Eyas's Blog

Occasional musings on software development, tech, the Middle East, and anything else.

Migrating this Blog to Next.js from Gatsby

In February 2020, I migrated this blog from WordPress to Gatsby. Using Gatsby also allowed me to switch from hosting my site on a paid plan on SiteGround to a (usually free) plan on Netlify.

The migration made sense to me at the time: static-site generation was all the rage, and Gatsby was the exciting new thing. It promised better performance and improved my authoring workflow with Markdown and React. Saving a few dollars a month on hosting didn't hurt either.

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Achievement is Discontinuous

Usage RightsJenga. By Naveen Kumar.

To this date, schema-dts is the only side-project I have that achieved better-than-moderate success. It took several hours between the time I had the idea for schema-dts and when I had a reasonably working v0.1. I pulled an all-nighter--something that I hate doing and would never recommend--not out of sheer passion, but because:

  • I knew how rare a moment of inspiration is, and
  • I knew that if I went to sleep, I would never finish this project; there's a graveyard of unfinished projects haunting me.
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"But How Do I Actually Start?" Making Games on Your Own as an Engineer

Usage RightsStacks and stacks of paper. By Sear Greyson.

In the Unity for Software Engineers series, I give an accelerated introduction to game development in Unity. Subscribers have been following this series over the past few months, often suggesting areas to cover or elaborate on. A few months ago, a readeralso a software engineerreached out to me (lightly edited, emphasis mine):

The biggest unknown for me is: How do I start? What does the process of creating a game look like? Should I build the scenes first? Should I design the gameplay mechanics first? With business software, it's much more familiar. It's easy to think, "Well, okay, I need to write the DAO or controller, etc." But with games, I'm lost.

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Unity Short: Building User Interfaces

Usage RightsPhoto by KOBU Agency

For the third and final "short" of this week's Unity for Software Engineers, I give an overview of building in-game User Interfaces in Unity. As a reminder, this week's installment is packaged as a series of short-form outlines, introducing readers to the breadth of the Unity toolkit.

Just like rendering and the Input System, Unity has a few technologies that can be used to render UI in a game. Unity's documentation includes a comparison of these UI toolkits. Of these, only two technologies can be used for in-game user interfaces. We'll discuss these here:

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Unity Short: Physics Raycasting

Usage RightsOriginal Photo by Pang KakitCC-BY-SA 4.0

Continuing the "shorts" week in the Unity for Software Engineers series, today we'll be discussing Unity's Physics Raycasting. As a reminder, this week is packaged as a series of short-form overviews, introducing readers to the breadth of the Unity toolkit.

Raycasting is Unity's way of checking collisions between objects in the scene and an invisible ray with a given geometry. Raycasting is used in a myriad of ways. Some examples:

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