Articles by Steven


Steven has written 447 articles, Page 6.
Bringing an Old ZX81 Sketch to Life with BASIC Is Absolutely Crazy
Foreign to many developers today, I have a notepad and binder full of ideas from my ZX81 days. The notepad contains early program snippets. In contrast, I have sketches and designs crammed into a binder…
Posted Apr 30, 2017 6 min read

What do ugly april showers bring? Why, pretty lego renders!
Okay, the weather hasn’t been that bad, but we did get a few showers. In either case, I found time to render a few more images: A remake, a new build, and someone else’s. Here are three pictures to round out your week. Let’s start with the remake…
Posted Apr 09, 2017 2 min read

After Years, These Are My Latest Lego Brick Parts
I haven’t built a new LEGO part for a number of years now. POV-Ray offered a very descriptive language, but the bricks were getting too complex. With the growth of the virtual LEGO community, I haven’t needed to render new parts. Until now. Old is new—minifigs…
Posted Apr 05, 2017 2 min read

An Itty Bitty Songbird, a Delightful and Fun Build
I’ve been a long time fan of BioShock, with the first game still holding a special place in my collection. Without hesititation, I pinned Imagine Rigney’s Itty Bitty Songbird when I found it. Taking a break from writing, I got around to doing a virtual build of it. Itty Bitty Songbird by Imagine …
Posted Apr 03, 2017 3 min read

Time to find motivation with Camp NaNoWriMo
April is almost here and I have two goals for next month. The first goal, which happens next weekend, is to finish my first Marathon. I’m so excited. The second, is to finish the 2nd draft of my novel Steel Warrior. Started during Camp 2014, Steel Warrior was my first novel…
Posted Mar 31, 2017 2 min read

Adventures in Lighting and Improving My Lego Waterfall
With my Advanced Blender script buy, I decided to revisit my Waterfall model. Created using various LEGO CAD software, it is a study in tools as much as rendering. As such, I thought it would be fun to compare its evolution to date, and review how it has improved over time. Adventures in lighting—9…
Posted Mar 24, 2017 3 min read

Bet and Win in Stud, a Simple ZX81 Poker Game
For March’s program of the month, I offer up Stud. Written in 1984, it was my first computer card game. Calling it a card game is disingenuous as Stud is a simple high/low betting game. There are no rules or even a deck of cards. Yet simple can be fun in this random poker game. An infinite deck of …
Posted Mar 24, 2017 3 min read

I love my LEGO images—how I made them better with Mecabricks
Yep, I did it. I purchased a template to render LEGO bricks. Given the many years spent developing my own, I never thought I’d say that. To be fair, it was about time. Mecabricks creator Nicolas Jarraud (aka Scrubs) developed a great product…
Posted Mar 19, 2017 3 min read

Having Fun With Change, Logs That Is
Last year, I ran across a nifty web changelog service. Although more than I needed, I liked the simple look for tracking changes. Looking for an opportunity to learn Bootstrap, I added it to my test site…
Posted Mar 04, 2017 2 min read

How To Render Beautiful LEGO Pictures In 5 Easy Steps
Infographics are a popular, and fun, tool to share information. I thought I’d give it a try using Canva’s infographic template, but I needed to choose something to talk about. Sticking to my current passion, the topic I chose was rendering LEGO images using Mecabricks and Blender. How to Render Bea…
Posted Feb 26, 2017 1 min read

Pictures Are Pretty, How to Make a ZX81 Draw
Sometimes one function can do a lot. For February’s program, picture uses a line drawing routine to draw a pretty picture. Okay, pretty is in the eye of the beholder. But, nonetheless, it is a picture. The fun, though, is in watching it draw. A computer and a boat, together are art…
Posted Feb 25, 2017 4 min read

Progressive Change, How I Made My Snowspeeder Better
Although I enjoy seeing the finished product of my LEGO renders, it is the process that engergizes me. The acts of learning, refining, and failing each add to my body of knowledge. Let’s explore some of that using my 8029 Mini Snowspeeder. Without continual growth and progress, such words as i…
Posted Feb 05, 2017 3 min read

Start the Year with LEGO Emoji, How I Lost and Gained Motivation
It feels like 2017 is just kicking off, yet here we are at the end of January. Time sure seems to be getting away from me lately. I blame the the heater skelter of the holidays and uncomfortable weather. Well, and taking a not so great vacation didn’t improve my mood any…
Posted Jan 28, 2017 5 min read

Can you hack the computer and save the world?
“Agent 51, your goal is within reach, but there is a problem.”“Understand,” you reply. Professional as always, you only allow a hint of annoyance in your voice. “Explain.”“Well, the plans are in the room in front of you, but the floor is a trap…
Posted Jan 22, 2017 5 min read

How To Make And Break Big Bricks Using Little Ones
At the end of November, during some time off from work, I dabbled rendering a series of LEGO models I call Big Bricks. Starting out as a “can I do this?” effort, led to me building variations on that theme…
Posted Dec 30, 2016 6 min read

Check Out My New Look For The Site And Programs
After a serious bout of procrastination, I updated the look of my ZX81 site to match that of my main site. In doing so, I’ve corrected the various errors that cropped up from my hosting upgrade. Clean and comfy, time to enjoy the new features this theme offers. More polish, less fluff…
Posted Dec 29, 2016 3 min read