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About Moach

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    Unsung Pioneer of Kerbal Spaceflight

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  1. I'd like to offer a perhaps more natural sounding alternative to the original K.R.A.S.H. backronym Kerbal Result Analysis Simulation Harness (or Handler, also works) just a brain fart - feel free to use it or not awesome mod btw - cheers!
  2. I'd call it a one-and-a-half stage to anywhere... very nice hybrid solution - the idea of a booster ring that you leave in orbit and return to pick it up is quite ingenious - kudos!
  3. that is not by accident modding was an intensively upheld priority in development for KSP - and the community was built from the ground up with the premise of fostering all the best possible conditions for authors and users alike since a very early stage in production I know this, because I was there.... me and my brother (HarvesteR) had plenty of open discussions about just how to approach features he was working on with regards to potential modding options - I would always remind him to keep that in mind, even though most of the time, he did not require even being told that's because both of us started our careers in game development not as programmers - but as a pair of prospective mod makers for Microsoft Flight Simulator 2004: the internet has kept a good record of this history: that link points to that very first foray into game development for the both of us - mind that we kinda shared the username "Moach" for that project, for the sake of simplicity, or whatever... eventually I kept that name and he went with "HarvesteR" (I reckon mainly because of MetallicA, as in "harvester of sorrow") how's that for a KSP pre-history lesson? anyways - that's why modding has been such a primary concern - since we've experienced first hand just how powerful mods are as a force to bring a community together also, back when the forums were first setup, (back in a time when I was the first moderator) we deliberately came up with a few guidelines for modders and how they should post their releases in a way we thought would be most beneficial for both authors and users. those were simple tips, like: keep the first post always updated; no pics, no clicks; include links to any dependencies; and so on.... eventually it was a modder who realized that besides making new parts, it was possible to forcibly "inject" code (C#) into the game with a certain method - this user was very thoughtful and informed the developers before anyone else about just how this was done so that method was eventually officialized, and in doing so, a proper SDK was established - a measure which was intentionally taken to ensure that users had no need to "hack" into the game, and successfully avoided a scenario such as found in games like IL2:1946, where the lack of an "official method" made for a host of mutually incompatible mods, and a huge deal of headache to anyone trying to install them (it is so that modders will do whatever it takes to make their mods work, and unless this is made easy for them, it will probably mean each will come up with his own unique solution, often conflicting with those of others) it is curious however, that KSP may be one of the very few games in the entire videogame industry that have been developed with a thorough understanding of the symbiotic relationship between modder and developer - this lesson remains mostly unlearned, and goes unheeded in almost direct proportion to the budget of game design companies lately.... so that's actually how it happened - an omnidirectional round of thanks goes to all those involved with the KSP modding community, on either side of the compiler (and modders of any game, really) cheers!
  4. garbage collection issues may be just as difficult a problem for unity developers to solve as unity problems are for squad to fix the reason is, Unity itself relies on the Mono framework (which is basically an open-source version of .NET) -- and this is in a large part responsible for some of the garbage collection process, which is actually a part of the whole compiler deal and whatnot... it's actually hard to tell - and truth be told, I have a bone to pick with the whole concept of GC in the first place - since after you get around using such a thing, you may find that it's actually EASIER to get memory leaks with GC, and those are harder to find and fix than without! (whut?!) yes, while C/C++ require you to do that stuff yourself, they also have the added benefit of that you KNOW that you have to do it, so it's rather trivial to ensure that it's done - whereas the promise of "it'll delete itself when not in use" is a horrifyingly vague one for a programmer - because now, you have things in your program that you simply "leave off" and hope that somehow the damn thing eventually gets around removing it in most cases, GC gets it right - and no major problems result -- but see, I did not learn to program in Unity no sir - back in my day, we used Flash (aaaaarrgh!) -- and son, that's how it was back then and we liked it! (no we didn't - it was excrements) unity GC is relatively benign, in comparison - where flash had a habit of "assuming" you were done with something, just because you left it off with an indirect reference to be retrieved later - then it'd give you a maddening problem, where depending on luck, literally, due to the unpredictable GC cycles - it may or not remove a reference which you were actually relying on! and when you really wanted something to go away - you had to go around and ensure all pointers to and from it were reset to "null" (another issue I have with interpreted languages, null is an invitation for disaster, as it's basically defaulting every variable to "segfault, please") - but then again, that was the icing on that cake of crap which we had for a tool back then - not only GC worked against you, you still had to go and do it's job for it! since ensuring your values are nulled for disposal is actually MORE trouble than using the convenient "delete" keyword of C++ so that was flash.... we're all glad it's over anyways unity seems pretty great now, doesn't it? but then again - GC in unity actually can be controlled to some degree, or even overriden in some cases - so it may be possible to optimize it such that the stuttering is reduced, but then again - there are just so many things in there that need optimization that this is really not even a very high ranking issue among them did you know that, while the little portrait cameras appear to have a very low FPS, they actually render continuously anyways? - in fact all internal assets are loaded and fully operational when you're in external view - simply because, my brother chose to "make it work first, make it work well later"... which was fine back when "later" was an option, I guess so basically, KSP was never really optimized - because they were saving it for last, and then it was too late the only game that's been less optimized that I can think of, is FSX - which had been built under the premise of an era when processor speeds seemed like they'd just increase forever (they actually expected by the time it was out, CPUs would be some twice as fast as the average pc is today) - but then came the thermal barrier, and well... a liquid nitrogen tank isn't exactly what you'd call "user friendly hardware" - and the industry made the sensible decision to go for more cores, instead of faster ones but mainly -- the game was never tested with anywhere close to the amount of mods we demand that it handles and damned it be if it doesn't handle them well! it has very little cause for concern performance-wise without mods, or with a reduced set... a few mods particularly, seem to have been made with sheer disregard for the fact that computers aren't really "magic" - and have a monstrous performance overhead also, mod-on-mod warfare interactions may also worsen the problem in absolutely unpredictable ways.... mod authors must be then very cautious to ensure they optimize their assets as much as they can, because it's all but guaranteed that any mod in a KSP install will not be alone in there
  5. sorry to say - this has nothing to do with how unity handles memory this is a known missing step in optimization which never got done before the devs who knew about it decided to "call it a day" it is so that this was most likely never intended to be a permanent solution - but since it was supposedly "just optimization", it got pushed back, and there it still remains no engine on this planet can work around the fact that it was deliberately instructed to load absolutely everything in one go and hope for the best - to blame it for that is like blaming a car manufacturer for getting a flat tire on a rough country road also, I don't think squad is in any position right now to do much about this (or, who knows, maybe they are...) - either way, I wouldn't count on it - and the best solution would be indeed to make a mod like I described on the previous page - anything else won't take us much further
  6. I guess I'm a Scientist type then - I have a way of optimizing one same line of vehicles until they become more or less reliable/capable/hilarious enough that I can let my "Inner Pilot" out to have fun with them - then I start another one, many Kerbals of course, die violently in this process For Science™ - where you don't need to apologize for things set on fire!
  7. though I'm not affiliated with squad, I do have some info from my brother (former lead dev) that explains just WHY the game suffers such issues, as well as some others the main problem is: KSP loads EVERYTHING unto memory at startup - this is also why loading takes so long with a good mod collection - and it'll have all assets up in RAM regardless of you having ever used them in any ship, deployed or not for now, the only way around the issue, is brute force, that is, the 64bit version which simply allows you to use "moar boosters" (memory in this case) to defer the problem enough that its no longer a factor but it will continue to take a long time to load, anyways since my brother is not with squad anymore, there's no way that he can eventually get around this "optimization detail" at this point in time, so one must consider a modding alternative as the only genuine hope for a fix it IS nevertheless possible to achieve this by modding - something in the lines of the popular "modulemanager" would do the trick this mod would basically scan over all parts, and replace them with a lo-fi "surrogate" which gets loaded upon game start (storing that in place of the part itself, moving the original outside the gamedata folder for later use) then it'd monitor the game for parts being placed in the editor, or appearing on craft which enter physics range (actually get loaded proper) - at this point, this "surrogate system" would replace the low-fi placeholders with the real parts, which could lead to a minor delay while it does this, but most likely wouldn't be a major factor much at all, since most ships use mostly a small set of the same parts multiple times (struts) a lot more than a numerous variety - this delay would be very easily accommodated, especially if asynchronous loading methods were used that would effectively remove both the long load time as well as eliminate the CTD plague - so he who makes this mod shall most certainly become a hero amongst his peers alas, I'm in no position to make it myself, due to "real life" and whatnot - so I leave it up to whomever wishes to take on the challenge and create this "one mod to bring them all, and in sheer awesomeness bind them"
  8. that would be much harder to achieve with an engine change than by more "sane" means, such as: optimization there are many little things that add up and make performance unnecessarily slow - I could go on and on about them, but the main thing really is: none of those things actually require a new engine to optimize for one, if it were up to me, I'd have parts load "on demand" rather than all at start - this would allow 32bit users to hoard as many mods as desired without memory overloads - also, a number of parts included in physics simulation could also do just as well without (this is more dependent on mod makers actually taking the necessary measures not to waste resources too) -- plus, a billion other little technical things which can only be determined by going over the logic and seeing what could use a little buffing around the rougher edges I know of a few gritty quirks of how KSP works under the hood that spell a clear difference in my programming style from that of my brother... and some of those provide good starting points for optimization... oh well - not that I can do much about them... or could I?
