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Multilanguage Site
2022.03.27

Multilanguage Site

brunomassa.com has been always an international site. Almost all posts were written in English. But now that I will venture in the politics (more about this in a later post), it’s worth to separate Brazilian Portuguese contents apart. Mixing posts about programming, gaming and movies will just confuse followers and voters.

Instead removing non-related contents, I decided to just split languages. In Brazilian Portuguese edition will show up more posts about Brazilian scene. Curiously, most of old posts written in pt-br were already about politics or football, so they are already fit for the job!

I do not know how to create a hybrid model using Hugo, with most language-independent content intertwined. If I find, I will enable it in the future. It will be specially useful for hot-pages, those pages that serve as a entry for promotions and special situations. It would not be good to create a hot-page for brunomassa.com/pt-br/hot-page, because it would defeat it’s purpose of easy to remember and share. To help even further, I’ve just bought the brmassa.com domain, aligning with other social media usernames.

So, I’m going to start to work towards generating more content about politics and Brazilian context. This week I plan to make the now-not-much-a-surprise announcement.

This very post is a multi-language. Click in the small flags to switch.

Netlify CMS
2022.03.19

Netlify CMS

I do maintain, for almost 10 years now, a personal journal. A diary. It’s a self psychotherapy. It’s a way to express my thoughts and feelings.

I originally used Google Docs. I created dozens and dozens of files, one for each day. Eventually, I realized that Google was not supposed to be trusted with confidential and personal information. Their spiders crawl and index everything. These thoughts may be still there, even after I delete all the files. Who knows.

Then I migrated to a secondary solution: Wordpress. I hosted a blog and used a add-on to lock it up, allowing just me to see. It’s really good for blogging, with a lot of tools. I designed myself some extra add-ons to manage some aspects of the journal, like a word count and a title generator (based on the post date).

However, maintaining a up-to-date Wordpress installation is critical. Due it’s popularity, and broad usage for e-commerce, Wordpress is a target for many many hackers. I started to think that I could let hacked and let all my stuff exposed. So I decided to export all posts and move once again.

I tried to only maintain it offline, in my computer. It’s, for sure, the most secure way. Anything that is in the internet, even if it’s secured, could be hacked. But sometimes I want to write while away from home. In a trip, for instance.

I looked for a solution that was hosted online, secure (bonus if it was encrypted), and versatile (super bonus if it was open source). I tried some days using SimpleNote then Notion. Notion is very nice and I was using not only to write my journal, but also I started to use it to track some daily routines, like checking weight, sleep time, amount of water that I’ve consumed.

But again I was not very confident about security. So, I’ve exported everything and decided to create host it only in my computer. This time, with a caveat: I was liking the usage of Hugo static site generator, so I designed a blog front end and only enable it locally. And use git to track changes and host at Gitlab. If eventually I’m not in home and want to write, I could find an app to connect to the repository and write. Months passed but I’ve never found a mobile app. So I was locked to just write locally or access the repository using VSCode or whatever.

Finally, the Main Topic

Other day I decided to check Netlify CMS. Created by Netlify hosting service, it tries to create a dynamic admin front end to manage static websites. The result will still be very much static, but the admin section is a single page with a JavaScript that will do everything. It will communicate with a online git repository and commit any new post. The authentication is done thru the git service, Gitlab in my case. It could be Github or any other git service. If the user do not have access to the repository, the admin page will be blank. It reads the source in real time.

Besides that, I could also host the final journal online using Gitlab pages, but settings that only visible to maintainers. The same authentication would be required to see both front end and admin pages. Nice solution.

Netlify CMS is VERY simple. I can only imagine how complex is under the hook, but the final experience for users are simplistic. However, it does the job: I can now access and write my journals from anywhere, including the browser in my phone.

The system relies in a monolithic configuration file that is hosted side by side the content in the git repository. Traversing all the posts from a remote git repository is very slow and not efficient. I cannot imagine dealing with a more complex team structure using it at the same time.

