently got a Google Home Mini and at first it worked fine. Then a day or two later it started refusing to do anything, saying something to the effect of "Sorry, I can't play music while content filters are enabled."

The owner and I both looked through the Google Home settings and saw that no content filters were enabled. We managed to get it working again by actually setting up the content filters and setting them to "can play anything." Then a few days later, it started refusing to do anything again, giving the same excuse about content filters. Somehow we got it working again, maybe by disabling the content filters, but once again only for a couple of days and now it's refusing to do anything again, saying that content filters are enabled and preventing it from playing music.

I'm exaggerating a little. When I say it is refusing to do anything, it probably would still answer questions asked of it. But it refuses to play music, and that's the primary reason it was obtained (it came free with a Spotify subscription).

I've tried searching for a solution, but the only results I seem to get are help pages telling me how to enable content filters. We don't want content filters or restrictions of any kind. We just want music! My search results are not showing any forum posts by others experiencing similar issues and troubleshooting steps to resolve the issue.

So how do we get the thing to realize that there are no content filters enabled, and just play music when people ask it to?

General Software Discussion / In search of good Equalizer Software
« on: January 17, 2020, 12:18 PM »
I'm looking for good equalizer software for my PC (Windows 10).

My speakers are, by default, very bass heavy, and very light on the treble. In order for me to be able to clearly hear the upper range, such as talking, I have to turn the volume up loud enough that when some deep/low bass sound comes out, it's very loud.

I used to have access to something on Windows 7. I think maybe it was the audio driver software. But (1) it didn't allow me to adjust the levels as much as I wanted to and (2) on Windows 10 my audio works without installing the driver from the manufacturer, so the equalizer software that came with the driver is no longer installed on my machine.

Does anyone know of any good software that allows me to adjust the levels for a particular audio output device? That is, I tend to use headphones a lot, and they are fine and don't need adjustments. But when I'm just using the regular speakers I would like to be able to crank up the treble and vastly reduce the bass.


Last night I told my computer to go to sleep and left it as it was doing its thing since it can take a good 10-20 seconds to fully go down into sleep mode. This morning I returned to my PC to find it hadn't fully entered sleep mode. The displays were off, power had been cut from USB devices, but I could hear that the fans were still running.

Wiggling/clicking the mouse gave no response. Pressing keys on my keyboard resulted in no response, other than the keyboard backlighting briefly turning on and then off again (it turns off when my PC enters sleep mode). Pressing the power button on the tower resulted in no response.

It didn't occur to me to try ctrl-alt-del at the time, and I ended up just holding the power button long enough until it fully powered down.

When I turned the machine back on I was greeted by a BSOD before it even made it to the "loading Windows" startup animation. After the machine rebooted itself it went into self diagnostic and ended up checking the disk(s) for errors. Then it told me it couldn't repair the problem.

If I manually boot from my OS SSD from the BIOS (UEFI) I get an error saying something to the effect of:

"NTLDR is missing. Press ctrl-alt-del to restart your computer"

Everything I've found in my searches on the error seems to indicate that this error message is for Windows XP/7 and I should only be seeing it if I upgraded my PC from an older version of Windows to Windows 10. But I haven't done that. I have formatted this SSD and installed a fresh copy of Windows 10 on it in the past.

Other guides I've seen either don't work (probably because they're written for Windows XP/7) or I can't be guaranteed whether or not they'll work since they suggest using some program(s) (usually partition managers) that are not free, and I'm hesitant to buy something that I'll likely only need this one time without knowing for sure that it will solve my problem.

I've booted into a Linux Live USB and the SSD itself seems to be functioning properly and the data appears to be in tact.

It seems the problem stems from the fact that the PC failed to fully enter sleep mode. Perhaps that changed some files or boot configurations and I just need to modify or replace some files somewhere, but so far I haven't found any useful information that is actually helping me to repair the boot problem.

Any helpful tips, suggestions, or pointers would be greatly appreciated.

DC Gamer Club / Steam launches Remote Play Together feature
« on: November 01, 2019, 09:43 PM »
A recent update to Steam comes with a beta release of Remote Play Together.

