The new look is here!

Okay everyone, MERRY CHRISTMAS (or whatever holiday you're currently celebrating).

I decided to go ahead and cut over to the new look today. Over the last several weeks, I've had to fight the CSS code, the author of the template, then review and update every article on the site. IThe links are all redone and the reviews are updated to reflect changed equipment and so on. Please enjoy!

Roster Builder 3.5 is here!

I have busted my butt to get to the point to write this. Roster Builder 3.5 is on-line!

I have managed to get a few improvements into this version:

  • I have added "All/None" buttons for unit types and Organizations to help with the filtering when building a roster.
  • I "externalized" the Gunnery/Pilot matrix so I can update it when (not if) CGL changes it in the future. It was set in the code before and I would have had to release a new application version to update it. This will do it easily for both you and I because the app checks for and auto-downloads updates when it starts.
  • When building a roster, any unit in the pool who's BV is greater than the BV left in the list will turn red, so it's easier to see who will "fit or not."

I also discovered a lot of missing movement values (400+) in the main database. If you have a unit in your inventory with that issue, please delete it from and reload it into your inventory.

The one future feature I want to put in is a capability to build Alpha Strike rosters. What I am still working out is what information to put in the mouseover window. Please, all feedback on what you want to see would be greatly appreciated. I played AS once, at Adeptcon like 5+ years ago, so I don't remember a lot about it.

Work continues apace on the Mac/Linux versions. I am now writing the code to be compatible with all enviroments, 90% of which is addressing disk operations, the rest being screen formatting. I am momentarily stuck because I discovered a bug in one module about text alignment on a button. I'm stuck until the author gets the fix through the approval process and releases it into the wild.

The new format for the website is up and ready, I am still grokking on if I want to go through with the last feature, which would be to provide a map of players by Zip Code and gaming stores by address. It's already being done, but (to me) it's clunky and you don't have a way to reach out to the other players. My main hurdle is I would have to buy a dating extension for my website and that will run me about $100. Hit the Contact Me page to arrange send cash if you want it to happen. Either way, I'm putting the new website up on NYE.

Getting so close...

I am making a lot of progress on the website revamp. I have gotten many things aligned properly, and just need to work out a couple of issues.

-CSS to change one module is not working, despite my trying everything without result. If you know CSS, please help. I will pay you for your time. hehehe, I had been beating my head on my desk for a week over this, and less than an hour after I wrote this article, my mind had grokked fully and I figured it out.

-I am trying to add a map where you can add your comtact information and you can see who is near you. A Google map of "Find Battletech Players by Zip coide."

-I am also shuffling my "deep dive" articles around to regroup them into more sensible categories.

I am setting the official roll out to 1/1/21. I may move it up if I get everything done and tested ahead of schedule.

December Painting Challenge

Since my last update, I've advanced only 25 steps. I didn't get anything done this past week for a variety of reasons, including a LOT of work on the new web page, house maintenance, a pet died and a few more things.

Days left: 390
Steps from last report: 1147
Steps left: 1122
Units in Weekly Delta: -22
this stage Delta Current status: On-Track
126 0 Ready 38.9%
14 0 Repair 4.3%
0 0 Garnish 0.0%
0 0 Sealed 0.0%
1 0 Dipped 0.3%
45 0 Detail Painted 13.9%
61 0 Base painted 18.8%
22 0 Basecoated 6.8%
0 0 Unpainted 0.0%
7 0 Unassembled 2.2%
48 0 Unpurchased 14.8%

 

Hopefully I'll be able to get some BIHPOM time this coming week. I'm not comfortable with only a +32 par. See you in 2021!

Changes are coming

I have grown weary of how graphics intensive the front page is, so I'm doing something about it. I dug up an old template that I bought to make another website in a project that fell through and never ended up using. I have been working with it in a "sandbox" environment (as opposed to this "production" website. In other words, you don't see it) and I am almost ready. I am still working out a few minor adjustments and one new feature.

Once I get those done, I'll move the changes over to here in the course of a weekend, probably overnight. Once that's done, I'm sure you will appreciate how much the website loads faster and certain items will be easier to find.

Painting challenge report is next week. See you then!

