Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Comical Jumpscare

A couple of weeks ago, I was going through some old external hard drives like one would go through their old box of memories. I sorted through 1000s of Pictures, PDFs, text files, HTML files, and my old source files. A lot of memories were in those old disks.

The ones that really caught my interest were my old SWiSHmax files source files. SWiSHmax, a cheaper alternative to Adobe Flash editor, is pretty much obsolete as they hadn't updated the program, or come up with a new product for years. Rumor has it that all of the old developers were bought out by other companies and SWiSHmax hadn't made an effort to replace them.

I reminisced on how much I loved making these files (and video blogging). Life and kids and housework and just about everything else seemed to have gotten in the way.

Or, maybe, I just let it be an excuse to not do more. How many people who have kids and other obligations still accomplish their goals... And their kids turned out fine? More than you think, but probably not as much as there should be.

I started this very blog to accomplish my goal. Use "life hacks" and tech to streamline my life and blog about it, so I can have the time to do what I love doing.

Fast forward a year or two. I still did my blog somewhat half heartedly. I let myself get caught up in useless political arguments, stress out a out useless drama, and meaningless busywork, all the while convincing myself that it was all necessary.

Mike's boss had finally found an excuse to fire  him. Mike was so demoralized by the fact that for some reason this guy was promoted over several more competent and qualified people that he became a little careless and made a few mistakes. Just so you know, Mike wasn't interested in a promotion. There were other qualified people right for the job.

Mike found a job in Texas so we decided to take a big risk and move to Texas, thinking that it would be waiting for us when we got there. Unfortunately, by the time we made it there, the job that he would have gotten, fizzled out as the owner had to cut back some to afford the new health care laws.

We lived on Mike's retirement savings for a year, dreaming to be more independent from the workplace. Unfortunately, bad habits are hard to break and he ended up working for Pepsi in Mesquite. At first, it wasn't so bad. He got exceptional reviews and it looked like we had some breathing room. Then he got a new boss. Turns out that he was like the last one at GE - only competent in being manipulative. Numbers started crashing and this guy was looking for a scapegoat.

The best Candidate? The one who has been proving him wrong the most. Mike is a problem solver, not a "Yes-man." Good if you want stuff done. Bad if you want to please a smiling politician-type saying garbage like "We will work to find the solution to that problem!" without giving any actual answers (keep that in mind you corporate types, if someone below you isn't giving you straight answers, he's probably screwing the employees over for his own benefit).

When the boss started to give him a moving target, making it impossible for Mike to succeed, we knew it was a matter of time before he would lose his job again. Proof that competence has nothing on good looks, a flashy smile, vague answers, and deflecting responsibility (a.k.a. "finger pointing"). Just look at our politicians who, for some strange reason, keep getting elected.

One month later, as predicted, Mike was suspended from his job... So far, HR hasn't called him to say he was fired. If Mike wanted unemployment, it won't be until 6 weeks AFTER he was fired. If he's only suspended, then those weeks he doesn't get paid, doesn't count.

Mike doesn't seem too concerned. As a matter of fact He seems relieved and happy. At the moment, he has been working for a few jobs and it seems that we may be able to sell our house before the year's up. We might even have property soon as a trade for his services as an electrician for a remodel. Life is hard, but there is hope.

In the meantime,  I have been brushing up on my programming skills. This brings me back to the hard drives. I found what I was looking for. My old source files.

I wanted to check my .swi files out, so I would have to install SWiSHmax. Since I replaced my laptop, I didn't think about installing it until now.  I still have my old license for it, so I downloaded and installed it on my new laptop. Then I took a look at my old files.

Ahhh, the flying smiley faces. I remember those. For the fun of it, I tweaked it a little, adding a jumpscare. Sarah wanted to make the creepy smileyface, so I let her. I wasn't able to embed a flash file in a blog post, so I decided to put it on my own server, on the future MOMĒTEK website that I may get around to finishing, someday.

Then I thought about it. Not only was it fun creating the simple "game," I came to realize how much I miss doing that.

So, this week, I plan on finishing the new MOMĒTEK website and I will be gearing it towards apps. I will also be blogging on streamlining your life again. After two years of losing my focus on what I love doing, I decided that there are no more excuses.

Here's the app: http://mometek.nancieswebonline.com/index.php?id=6. It is a bit lame as far as jumpscares go, but my toddler found it hilarious. I do plan on tweaking it more before I create another. I'm using it as a way to refresh my memory.

I'm back, and it feels great!