Mafia Games Monday (MGM) – New Mod Released!

March 30, 2015

You read the title, I am releasing a new mod today! Isn’t that awesome? This mod is something that I have been wanted to release to you guys for a while now, but I just have not gotten it to a point to release it as a mod yet. Well..I did today!

So, what’s the mod called? It’s called…April Fools! 😛

Yeah, I do not have any new mod to release today, but wasn’t that exciting to just think about? Okay, I know now you are a little upset with me, right? Why would I say that I am releasing a new mod and then all of a sudden go back on my word?

Does that remind you of anybody? Someone gives you promises, but does not deliver? With the number of times that I have seen it as a programmer and as a game owner, I am sure that many of you have experienced this before too. It is quite a problem nowadays in pretty much any industry, which is really a dire shame. A couple of weeks ago, I got duped out of $10 for my programming. I know, it does not sound like much at all, but MANY of those $10 dupes do add up!

Doesn’t that just give you a little sense of distrust in freelance programmers or game owners? They just want the money, don’t they? Well, as a freelance programmer AND a game co-owner, I can tell you that the money is nice, but that’s certainly not everything. Most freelance programmers do like having some money coming in, but their reputation also plays a big role in ensuring the possibility of being hired again. You never know if the person you are going to “dupe” is in fact someone who has a high reputation in the industry, so why bother? Wait..is that the ONLY reason why people don’t dupe others? Well, no! You should be an honest person anyways. Period. No matter who it is, just remember that there is a person on the other side expecting something in exchange for the money you’re receiving.

To those who are doubting freelance programmers / game owners: We are all not dishonest. Most of us are honest people who will deliver what is asked of us. Just be sure that you are not one who is dishonest!

To those who have been dishonest in the past: The time is now to change your ways. You can only improve your reputation by becoming an honest freelance programmer or owner. Otherwise, you will find out that you are not going to receive the benefits that you would otherwise be getting for being honest!

To those who have been dishonest and will continue doing so: There will be a time where you upset the wrong person and you will find yourself in court (or even jail if it is an international offense). Be wary, and I would suggest making sure you lock yourself in a cave and not interact with other programmers / game owners. 🙂

That’s all for now, until next time…keep that tech gear ticking.

~Goliath7470

Women in Tech

March 26, 2015

The tech industry has a problem with diversity. Women are not seem much in the tech industry, as are minorities, but our focus today is solely on women in the tech industry.

According to an article by the LA Times, women are “leaving the tech industry in droves” because of a “hostile work environment.” This certainly is an issue, as you should not be discriminating anybody due to their gender. I completely agree that a hostile work environment could pose a major problem.

However, not all work environments are “hostile” for women. More often than not work environments are not “hostile.” There just aren’t enough women in the tech industry to consider the industry to be diverse to people. Since basically the start of the tech revolution, women were not the prominent base of the tech industry workforce. Why was this the case? I don’t know, but we all know that is a true statement.

What can we do in order to diversify this more? Well, the answer is not much. We can make sure those “hostile” work environments are no more, but what’s really needed are more women who are interested in the technology, which is quite scarce, especially in a development platform. Is it improving, sure, but I don’t see the improvements that are keeping up with the growth of the industry as a whole, meaning that the industry is growing faster than the number of women entering the tech industry workforce.

Will we see women in the tech industry more often? Maybe. I certainly would hope so, as I think that technology allows you to create some great things that otherwise wouldn’t exist! 🙂

So, women reading this, if you have thoughts about having a career in technology, my advice to you is to go with your gut. Do what you feel is best for you, but just be aware, if you invest your time into technology and have passion for it, the tech industry will reward you. 🙂

That’s all for now, until next time…keep that tech gear ticking.

~Goliath7470

Job Market Outlook Declining?

March 19, 2015

So, a little while back, I posted a blog post about the possibility of robotics taking over the industry. For those of you who do not remember about this, the video is below:

Humans Need Not Apply

Anyways, it seems like this discussion is not over and has gone full circle!

According to an article by CNN, the technology revolution is paving a way for much less job opportunities, as the technology is taking over tasks that otherwise would be people’s jobs to do so. Their article states a study that only 36% of college grads have jobs that pay at least $45,000, which is much less than the 1990s. This study seems to be a little flawed considering the prosperity of the 1990s that is no longer there now: people just do not have as much expendable income like it was in the 1990s.

At any rate, jobs in certain industries does appear to be on the decline, as those jobs that normally would be done manually by people are now being automated; however, that just translates to more jobs in other industries. This goes back to one of the golden rules of a developer: adaptation. Yes, adaptation. Obviously doing what you love is important; however, make sure that before you completely decide on a major, understand the competition. Make sure that what you want to do has some sort of job outlook, and if that outlook is low, be prepared to work tirelessly in order to achieve your goal (you should be working tirelessly anyways though).

The article is posted here if you’re interested in reading it: http://www.cnn.com/2015/03/18/opinions/wheeler-silicon-valley-jobs/index.html

So, to those upset about the lack of jobs available, I would recommend trying other lines of work. Jobs are readily available, and if you feel that you have something that you really feel can turn yourself into a businessman, then I’d say go for it!

What are your thoughts?

That’s all for now, until next time…keep that tech gear ticking.

~Goliath7470

Mafia Games Monday (MGM) – Magic OOP Methods

March 16, 2015

There are many words within a programming language that are considered reserved words, that is, they are predefined in the language that cannot be used anywhere else. So, for example, if you wanted to name a function as “int” in PHP, I.E:

function int($val) {
return $val;
}

Even with how simple that function is, it will not work! Why is that? Well, “int” is a reserved word in PHP, so when PHP attempts to run the code, it will treat “int” as the reserved word instead of a function name, which will cause the code to throw an error.