Put simply, Remote Play Together allows you to play games online with your friends. That is, games that feature local (split screen or "couch co-op") multiplayer only, with no networking capabilities, can now be played online with your friends. And only the host of the game needs to own the game in their library.

Or put another way, if a game supports multiple people playing on the same device simultaneously (usually using gamepads) then it can now work online through Remote Play Together.

Anyone up for some gaming? I have a number of local co-op games that I haven't really played much because I never really had anyone to play with. It might be fun to organize some play sessions.

If you have a Keybase account, or if you create a new Keybase account and link your GitHub or HackerNews account(s) that were created before the announcement, you should be eligible to receive a giveaway (airdrop) of the cryptocurrency called Stellar Lumens.

I received about $20 worth of Lumens last night, and they're giving away more each month divided equally between everyone who joins and is eligible.

As a surprise gift, the Stellar Development Foundation just starting sending 100 million Lumens, worth $5 million USD, to 300,000 Keybase users. There are lots of different tokens on Stellar, but Lumens are Stellar's native token, and SDF wants real people of the world to have them.

This surprise giveaway translated to something like $19.54 USD worth of Lumens for each active Keybase user. No strings attached, and those Lumens are going out now, to be delivered by Sept 13th or so.

But that's only the beginning.

SDF is dropping 100 million Lumens next month. And the month after that.

In total, they are giving 2 billion Lumens (roughly $117 million USD) out using Keybase over the next 20 months. On the 15th of each month (starting Oct 15, 2019), SDF will give the next batch, divided equally among everyone.

Those who join now will participate every month until the end. So people who join earlier will get more.

To qualify: you must have a Keybase account registered before this announcement OR if you're new to Keybase, you must connect your Keybase account to a GitHub or HackerNews account that was registered before this announcement. This is to prevent bot signups to Keybase.

More details here:

And for reference, here's a link to the Keybase thread on this forum.

General Software Discussion / How to convert FLAC albums to tracks?
« on: August 18, 2019, 04:44 PM »
I recently used Music Box Alpha to rip a bunch of CDs because they make it dead simple to make guaranteed accurate rips with CUETools (CUERipper).

The only problem is that they rip the entire album to a single FLAC file. But sometimes I want to listen to or play only a specific/single track and not all media players support that. For example, Plex Media Server shows the album as a single, hour-long (or more) track, which makes "shuffle play" kind of useless if you don't want to listen to an entire album at a time.

So now I'm on the lookout for something that can take my perfectly ripped FLAC files and export them as individual tracks using the metadata from the associated CUE file for proper filenames and tags, etc. Ideally the individual tracks would also be FLAC, but I'm willing to accept MP3 for convenience sake.

It would also be nice if it could download the album (cover) art based on the metadata as well, but that's not a requirement.


My PC updated to the Windows 10 1903 update a week or two ago and I've noticed that the audio in my headphones is really quiet now.

Whereas usually I had the volume set to the 20-30% range, sometimes turning it up to about 40-50% if it was too noisy around me, now I have to have the volume cranked to 100% with Loudness Equalization enabled to be able to hear decently in a relatively quiet environment (e.g., with maybe a quiet TV on in the background). Sometimes the audio coming through my headphones is still just too quiet for me to be able to hear what's going on on my PC, such as when the TV gets turned up or people are talking too loudly, and I have no recourse since I can't turn the volume up any higher than 100%.

I've done some searching for potential solutions but everything seems to suggest either rolling back the driver (which isn't an option for me; the button is grayed out and disabled) or reinstalling the previous/manufacturer's driver (I've never used any driver for this headset other than the Windows built-in driver). These headphones aren't anything special. Just two little speakers connected to an audio jack. There are no special buttons or volume controls on the cable, etc., that would require custom drivers.

Does anyone know of a way to get the audio working back to the way it was before the 1903 update? Or perhaps can anybody recommend some software that allows me to boost/equalize the audio coming from my PC?