A nice feature is the draft mode: it creates automatically a fork with the draft content. Only when the user click “Release”, it merges the content into the main branch and publish. Netlify CMS does not require Netlify itself, but they are nicely integrated if you decided to use it.

After the successful first experience with my diary, I implemented in my blog. In fact, this very post was written using this pseudo-CMS!

Godot Jam Review
2022.02.10

Godot Jam Review

At the beginning of the year I posted about the retrial of Godot, the most popular free and open source game engine around.

I’ve posted some pros and cons at the time. I then decided to enter into a JAM to motivate myself to try to actually use it for a real complete project. Even it being a jam-like game.

Now it’s time to do a review the whole process.

TLDR: I failed to complete the game. I tried to created a pipeline to build a nightly version for the latest version, with C# support. It is partially running ok.

Bootstraping

The Jam theme was ocean. Bonus points for those that:

  1. all sounds in-game are made with your mouth(s)
  2. include a fishing mini-game
  3. include your favorite quote or pun in game

So I started. As previously said, I’ve planned to implement a old game of mine as the main game. The advantage was that I knew what was needed and the general need. Another plus was the fact that the game was abstract, so I could save a lot of resources and time on the presentation. And by doing the sound effects with the mouth, I could neglect this front until the end.

For the mini game, I looked for a small board game that I could easily implement in the digital form. After some research, I settled with Leaky Boat, a fast paced pen-and-paper game with dice.

So I started to code. But the problems with the C# integration was getting in my nerves. Godot editor crashed more than 30 times in the very first night of coding. It was not blocking the path, but it was making it very very difficult.

New Version from Scratch

As a potential solution, I checked if the undergoing development of Godot 4 (I was using the “stable” version of Godot 3.5) had any nightly build available. I’ve found a guy that was creating theses nightly builds! But only the original non-C# version. The repository was open so I checked if anything was possible to salvage. Not much.

So, as a detour, I decided to build a pipeline on Gitlab that would compile the source code and build it. Eventually I would schedule it to run every night. However, the process of creating a build pipeline online is very tedious and laborious: on every change, I had to run in online. In the case of Godot, trigger the code compilation to eventually discover that 30 min the build start, it failed due some dependency on the build stack was not fun. It took me a whole day spending my personal CPU quota doing this.

So, as a second detour, I decided to host a local Gitlab instance in my computer. It would allow me to develop the pipeline itself. Once ok, I would migrate back to the online service. It took me 2 days to set this. I first decided to go with local Kubernetes, but it was getting too complicated. Then I migrated to a solution that I am more familiar with: Docker-compose inside a virtual machine. I created inside Virtualbox (instead KVM) because I planned to reuse it when I decided to use Windows.

Downloading and building several docker images takes a lot of space! I had to resize the VMs to a much bigger size than originally planned to accommodate the dozen images created/downloaded.

The plan was to create an helper image with all the tools needed to compile the code with or without C#, host/register inside Gitlab itself and reuse in the main pipeline. This step was working fine, but the actual build was failing time after time.

To check if the steps were right, I decided to compile inside my own machine. I did not wanted this originally to not pollute my pc. But worked. Since I “wasted” several days in this detour, I decided to use this local compilation into my project again.

New Version, Old Problems

Godot 4 renamed several classes. Also, it changed several small things internally and it took me couple of ours migrating to the new environment. Good thing is that I did not have much to convert. Done. And the game was working the same as before.

Now it was time to continue the development. But the problems continue the same way: the editor was crashing time after time. I managed to make both the game and the mini game functional, but with several restrictions. The pace was slow, because I had to investigate the way of doing things all the time. And the documentation was definitively not comprehensive for C# users.

After 5 days, I gave up. :( I could theoretically finish the game in a certain state, but I decided to focus my attention to other projects instead. I might try to go with this engine later in the future, but for now, I will return to Unity until I finish one of my projects.

