Tag Archives: Software

Snip Tool – A Free Snipping Tool Compatible With Windows XP

Are you familiar with the Snipping Tool in Windows 7? I can’t live without it, so I decided to build Snip Tool which is a direct ripoff of Snipping Tool, but this one works in Windows XP! It’s sort of a bonus I did for my other article Installing and Using Windows XP In The Year 2017.

Usage is the same as Snipping Tool. Running the program immediately puts you into snipping mode. Simply draw a rectangle around the screen region you wish to capture.

Requires Windows XP or better and .NET Framework 4.0.

Download Snip Tool

Installing and Using Windows XP In The Year 2017

Windows XP is no longer supported by Microsoft. Installing it will usually result in a less than satisfying experience, until some fixes are applied manually. This article will explain why and how to do that.

It’s 2017 For Crying Out Loud, Are You A Madman?

Yeah, yeah. Windows XP has it’s flaws. Microsoft doesn’t support it. Everyone says move to Windows 7/10. Security concerns and marketing scare tactics aside, there’s a whole lot of computers and laptops out there with Windows XP still, and here are a few reasons for maintaining such a machine:

  • The computer is a hand-me-down for a family member or kid. Nothing expensive to worry about if it gets damaged. You did pay for this thing, remember? You did purchase software and games for it back in the day, remember? Might as well squeeze out that extra ounce.
  • The computer cannot be upgraded to a newer version of Windows due to hardware requirements. You did pay for this thing, remember? Just because Microsoft doesn’t support it doesn’t mean you need to trash it. The computer still computes.
  • A service technician needs to interface with an old machine (like an office copier or PBX phone system), using an older cable interface such as 9-pin serial, or older software program such as MS-DOS. Sometimes Windows XP is the only solution here.
  • The computer is part of a legacy system or network environment that cannot be replaced without incurring overhead, downtime or fees. Chain restaurants like Subway may still use Windows XP for taking orders. These are typically disk imaged to make fast deployment and repair possible, working as a turnkey restaurant solution.
  • You want to run a virtual machine (VM) with a licensed copy of Windows for whatever reason.
  • You’re a cheapskate and thought it was a good idea to buy a computer w/ original media on eBay or at a pawn shop for $50. I won’t say that was a good idea, but you may still be in luck.
  • The computer is kept around for preference, nostalgia or cyberpunk/cypherpunk reasons. If it ain’t broke don’t fix it!

For these reasons it is a good idea to always save your Windows XP disc and serial number. These are things you paid money for, and there is no way to recover them if lost. Another important thing to save is the driver disc, because as these computers get old it becomes more difficult to find the drivers online.

Now let’s walk through the steps necessary to get this antique operating system up and running.

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A Game Engine From Scratch In JavaScript Part 4 – Editor & Debugger

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The editor serves as a live debugger and allows modifying the game objects in real-time. These are canvas sprites we’re talking about, not DOM elements. While this is still a work in progress, I wanted to share a screen capture so you can see how it might end up looking. The next screen capture shows some live editing capabilities.

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A Game Engine From Scratch in JavaScript Part 3 – Breakout

I wanted to make sure this engine would be comparable or maybe even easier to use than some of the other engines out there, with the ability to build a variety of game types and not just the game I was hoping to build. For this, I decided to go with Breakouts, which is a website that aims to help other developers compare and choose a game engine. So here’s my attempt…

It’s a work in progress, please check back soon for the full article:

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This GIF was recorded at 20 FPS; the game runs at 60.

Working: sound effects, level progression, game states, mouse/keyboard input, collision (a bit buggy), ball-bounce physics (a bit crude), sprites, spritesheets, sprite animations, rendering layers, async module/asset loader, fixed timestep. These are all provided by the core engine.

Not Working: power-ups, variable timestep, improved physics.

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A Game Engine From Scratch In JavaScript Part 2 – Physics

About 1-2 weeks ago I decided to make a game engine in my spare time. The most challenging aspect so far has been the handling of physics – how objects in the game behave when they collide.

I was able to get a few collision prototypes working. Here’s what the first prototype looks like, it could handle many moving objects, but the accuracy wasn’t perfect:

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Disclaimer: I do not own the graphics depicted in this article, nor do I have permission to use them in a commercial product. The graphics were found using Google Image search, and they are being used here solely for showcasing the engine’s capabilities and progress. The tree sprites are from Here Be Monsters, and the player/wolf sprites are from Ragnarok Online.

What you’re seeing in the screen capture above is a bunch of objects (wolf sprites) being spawned with a “roam” AI package, which just makes the objects move around. This AI package idea will be expanded upon later, but it’s kind of how Skyrim AI works, mixed with Final Fantasy XII Gambits – interchangeable and override-able behavior stacks for different scenarios.

(The screen capture above doesn’t reflect 60 FPS due to gif recording at the time. It’s also a .gifv image hosted by Imgur, my apology if the buffering is choppy…)

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Mist – Alpha Preview 1

Yet another project I’m working on…

Screenshot of the Edit menu, for real-time editing of meta-data, somewhat resembling a CMS:

mist1

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WP-OAuth Screenshot Preview

While I’m working on the next version of WP-OAuth – a free social login plugin for WordPress – I thought I’d drop this screenshot preview of some upcoming features.

There will be some new settings, such as having the ability to automatically logout inactive users, suppress the welcome email during registration, or assign a user role during registration (even in Multisite, which removes this option). We also have a bug fix for cloud-based hosting providers such as Heroku, courtesy of our first open-source contributor, larsschenk.

But aside from that, I’ve included provider icons for the login buttons and you’ll be able to change the icon size, choose from different icon sets, or easily design/include your own icons. This leads us towards new layouts, all of which are configurable via the settings page or shortcode attributes:

Links-Column layout, styling handled by the theme:

login-form-layout1a

Buttons-Column layout:

login-form-layout2c

Buttons-Row layout, no prefix or name:

login-form-layout3a

Buttons-Row layout, no prefix, name or padding:

login-form-layout3b

Settings page overhaul (again), now includes a shortcode designer and fully responsive/fluid layout for mobile devices:

settings page

Settings page responsive/fluid layout for mobile devices: Continue reading

Choices & Chances – A Choose Your Own Adventure Platform

Yet another project I’m working on…

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