Gravitating to normalcy

I can’t say it has been a crazy month for me. At the same time it’s also a month I lost my focus due to things that were happening, and the things that happens sometimes are temporary that won’t span more than 3-6 months.

That said, I’ve been working slowly on getting back to my project and finally having a release date somewhere in August where I can just complete user guide, development guide, and have the content ready for users. Whether I hit the mark or not really depends on how much I get done in the core project. Once the main project is done it’s just a matter of execution.

I’m somewhat mentally tired though. Things sometimes don’t work in your favor. But for me, it feels like sometimes it just never has worked in my favor to the point that I just started accepting that maybe I’m just not meant to have the little joys in life. And given my life, I’m becoming a strong believer that I’m just not meant to do anything great both on a personal or professional level.

Well, it sucks, but it is what it is and going against the flow of life tends to just kick you in the nuts.

Would StockTwits be considered a dangerous site for market manipulation?

I have basically deleted my dummy account I created for it. Over the span of three weeks I came with the conclusion that whatever StockTwits was set out to do isn’t really hitting the goal. StockTwits wikipedia:

StockTwits is a social media platform designed for sharing ideas between investors, traders, and entrepreneurs. The company was co-founded by Howard Lindzon and Soren Macbeth in 2009. The company received the first Shorty Award in the 2008 finance category.

Wikipedia

If anything StockTwits isn’t really a site for investors, traders, or entreprenurs. Right now it hosts a series of users whose purpose is with an agenda: Hype a stock, hype it until it gets through the rankings, make new and possible old investors believe that they are on a journey to cash in, pump, and dump it completely.

And, I think by now I’m sure StockTwits probably knows the pattern by now. Sadly, nobody is taking action on anything.

Cryptocurrency has always remained on top of the rankings. Cryptocurrency has become a penny stock of sorts, again with the same pattern where you get people hyping the cryptocurrency, because these cryptocurrencies are still starting you can buy them at $0.001. Once it reaches a certain level, let’s say it reached $0.06 you’ll start seeing huge dumps on it dropping it back to $0.001 or a bit more.

You see a lot of people mentioning things like: “BUY THE DIP. I JUST THREW $2,000 at the dip. Just you wait, I’m feeling bullish!”

But honestly, who would throw $2,000 at something that can’t even get off the ground, let alone people pumping and dumping the stock or currency. You are better off buying a low-cost index fund or a low-cost ETF have better chances of making money with it than wait for a cryptocurrency to fully launch.

It’s all tempting that people just want to get rich quick. But is it worth it throwing all your money into virtual coins that has no real value? Maybe in the future, sure, but will you even be, or me, alive to see it off?

Bitcoin took many years to get to where it is today. Just think, calmly, on where you put your money.

And again, going back to the subject. Sites like StockTwits feels more like a scam-site would. All it takes is to misdirect new investors to keep “tuned-on on the hottest stock” just to lose their money.

Disclaimer: Of course, I am no financial advisor. This isn’t a financial advice. At the end of the day, you the individual make the decisions you have to do.

Finances, retirement, and hitting the surface of reality- Adjusting my year goals and rectifying my expenses

So, as of late there’s something that has hit me really hard and that is retirement, what’s gonna happen in 20-30 years from here for me. How is the future going to be? Etc, etc.

Now, the reason I started thinking about all this is because of what’s happening in the stock market. Anybody that keeps an eye on the news at least once a week knows that a lot went down on GME(Gamestop Corp), AMC, and the all the cannabis stock.

But that’s what hit me is finding a whole forum of people dedicated to investing, not just for retirement but also future projects and seeing how they profile themselves in the forums have made me realize that I’ve been extremely awful with my money. To the point that my savings aren’t much, but sustainable for a few months as living where I am doesn’t come with a huge living standard.

Having said all that, I’m just beating myself up at how I have poorly managed my money up to now.

I have no retirement plans besides my 401k. I just opened a brokerage account and a Roth IRA account. Where my priority is to max out my Roth IRA contributions every year I can.

Now, this means that my goals have changed from what I was initially set out to do. Which was traveling and learning a language. Now, I can leave traveling for some other time, and still apply learning a language

All in all, this has gotten me a bit angry at myself for just realizing how bad I have been at managing my finances. And to be honest it’s not that it’s awful at all. Like, I just got my own place. But I think I could have expedited a lot of things if I knew how to manage my finances earlier.

I guess, from here on now there’s a lot of challenges ahead and how to recover the initial investment lost on my new place so I can finally begin my goals for the future.

2021 time constraints and laziness getting to me

First post of 2021 and January is already out of the door so fast! I hope you all had a fun end of the year in 2020. It’s been super hard for a lot of people out there with the COVID19 lockdowns.

For me I’ve been super busy at work and contemplating about my professional life and where I want to head this year. I laid out a roadmap for myself that I hope to start achieving eventually. But January is out and that means I just missed a window to learn new stuff.