A couple of days after the end of the jam, Godot 4 alpha 1 was released. I still think that, if the devs do not provide a nightly version by themselves, my project has some space.


Despite the failure, I’ve learned a lot about Godot, Gitlab and Kubernetes. Specially the later two. I will use it in the future for sure, so I do not feel the pressure of failure.

All the code, even incomplete, are open source in my Gitlab profile.

Also, they are organizing a Jam every month. I can reuse all to the new jam, for certain.

Star Wars: Jedi: Fallen Order
2022.01.31

Star Wars: Jedi: Fallen Order

Star Wars: Jedi: Fallen Order was mouth-full sub-titled titled title. I don’t particularly like this cascading naming convention, but it’s rather common in big franchises. Harry Potter, Jurassic Park, Pokemon all suffer from.

So, EA publishing another Star Wars game. The default expectation is TRASH game loop with micro transactions and paid loot. Battlefront 2 and FIFA will not let me lie…

But this one was… really good!

I got it “for free” in Amazon Prime deal. My original intention was to get both “free” shipping and streaming service for a fixed and low monthly fee. But they do give some video games for free too. And they are eventually good games. After activation in the yet-another-game-launcher Origin launcher, I decided to give it a try.

TLDR: it has all the mediocre elements of recent games. But visuals and gameplay hooked me in. I liked it very much.

How to parry in star wars jedi fallen order feature.jpg

Characters

The main protagonist is bland. Another white impetuous generic dude. The amnesia trope was also employed here. The guy, once fully skilled, now have to relearn everything.

The companions, however, are much more varied. They never are very relevant to the plot, nor we participate in their own journeys, but they add a great flavor to the story. Particularly the pilot Greez: funny, warm hearted but scared little creature. And, of course, your droid companion. The villains are good. Some visually memorable like the Ninth Siter. Some are, like Malicos, from those type that appears, brags and dies. Next.

The general assortment of goons are the stars of the show. From low rank troopers, big machines, monsters and fallen Jedis, the list is varied throughout the whole game. They provoke fear and anxiety and relaxation. They generally do not talk or express any particular personality, but all portrait a very specific role.

The appearance of iconic characters is definitively a high point to mention. But not spoilers here.

Fallen order dathomir.jpg

Visuals

No much to add beyond you can see in screenshots and trailers. The game is gorgeous. EA at least have to praised in this regard: despite being bad games, all recent SW games are visually stunning. Squadrons, another Amazon free game that I’m still playing, is also amazing.

Gameplay

The main core loop is great. In the Metrovania style, maps are presented but inaccessible until the player acquire some special ability. It implies that, when acquired, the player must revisit the same areas over and over again. There is a kind of fast travel mechanism, but the travel points are sparse and will still require some time traversing.

The combat is challenging. Being a Jedi presupposes being god-like fighter. The game gives the player enough abilities to make one feel powerful but not overpowered. Even on late levels it’s possible to lose health fighting goons. Health that is important in order to face bosses and harder enemies.

Boss encounter do not change the general gameplay substantially, which is a plus. You fight using the same muscle memory developed until it. There are always the annoying pre-cutscene that will be played over and over if you die a lot on these fights.

Visiting 5 different planets gives the scenery a great variation, even to being particular different regarding the traversal challenges. Ice planet, fire planet, vegetation planet, futurist planet/installation, underground… And all are beautiful to look at.

Star wars jedi fallen order review 9.jpg
Villain

Final

I got it for free, but I would pay for it if necessary. The game is fun, front and foremost. The story is a bit lacking, the protagonist is definitively lacking but when I finished, I even tried to complete some extra objectives to extend the experience.

My Rating: 8
Metacritic: 81
Trying Godot Engine Again
2022.01.13

Trying Godot Engine Again

It’s about 10 years I discovered Unity and felt in love. The editor was great but I really liked programming in C#. I allowed me to both organize and creative.