PHP Error

Why am I bringing this up? Well, in Object Oriented Programming (or OOP, which I have discussed in previous blog posts), there are also reserved methods, which PHP calls magic methods. What do these methods do? Well, it depends on the method, but they act like a reserved word: they cannot be used for other than the main purpose of the method. So, for example, remember the farmer class that I created in my Parent/Child classes blog post? Well, for those of you who do not remember the class itself, here it is:

class Farmer extends Person
{
public $numcows;
public $numtractors;
public $numland;

public function _construct($mf)
{
parent::_construct($mf);
$numcows = 0;
$numtractors = 0;
$numland = 0;
}
}

Now, looking at it, do you see the _construct() function? Why does it look that way?

Shrugs

Well, this is what PHP refers to as a magic method! As mentioned before, the _construct() function creates an instance of that particular class, which is its intended purpose. If you tried to create a _construct() function for any other reason than to create an instance of that class, then it will not work correctly for you and will throw an error.

If you are unsure of whether a PHP function is a magic method, look for the underscore ( _ ) in front of the function name. If it is there, that’s a good indicator that it is a magic method. If not, then this is not a magic method. Thank you PHP program creators for that easy identifiable trait!

Thank you!

If you are curious as to what all of the PHP magic methods are, then you can check them out here.

Do you like the idea of having magic methods? Why or why not?

That’s all for now, until next time…keep that tech gear ticking.

~Goliath7470

Mafia Games Monday (MGM) – Game Security

March 9, 2015

For those of you new to programming (as well as those who are not), you should be made aware that security is a vital component to a game to ensure its success. Why is this the case you ask? Well, we just have to remember the golden rule of security: never trust a user’s input.

Yes, that means EVERY user!

Cat Typing

You never know what kind of text a user will put in, so you really have to be aware of this problem. As a game owner, you no doubt have to account for the user’s input; otherwise, who knows what will happen to your website!

There are many other things you have to look out for, like SQL injection, JavaScript injection, and many other security problems. With all of these different things spinning around in your head, you’re ready to tear your hair out, right?

Tearing hair out

Well, don’t you worry, there are some things that you can do in order to ensure that your game doesn’t get compromised! Here are a few:

  1. Make sure input is of the correct datatype – Very simple and the easiest way to ensure your game’s security. So, for example, if you want them to input a number, make sure that what they put in is in fact a number! You can do this in PHP with ctype_digit().
  2. Make sure input does not contain any SQL text – Again, something that certainly has to be done! In PHP, you can use mysqli_real_escape_string() (as mysql_real_escape_string() is deprecated!).
  3. Make sure input falls under any specific guidelines you set – This basically means that if for example, you want a number greater than zero, that you ensure that the number is greater than zero! It is something that can be easily checked, but if you fail to do this, it could break your code and cause major headaches. That would be bad news!

This all sounds very simple (and it is), but ignoring these validation checks can really change a game that would be fantastic into a game of misery and emptiness.

I will be talking in more details about this in a later blog post, so stay tuned!

That’s all for now, until next time…keep that tech gear ticking.

~Goliath7470

Bedridden Yet See The World

March 5, 2015

So on this snowy Thursday (at least it is here haha), we may get stuck at home sometimes, not really able to do a whole lot. Whether that is because of weather or because of a medical circumstance (like being bedridden), there are plenty of reasons why something like this can happen. Maybe even because you’re just simply too lazy.

Well, for those who cannot get out of the house (for reasons beyond their control – no, being lazy is not one of those reasons!), there is some new technology that will allow someone to be able to see the world! Pretty amazing, isn’t it?

Anyways, it is called Beam. It looks like the picture below:

Beam

Kinda looks like something we have seen before though, doesn’t it…?

South Park Facetime

Anyways, this is something that could really change the world for many people who are stuck at home for one reason or another. Below is the official Beam website if you are curious as to exactly what all it does:

BeamPro : https://www.suitabletech.com/beam/

Do you think this is beneficial or harmful?

That’s all for now, until next time…keep that tech gear ticking.

~Goliath7470

Mafia Games Monday (MGM) – Spring Break Approaches…

March 2, 2015

Hello all!

So, for those of you who are in college in the USA, it is getting close to that time of spring break. What plans do you have for spring break? Well, for me, I will be working, but hey, that’s the life of a programmer haha.

At any rate, during spring break (or any kind of break for that matter), we all decide to not really do much, which could be a good or bad thing depending upon how you manage your time. It’s a fantastic opportunity to procrastinate, which if you have any kind of deadlines for projects, then that is a big problem! That can lead to things like rushing to get done, which is what I’ve talked about in several of my previous blog posts. Rushing around to get stuff done, especially programming something, can lead to a lot of bugs and other problems! Simply don’t do that people!

I’ve personally had an experience with someone who decided to rush to get stuff done not too long ago. Their programming work was adequate at best, no attention to design, and there were many bugs, most of which I had to fix because of his “lack of time” to do anything else! They did not get any form of payment based off of the sale because of these issues, which if you do not take your time to program things with care, that may happen to you as well. So slow down, take a deep breath, and make sure you program your features right because otherwise, you might not only see a lack of payment (if you are a freelancer), but you may also lose your reputation as a programmer or an owner, which is something that takes a long time to get back!

That’s all for now, until next time…keep that tech gear ticking.

~Goliath7470