Switching Gears

I think I am putting too big of a resposibility load on myself by trying to report weekly. Every time I head home from work during the week I tell myself, "You need to put in the painting time!" Yet I am mentally exhausted by the time I get home and only the looming weekly deadline time makes me panic even more. I've also been catching up on several major house issues, so my BIHPOM time (pronounced BISH-POM and means "Brush In Hand, Paint On Miniature", go read See Mark Paint) has been difficult to say the least.

I have managed to get the current Team Banzai inventory of 25 miniatures all up to Detail Painted, and even started applying paint to the dozen 1st Davion Guards to move them to the same milestoone. I also got a repair in as well. Once I figure out what I want to get for the last eleven 'Mechs for Team Banzai, plus the last eight vehicle miniatures for the 101st Irregulars, that will give me an easy boost.

I am also shifting the reporting here to monthly. I have 57 weeks left to go, I don't want to flood my feed (and you) with that many posts on the same subject. So, until I get this done, the first Monday of every month will be "report day."

Here's the numbers. My current Par is +53:

Days left: 404
Steps from last report: 1154
Steps left: 1147
Units in Weekly Delta: 7
this stage Delta Current status: On-Track
126 1 Ready 38.9%
14 -1 Repair 4.3%
0 0 Garnish 0.0%
0 0 Sealed 0.0%
1 0 Dipped 0.3%
30 6 Detail Painted 9.3%
73 -6 Base painted 22.5%
25 0 Basecoated 7.7%
0 0 Unpainted 0.0%
0 0 Unassembled 0.0%
55 0 Unpurchased 17.0%

I get four days off this week due to Thanksgiving, I hope I can get a lot done then.

Painting Challenge Week 4

What did I get done this week? Not a damn thing. But then again, I had to prepare for, hold and recover from a tournament Saturday. I did update a couple of articles here, so there's that too.

I did get a bit of painting in this afternoon, but not enough to advance anybody and steps officially. I plan on finishing up what Team Banzai I have left and detail painting my 1st Davion Guards.

Painting Challenge Week 3

Work continues apace. I made my quota, however I am disconcerned that I am only getting basically just eight hours total over Friday, Saturday and Sunday to paint. Granted, I have to spend time with my family, house maintenance, eat, sleep, work and other things on top of those (Including a great game aid to premere soon!). I guess this is a roundabout way of telling myself I'm lucky to have painting time at all. I could be stuck in a low-paying job where I have to work a second (or third) job, 80-100 hours a week to have a roof and food for my family.

I am very blessed. With what I've been through, I am honestly surprised I'm still here. I sincerely you, dear reader, are blessed as well. No matter what, when the son comes up in the morning we can open our eyes, sit up and take nourishment. Be humble, greatful and thankful for those things, every day. I sure am.

Enough of the weepy shit. Here's the numbers:

Days left: 418
Steps from last report: 1177
Steps left: 1154
Units in Weekly Delta: 23
this stage Delta Current status: On-Track
125 0 Ready 38.6%
15 0 Repair 4.6%
0 0 Garnish 0.0%
0 0 Sealed 0.0%
1 0 Dipped 0.3%
24 0 Detail Painted 7.4%
79 0 Base painted 24.4%
25 0 Basecoated 7.7%
0 0 Unpainted 0.0%
0 0 Unassembled 0.0%
55 0 Unpurchased 17.0%

.

Painting Challenge Week 2

I am amazed. I actually gained ground, despite that I only worked on stuff Friday, Saturday and Sunday. I even kitbashed the Goliath, he was missing a part on his right side, I found a loose Rotary Autocannon and attached it then filled in the gaps with green stuff.

So I managed to repair the frosting on the aircraft, bringing them to "ready" status. I detail painted thirteen units, printed/assembled four units and brought them to "base painted."

w2 results

Here's the numbers. By the time December rolls around, I will have enough data to understand what my actual production levels are and I'll be able to revise my estimated completion date:

Days left: 425
Steps from last report: 1206
Steps left: 1177
Units in Weekly Delta: 29
this stage Delta Current status: On-Track
120 2 Ready 37.0%
20 -2 Repair 6.2%
0 0 Garnish 0.0%
0 0 Sealed 0.0%
1 0 Dipped 0.3%
18 13 Detail Painted 5.6%
82 -9 Base painted 25.3%
25 0 Basecoated 7.7%
0 0 Unpainted 0.0%
0 -2 Unassembled 0.0%
58 -2 Unpurchased 17.9%

.