Despite being the among the top 2 suites in the world, I’m increasingly annoyed by them. It became a huge spyware, heavy and the full of annoyances. Beside being super expensive (for Brazilian standards), the pricing model is much less indie-friendly than it’s nemesis, Epic’s Unreal Engine. Users pay upfront instead paying royalties of their own success.

Time to explore new grounds! In fact, I try new stuff all the time. It’s time to land in new grounds! Some criteria to consider:

  • Open source preferred, almost required.
  • Avoiding C++ (because my games would leak memory of certain). Javascript is discarded due performance. Rust is hot, but an engine supporting it is probably super beta.
  • Small footprint if possible.
  • Pro developer tools, like CI/CD headless compilation.
  • Big community or organization supporting it. The lack of big support is an abandoned project wannabe.

So for the past months I tried to play with several options. Notably:

  • Unreal is unbearably gigantic (7gb+), which hits specially hard on CI/CD. And Linux editor is buggy.
  • I was excited by Stride/Xenko, but months after the open source, it was basically abandoned.
  • Godot have that annoying scripting language embedded, but the no-go was the lack of a equivalent of ScriptableObject to create data assets.
  • O3DE is a possibility for the future. Lua as scripting language is a personal nostalgia.

Spark of hope

Then I read an article about creating data assets in Godot. It used C#. It was not a trick or complex. Pretty straight forward. I decided to try it again. Less then 100 mb later, with no need to install or register, I started my -again- first project. The goal was to load data from a asset created using C# code, just like a ScriptableObject in Unity. The test was a success.

So it’s time to try to create a full prototype game! I’m planning to joining one of the several jams they organize to motivate myself to finish. No prizes involved, just challenge. Things to explore in order to be conformable with:

  • Client-server multiplayer.
  • Scene streaming.
  • Animations.

Another idea is to recreate an old game of mine: PICubic. It was not commercially released, so it might be a good way to learn and expect results.

Some general thoughts

After a week that I’m playing with it. Some thoughts:

Cons

👎 The design principal that each node have only one script attached instead the super common component-driven approach lacks. Specially trying to design very complex systems using small parts, like the micro-services in the web development. I heard once there are a spin-off that implements this, but there is no traction in the community.

👎 C# integration is still not good. At least in my computer, the editor crashes each 30 min on a random time I hit play. Also, the editor do not display custom C# classes in the inspector. I design several vanilla classes to organize the code, but I had to transform them into Resources to be able to edit their data.

👎 Linking assets in the editor does not respect the class restriction. One could insert a Player asset instead Weapon and the editor will not complain. I have to check before using a external variable every time.

Neutral

😐 Refereeing nodes in the hierarchy and in the asset folder are two distinct things. Nodes in the hierarchy are accessed by NodePath while prefabs (here called PackedScenes) have a different type.

😐 GDScript: focusing on a custom language instead a vanilla widespread like C# or C++ is a waste of both newbies and Godot’s own developers energy.

Pros

👍 The everything is a scene approach fascinates me. I always thought this way in Unity: scenes are just a special prefab.

👍 Creating an automatic build pipeline on Gitlab was a breeze. Due the smaller container and less complexity, it takes less then 2 minutes to create a build on any platform. A empty Unity project takes this time just to download the 4gb+ image and at least 5 more minutes to compile.

The project development is somewhat slow for my taste, but they are receiving more and more financial support in the last months that might enable them to accelerate the pace. I’m specially interested in the new external language integration for the upcoming Godot 4.

Game List 2021
2021.12.31

Game List 2021

Last year I published a post of my played games but the title was mistakenly name Media List 2020. It was a games list so this year it was properly named. This year I wrote much less about each individual game, so I dedicated a small space to comment each entry.

By far, the most important game I played was Cyberpunk 2077. At least, it was supposed to be the most loved and commented game. Whatever, here is a list of games of all games I played this year.

