Monday, July 27, 2009

She works hard for the money

...So my company better treat me right!

This week on my attempt to update more often, I bring you Kyra's Code Dash, Summer play. Enjoy!

Kyra's Code Dash Did you ever have one of those days at work where someone assumes you have something done that you very much don't? That happened to me this week and damn, was it annoying.

Apparently about 4 months ago we scheduled the site for BlackShot (the online FPS game we bought from the korean company Ntreev, if you've been paying attention)... and the higher ups ordered a code review of the site to be scheduled at a future date. Fast forward to last week, and my team leader looks at a peice of paper with a shocked/bemused expression. 'This here says the entire site is supposed to be finished by 7/27! ... (glances at me, the site coder). "give me that!" I snatch the paper out of his hands. Sure enough, the testing company is going to test 26 pages the following monday. 19 of which do not yet exist. These pages are on my schedule as taking through mid-august. Aaaand the one guy that knew about this date of the test and my schedule is (CONVENIENTLY) on vacation!!

A somewhat heated discussion with the rest of the department concluded:
1. This would cost too much to reschedule.
2. You can get ignore TWO (out of 19) pages.
3. Get them done, kiddo.


So this past week I have been in a coding frenzy. I have worked my little fingers to the bone, eyes blurring, butt numbing, legs cramping, and leaving at 11 PM every day only so I don't miss the last train. I worked most of saturday, and put finishing touches on sunday. But now, at last, it is done. Done! DONE!! (cue the hallelujah chorus!) And now I get Wednesday off to make up for saturday.
But now they're going to test my pages and probably find some nasty security holes. What can I say, that's what happens when you give someone a week to make a forum, a ranking system, and a site that appears private for every clan. Oh well, at least my work for the next two weeks is pretty much done and now I'll be able to take my sweet time. I'm thinking naptimes are in order.

Summer Play I love Japanese summer. Even though it's hot, and the humidity makes it seem even hotter, it's the season when vitality is literally bursting through the seams of Tokyo. It's this season when you forgive them for making everything out of dreary grey concrete, because if they didn't the weeds and plants would take over the place quicker than you can say 'heat island effect'.

To take advantage of the glory of the season with its deep blue sky and bright white clouds, I've been meeting up with friends and organizing trips. It was a 3 day weekend last week, which was busily and happily spent with Jen, Elaine (and Paul and Mel) from the US going to Kamakura seeing the Great Buddha. Monday was 'Umi no Hi' (Ocean Day), so we went to the beach with some friends we dragged along at the last minute.

Then Sunday, even though I was dead tired and had worked in the morning, I had organized a trip to my neighborhood (one stop by train!) amusement park. Even though it was tiring, we had a great time making fun of each other and getting sick on rides and ... having beers. Yes, beers! in the amusement park!
Japan is a very advanced country.
I've never been a big fan of beer until I had one after that long hot tiring day. I swear that kirin was made of sweet ambrosia.

Next time: Calorie Mate... aka, Ship's Biscuit.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Team Leader = Cheemu Ri-da-

Hey guys! long time no see. I'm going to try a new format, maybe this way I can get myself to update a little more regularly. Instead of one long story, from now on this blog will be divided into tasty magazine-like nuggets. Here goes.

Working at Play work blurb of the week from an online game-hosting company. In japanese companies there are always strict hierarchical systems. You know exactly who is above and below you in the food chain (you'd better because your style of speech depends on it).
These ranks are accompanied by a plethora of titles. The way this traditionaly works is instead of saying 'Yamada-san', you put the title at the end, so the division head becomes 'Yamada-kacho'.
Of course japanese titles are used, but for some reason there is a love of western titles as well, and with the ever complex political system of everyone needing a title, they always need new ones.
So it's not strange here to hear of a Yamada-Team Leader, a Suzuki Project Manager, etc. But this way it's hard to know who's in charge. As of yesterday, one of the managers was promoted to Chief.
Does this rank above Kacho? Who knows? Who cares? But more importantly, do they know how silly 'Yamada-chee-fu' sounds? Deep thoughts.

Projects: For an anniversary present, Takeshi got me an iPod Touch. That thing is so sexy. But it seems a little crippled without the internet connection. There is *very* little free wi-fi available in this most hi-tech of cities.
Anyways, so this limits the gadget to movies, music, and applications. As a developer, I cannot help but drool at the thought of making an app for the ipod. Even with very modest pricing units, if you can just get a few hundred downloads, you just made a month's rent. Plus it just looks fun. I wanna make a 'learn japanese kanji through comics' app... drawn by moi. ;)
I was looking around, but to my dismay I found that you need a mac to develop for it. Waaaaah.

Question of the day... if you could make any ipod app, what would you make?