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More fun with pads, one helluva day

  One of the downsides to business sometimes is you get really excited about something and would love to tell the world.  Unluckly, sometimes you can’t until all the pieces are in place.  GamerZone has some major things in the works now, and I’m dead tired from running around making all the pieces fall in place for all those things.  (Ok, and not having a full nights sleep yet again doesn’t help that either   
And that’s where this entry ended up setting for a while…   I wandered off, worked on other things, then finally went home to go to bed.  Then insomnia struck, and now I’m back down at GZ at 8 AM working on stuff again.  This is going to be a long day    This sort of thing is happening more and more often to me – Work ungodly hours, go home to sleep, then end up back up here working again, take an hour nap or so, then open up the store.   Luckly tonight I don’t have to work a full night – I only have to work until 9 PM, then Harmon replaces me (of course I’ll still be here, hackin’ around 
The DDR construction is becoming an interesting thing.   While I had planned many times to build a set of DDR pads for myself, I hadn’t planned on building a set for the store.  Someone will probably ask – what’s the difference?  Oh, 100+ lbs and constant use.   Too many of the plans have structural flaws that aren’t going to survive past a month with the constant use and EXTREMELY heavy players that I have.
A pad breaking might not seem like a bit deal, until you look at how they could potentially break – for instance, the bottom lit one I ran across has an open space under each plexiglass panel.  If that breaks, someone’s foot will go through it.  Not good.  GZ runs on extremely tight margins – one lawsuit is enough to sink us (remember folks, your insurance only goes so far 
With that in mind I’ve come up with a new solid design that fuzes elements from multiple pad designs, and also puts safety high on the priority list.  Only one little problem to overcome at the moment – the design would produce too loud of a noise when each step is hit.  Hrm.  As soon as I figure that one out, construction begins.   I’ll be documenting the construction of the second pad (not the first one, ’cause that’s the one I’ll find all the bugs in the design with  and post it online for anyone who’s considering building pads.
We found another problem – I moved the DDR pads to a new location yesterday, and had to move them AGAIN.  The plaster was giving way in the new location of agents, and showering thier books with crap!  Damnit – seemed like a good solution at the time, just move the pads   So, they are back where they were before, but there’s 2 inches of closed cell foam below them to deaden the DDR impact.  
So far it seems to have worked – you can’t feel the DDR players from across the entire store (if you are right beside the pads, you can still feel the vibrations), so we’ll see if that fixed the problem or not.  Special thanks to wizitchizit, Rayne, Lord_Yukuu, and Kage for pounding on the pads for a while to test ’em out.  In general everyone’s been pretty cool about working with us to make pretty much the ultimate on a budget DDR setup.
I doubt I do any cutting on the new pads tonight – I’ll just be too tired by then I’m sure.  I’ll probably put that off until Sat or Sunday now before I start cutting wood.  (Of course, I could be wrong – I may have a Monster, and get enough energy worked up to hack on ’em.  It’s hard to tell 
Oh, and to answer a question I’ve been asked a couple o’ times – yes, we’ll be letting people load on thier own tunes on the machine.  However, since we have content rules before midnight, the stuff that’s going to be loaded on there has to be passed by me first.  While getting the DDR stuff perfect is important to me, keeping my existing customer base is also important too (well, expanding that customer base for that matter   Parents aren’t too happy if they show up with thier kids and there’s a lot of foul language goin’ on.  After midnight, I could give a shit less, and if I’m playing a game you can tell I don’t care 
GZ is getting it’s first TV commercial here soon.  It’s a pretty blah generic affair really – it’s part of a commercial airing for the whole Delano district.  But it’s the first time we’ve managed to get even a little screen tim.  $30 for 200 commercials just can’t be beat 
Davis, Gamer Zone
Hm… I should be down there more often.. I want to be here for the development of this. Hm…
Posted 4/21/2006 10:37 AM by Aur0raXXBorealis – reply
Aw man, that means my Chaos simfile is going to need to be edited lol.
And uh, I’ve got a ton of simfiles, including 100% arcade accurate ITG1 and 2 simfiles (including video) that I could upload (though they are rather huge, I think each file is around 45 MB).
Posted 4/21/2006 2:20 PM by ShalashaskaTheGreat – reply
IIRC, that machine has an almost empty 80 GB drive on it. So there should be pleanty of room for stuff. If for some reason it gets really clogged with simfiles, and they are actually unique stuff (IE, people aren’t trying to load more copies of the same stuff  I’ve got a 250 GB drive I could ghost that drive onto, and then there’s even more room to work with.
Yes, you should come down here more often 
Posted 4/21/2006 3:42 PM by GamerZoneCenters – reply
Holy shit that’s a lot of space for a dedicated stepmania box :O
Posted 4/21/2006 4:10 PM by wizitchizit – reply
So far it appears there’s some pretty dedicated DDR players – seems like a good trade off to me 
Posted 4/21/2006 4:11 PM by GamerZoneCenters – reply
holy crap that is a lot of space dedicated for Stepmania…. lolz
Posted 4/21/2006 5:55 PM by Aur0raXXBorealis – reply
I cant wait to try ddr with a bar :O even though im still on light mode im getting better at it. I cant do any gallops yet 🙁
Posted 4/22/2006 8:15 PM by flairburns – reply

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