2021-01-13: Totally forgot to include both Battlefield 4 and Battlefield 1.

Finished

  • 3 out of 10 Season 1( 7 ): the self mocking humor is funny, but the gameplay is monotonous.
  • Abzu( 6 ): Underwater abstract exploration. Due the short length, it was ok.
  • Battlefield 1( 9 ): the best in the series. The split stories, all good, allowed to explore multiple game plays.
  • Battlefield 4( 6 ): really bad. The invincible hero trope to the last moment. Cinematic after cinematic.
  • Control( 7 ): it was in my wish list for quite some time, then Epic gave it for free. However, I must admit it was a bit off for me. The weird story was never fulfilling, the levels and flow was a bit repetitive. My impression that Jesse, the protagonist, was at the same time omniscient and suffering an amnesia. The Dr Casper Darling (played by Matthew Porretta) was a fun character though.
  • Cyberpunk 2077( 7 ) I enjoyed quite a lot. Finished every single quest. Still, expectations were higher.
  • Gunpoint( 8 ): quick, easy, and charming puzzle-platformer.
  • Hyper Light Drifter( 5 ): loved by many. Not me. Hard and confusing, despite beautiful. I gave up.
  • Imperialism 2( 8 ): finally played to the end the other day. The clunky old graphics and controls get a bit in the way.
  • Little Nightmares( 7 )Little Nightmares( 8 ) (as watcher): I’ve made my wife to play this, a bit every night. Despite the lack of gamer’s finger coordination, she did fine and loved it. We will definitively play the second installment eventually.
  • Offworld Trading Company( 7 )(campaign mode): the campaign mode lacks the openness and do not add a great story to compensate.
  • Quadrilateral Cowboy( 7 ): this very quarky game about hacking and programming. Very experimental, both for visual and gameplay.
  • Tell Me Why( 8 ): my wife played this game with me. She loved the theme but she really sucks with the camera controls. We talked about the themes and storylines for weeks. I decided to be by her side to help her play the amazing Life is Strange, because she was liking the game but associated it with the mental gymnastics to just make the character walk.
  • Tharsis( 6 ): a survival digital board game. We have to manage action points, mitigate bad dice rolls and survive for about 5 turns. Short and agonizing.
  • Watch Dogs 2( 8 ): after playing a couple of Ubisoft open world games lately (1 FarCry’s, 2 Assassin’s Creeds’ just the last 2 years), I was expecting the same generic main protagonist and blend story. But I was genuinely liked this entry. Marcus is a likable dude and despite the exaggerated characterization of hackers, it had several storylines right.

Not finished yet (for a reason or another)

Most of them I barely started. Just to check the general flow or if it was working at all. Some It’s WIP. Few are collecting dust.

  • 3 out of 10 Season 2( 7 ): the same of the first season. Funny and awkward. About to finish.
  • A Plague Tale Innocence( 8 ): beautiful production. Played just first couple levels.
  • Assassin’s Creed 3: It’s a big cut scene with some on-rails gameplay. Hated so far. :(
  • Astrologaster( 8 ): indie small game. Crazy humor. I liked it very much so far.
  • Blair Witch( 7 ): did not care much of the lore, but it’s a nice horror game.
  • Black Mesa( 8 ): the official/non-official Half Life 1 remake. The original one I did not play at the time. This remake is really good!
  • Crying Suns( 7 ): very similar to FTL, with a delightful story and context. My current run is in the Chapter 4 and about to finally finish.
  • Doki Doki Literature Club: not my style, but I heard so much good things about it that I’m intrigued.
  • Ghostrunner: 3D puzzle game action game. Think about 3D Super Meat Boy.
  • GRIS: beautiful first level.
  • Heaven s Vault: highly anticipated game, played a bit and liked the story so far. As far I can tell, there is space for multiple runthroughs to explore all possible branches (not sure if I would do it).
  • Just Cause 4: repetitive like it’s predecessor. But it was crashing too many times. Hardly coming back.
  • Observation( 7 ): excellent storytelling, despite the clunky controls.
  • Overcooked 2( 8 ): my family loved it and I’m trying to play the campaign with my wife
  • Snake Pass( 5 ): 3D puzzle game, installed to play with my nephews, but it’s controllers and specially the camera, are too clunky and annoying.
  • Supraland( 8 ): from nowhere, this game is surprisingly hard and much longer than I anticipated. Still, I’m loving the sarcastic tone and the bucket load of jokes.
  • Sherlock Holmes - Crimes and Punishments: the best game in the series. 4 cases with somewhat similar mechanics and styles. Just one to go.
  • The Stillness of the Wind: installed.
  • Unravel Two( 8 ): still to finish with my wife. She struggle to use the joystick, but this game is quite forgiving, due the slow pace. The light story allows infrequent plays.
  • Wilmot s Warehouse: it works. It’s all that I can tell so far.
  • XII: installed, played 2 levels. Very unique style but old controls.

