Sunday, June 28, 2015

How to draw quickly draw 3 arcs with rounded end points in GIMP.

First draw 3 circles (I selected a large circle turned that into a path, shrunk selection by 40 pixels in this example and turned that into a path, then shrunk again 40 pixels and turned that into a path, then selected none, stroked all 3 paths using brush size 20
Free select tool and cut away unwanted parts.
Using the same brush (size 20 pixels and round brush) just dot the end points to make it look round. and That's it! :)
There's even a better way to produce perfect circles without artifacts using offnuts' script to create perfect circles that will produce something like this
more details here: http://gimpchat.com/viewtopic.php?f=11&t=12739

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Do you have young kid(s) about 2 years of age?

Do you have kid(s) about 2 years of age or a little older that are trying to learn the alphabet?
If so, then we have a great app for your kid(s).

This is my first paid app, only $1.80 CAD (Google Play keeps 30% so I make about $1.25 CAD).
 The app can be purchased on Google play at the below link
https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.sky_learn.first.alphabet
Sky-Learn Alphabet app teaches kids the alphabet by letting kid(s) discover through trial and error and positive reinforcement.
1st Phase of the app shows 3 random pictured icons, it'll speak out something like "A is for Apple" and the kid has to touch the correct icon to progress (a "Ding Ding" bell will sound and 3 points are awarded).
This repeats for random characters (there are 3 different items for each character so with a total of 78 beautiful pictured icons).
If the wrong one is selected an unpleasant buzzer will sound and 3 points are taken away.  Through trial and error, kid(s) will eventually get the right one and getting the "Ding Ding" bell is a positive reinforcement it'll help kids to remember the correct icons on later trials/plays.
When 300 points are reached.
The game/app will kick into 2nd phase which will sound out "Capital A" and the kid has to select the capital A out of 3 icons of capital letters.
If an incorrect letter is selected, it'll start back at "Capital A" until Capital Z is reached.
After which point, the app/game will kick into phase 3 where small a has to be selected and so on all the way to small z (similar like phase 2, except instead of capital letters, it's small letters).
If small z is reached. The game is over and the kid has the option to replay if they touch the "Play Again!" button.

Through repeated plays and positive reinforcement, kids will get better at recognizing letters of the alphabet.

I called it sky learn because icons slowly float up from the bottom of screen with a blue sky back ground with clouds floating upward as well it feels like you're falling slowly and if correct icon is not selected in time and the icons travel past the top of screen, they'll start at bottom again so kid(s) will have multiple opportunities to select the right one.  There's no way to lose the game unless you purposely keep selecting the wrong one in which case you'll just end up with a really large negative score but the game won't end so you can still play and try to get 300 points starting from a low number.
I wanted to keep everything simple because it's intended for kids.
There's also a speech bubble in lower left of the screen, it's for when kids misheard the speech part, they can touch the speech bubble to repeat what they're supposed to select.

Monday, June 15, 2015

Sky-learn a prototype app to teach children alphabet/numbers/shapes/colors and things(animals and things)

Sky-learn is a prototype app.
With alphabet/numbers/shapes/colors and things (floating up in the sky) intending to teach young children to recognize them based on speech.
The app will speak a letter/number/shape/color or thing(animal or thing) and the child has to click on right icon out of 3 possible icons.  If the child clicks/touches the right one a "Ding Ding" bell will sound and the child gets 3 points (1 point for each icon).  If the child clicks/touches the wrong icon, a "Buzz" will sound indicating it's incorrect and 1 point is taken away.
If the child did not hear the speech the first time, the child can click on the speech bubble located at the lower left hand side of game screen area.  And the speech of the letter/number/shape/color or thing will repeat again.
Here's a video capture of the app/game in action.

This app could also be used for non-english speakers to teach them letters/numbers/colors/shapes and things English.

Later on, i want to build more difficulty by showing words instead of pictures so that the users/kids can learn to recognize words, the first essential blocks of learning how to read.

You can try out this prototype here: http://arcade.gamesalad.com/games/131497

I am starting a kickstarter project to get funding for getting the GameSalad Pro version which will me to publish to mobile apps such as android.  Hopefully, i'll get enough funding.  I want to make the app/game available for free, because it's intended to be educational and education should be as free as possible.

