April 2004 Archives

Vote for who?

Someone asked why an old website project of mine wasn't in the Old Projects and Random Stuff section.

Here's a hint:

Vote Bubba shirt.jpg

You can check it out by clicking the Old Projects and Random Stuff section on the left.

Vote Big! Vote Bubba

Back in 1998, my good friend Bubba Murarka ran for ASI President. As a member of his campaign staff, I created his campaign website.

Bubba asked why this website wasn't listed in the Old Projects and Random Stuff section. Well Bubba, I just brought it back from retirement. Back from the grave. I present to you, the Vote Big! Vote Bubba! website.

...and look I just found and dusted off:

Vote Bubba shirt.jpg

Reunion & CPSC bid party photos

I'm back in LA for 4 days and then I go back to SLO for Wildflower!
The photos from the weekend are now up:
2004\Reunion and 2004\CPSC\Bid party.

Check them out and let me know what you think. You can use the new Shoutbox to the left.

Better pictures and fixed some problems

Thanks to everyone who read my mass email and took the time to say hello. There were some problems with the website & photo album, so hopefully that's all fixed. If not, let me know.

As I promised, here are some panoramic pictures from my new place on a better day.

Hermosa Sunset.jpg Hermosa Sunset (click for enlarged view and scroll to right)
Hermosa Clear Day.jpg A Clear Day (click for enlarged view and scroll to right)

As I unpack, I'm finding more old pictures from back in the day. The photo album now has pre-2000 pictures. Yeah, I look like a youngen, but you might be in there too! If you have any pictures, especially of the early years, send them to me!

Is having nothing to do that bad?

It's my second week at work an I've been told that I really won't be doing anything for the first month. You see, in order to work on the real stuff, you need security clearance from the government. Well my recruiter never gave me the stuff to fill out months ago when I was back in SLO. So instead of showing up on the first day with clearance, I had to fill out all of the forms and now I have to wait a month or more for that stuff to get processed as they research my life history and make sure that I'm not a bad guy.

Meanwhile, I show up for work and find stuff to do. How many times can you check your email in one day? At least I've started to update my website. So look around. I just added a lot to my Old Projects and Random stuff... a little museum if you will.

Everyone should come down to Hermosa Beach & party. Only 3 short blocks from the beach and another block or two to the bars & pier. If my lazy ass can walk that, so can you! Can't get any better than stumbling distance home!

Winamp Dynamic Playlist

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Here's the deal behind this program. I have lots of MP3s. They're organized like this:
I manually organize my music like this since the ID tags are never complete or consistant. I can easly right click on a folder and select "Play in Winamp" and if I do that to a Genre, it will add everything under that folder into the playlist.

Well I like lots of different types of music. I have a Punk folder, Ska folder, Classic Rock folder, etc. But what happens when I get a new album? I would have to remember to add it to the playlist, then save the play list. Otherwise I'd have to select everything all over again.

Let's go one step further. Since I have so much music, there is inevitably lots of crap. Let's face it: the majority of albums do not contain 100% good songs. Then you have the bands like No Doubt, for example, which used to kick ass and now suck because they start experimenting with crap and change their style. Then you have one hit wonders where all their songs except for that one single sucks (like the Meat Puppets with Backwater).

My solution? My Winamp Dynamic Playlist
You have a text file that lists as many drives, folders, and/or files that you'd like in your playlist. When you run my Winamp Dynamic Playlist, it:
1) Starts Winamp (if necessary)
2) Clears the playlsit
3) Recursively adds all of the mp3s located in the drives, folders, and/or files that you've listed in your text file
4) Sorts the playlist alphabetically, so all of the tracks are in order for each album
5) Turns on shuffle mode
6) Hits the play button for you

Download a new album? No problem, throw it in its folder and run the dynamic playlist program. I keep mine in the Quick Launch area next to the start button.

Download: My Dynamic Playlist
Requirements: Windows and .NET Runtime
Source Included

Scheme Interpreter

In on of my grad level language classes, I had to write a Scheme Interpreter. Scheme is a funcitonal language. Functional languages differ from the imperative languages that you may be used to or have heard of: C/C++/C#/Java/VB/etc. Instead doing stuff line by line, you evaulate expressions backwards. For example:
(+ 8 7) will return 15
(+ 8 (* 3 4)) will return 20
Weird? Yes! But some swear by it. Most hate it.
I'd rather do:
a = 8 + 7;
b = 8 + (3 * 4);

Download: Scheme Interpreter
Requirements: Windows and .NET Runtime
Source Included


This project called for use of Physic in an animation. Some people pushed a brick off a ledge. I made a rollercoaster. Parabolic curves are used to define the track. You can even switch the view from 3rd person to 1st person and ride the rollercoaster.