Btt, these days I’m not really taking things hard. Life’s short and honestly my perspective is just getting done as much as I can humanly can. That’s one of the things that I want to take care of this year and is becoming more human towards myself and just letting things go if I can’t reach a goal.

This month has been pretty busy in different ways. I’m hoping February I can start making some progress towards my goals and see it to fruition. But it also means putting a lot of hours into a lot of things and getting better at managing my time, less procrastination and more doing.

I guess, sometimes depression just gets you to that point where you just don’t want to do anything but to stare at a wall wondering what the heck you are doing with your life, existential crisis mode.

Beyond that, it is my first post of 2021, and hopefully more to come. I’ve been trying to come up with subjects but sometimes due to my mind paying attention to multiple different stuff it just escapes me.

Thinking 2021: How I have found success in 2020 and moving forward

I have said it before on social media and it’s a weird thing to say when 2020 has had such a negative impact on so many lives. For me 2020, as November ends draws near, has been a year of many successes. It was a good year where I have set my mind into things, did the work, and received recognition of said work.

My take away from this is that 2020 the year itself didn’t really have anything to do with the successes. I have been busting my ass day and night on the computer. I have been more proactive at work. I have been more proactive at life. I have been more proactive in almost every little thing, all for one purpose: I wanted change.

If you have heard from me before on social media or have seen me talking on forums or whatever. You have probably heard me say something like, “there isn’t such a thing as a good year or a bad year”. Don’t get me wrong, sometimes real bad things happens in a year and it is a depressing situation for the individual, and maybe next year is better because the bad events culminated.

What I want to get at is that if you don’t do anything whatsoever, it’s the equivalent of expecting different results while doing the same thing: nothing. Even before I became more proactive I already acknowledged the fact that a year doesn’t have any bearings on how you perform throughout the whole calendar.

It doesn’t. It’s like looking for an excuse of why you failed at something. It’s just an excuse at the end. And you won’t be happy about it because you probably deep down recognize that you didn’t do enough, perhaps. Or maybe you did a lot and it didn’t pan out for you and that can also happen, and I want to mention that because sometimes even if you are proactive and you move around and you do all the stuff that you have to do things just don’t go your way.

I’m thankful that a lot of things are falling into their places. I’m thankful that November is basically a fresh start in my life. I’m thankful for so many things. And yet, the best is yet to come.

I still have things I want to try. These things probably won’t be ready until 2021, realistically speaking.

My goals, and my mindset is to finish my project and publish it to the world in hopes that it becomes something greater.

I also plan to get on full-keto and lose all the pounds I can. As an obese person throughout most of my life. 2020 and 2021 has been trying to get back on track and lose the weight.

I want 2021 to be even better than 2020. And I’ll have to work on every aspect of my current self to do so.

New place, who dis?

I think… it’s been quite a hectic week for me. From rushing to set up utility services, to waiting for ISP to install their new service to a whole new ride of emotions after being considered for some things at work… it’s been two exhausting weeks where I feel I’m just wired right now moving earth and sea to get things done.

I feel slightly accomplished… because for a long time I’ve been set to do this. In fact I’ve been wanting to do this since 2014-2015 but life kept getting in the way in the most depressing ways possible. So I had to hold my ground until it was the right time to push for what I wanted. And I feel that everything is paying off… like I feel a bit more complete after achieving these things I’ve been wanting for so long.

So finally, a new place for me to sport. A new whole slew of achievements have been met at work. There’s a lot of things running in the background for me and I think right now I gotta ride this hectic time because I feel if I don’t I would be wasting opportunities and chances to do different things.

I want to get back to my project. I want to do a whole lot of new things and hopefully kickstart my social life in this new town once COVID is gone… but that will take a while.

Genshin Impact and all the things it does wrong and why miHoYo needs to address its future with the next patch

Whether you love or hate Genshin Impact. It’s truly one of those games that came out of nowhere. I didn’t know anything about miHoYo, and I’m not exactly a mobile gamer. True, miHoYo may have some established history already with Honkai Impact 3rd, which is another gacha game that the company works on.

Genshin Impact is itself a game that has an insane identity crisis right now. It doens’t know what to be. A full fledged gacha game? A single player with added gacha? An online game akin to MMORPGs (Final Fantasy XIV, Guild Wars 2, Phantasy Star Online 2)?

Whatever it is or whatever it was set out to be it is in danger if miHoYo doesn’t start defining what the game should be in the future. It is more that obvious that millions and millions of people are playing Genshin Impact already. I feel like miHoYo didn’t expect this sudden embrace. Or perhaps it did and wasn’t ready to tackle the “What’s next for Genshin Impact?”.

This is honestly a very short post. In a sense I have been wanting to post about Genshin Impact for a long time and have been doing so on my Twitter. My twitter right now is a huge Genshin Impact fanpage.