If you'd like to back this project, you can back it here: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/trandoductin/sky-learn-an-educational-app-for-young-children

Friday, June 12, 2015

The White cow and the talking celery stick

Once up a time, there was boy who went to McDonalds to get some hamburgers. On the way, he tripped and fell....He looked up and there was a beautiful white cow appearing over his head saying: "Why would you eat us?" The boy said: "Because your meat is just too tasty".  The white cow said: "But those cows you eat are reincarnations of your long passed relatives as well".  "What are you fucking kidding me?" The white cow said: "Yes, I am just fucking with you. get up and go grab your hamburgers, kid!".  The boy got up and the white cow disappeared.
On the way he met a little girl who was a vegetarian who was going to 7/11 for a slurpee.  The boy told the girl the story how he met the white cow.  The girl was surprised at the story because she too tripped and fell and she looked up and saw a large talking celery stick and said: "Why would you eat us?" and she said: "You're not too tasty but i don't eat beef so I have to eat you".  The talking celery stick said: "But don't you know celery sticks are long passed relatives of the cows?" "You mean cows die and grow into celery sticks?".  The celery said: "No not really, i was just fucking with you!".  The young boy and the girl decided that food should be punished by being eaten because food always trying to fuck with them even appearing as talking entities while they have a mild concussion.  The two of them grew up and and got married and had kids and in return for messing with them when they were younger, the two of them fed their kids a lot of beef and celery sticks.. the end.

"Silk Man" and "Moon Lady" mythical characters in movies (Ong To Ba Nguyet)

Old tale:
During the Tang Dynasty, there was a young man named Vi Co who was looking for a wife.
One night, he saw an old man leaning against a large bag reading a book under the moonlight.
He talked to the man, and the old man said: "This book has written names of married people
and this bag contains pink threads that are used to tie the legs of people who are destined to marry each other and cannot be untied".
Vi Co asked the old man: "Who shall I marry?".
The old man pointed at a three year old girl in the arms of a blind woman who was bringing vegetables to
sell at the market and said: "That's your wife!".
Vi Co got very mad and instructed his servants to stab the little girl.
But the little girl was only wounded and survived.
Fourteen years later, apparently Vi Co married the young girl.
The name "old man moon" is translated from the "old moon".
Two names of "Silk Man" and "Moon Lady" also came from this old tale.
According the myth, "Silk Man" and "Moon Lady" travel as a couple, and they have the task
of tying the legs of couples who are destined to marry each other with pink threads.
Couples who are in love would sometimes pray to "Silk Man" and "Moon Lady" to have their legs tied together with pink thread.
Because it's a myth, "Silk man" and "Moon Lady" and their threads are not supposed to be visible to
the naked eye but unless they want to appear to regular people (according to the movies).

Saturday, June 6, 2015

How to roll Vietnamese Salad Rolls so the filling doesn't fall out after the first bite.

So you try to make your own home-made Vietnamese Salad Rolls and the filling keeps falling out after you take a first bite and try to dip again and filling falls into the dipping and it makes a mess.
Here's how you roll it so that the filling doesn't fall out.
Instead of trying to roll all the filling together in one go, try spreading out the filling on the rice paper and roll the rice paper along with the filling so that the rice paper gives the middle of roll some structure so the filling doesn't fall out.

Here's a diagram of the difference between rolling it in one go and rolling the rice paper along with the filling.  Try to roll like diagram B.
There you have it, a simple trick that prevents the filling from falling out after you try take the first bite and try to dip again.  I was rolling them like diagram A for years and had to suffer from the annoyance of the filling falling out into my dipping.  Then I discovered how to roll them like diagram B and from then on, my filling never fell out anymore.  Thought I'd share this trick to fellow Salad Rolls lovers out there.

Here's a link to a recipe for Vietnames Salad Rolls that my friend shared on facebook, just in case you wanted a recipe: http://www.howdoesshe.com/vietnamese-salad-rolls-with-peanut-sauce/

Thursday, June 4, 2015

How to hatch an image in GIMP

I posted a similar post but much simpler about my Auto Hatch Layers script on GIMP LEARN forum here --> Hatching an image in GIMP Script

Inside GIMP, you can manually hatch an image by creating a hatch pattern then copying that pattern into the clipboard and simply dragging that pattern onto a selection to fill the selection with that pattern repeatedly.