Not finished yet (still from previous years)

Yet, there are some games that I did not quit definitively, but they are still to be played (therefor, not yet rated). A few are event still installed.

  • Baba Is You( 7 ): played some levels. To the second or third “world”, if I remember. SUPER clever.
  • Bad North( 7 ): nice but I still have to give it more time to shine.
  • Detention( 7 ): I was far in this indie horror game. I think I formatted the HD and lost the saved game.
  • Else Heart Break: it’s working. It’s all that I know
  • Everspace( 6 ): FTL in 3D. You command a ship that have to fight, explore and trade point to point, in a similar fashion of the famous indie game. I liked, but did not loved. Probably I am not continue to play.
  • Far Lone Sails( 5 ): I liked the concept but I felt lacking.
  • GRID 2( 7 ): played A LOT. top tier racing games. Beautiful, despite the age.
  • Hand of Fate 2: I liked the first game, despite the flaws. This second installment is more complete in every level. I shall play it. I’ve read the developer closed doors.
  • Kentucky Route Zero: this acclaimed game I was super excited to try.
  • Shadow Tactics( 8 ): I really liked the thinking of this game. It’s definitively one that I will try to complete sooner than later.
  • SOMA( 6 ): I haven’t gave it time to blossom, but I was not utterly involved either.
  • Subnautica( 7 ): it took me time to understand the whole open concept. But a saved save was lost and I’m not in that mood to retry it.
  • Sunless Sea( 6 ). The procedurally generated world is amazing, but this was not my cup of tea. Probably I am not continue to play.
  • Superhot Mind Control Delete( 7 ): played several levels already, yet to finish.
  • The Pillars of the Earth: loved the book. I barely started the game, so maybe it should not be here.
  • The Quiet Sleep( 8 ): in this weird indie game, you play the internal mind of a trouble guy during 3 scenarios.
  • War of Mine( 8 ): I’m far in my third play through, but still to see the game credits.
  • Witness( 7 ): quite adorable. Some puzzles are difficult and make you feel smart. Yet, the lack of pressure makes it a eternal secondary game. It’s also difficult to put it in a “continuous play” category, because you need to know at what point are you.

Continuous playing

I play them eventually. Most of them, strategy games.