  9. having personal experience with unity, and having worked with other platforms to compare - I'd like to rephrase the main question here to: why NOT unity? seriously, it can do more than ppl give it credit for - being easy to use does not mean it's less capable. while it may lack the prefabricated eye candy advertised in favor of the oodles-more-expensive platforms generally considered "top notch" - there is really no reason why those engines are truly more or less capable in a practical sense. which means, there's nothing you can do with a multi-million dollar engine that you cannot also do with unity, provided you're willing to go and actually DO it in practice, that makes it MORE capable, since less pre-made "gimmicks" means a lot more flexibility and efficiency - things which at times are sacrificed for superficial "wows" with visual appealing showpieces it's really not what the engine can do for you - it's what you can do with the engine there are less than zero reasons for moving to another engine - yes, negative reasons, that is - i.e: reasons exist for sticking with it, for it is a tool that has not yet failed to deliver, or held back progress in any major way (ok, there was the 64bit deal, but that's not the case anymore) in other words, why fix what ain't broken?
  10. Bonk-a-dee-bump-bump fixed the link for the image - it broke when the forums were changed, sorry for the inconvenience. as for where I got it: I had it with me ever since it was made. I also had a bunch of other drawings made by my brother in that same box full of papers... I'm pretty sure he's got a bunch of sketches I made in some forlorn box somewhere... we aren't exactly what you'd call "super tidy, well organized ppl", see - stuff gets mixed up lots when you have a twin so even after I was married, and he had moved on to mexico, I found that I had this sketch in one of my piles of random stuff uh... collections of drawings in my then-apartment now I'm no longer married, and live about 10 thousand km away from where that apartment had been... but I actually DID bring that sketch with me (it had kinda become a big deal by that time) - so I still have it. what I no longer have, is any of those cardboard spacecraft... but well, that's mostly due to how those missions turned out... the ones which we could actually locate and salvage after launch were not exactly in a state our parents would have allowed us to bring inside the house without a few objections as for the name Kerbal, I think it was my brother who coined it for the spacecraft after I had first called the little tin foil man a "Kerbo" - as language evolves over time, Kerbal then became the name of the species, and Kerbo is now used as a word root for Kerbal-related things Kerbin is one name I distinctly recall having come up with myself - see,Star Wars was very hyped up back then, as Episode 1 had just came out (yes, the concept of Kerbals is about as old as Jar Jar Binks) -- so it kinda spun off the name "Bespin" - in large part because of a model Bespin Cloud Car we had around at the time these early kerbal konstructs were experimented with... it fit well as a name for their planet, for it had a funny ring to it, as a "bin full of kerbals" and Kerbo was a name I came up with simply by cobbling up some (pseudo-)random syllables which sounded like a funny alien name - no major thought given to it, as I had a tin-foil man in one hand, a rocket in the other, and no safe intentions in mind whatsoever cheers
  11. [reaction] WHAT MADNESS IS THIS?!! [/reaction] Allow me to moderate.... Please, let us quit it now, while we're (scarcely) ahead of now inevitable horrific-gruesome-disaster-doom-brutal-death-murder -- this is a textbook example of escalating forum warfare and well, given how rapidly these things tend to devolve into caveman-type manners -- I shall now end this Fire Hazard of a thread before anyone loses an eyeball and/or naively rested limb May The Force be with us! started good... turned bad... must end before "ugly" and no, trust me -- there's no recovering from here... this thread is deep stalled below minimums
  12. This is how your post looks to a moderator