Or you also manually hatch an image with the help of a script I wrote to help you with the manual process, you'll just have to select the area (you might have reduced the number of colors of your image) maybe of a specific color, and then run the script.  And the script will allow you to specify 2 colors, one is the hatch color, the other is hatch color number 2 or can also be referred to as hatch background (not always, since my script will flip the colors around if your hatch width percentage is greater than 50%, I did this so that for circles patterns it'll always fit inside a grid of the hatch pattern).   The script will allow you to choose a pattern of "Lines","Squares","Circles","Triangles","Zigzags","Fans","Rings", or "Hollow Squares".
You can specify hatch width percentage so if you want gray 50%, you can specify hatch colors of White and Black and use hatch width percentage of 50%.  So what that will do is it'll give you a hatch pattern that has 50% white over black hatch pattern.
This script is useful if you really want to control every detail of your hatching of your image(s).  You can manually calculate/figure out what color you want but are happy with the 8 built patterns.
Here's the script's options:
 You can specify rotate angle to rotate the hatch pattern to a certain angle (default is 45).  And the hatch Grid Width and Height defines size of hatch square in pixels.  If you make it 5 minimum it'll be a fine hatch, if you make it larger it'll be courser.
Okay enough talk about the script.  You should just download the Hatch Selection Layer script and try it out for yourself.

Now onto something more AUTOMATED!  What if you don't want to do the manual work of defining every color manually? All the simple but tedious math.  Well I wrote a script for that too.
You just have to have an image in RGB mode.
You'll have to select number of colors/hatch you want.  This script will reduce the number of colors of your image down to the number of specified hatches and then automatically hatch your whole image.
Here's the script's options:
You can turn on/off each of the hatch patterns (there's 8 right now) but if none is turned on, it'll default to hatching with "Lines". So for an image of at least 8 colors/hatches you have 255 different ways to choose your Hatch patterns (2^8, 256 but because we don't count the option of having everything turned off).
And you have the option to "Break into color components instead of hatching over black".  What that option does is what it says, it'll try to break your image's color into 2 colors that when combine give the original color so that when possible you have colors other than one of them being black.  If you turn off this option, your hatch pattern will always be a single color over black, if you turn on this option, it'll try to break out Red, Green, or Blue value whichever is the highest out into it's own to be the second color and the other 2 channels combine to give you your first color, unless the highest component cannot be fully represented in the second color then some of that value will be added back to the first color of the hatch so that the combined values of the hatch represents the original color.  There was some really simple but tedious math involved in this when i was writing the script.
"Hatch Start Angle" specifies the start angle of the first hatch pattern.  So if you specify "Hatch Increment Angle For Each Hatch" that is greater than zero.  Each hatch pattern will be incrementally rotating that much starting at the Starting Angle.  If you want all your hatches the same angle, just use zero and they'll all be using "Hatch Start Angle".  And similarly to the manual script above, you can specify the your hatch to be fine or course by chaning the "Hatch Grid Width and Height" (in pixels).
Okay enough talk about the script, You can download the Auto Hatch Layers Script and start playing with it.
To use these scripts: You'll just have to copy the .scm file into your GIMP's Scripts folder and restart GIMP, and they'll be available under Script-Fu/Create New/Auto Hatch Layers Script or Script-Fu/Create New/Hatch Selection Layer depending on which one you're choosing to use.

Here's an example image that I wanted to apply my "Auto Hatch Layers" script on (I just found on the internet, searched for "Snowwhite" images)
And here's the out come when I chose ticked on just "Circles" and "Rings" and specified number of hatches as 30 (so it reduced my image down to 30 colors before it applied the hatches). As you can see the below only have circles and rings pattern.

 Here's a close-up of the above image (just so you can see the hatch patterns easier).

And finally I want to show you some samples of the 8 built hatch patterns (white over black at 50%)
Depending on the percentage, the shapes do shrink to represent that percentage.
Samples of white over black at 50% (click to see details)