Wednesday, March 07, 2007


It's been a while since my last post. I left Phoenix and went back to Austin on January 24th. I had hoped at that time that I would be getting back on my feet quickly, but I feel into an oblivion of laziness. It was pathetic how little I did throughout most of February. I mostly played video games and watched anime and slept. I also did something evil: I installed Windows XP onto my home computer again. I haven't had Windows installed on any of my machines for almost 3 years, but I finally did it. The only reason I installed Windows was so that I could play some of the old computer games that I rightfully own, because wine doesn't usually work that well, and my free copy of VMware was being stupid and wouldn't recognize the proper kernel headers when I tried to build the module, even though I made absolutely certain that it was pointing to the right headers. So, I decided to put my spare hard drive to use and dedicated it entirely to a NTFS partition, and now I dual-boot Windows and Linux. I only play games in Windows and nothing else, since that's all that its good for as far as I'm concerned. I thankfully haven't had any problems with viruses or malware destroying my machine (so far), which I think is because of the hardware firewall enabled on my router.

Anyway, my recovery rating topped out at about 80% about 10 days ago, but it has started to drop back into the 70s again (damn engineering has made me so quantitatively minded). I am very relaxed these days (too relaxed, in fact) and not suffering from anxiety problems anymore, but there are two things that I am painfully missing: drive and energy. I think the reason I have no energy is precisely because I have no drive, so if I can get my drive back I think I'll finally be myself again. But its harder said than done. I am not motivated to do anything anymore. Its weird, I still -want- to do things, but its like I can't. Things like: find a job, clean my house, exercise on a regular basis, make the world a better place, etc. I'm just really confused as to what course of action I'm supposed to take now. Before there was always a clear goal (a degree to obtain) and a clear path to get there, but my primary goal is so vague now I don't know how to achieve it and feel successful. My goal is, and has been for a long time, to make a positive, recognized, and lasting impact on the world. Right now my best path to that goal is through Allacrost, but for some reason I just can't keep myself motivated for more than a few days at a time. The thing is, there's not a single thing in this world that I clearly and naturally excel at. I'm just pretty good in many many things, and furthermore I like those many things and so I want to do them more. But I don't know where to focus myself right now. Should I read more books? Should I make myself gain more knowledge? Should I continue to hone my programming skills? Should I pick up drawing once again? Should I resume my unfinished self-taught piano lessons from 2-3 years ago? Should I master the Japanese language? Should I train myself physically and resume competitive racing once more? These are all things that I bounce back and forth between on a daily basis, and all of the things I mentioned I wish to pursue. But I don't have the energy to devote myself to all of them right now, because I don't have a clear goal to pursue. It feels like I'm stagnating myself going in this circle.

In other news, Allacrost has been making some good progress in the past 2 weeks, although there was a lot of inactivity last month. We've hired 3 new programmers, a composer, and a couple of new artists have been contributing lately as well. After I re-wrote the map code from scratch in January, I started working on the script engine and made excellent progress in figuring out how to provide a communication channel between the engine (C++) and our scripts (Lua) that is a pivotal turning point for the programming side of things. I've also re-designed much of the "global" code, which represents things such as items, weapons, armor, inventory management, characters, enemies, and party management. I'm finished with that for the time being, and now I'm getting myself back into the map code.

I also did manage to apply for one (and only one) job last month. It was a software developer position at Applied Research Laboratories in Austin. The position was for the design of sonar data analysis and visualization software, which sounded really cool to me. It was kind of a PITA to apply because they required official transcripts, a statement of interest, and three contacts, which took a good amount of time to round all that up. Unfortunately, I think that right after they got all my info they must have hired someone, because I saw the position was pulled from the job listings page just a few days later. I honestly don't even know what type of job I want at this point. I don't think I'd be happy in another microprocessor design job, but who knows. I just want to enjoy my job and not let all the stupid management and bureaucratic crap make me angry and frustrated like it did back at Freescale.

Anyway, I've rambled on about nothing for long enough. I really should make it a habit to update this blog more often so I don't try to talk about a million things in every post I make. :p Thanks for reading.

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Anonymous Kentaro said...

Tyler, well, I am really surprised how similar my situation and your situation is. Like you, I have not done anything in February. I think I am in depression. All I did is pretty much stare at wall and eat. I eat for few days, and then quit eating for few days. As a result, I lack energy all the time so I seldom went outside. I am really surprised that it is already March because I feel that it is still January.
I have one advice for you. Why don't you travel? It seems to me that staying in Austin does not help you at all. By watching the world and meeting new people, I am sure you'd find your drive.

2:05 PM  
Blogger Tyler Olsen said...

Yeah I'm trying to get out more myself, but its difficult when nearly everything I do for fun or for a hobby is computer related. :( I've been running since I got back to Austin though and you'd be surprised how much a 30 minute run outdoors can help you feel better.

I would like to travel, but I'm being financially conservative since I'm not bringing in any income right now. Plus I don't really have anyone to travel with, so it would be a bit boring to be by myself.

3:36 PM  

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