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Old 05-29-2008, 06:36 PM   #1661
davethegecko
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The "shooting starfish" effect (as I like to refer to it) could be Marine Aquarium's take on the "uncanny valley" - except in this case the uncanny part is how clean the tank glass appears to be...

Actually though, now that I think about it, does the uncanny valley only apply to the representation of humans, or does it also work with fish?
Praying for a Pufferfish...
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Old 05-29-2008, 08:23 PM   #1662
Jim Sachs
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The floating starfish problem will be partially mitigated by the scrolling camera. From the movement of the starfish, it will be obvious to the observer that it's on a plane in front of all the background material. I'm also looking into having a slight shadow below the starfish on the glass. Ordinarily this would indicate dirty glass, but if it is subtle enough, it just might work.

I've never had an "uncanny valley" problem with the Aquarium. Most people seem more than willing to accept the fish as real, and that will only get better as I improve their behavior. I am, however, extremely concerned about this phenomenom when I start making my movie.
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Old 05-30-2008, 01:04 PM   #1663
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I still have trouble sleeping when I think about the zombified version of Tom Hanks in "Polar Express."
Praying for a Pufferfish...
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Old 05-30-2008, 03:06 PM   #1664
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Originally posted by Jim Sachs:
From the movement of the starfish, it will be obvious to the observer that it's on a plane in front of all the background material. I'm also looking into having a slight shadow below the starfish on the glass. Ordinarily this would indicate dirty glass, but if it is subtle enough, it just might work.  
Wouldn't you need an algae eater in the tank to keep the glass crystal clear? A user preference to configure a pane of dirty glass would add realism.
Reasons people don't watch Star Trek:
60% - It’s for nerds.
39% - The show’s stupid.
01% - My parents were killed by Klingons and it's still too painful.
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Old 05-30-2008, 03:33 PM   #1665
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You mean like an army of Cerith snails?
Thanks to Morgan, Tiny Snapshots is up and running again with "Tiny Järvafält" as the latest addition – Go have a look and tell me what you think.

"We knew the world would not be the same. A few people laughed, a few people cried, most people were silent.
I remembered the line from the Hindu scripture, the Bhagavad-Gita. Vishnu is trying to persuade the Prince that he should do his duty and to impress him takes on his multi-armed form and says,
'Now, I am become Death, the destroyer of worlds.'
I suppose we all thought that, one way or another.
" /Robert Oppenheimer on witnessing the first thermonuclear detonation in history.
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Old 05-30-2008, 04:13 PM   #1666
johnblommers
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Originally posted by Tiny Turtle:
You mean like an army of Cerith snails?  
Perhaps only a squad of snails would be appropriate for this sized tank. The Aquacon site has a selection of snails.
Reasons people don't watch Star Trek:
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39% - The show’s stupid.
01% - My parents were killed by Klingons and it's still too painful.
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Old 06-02-2008, 05:01 PM   #1667
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I thought I heard (or maybe even read here somewhere) that the fish will be getting improved AI that will make them act even more realistic - Have you considered adding a life cycle to the fish as well? Maybe have them mate, grow old, float at the top of the tank for a bit and so on. I'm sure it would be a pretty big task but might be a neat pay off! =D (Just as long as we still don't have to 'clean the tank'!) Maybe in MA4 or 5 you can even add realistic smell (my cat would go nuts)!
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Old 06-02-2008, 07:57 PM   #1668
Jim Sachs
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Float at the top of the tank for a bit? And then they get better?
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Old 06-02-2008, 11:49 PM   #1669
shade2074
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Originally posted by Jim Sachs:
Float at the top of the tank for a bit? And then they get better?  
lol no, maybe the other fish can do what fish sometimes do - nibble at them! Maybe after some time passes you could add a huge 3D hand or small fish net that takes it out of the tank (and if you really want to get elaborate - you could make a short 'cut scene' showing a small burial in the back yard complete with music and children standing around the tiny grave). lol ok I'm going to go out on a limb and guess that's probably a bit much for the scope of MA3.

-after thought-
If you do decide to go with this idea at some point, you should probably make it optional via a check box or something like that. I've seen some people actually disguise this screen saver to look like a real tank - and they may not like the idea as much as some other might.
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Old 06-03-2008, 07:05 AM   #1670
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"Marine Aquarium 3 - Now with optional DEATH!" Sorry, not gonna happen.

Update: I'm still having trouble getting the starfish working properly in the new tank. For the past week, I've been very close to finding the problem, but each day it eludes me. Jury duty today.
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Old 06-03-2008, 10:00 AM   #1671
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Mr. Sachs and Jury Duty

Thank you Mr. Sachs.

Besides designing the best simulated aquarium available, you also attend jury duty. Too many people will use any excuse they can think of to get out of serving. You are setting a good example for other citizens to follow .
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Old 06-03-2008, 10:29 PM   #1672
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I didn't get assigned to a case today. They have me tomorrow and Thursday, then I can't be called for two years.
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Old 06-04-2008, 01:24 AM   #1673
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I had it the first of this year and was assigned two cases. One I was an alternate juror and the other was settled out of court about an hour before it was scheduled to start.
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Old 06-04-2008, 05:07 AM   #1674
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In the UK you get 2 weeks straight (or at least you did last time I was called)...
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Old 06-04-2008, 07:10 AM   #1675
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Here, every county can make their own rules. I must admit that Jackson County makes it as pleasant as possible, and many of the jurors ask when they can do it again.

I was surprised by some of the statistics given by a judge during orientation. By far, the most common criminal case is "Driving Under the Influence". The second is Domestic Violence, which is almost always fueled by alcohol or drugs. Third is robbery or burglary (usually to support a drug habit). It seems that crime would be almost nonexistant if it weren't for substances that people ingest to intentionally make themselves stupid.

MA3 update: The starfish is still not totally under control, but at least it's remaining above the gravel now. Prolific is hard at work designing the Fish Picker interface, and some other items.
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Old 06-04-2008, 07:31 AM   #1676
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I seem to remember having a lot of free time whilst waiting around. - Did you take a lap-top? - You could have passed judgement on two things at once! - A drug addict for stupidity, and a starfish for going walkabout.
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Old 06-04-2008, 09:36 AM   #1677
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I thought about, but I've never really been able to get any work done on my laptop. It's also very hard to bring anything in to the court building, with all the security screening.
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Old 06-10-2008, 11:48 AM   #1678
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Embarassed note for jim

just wanted to toss another note of encouragement out there. Excited for the beta and looking forward to more years of viewing enjoyment and serenity. :-D

Keep up the great work Jim!!!!

-alex
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Old 06-10-2008, 01:12 PM   #1679
Jim Sachs
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Last night I got the starfish under control. At the moment it's confined to the floor on the far left side of the tank. It can't go on the glass yet, because I need to write a transition routine. In the old program, it would wait until the lights went fully dark before jumping on or off the glass, but the new program doesn't have a full-dark mode.
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Old 06-10-2008, 05:56 PM   #1680
Derrek
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Will the starfish 'jump' onto the side like in MA2.6 or with the new 3D routines will it be able to slowly 'crawl' up onto the glass.
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