Thanks in advance. I hope to hear from you soon. ;)

EDIT: Maybe I spoke too soon. Just after posting this message I rebooted my PC so that Windows could finish installing a cumulative update and when it got back into Windows, the volume was set to 20% and I can take it all the way up to 100%, with it getting louder than I'd like at around the 50% range. So it seems things are back the way they were for me. :Thmbsup:

DC Gamer Club / Assassin's Creed Unity free for a week
« on: April 18, 2019, 10:54 AM »
In support of Notre Dame, which was badly damaged in a fire earlier this week, Ubisoft is giving away Assassin's Creed Unity, which prominently features the cathedral, for a week on their Uplay store.

They've also pledged to donate €500,000 to help rebuild Notre Dame.

As the smoke clears on the events that unfolded on Monday at the Notre-Dame de Paris, we stand in solidarité with our fellow Parisians and everyone around the world moved by the devastation the fire caused. Notre-Dame is an integral part of Paris, a city to which we are deeply connected. Seeing the monument in peril like this affected us all.

In light of Monday's events, we will be donating €500,000 to help with the restoration and reconstruction of the Cathedral. We encourage all of you who are interested to donate as well. In addition, we want to give everyone the chance to experience the majesty and beauty of Notre-Dame the best way we know how. For one week, we will be giving Assassin's Creed Unity away free on PC, for anyone who wants to enjoy it. You can download it now for Uplay PC here:

When we created Assassin's Creed Unity, we developed an even closer connection with this incredible city and its landmarks – one of the most notable elements of the game was the extraordinary recreation of Notre-Dame.

Video games can enable us to explore places in ways we never could have otherwise imagined. We hope, with this small gesture, we can provide everyone an opportunity to appreciate our virtual homage to this monumental piece of architecture.

Recently I was wondering how I could get a file from a headless Linux VM onto a different Windows machine, and thought it would be super useful to have some kind of file sharing service which could be accessed from the command line. Almost like a pastebin, but for files rather than just text.

A quick search revealed something called which allows you to send files up to 10 GB with no complicated setup required.

  • Made for use with shell
  • Share files with a URL
  • Upload up to 10 GB
  • Files stored for 14 days
  • For free
  • Encrypt your files
  • Preview your files in the browser

An example of how to use it:
$ curl --upload-file ./hello.txt

And there's even an onion link:

I'd never heard of it but searched the DC forum in case I'd missed some previous mention of it, and found that a relatively new member of the forum posted a link using it just a couple weeks ago, here: https://www.donation....msg428747#msg428747

It's open source, too, so if you want to host it yourself you can do that:

This code contains the server with everything you need to create your own instance. currently supports the s3 (Amazon S3), gdrive (Google Drive) providers, and local file system (local).

I hope others here find this useful.

Details are scarce as it seems Google is withholding information until more people have had a chance to update to a version of Chrome which doesn't have the vulnerability. This is the most specific information I found:

According to the official release notes, this vulnerability involves a memory mismanagement bug in a part of Chrome called FileReader.

That’s a programming tool that makes it easy for web developers to pop up menus and dialogs asking you to choose from a list of local files, for example when you want to pick a file to upload or an attachment to add to your webmail.

When we heard that the vulnerability was connected to FileReader, we assumed that the bug would involve reading from files you weren’t supposed to.

Ironically, however, it looks as though attackers can take much more general control, allowing them to pull off what’s called Remote Code Execution, or RCE.

RCE almost always means a crooks can implant malware without any warnings, dialogs or popups.

Just tricking you into looking at a booby-trapped web page might be enough for crooks to take over your computer remotely.

I'm curious if this affects all Chromium-based browsers. :-\

Living Room / Coinbase Earn - Get Paid Crypto to Learn About Crypto
« on: February 27, 2019, 02:24 PM »
Learn a Little, Earn a Little

Coinbase recently (December 2018) launched Coinbase Earn:

Coinbase Earn allows users to earn cryptocurrencies, while learning about them in a simple and engaging way. The idea is for users to understand more about an asset’s utility and its underlying technology, while getting a bit of the asset to try out.

I received an email about it this week with an offer to receive about $10 worth of Basic Attention Token (BAT) for learning about BAT and the Brave browser (which I've mentioned here before). There were four "lessons" for me to take, each one consisting of watching a short video and answering a 1-question quiz, which took me about 2-3 minutes (each) to complete. The final one had me sign into my Coinbase account from the Brave browser instead of taking a quiz. I completed the whole thing (including installing Brave) within about 10-15 minutes.

