So next week I will be in Montreal for the annual Python Software Foundation conference: PyCon. My coworker and I will be presenting a project we developed at UCF that uses Django, AWS, and a bunch of other tools that allow us to help 60,000 students learn in a better environment.
Next Friday’s post will probably be late, depending on what the internet connection is like up there.
I am proud to present the very latest version of PiPlay! PiPlay 0.8 Beta 9! I feel like this is the best release yet!
While this was mostly a bug fix and compatibility update, we do have one awesome new features implemented. When you upload, drag and drop, ftp, or somehow copy a game file to the roms folder, our file watcher will pick that up, and automatically update the PiPlay Menu. No more running the Rom Scraper, or getting popups about unscraped files.
Sorry for the very late post this week. Trying to figure out why I’m having such connectivity issues to my web host. Replaced the router. Still happens. Modem is fine. It’s not my host. But my ISP can’t see it as being down since it comes up 5 minutes later. I can VPN into work and access my host from there. So weird.
Tomorrow marks my 2nd Wedding Anniversary. It feels like it’s been a day and a half 🙂 K, I love you. Thank you for putting up with me.
0.8 Beta 9 is coming along. It should be released in a day or so. This is the best version yet, and I’m so sorry for the Beta 8 release. Trying to get everything working on both the Pi and Pi2 has been a challenge. But I think this version will be great. We have upgraded to the latest Raspbian image, moved more emulators into GitHub / Git and now can update most of PiPlay with a Git Update. Mark has created an awesome file watching script which automatically updates the frontend when a new file has been uploaded. No more running the scraper, it all happens in the background.
Mario Party 10
Mario Party 10 came out this week. I had a chance to play it with a group, and, well, it feels like Mario Party Lite. The game is gorgeous, the levels are beautiful, but there are only three game modes. Amiibo Party, Bowser Party, and “Mario Party” which isn’t like previous games. Everyone works together to get to the end in a vehicle, basically pooling dice rolls. The classic game has been shortened and moved to Amiibo Party. It feels like a lot of content is missing. The load times are also really long. I really wanted to love this game, but I feel like its a demo. I’m hoping patches and some free DLC fix that.
I backed the SmartiPi kickstarter a short while ago, and received my case the other day. I think this is one of the best designed cases out there. It easily wraps around the whole Pi, and has LEGO compatible pegs on the case.
First of all, yes, I’m aware of a really dumb bug in PiPlay 8 Beta 8. I’m going to release an update this weekend that should fix it. I don’t know how I let a release slide with a joystick bug, but I did, and I’m sorry.
I changed my Raspberry Pi battle station setup so that hopefully testing will be a bit easier.
On another note, this week at work has been amazing. One my applications was selected as a winner in an educational app challenge. My team won 3rd place. I am very proud! My team was also selected to present at the New Media Consortium on our work with Learning Tools. 😀
Have a good weekend all. I look forward to releasing the bug fix update.
PiPlay 8 Beta 8 is here! Mark has put a huge amount of time into the new frontend code. We have moved form YAML files to a SQLite database. Many items have been sped up. The web frontend now has a database administration section.
This is a huge update. Probably the best I think we put out… but because of the Pi2, we have had to do a lot of extra testing, and may have missed some stuff. Please please please let us know if something isn’t working, or if something slipped through the cracks. I want this to be the best release ever!
This new image will work on the Pi2 and B, B+, A, and A+. I have spent the past week pulling out hair trying to get everything to work. I have had to remove Stella, the Atari 2600 emulator for the moment. When I can get it working properly on the new kernel, I will add it back in.
The image is currently being uploaded to SourceForge, so in a few hours it should be available.
Thanks for your patience, and thanks to all the testers. If you find any bugs (I’m sure there are some) let us know in the PiPlay forums.
A big announcement came from the Raspberry Pi Foundation today! They introduced the Raspberry Pi 2!
The biggest change is the CPU has been upgraded from a single core ARMv6 @ 700Mhz to a QUAD CORE ARMv7 @ 900Mhz. The RAM has also been upgraded from 512MB to 1GB. The price is going to remain the same as well! Only $35!
The upgrade from ARMv6 to v7 is pretty big. v7 can run things like Ubuntu and Android OS. Most main line software repos are precompiled for v7 first as well. Microsoft has even mentioned that Windows 10 will be free for the Raspberry Pi (though in an Internet-Of-Things way which may be more like the Intel Galileo than a full desktop environment).
All software should be backwards compatible so PiPlay should work right out of the box, along with a much appreciated speed boost. I can’t wait to start recompiling the source code to eek out as much power as possible from this new core!
Most of the retail sites are swamped, but here is a list of places to order:
I wanted to give you all a sneak peek on the next version of PiPlay. The biggest feature is that we are moving from YAML files to a sqlite DB to store a lot of the data. There are also lots of optimizations and speed improvements.
My two favorite features have to be the ones that Mark implemented: Favorites, and Game Info. You can now favorite a game and it will appear in the favorites category. Alongside the game list, you will also find info available about your game (as long as you have run the scraper.)
The web interface has also been extended to include database editing. You can now add menu items to frontend via the web interface.
This release should be out in the next week or so.