Hackathon

I’m just home from a great hackathon, and have slept off the worst.
Now I’m relaxxing at the lake near my hometown, the weather is just right, I’m drinking some cold beer and even if my body is kind of sore and my head is pounding, life is pretty sweet.
There’s nothing like the day after some heroic acts of coding.

We reimagined chess.
We made chess a Line-of-sight-kinda-game, and the idea works really well.

Two kinds of graphics: Pixel and 3D – with incredibly cute animations.

Most exciting, the knight. He sees a lot (almost the entire 5×5 field around him), but he can’t see the very things he’s vulnerable to: The diagonals.
Interesting: Pawns make great scouts.
The king is almost invisible, and weirdly powerful in the endgame.

The other side!

We did the whole thing in JavaScript/with Node for network capability.
I don’t speak JavaScript.
I don’t even speak something vaguely related to JavaScript.

And that’s great.

The last time I played around with JavaScript, it was a simple scripting language and we used it in combination with php (4 and sooner) and HTML. It sucked.
Then came AJAX and hundreds of other things, and I often heard that everything old was new, but I had long ago ventured off from Web stuff to algorithms and parallelization in C.

Yesterday, I was reintroduced to JavaScript.
And I was surprised to find a significantly matured, object-oriented and quite powerful language.
Sure, I have not even begun to grasp their concept of “this” and probably never will (I have no plans to go back to web development an time soon) and their ways of handling arrays and their garbage collection violently crash with my way of doing algorithms, but .. that’s not the point.
The point is that I spent a significant amount of hours working wth really great coders on things that don’t work the way I’m used to.

And that’s the very definition of learning.

The logic behind the knight – my part was mostly game-logic, and placing some sound-effects and stuff.

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