Right now Coinbase Earn is invite only (with invites being controlled by Coinbase, so I can't invite you myself), but you can go to the Coinbase Earn site and check out each set of lessons and join the waitlist for each one that interests you.

Note: I am not being compensated in any way to share this information. I just thought some folks here may be interested in this opportunity to earn a little "free" cryptocurrency in exchange for learning about them. :Thmbsup:

Found Deals and Discounts / Affinity Designer Workbook 50% off
« on: February 14, 2019, 11:52 AM »
I got an email from Affinity with a link that can be used to buy the Affinity Designer Workbook at a 50% discount which comes to $25 (+$5 shipping) in the USA.


It says the offer is available for a limited time, but doesn't specify when it ends.

General Software Discussion / Full Windows 10 on Raspberry Pi 3!
« on: January 16, 2019, 09:45 PM »
I came across this tweet thread saying full Windows 10 on Raspberry Pi is possible, linking to this Github repository for instructions and details on how to do it.

I've got a Raspberry Pi 3 B+ not doing anything worthwhile, so I decided to give it a try. My first attempt was unsuccessful. I'm making another attempt as I write this, but decided to post about it here in case anyone else would be interested and maybe we could help each other get a working install.

In my first attempt, I tried Windows 10 Pro 18237 image and the 1.2 Core Package. After deploying to the SD card I plugged it in and attempted to boot up. Eventually it just got stuck in a BSOD boot-loop. The stop code is DRIVER_UNLOADED_WITHOUT_CANCELLING_PENDING_OPERATIONS.

In my second attempt, I'm using the same image but trying the 1.0 Core Package. If there's any interest, I'll report back on things later.

DC Gamer Club / Latest Epic Games Store Giveaway
« on: December 24, 2018, 01:30 AM »
Epic Games recently launched their own digital games store, bringing more competition to similar services such as Steam and GOG.

They're currently running a promotion where they are giving away one game every two weeks. From now until December 27th, 2018, they're giving away Subnautica, and from Dec 28 2018 until Jan 10 2019 they'll be giving away Super Meat Boy.

The games must be claimed using the Epic Games store/launcher:

I came to my PC today to find a message in the notification area telling me that a Photos Add-on had been installed. I clicked it to see what it was all about and it opened the Microsoft Store to the product page.

Photos Add-on is essentially free DLC for the Photos app. While my first impression of the software leaves me questioning its usefulness (it created a bunch of albums for me, but only from photos taken around 5 years ago), this post isn't really about the software itself. This is about the disturbing fact that Microsoft thinks it can (and should) install software on my PC without even asking me first. In my mind, this is different from bundling software with the OS installer, or even OS updates. While that is annoying, it could be said that the bundled software is part of the "feature improvements" the update brings.

But this was not an OS update. It was not even a Photos app update. It is just an out-of-the-blue download-and-install on a random day for no reason other than just because Microsoft decided they wanted me to have it.

It's disturbing and makes me feel violated in some sense. Like I had a home-invasion from someone who saw through my windows that I eat bread and thought I'd really enjoy a certain flavor of jam to go with my bread.

One more piece of evidence to back up the axiom that security and convenience are often mutually exclusive.

It seems "hackers" and law enforcement have a new tool in their toolbelt for getting into people's phones: a 3D printed head/face can unlock some devices.

Forbes reporter Thomas Brewster commissioned a 3D printed model of his own head to test the face unlocking systems on a range of phones — four Android models and an iPhone X.

Bad news if you’re an Android user: only the iPhone X defended against the attack.

But, at least in the case of law enforcement, it's more likely they would just compel you to press your finger or show your face to your device to unlock it, rather than make a 3D print of your head.

Even still, the fact that a 3D print can bypass security measures reveals a fundamental risk:

“A situation where you couldn’t get the actual person but could use a 3D print model may exist,” he said. “I think the big threat is that a system where anyone — cops or criminals — can get into your phone by holding your face up to it is a system with serious security limits.”


Those cheering on the “death of the password” might want to think again. They’re still the only thing that’s keeping your data safe from the law.

If you launch the client you can claim Destiny 2 for free between now and November 18.

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