Truth be told, I’m super curious what is really next for Genshin Impact. I love playing this game and ultimately the content isn’t enough, so let’s start there.

Table of Content

  1. Current combat system
  2. Story progression
  3. Resin
  4. Character level and weapon materials
  5. Dynamic quests sucks
  6. There needs to be more exploration content
  7. Gacha needs to be redefined as it is predatory as it is
  8. Conclusion

Current combat system

If there’s anything I like about this game is the whole mix of party members just going out there and doing their party. Every party member in combat, except Amber, has something to contribute to the battle. You work through the enemies with elemental reactions, and that’s all fine.

The problem? Enemies don’t have counters. I feel like they should be smarter to counter things like being frozen. Right now the combat is okay as it is but I feel further down the line once you master your team the combat becomes dull.

Story progression

For a game that has been marketed as a gacha game. Genshin Impact not only provides a whole HUGE world to explore but has actual storylines and lore for the player to explore as well. The thing about the story is that it is so tied to the Adventurer Rank that there isn’t really enough content to play. The content of the game is exploring, that’s the main content, and that’s the biggest problem right now.

Once you complete most of the story parts there isn’t much to do besides exploration. And even if there was, the players have probably picked up all the chests and did most of the abyss.

In terms of content, as people are really treating this more of a single player experience I can see why they are annoyed that there isn’t enough to go through.

Resin

Recently miHoYo has addressed that they’ll add 20 more resin into the current system. Meaning you’ll get 140. The subreddit (official) community of Genshin Impact had a bad reaction to this because let’s be honest. That’s not a solution that’s just pure laziness.

miHoYo leadership seems to have missed the bus on this one and walked right into an angry mob. You don’t resolve a critical component like resin we just a small addition.

What I was expecting is for miHoYo to have reworked resin either rework it or remove it and introduce other things that could be done to get said materials.

In terms of even lifting the finger to do something miHoYo gets an F. This was of bad taste when the developer replied to the survey.

Character level and weapon materials

The thing about characters and weapon materials is that they are all tied to resin. At the end of the day you have to make a decision on how to spend your resin: Will you use it for weapon ascension materials or character ascension materials or weapon materials?

This is honestly the biggest issue with the game. The resin system sucks completely and I think they could have worked through it better.

Dynamic quests sucks

To define what is a dynamic quest is basically a quest that randomly appears from either an NPC or world interaction. There are dynamic quests in Genshin Impact but they are too simple or mediocre.

The lack of content and quests to do in this game has caused a content drought and I feel like if miHoYo doesn’t get smarter they will lose a good chunk of people.

There needs to be more exploration content

Let me define exploration content as exploration quests, something similar like Monster Hunter exploration, have an NPC hand out quests with specific exploration content of things to do and your rewards.

Basically, miHoYo missed the opportunity of fully utilizing the world they created to having a lot of quests out there to do.

Gacha needs to be redefined as it is predatory as it is

There are dozens of ways to do monetization in a product. Gacha feels like the worst thing to do as it is predatory for people prone to gambling. I feel like if they approached it the way Warframe did it would have been completely acceptable. But right now the gacha rates in this game are so bad it’s really not worth spending money.

Sadly, miHoYo has already cashed in and the community doesn’t foresee them leaving gacha. It would create an unprecedented amount of good will if they did but let’s not fool ourselves.

Conclusion

Honestly, I don’t think anyone ever expected a free to play game like Genshin Impact to just merely exist. I feel that miHoYo has done an insane job with Genshin Impact and it really shows. The world exploration is amazing, the discoveries while exploring really leaves an amazing feeling. Everything that Genshin Impact does visually is charming and amazing.

The content right now is just downright disappointing because there’s no “endgame” there’s nothing to do anymore. The subreddit community has said as much and it’s just a matter of doing your dailies and exhaust your resin and I think there’s more to the game than just that. And I hope people looking at things with a black and white logic that “it is a gacha game” realize that this game can be much more than that. miHoYo needs to realize that this game is more than a gacha game right now.

For that matter, criticizing the game is the right way for studios to take notice that there are things they can improve, if they feel like it.

If miHoYo fails to define a proper future for Genshin Impact then all that work will just slowly disappear and people will just move on to other games. And I think that if your game already broke even with the initial investments, then the rest is either good will or pure greed. And I feel like there can be good will and still make money out of your product.

On that note. I like Genshin Impact. I have been playing nonstop since its release. I have become a huge fan, but at the same time if I don’t see miHoYo improving then… what’s the point?

Development Notes #6 Project on hold

I think it should take no surprise that I’ve been a little bit tight on time. And to keep myself from going insane I decided to put this on a little hold for a while and decided to use the remaining time to focus on hobbies in the meantime. Like playing Genshin Impact or any other game.