Roster Builder 3.0.2

Just a quick note, I found and fixed a couple minor issues. Redownload (it should ask you when you run RosterBuilder the next time) and have fun!

Painting Challenge Week 1

Week 1 down, I got the easy stuff out of the way.

Printed 1 Mech, assembled two vehicles I printed, then primered all of them and painted the bases of 63 'Mechs and 12 Battle Armor. The next week or three will be detail painting all of these. Then comes more to print and prime. When I get to about 150 Detail Painted, then comes the massive dipping.

w1 results

Here's the numbers as of yesterday:

Days left: 432
Steps from last report: 1315
Current Steps left: 1206
Units in Weekly Delta: 109
this stage Delta Current status: On-Track
118 -1 Ready 36.4%
22 7 Repair 6.8%
0 0 Garnish 0.0%
0 0 Sealed 0.0%
1 -3 Dipped 0.3%
5 -4 Detail Painted 1.5%
91 57 Base painted 28.1%
25 -35 Basecoated 7.7%
0 -6 Unpainted 0.0%
2 -11 Unassembled 0.6%
60 -4 Unpurchased 18.5%

See you next week, same Mech time, same Mech channel!

Back to painting

Well, I’ve successfully completed this iteration. I have been working on both See Mark Paint 4th edition and Roster Builder 3.0 with every spare second I have had since April, when I released Roster Builder v2.0 at the start of the pandemic.

Now I am going to take a break from coding and writing. I am locking myself in my painting room, telling my boss I quit, telling my wife to leave me for another woman, and telling my son to feed me by sliding a pizza under the door every day until he sees me come out with all of my miniatures painted.

I’m exaggerating. Slightly.

But I am taking a step back from generating content and concentrating on bringing a total of 324 miniatures to a table-ready state. This means I can field two complete Regimental Combat Teams (eight battalions) and my Demo/Loaner battalion for a total of 9 by New Years’ Day 2022. That’s bringing 141 unfinished miniatures from various states to tabletop ready and another 64 miniatures I don’t even have yet.

To help me achieve this goal, I will be posting my accountability tracker here every Monday to keep me motivated.

Each line is a separate waypoint, from purchasing/printing the miniature, assembly, basecoating, etc., to ready. As you can see from purchasing to ready (don’t include repair, that’s an otherwise “Ready” miniature) it takes nine steps. The number of “steps left” will be a reasonable progress tracker, as I have 1,315 steps to perform and that’s going to work out to an average of 21-22 steps a week. Think of that like taking 3 miniatures from unassembled to ready every week.

I will post the numbers below every Monday so you can see if I’m making progress or not. The goal is for the “Ready” line to be 100% by 12/31/21.

Here are the starting numbers. Wish me luck!

Days left: 437
Starting steps: 1315
Steps left: 1315
Delta: 0
Current status: On-Track
119 Ready 65.7%
15 Repair 8.3%
0 Garnish 0.0%
0 Sealed 0.0%
4 Dipped 2.2%
9 Detail Painted 5.0%
34 Base painted 18.8%
60 Basecoated 33.1%
6 Unpainted 3.3%
13 Unassembled 7.2%
64 Unpurchased 35.4%

Wave 1 has arrived!

I received an email at 10:02am today that my Kickstarter Wave 1 Battletech Clan Invasion was on the way. It hit my front porch about 10:30am. SQEEEEE!!!

And here's what I got:

KS Wave 1

Roster Builder 3.0 released!

It's been 6 months since I released Roster Builder 2. Thinking up new features, writing code for it, cleaning up the interface, cleaning up code and way more. But I've finally got it to a point where I'm happy with everything.

Here is the link to the page with the app: Battletech Roster Builder.

Here's the walkthru videos. Enjoy!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hy2ZaRpBoAw

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=10e2jYL5EGg

Shoutout for Aries Miniatures

I placed an order last week to Derek King at Aries Gams and Miniatures. From the time I hit "Send" until I got the email that the order was shipped was eighty-nine minutes. He said he "just so happened" to be near the computer when the order came through, but I think he's more like this, perpetually and anxiously waiting:

man staring at computer

They say for most any good or service, "Good, fast, cheap. Pick any two." With Aries, you get all three.

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