  13. I've been in airplanes several times and enjoyed the ride (dude, you're FLYING!) thoroughly on each and every instance side effects have so far included dryness of my airways (at FL350+, no wonder), a one-time case of "underpressured inner ear" that lasted an uncomfortable couple of hours until I managed to make it go "pop" (must have been related to the pack of cookies I selfishly munched empty during most of the descent/landing on that flight) - and uh.... well, so far, no "death" or any death-related symptoms... even my dog, (my avatar loosely based on her) who flew on my lap (long story) and slept through most of the adventure of immigrating to Canada had no complaints about that fantastic Flying-Man-Machine, at least not after the point she became more or less generally convinced that the whole thing was not a most elaborate plot to get her to The Vet - and also took no part in schemes leading to the water-torture of what men call "Bath" she was kinda digging it by the time we turned final approach on runway 26R of CYVR... another very enjoyable flight... tho I'm biased to say, since I'm really into airplanes and flying things in general... (most passengers seem slightly unsettled by my giggling through moderate/heavy turbulence (quote ex-wife: "YOU FIND THIS FUNNY?!!" -- "yep! - lol!" - regarding a brief moment of near weightlessness aboard an A330-200)) anyways, flew several times.... engines were present in the majority of those flights... some hours of sailplane training to boast of, no poison gasses there (only those provided by the crew) ...haven't died ONCE! but most relevant of arguments that come to mind: don't airplanes have noxious gas detectors installed? -- by law? also -- with 300+ folks from all over and beyond aboard... may I dare poke at the little germaphobe in all of us by reminding that -- the engines and mythical engineer's-career-ending-blunder fumes therefrom are perhaps the LEAST worrisome of airborne things that could make you sick aboard a commercial airplane.... eeew, Globalized Cooties grosse....
  14. Spore? Spore?!! SPORE?!!!! SPOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOORE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! There... *grunt* was.... NO!... *angry sound* Such.. Game... as.... <grudge> "spore" </grudge> *end scene* *begin actual intended comment* now, there's a video I must definitely watch! -- I long believed, and kinda hoped this would be the case, and nice to see a concurring development on the notion that games, much like their largely-less-awesome forefathers "movies", can have such a result as to affect the way of scientific pursuit in such ways this is really cool! cool.... *compulsively back to rant* ...very awesome: <gollum> Theyss ruined it! They Ssstole it from usss! </gollum> *grabs (figurative) bucket of popcorn* *watches video*
  15. OK, guys - Please do not turn this into a conspiracy theory vs. skepticism duel -- that's just, uh... lame - yeah, that's the technical term for it... lame... it's not very agreeable and it is bordering on a breech of forum rules (the "no politics please, thank you" rule, that is) -- so leave the "I think they're hiding stuff from us!!" arguments for whatever's left of what once was the "history channel" and let us do without turning on one another over a "I'm more right'er than you!" contest... those rarely ever lead to positive insights and more often than not don't fare any better than ultimately becoming the stuff that fills the carcass of a locked thread... ...and locked this shall be, (not now, of course - not YET) if it continues down the path I sense it to be headed down -- no harm thus far, but the "overtones" of this thread has my spider-sense tingling somewhy... so, no tangible evidence of the case being true -- well, tough break -- "airplane farts" is then a subject that perhaps needs more research, that's my belief -meaning... Bear with me* - Upon the case of there being credible claims that "airplane farts" may happen, I as King Commander of The Earth and All Things Upon It mandate that an unbiased group of individuals shall be assembled immediately (Ideally, comprised chiefly of forum-folk from the Internet, plus some Scienceâ„¢ people) - And this grand fellowship shall be encumbered the quest to delve into the matter wholemindedly and thus produce an undisputable decree on how we should rule the Earth upon the implications of their findings! * I have a BEAR with me, so listen! Earth King! -- Excelsior!! *end scene* that's just to demonstrate, by a crudely humorous mean of Reductio ad Absurdum, how I fear this debate will turn out if left unchecked, as judged by extrapolation of its growingly rueless trajectory of the nonce... which is my inelegantly long-winded, arguably effective, unavoidably creative way of saying: "Easy there, Cowboys!" be nice to each other or I'll have the Moderating Hammer of Topics Forever Locked swinging here way sooner than it'd take a small airliner to pump itself full of poisonous jet-fart-fumes... Cheers!