Hood to Coast Test Post

I am testing out a live blog of the 2011 Hood to Coast run for this year. The following live blog is only a test. Stay tuned for the real Hood to Coast: The Outlaws and Inlaws live blog in 2 weeks.

Introduction to Game Design in Scratch

There are many game-design related topics—too many to cover in a post or 1-hour workshop. I will nonetheless cover a handful of core topics:

  1. Game Setup & Preparation
    • Create core variables for main object: health, score, & lives
    • Position all sprites where they need to be
    • Hide any sprites that should not be showing
  2. Display Game Name & Brief Instructions
    • Display a stage Background with Game name & Instructions on how to play
    • Note: be sure to tell the user how to start the game
  3. Start the Game
    • I recommend you broadcast to start the game (as a message to all sprites)
    • Begin the GAME LOOP
  4. The Game Loop – This is where all the action happens. For the game loop, you need to deal with the following topics:
    • Character Control for the “hero”/main object
    • Artificial Intelligence for enemy/antagonistic objects
    • Collision Detection
    • The “End Game” this is where you determine how the game ends
  5. The End Game

I could write all about this, but I think it’s better to use visuals (especially considering how Scratch is virtually all graphics). For that reason see my PowerPoints:


Simple AI (Artificial Intelligence

How I script artificial intelligence (AI) for a flying "bogey"
How I script artificial intelligence (AI) for a flying "bogey"

Dealing with Navigating through Rooms

How I create multiple Rooms (apply to the stage)
How I create multiple Rooms (apply to the stage)
A Script for dealing with multiple rooms - Part one
A Script for dealing with multiple rooms – Part one

This is how I deal with moving through rooms - part 2

This is how I deal with moving through rooms – part 2

Scores and Lives


Notes For Stupid Browser Tricks Day 1

Various Built-in JavaScript Functions We Covered

  • alert("Help Me!!! I'm trapped in an alert box!");
    • Alert rings the bell and pops up a window of information
  • prompt("What's Your Sign?", "Neon");
    • Prompt asks a question (“What’s your sign?”), and then adds a prompt (“Neon”) as a possible answer or hint as to how to enter the box
    • Prompt will return what the user types in the input box
  • confirm("Can I move on now?");
    • Confirm asks a question (“Can I move on now?”), and returns either  a
      • true (if ‘okay’ was pressed)
      • false (if ‘cancel’ was pressed)

Objects in JavaScript

JavaScript is like PHP, ActionScript, or Python in that it can be coded as a top-down, procedural language (run one statement at a time, working your way from top to bottom) or it can be coded using the Object-Oriented Programming (OOP) paradigm. This makes JavaScript one way for a teacher to introduce Object-Oriented Programming in small chunks. When it comes to browsers, JavaScript has some built-in objects that make working with web pages very handy.

The three objects introduced yesterday were:

  • document – The document class refers to web pages. Every web page has properties and methods.
  • navigator
  • date


Anatomy of a Function & Function Calls

LOST: Sundown

According to Darlton (the producers: Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse), this week’s episode of LOST, titled “Sundown” is about the time given for the folks in the temple to surrender. Up until now, most genres have been played out in this wonderful show: the mystery, action, romance, horror, sci-fi, and now…the western. It seems the idea might be taken from the ’57 film, Decision at Sundown; either that or other similar westerns (High Noon, etc.)

It looks like MIB (Man in Black, aka Flocke: Faux Locke, aka the Lockeness Monster) and a wigged out Claire are heading for a showdown at the temple, and the other others (including Sayid, Miles, Dogan, and the rest) have until Sundown to surrender the fort.

Watch LOST: Sundown live blog here (Tuesday, 9:00pm PST)

LOST: The Substitute

As we rush headlong into the finale for the best television show of all time (and I will gladly defend the honor of LOST to anyone), let’s pause and cherish the last few episodes. Let’s not be in such a hurry to get answers that we fail to enjoy the mystery. 

Let’s not forget to savor the character development. When was the last show to have such richly drawn characters as the hotpocket toting, lottery-winning, dharma van jump-starting, I see dead people Hugo Reyes?

Some day–not far from now–we’ll miss the eager anticipation we had each week to find out if we’ll hear the godzilla-like rumblings of the smoke monster, or debate over the water cooler if Henry Gale is really an other, or ponder the meaning of Jack’s tatoo, or even choose sides as to who Kate will end up with (come on, you know you did that once upon a time). In under half a year, we’ll no longer share Charley’s (excuse me, Cholly’s) interogative: “where are we?” You’ll be sad; you’ll compare every other show to LOST only to find them sorely lacking. You’ll watch seasons of shows with some kind of twist languish on because their writers won’t have the guts to end the show .

No, you’ll wish you could go back to that time of wonder, but it will be tougher than convincing the Oceanic six to return. Then, you’ll fondly recall this moment.

Click Here to view The Substitute live blog

SuperQuest Flash Files

Before I post all the files, I want to thank all who attended my workshop. We gathered quite the range of experience. I had so much fun, and I appreciated the input you gave. I hope you take more SuperQuest courses in the future.

Here you go folks!

Flash Files

These are the source files (.fla), shockwave movies (.swf), web pages (.html), & necessary JavaScript (.js) to both edit and post animations. They are all zipped, so you will need to save them (right-click > Save Target As…) and then extract the zipped files.