The reason for this is quite simple. Because there’s quite a lot of back and forth going on with my life at the moment I just thought it was easier to put this on hold and continue it on mid November. I think I have made a lot of progress so I’m not really worried taking a bit of time for myself.

Also, on a fun fact my servers went down and I had to install the servers from scratch so… at times the site loaded extremely slow because the database server was in Italy while the application server was in the United States. I’m finally back online and now I can continue writing posts.

Was Microsoft Edge really ready for prime time?

Over the past few days I’ve made a full switch to Microsoft Edge being rebuilt on top of Chromium, a Google-based solution that you, the consumer, may know as Google Chrome.

Chromium is an open source web browser. As the words “open source” states any individual or entity can fork the code and do whatever they want with the source code. Microsoft decided to ditch away all the efforts they have done for Microsoft Edge and adopt Chromium. Up to this date I feel like they shouldn’t have done this but I completely understand on the why would they head that route. It’s actually quite genius when you think about it.

The first days using the new Microsoft Edge has been…. weird and I have complained about it in the past but this time it has become an on-going nightmare to really keep using it. All the issues starts when I unplug the AC adapter from my laptop… sadly I’ve seen the problem reproduce itself even with the AC adapter plugged and battery setting on Best Performance.

The issues I’ve had so far have been the following:

  • When watching a stream, it might lock-on into a frame. It causes the stream to look like it has frozen, but they audio continues.
  • When you are switching tabs and a video or stream is playing it might go completely black to the point you have to reload the tab.
  • When a video is being played, similarly to the previous problem above, instead of going black it creates colorful noise, not just to the video but the whole screen. If you try to minimize or maximize chrome it might affect your whole screen.
  • If in battery mode, the “smooth scrolling” is completely gone. It’s not like Safari, where you have that sleek user experience whether you are using battery or not… the experience with Microsoft Edge while the battery is in use degrades greatly to the point that it is noticeable to the user. You can see the scrolling around the pages “feels rough”, it loses that smooth slide.
  • And now, that one thing that led me to switch back to Firefox: I am a bilingual person. I know Spanish and English. I use the spellchecker of the browser for both languages… but for Microsoft Edge it literally chokes when clicking on a word it has identified as wrongly written. The behavior? I click on the word, to select the correct spelling… and the browser completely freezes for some time then displays the right context menu. As to why? I have no idea.

These issues, some of them are minor and others are glaring issues… lastly this is a fresh install. A fresh Windows 10 install. I willingly upgraded Microsoft Edge to the new chromium one… and honestly on paper it looks great, and it looks fantastic but was Microsoft Edge ready for prime time? I guess… I would say yes, but no? Maybe not enough time for testing on different laptops/computers?

I would love to come back to it when it’s more stable. I’m not writing Microsoft Edge off. I’m looking for it to mature because I know I WILL become a Microsoft Edge user eventually. Perhaps the right way to being more pro-active is to see how can I help the team test this and report back? Who knows.

GPU woes with the Dell XPS 9500 – A weird case of power saving issues affecting browsers like Microsoft Edge

Recently I’ve become forcedly aware of the existence of an on-going issue with my laptop. This issue, I believe is being caused by the power saving features in the drivers/software side. Or by Windows 10 but I find it hard to believe Windows 10 as an OS would meddle with the driver’s power saving decisions.

I could be wrong. The many times I have been wrong isn’t even funny sadly.

So, to begin with let’s look at the symptoms, they could be the following:

  • It could be a combination of my laptop starts exhibiting colorful noise or black screen while using Microsoft Edge.
  • Or Microsoft Edge video stream goes black while I’m watching a stream on Twitch or YouTube.
  • Or the stream freezes but the audio continue while using Microsoft Edge.
  • Or the while I’m playing a game the screen freezes, but the audio continues.

Honestly, Microsoft Edge has a weird thing going on with the GPU and power saving features more than any of the other browsers. Mozilla Firefox has never exhibited this behavior when it falls back into “Better Battery” profile. I very much doubt Google Chrome is impacted.

This leaves up with the following:

The Power Management features in the Intel and NVIDIA drivers are causing issues. If NVIDIA is set to Optimal Power, the software will do its best if it detects that program or game is idle. It re-uses the same frame, thus it causes the “screen freeze”.

Initially I thought it was just the NVIDIA GPU, but I noticed that the NVIDIA GPU wasn’t being used and it was the built-in GPU (Intel). Now, how these two are managed in modern time I do not know.

All I know is that the screen freezes and a stream going black or showing noise is itself a faulty driver issue. Something that either Intel or NVIDIA must investigate.

I do know that NVIDIA has these issues even on its desktop products. And I like to think that most of the problems are being caused by NVIDIA drivers. But at the same time, I cannot discard that maybe Intel GPU drivers are also wreaking havoc somewhere.