  • A Total War Saga TROY( 8 ): One of the Epic Store exclusives (for a time), it impressed me. I’m about to finish my first campaign, playing the Amazons.
  • Cities Skylines( 8 ): After my friend mentioned that he was lost hours and hours designing his hometown, I reinstalled it and started to lose hours and hours too.
  • Democracy 3( 8 ): always in Vogue.
  • Hidden Folks( 7 ): success with small kids and non-gamers alike
  • RimWorld( 8 ): MUCH more complex than Prison Architect, offered a great variety of procedural content. I did not finished a single play through, but it’s really special.
  • Rome Total War( 8 ): I played a lot last year. But it’s a quite long game. Once I finish it once, I might close it once and for all. The Troy is heavier, but ultimately better in every aspect.
  • Scythe: the award-winning board game that I still have to give a beginning to end match.
  • Stelaris( 7 ): slow paced super broad space strategy. The sense of exploration is still amazing
  • Surviving Mars( 7 ): loved board game that I played a couple of matches solo. Did not click to me, but I will still give it another try.
  • Ticket to Ride( 9 ): played online with family and friends. Always a success.
  • Wingspan: immediate success with my family and friends. Special mention to my 6 years old nephew comment: “It’s the best game I ever played”. He was assisted and played quite well.

Next games in my radar

Finally, here a list of games that I already have in my collection that I plan to play in the next months.

  • Hitman: I’ve never finished Contracts, but just because I was obsessed for being perfect. I hope to play more relaxed this one.
  • Assassin’s Creed Syndicate: hope to be better then the 3.
  • Deus Ex: Mankind Divided: liked the first title, Deus Ex Human Revolution. I hope to like this one too.
  • We Are There Together: I bought to play with my wife using family feature on Steam (she shares all my games). HOWEVER, it is not included in the Play Together, so I am required to buy twice. :/ Trying to convince another soul to play with me.
  • Heavy Rain: I will play this critically acclaimed story-driven games from Quantic Dream with my wife.
  • Beyond Two Souls: another story to play accompanied.
Movie List 2021
2021.12.31

Movie List 2021

Just a list of movies that I’ve seen this pandemic year.

  1. Be Kind Rewind
  2. Best in Show
  3. Borat
  4. Borat Subsequent Movie
  5. Bridesmaids
  6. Coming 2 America
  7. Cruela
  8. Don’t Look Up
  9. Enola Holmes
  10. I Care a Log
  11. I’m Thinking of Ending Things
  12. Incendies
  13. Judas and the Black Messiah
  14. Lady and the Tramp
  15. Last Knights
  16. Live Twice, Love Once
  17. Mank
  18. Minari
  19. News of the World
  20. Okja
  21. Radioactive
  22. Roma
  23. Shadow
  24. Sound of Metal
  25. Sound of Silence
  26. The Chamber
  27. The Dig
  28. The Father
  29. The Informer
  30. The King
  31. The Midnight Sky
  32. The Trial of the Chicago 7
  33. Us
  34. Wasp Network
  35. White Tiger

Documentary

  1. American Factory
  2. Honeyland

Animations

  1. A Cat in Paris
  2. Luca
  3. Soul
  4. Your name

Shows

  1. Loki (S1)
  2. Mandalorian (S1, S2)
  3. Morning Show (S1)
  4. Queen’s Gambit (S1)
  5. Ted Lasso (S1 S2)
  6. The Spy (S1)
  7. This is Us (S1)
  8. Tiger King (S1)
GitOps Lifestyle Conversion
2021.11.11

GitOps Lifestyle Conversion

I’m currently fascinated with Gitlab’s handbooks. I heard of companies trying to be more open to the public, but the extent that Gitlab is doing is unprecedented. They are documenting everything publicly. Most, if not all, internal processes are getting written for everyone to see.

  • How admissions are done? It’s there.
  • How and when employees are bonuses? It’s there too.
  • What is the ERP used? It’s there.
  • In fact, what is the whole list of external software and service used? It’s there too.
  • The scripts used to manage it’s own site? It’s there too.
  • Personal information, like employees actual salaries? Of course, are not there.

Too much information? Maybe. But it’s definitively inspiring.

Another source of personal inspiration comes from a guy on Twitter: Keijiro Takahashi. This japanese programmer does several mini-tools for himself but publishes everything on Github with minimalist’s licenses like MIT.

