VARIOUS THINGS

After Thursday, I found myself with nothing too pressing to do. When you’re in school, that feeling should worry you. A student, especially a grad student, should always have something pressing to do.

Yes, I do a have a proposal due on Tuesday, but for some reason I’m not too worried about it. I should be, since I have no idea what I’m going to propose. It’s a proposal for a short project I’ll be doing for a class. It’ll get done somehow and on time, and if it’s crap, then it’s crap, because I know I’ll have tried my best on it.

I also have to make an hour long (or thereabouts) presentation in about two weeks. This isn’t even for marks or a class! Here at SJC, we have a Resident Speaker Series. It gives the residents a chance to speak, lecture style, about some topic. It doesn’t have to do with your research, it can be anything you have knowledge of. The talks are generally attended by other residents. The impression I get is that these talks have sparse attendance. To be honest, some people choose really dense subjects, which they genuinely may be passionate about, but leave others wondering if there’s an episode of Family Matters on TV. Others give light-hearted talks, while they aren’t rooted in academia, are much more appreciated.

Anyways, a moron like me doesn’t know a whole lot of anything, so I can only give a fluff talk. I’ve decided to entitle my talk, “Video Game Testing : A Dream Job… Or Is It?“. I realized a long time ago, the job of a video game tester is pretty unique. Whenever I told people what I did, invariably their eyes light up, and they start asking questions. From this, I gathered most people have inaccurate perceptions of what goes on during testing. My hope is that my talk will shed some light on what testers do and what goes on during the testing phase.

My goal is also to keep people entertained. If my talk about entertainment software, doesn’t entertain people, then I will have failed horribly. I’m planning on having some hands-on demonstrations of certain testing activities. I’ll pick a volunteer out of the crowd and get them to participate. I won’t give away what I have in mind, except to say it’ll be fun. I’m also going to have a PS2 setup with my lecture. While I’ll try to keep the focus on the general activity of testing, I’m going to get specific with a particular game. I’ve decided to use NHL 2002 for most of my specific examples. It makes sense since I believe I did a good job testing that particular game. Near the end, I’m going to show the audience something really neat with NHL 2002. Again, I won’t say anything more.

I’m kinda looking forward to writing this presentation, except for two things. I’ve never done a presentation on Powerpoint before. I don’t know how to make the slides and I know nothing about those fancy transitions and fade-ins. I’m hoping the learning curve will be quite shallow. The other thing is that I don’t have a laptop to put my presentation on. I will have to rely on the kindness of my fellow residents to let me borrow their laptop. I must remind any SJC resident with a laptop that I occasionally bake cookies and cakes, and a trade just might be possible.

Wow, it’s getting late. I need to go over some PHP files. I will talk to you guys later. Oh, one more thing, that was a hell of a save.

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