Ramblings of a Gamer Nerd Parent

School supplies have all been picked up for both public and home school. All book orders have come in too. I think all that’s left to do is to take Little Bear out for shoe shopping. I even took the extra trip back over to the hospital to sign those release forms already back on Thursday so hopefully they have already faxed the information the elementary needs. I’m really hoping this school year goes smoother than last year.

My father reminded me that every child is different and not all children like school or enjoy the learning process so it’s not always a reflection upon the parent or the school when a child reacts the way Little Bear does when it comes to school. Logically I know there is truth to this. Not everyone is born a book worm or makes a hobby out of learning just for fun.

Let’s be honest here I’m a “lazy scholar” when it comes right down to it. I learned just enough XML to make a bot work for a game before moving on to the next project. Now I’m working on tinkering with a plugin called TerrainControl that messes with the random generator in Minecraft and I can’t even tell you exactly what programing language that’s written in. I think the biome files at least are coded in YAML, but don’t quote me on that. It’s odd after tinkering with so many files between the third part programs for FFXI and Minecraft I can’t tell anymore other than I just know I need to open them with Notepad++ to customize the files.

Many of these programmers are sweet and script in comments, instructions, and explanations about these files. Scholar Owl keeps telling me I should learn how to make my own mod but I have no idea what it would be. If I ever did learn to actually program for real I could see myself picking up an existing mod and keeping it alive rather than trying to build one from the ground up. Why try to reinvent the wheel when there is so much really good stuff out there already?

The saddest day for me was to see the discontinuation of SpellCast within the FFXI modding community. They still push GearSwap like it’s the biggest and greatest thing but I still say that SpellCast had some finer points worth keeping.

Yea… that’s a serious tangent and rabbit hole right here. And should I go down this hole and start explaining this mess? Let me just say when SpellCast support ended and it finally broke, my bots broke too. This meant in order to use GearSwap I would need to learn a brand new programming language, Lau, and convert my bots from XML to that. It took me one or two weeks to convert one bot. Not bad, but it turned out to be more complicated than that. SpellCast functioned differently than GearSwap does.

SpellCast activated on actions that successfully happened to or committed by the character. GearSwap functions on sent packets…. *sigh* My bots were scripted based of the successful actions so in GearSwap this ended up triggering multiple chain loops and well I no longer bot for fear of getting nailed because I don’t have the energy to figure this out and prevent that from happening. Especially since the game introduced NPC “henchies” that behave in a creepy fashion very similar to my bots. Thus no incentive to solve my problem. I know given enough time I could fix it and make all my bots fully working again.

As it is, I already got my Beastmaster bot semi functional. It’s not reading my pet’s health and it has the looping error. I also got my Scholar bot up and running with an annoying lag with the Addendums and of course it too has the looping error. And again, my Dancer/Ninja tank works like a dream if not for that looping error. I know the source of the error is due to the way I set up the bots to communicate their health to each other so they would heal each other as needed, but if they couldn’t the packet for the action is still sent and GearSwap still reads that and thus a loop is created…

I could probably fix that by instead of triggering an execute command I could have it trigger a switch in the active loop so that GearSwap doesn’t create multiple loops… but yea, why bother when the game gives you NPCs to do all this for you now? Well aside from the fact that the NPCs sometimes are really dumb and all die the moment you die. But I’m “lazy” and I don’t want to risk getting banned from this game because of this looping error so now I play “vanilla” and just one character at a time. The only time I log into Windower now is when I want to log into an extra character to set up a bazaar somewhere to sell surplus stuff that really needs to clear space.

So random ramblings aside and returning from the rabbit hole, I’m a nerd. I read. I write. I study random things for no reason other than it catches my fancy at the time. I have children that do not feel the same way. I have one child that for whatever reason refuses to learn to read. I’m having a really hard time with this. It’s really easy to blame the world for it rather than to accept that your child is simply not like you – at all.

How often do scholars give birth to warriors? How often does it happen the other way around? I don’t have the answer to that. As angry as I get and as often as I rage in my life, I truly do not see myself as a fighter. I want very much for Little Bear to be his authentic self. I want for him to feel the freedom of self that I didn’t feel growing up. Yet, in all of this for so many reasons I fear that I have to strip a lot of that away. Mostly due to safety. How do you let the Bear be a Bear when he isn’t surrounded by other Bears? I guess that’s the question I’ve been asking my whole life. Now it feels more important than ever.

I don’t know. It makes me think of the old children’s story The Ugly Duckling. The poor baby swan struggled its entire childhood to be accepted as a duck only to discover in adulthood it was a beautiful swan. The problem is for some of us, that moment never comes. For some reason who we really are is never really good enough. And I want my sons to have that. At least in my home. At least here in this one place. If nothing else I hope they grow up knowing they are good enough in my eyes and heart. Lord knows the world can suck enough already so let home be the one place it doesn’t.

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