In contrast, I was checking my LinkedIn the other day then I decided to share my Gitlab and Github accounts. There are so many projects over there. #ButNot. Most, almost all, were private! Many game prototypes, small side projects. All locked. Some are basically live backups, since are not updated for ages. So I decided to do two things:

  1. Open some of the closed projects
  2. Git-fy some of my personal and professional projects
  3. Documentation as code for my new company

The first is pretty straight. Mostly checking a box. Sometimes adding a small README or LICENSE files. Few times making real changes.

The second is a new mindset: I have dozens of small projects, from games to personal scripts, that I’ve never used git to track changes. But not only I could get better control of it, but also I could share with the world. You will see more and more projects popping up in my Gitlab account page.

The third, follow partially Gitlab’s way. I’m considering in documenting most of the processes in git-like wikis. It will not only good sharing the knowledge with other employees and partners. It’s also good for tracking the business decisions that changed these processes. A rather clever approach.

Certification and Credibility
2021.10.18

Certification and Credibility

Can you prove what you claim?

Do you fully trust in the media, banks or advertisements? I bet you don’t. And you shouldn’t. Not blindly. Trusting is a very delicate matter.

By living in a society you are required to trust other people. That’s the way to share the responsibilities. Each individual do a thing for another. You simply have to give a bit of trust in others. If not the if we should trust, the problem lies on how.

Source of Trust

The primary source of trust are the individuals themselves. You gain trust by living and presenting reliable results. It takes time.

Governments, on the other hand, use the power of law to reinforce what they want to be believed. They issue money, certificates, documents and they all MUST be accepted as they were the truth. What makes you believe that a $100 bill is worth the $100? Simple: the law says it so!

If you need to be trusted but you do not have the time to gain it organically nor cannot “fabricate” the trust? The solution lies on a already trusted third parties vouching, a…

Certification

Someone that you trust can vouch, give their word, for another one. That works like a web of trust. I trust my mom, that trusts her old friend. So, I might trust her too.

Language and professional certifications are the most common form. Several institutes, for a very diverse range of fields, can issue a certificate saying that you are good as you claim. Proficiency in Mandarin? Project management? Someone can certificate that you master it.

Double Agent

Certification agents must be impartial, indifferent from your own success derived from the certification, otherwise they might be incentivized to lie for you. It breaks the whole point of the certification as source of trust.

  • Accounting firms hired to validate a client company financial health might be interested in lying. The at-the-time famous Arthur Andersen participated in a giant fraud stating that it’s client’s, Enron, finances was ok. Enron bankrupted months later and AA was suited and had to slipt in two companies.
  • The 2008 financial crisis also can be attributed to rating companies, that stated that several risky bonds were good and risk free. They help clients to sell them to others, profiting from lying.
  • Some colleges graduate their students even when they have really bad grades. Flooding the market with awful professionals, it becomes impossible to assert which one is good and which one is bad.

There are several good certification institutes. But these authorities have to be constantly monitored. Also, their own processes have to be constantly certified, creating a big process of checks and balances.

It’s a worthwhile initiative for the whole society.

Post originally written in 2015-11-05. But was in draft mode by mistake for all these years.

Rating Badge
2021.09.24

Rating Badge

As a programmer and businessman, I try to organize the world. So, I created a unified Ratings page consolidating all reviews that I did. Games, boardgames, books, movies and TV shows.

A few of them I wrote a full blog post. But most I did not. That was driving me crazy. I often mention the same games/movies on multiple posts. When it happens to a piece of art that I did not previously reviewed, I felt a pressure to do so. I even might do so, but now it’s not required anymore. Now the non-reviewed-but-rated are properly acknowledged. And I shall have the consistence.

I’m going to scan, in the next days, all previous blog posts to cross reference, but the main step was done.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Also, in a similar vain the previous post, Rating Art, I decided to give my ratings a more visual appeal. For now, beside the numeric 0-10 rating, it will show the according number of stars.

BRUNO MASSA