This project went way beyond the requirements, so I never planned on fixing all of the rough edges. Just the fact that the car, once pulled to the top by the chain, actually used physics to follow the track was a major acomplishment. I think the highest bonus points prior to this project was a +10. I got a +20. Looking back though, it looks kinda ghetto.

Download: Rollercoaster
Requirements: Java AND Java 3D
Source included

Genetic Algorithm Music Generator

I took this AI grad class because it seemed like the easiest. Most of the stuff was boring, probably because of the teacher. But I did come out with a cool little project that used Genetic Algorithms combined with Music Theory to create good sounding music.

Download: Genetic Algorithm Music Generator
Requirements: Windows and .NET Runtime)
Source Included

Animated Hand

In this little project, I created an animated hand. The fingers will independently move depending on the keys that you press.

1 - 1 finger up
2 - 2 fingers up
3 - 3 fingers up
4 - 4 fingers up
I - Bend Index finger
M - Bend Middle finger
R - Bend Ring finger
P - Bend Pinky finger
T - Bend Thumb
A or 0 - Bend All fingers
U - Hang Loose

When CONTROL is held while pressing a number, the active fingers will only bend half way.

Download: Animated Hand
Requirements: Java AND Java 3D
Source Included


I survived hell - otherwise know as Dr. Clint Staley. Through this class, I wrote an Othello game, which included minimax AI for the computer player. I wrote two completely separate but identical versions: In C++ (using MFC) and Java (using Swing).

C++ Version (Requirements: Windows)
Java Version (Requirements: Java Runtime)

Real-Time 3D World Program

So I decided to take this real-time 3D games class, which was being offered for the first time replacing a virtual reality class. I ended up kicking ass in that class and created a pretty cool world to run around in.

I saw "world" because it isn't much of a game. The teacher didn't want us to kill stuff, so we "harvested trees." Yeah, whatever. Anyway, it uses Quake 2 character models so you can walk around as a Stormtrooper or Lara Croft from tomb raider and shoot stuff.

As for the tech details see the readme file below:

Download: Ryan's 3D World
Requirements: Windows and a 3D Graphics card that supports OpenGL. Most do. That's probably the only requirements. Email me if something doesn't work.

Read on for the technical details, controls, and known issues.


Classwatch started out as a personal tool that I used to get classes. It would watch over the "open class list" and as soon as a class that I wanted opened up (for example, if someone dropped the class) then I would be notified by email, page, text message, or IM. Little did I know that almost 1300 students would use it!

Classwatch became very popular and people became to depend on it. Some emailed me to thank me for giving them the opportunity to graduate in time! Articles were written up in the Mustang Daily school paper and the College of Engineering Newsletter. I was even able to get it written off as my senior project, although I orignally had no intensions of doing so.

Classwatch was eventually closed when ITS (tech dept at Cal Poly) decided to stop the "Open Class List" that Classwatch, and in the later part other competitors, used a the source of information.

I'll evenutally move it over to ryanretting.com although it won't send a text message to your phone anymore. Put it in the museum of Ryan Retting as a little nostalgia. In its day it was huge!


EZsearch was the first tool to let you quickly search for open classes AND get their descriptions and pre-requisites through the course catalog. In the first 1/2 and even later, you didn't know what classes were all about. All you had was a course number or a GE category that you needed to satisfy. This quickely linked up the course catalog since that was what most people were referencing when they were registering for classes.

EZsearch was also closed after ITS pulled the Open Class List (See Classwatch). Hundreds of people used EZsearch back in the day... back in the day!

First week of work

This is my first week of work. I still don't have internet at home since Adelphia cable sucks, but I should hopefully have it soon. Then I'll update this site more & add lots of stuff. Until then, if the Photos link doesn't work on left, try this linke: http://ryanretting.com/photos.

Back to work since I should be working @ work. On what? I don't know yet.

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Countdown to Cinco de Mayo!

Strict Standards: mktime(): You should be using the time() function instead in /home/ryanre2/public_html/includes_c/cdown.php on line 37
7 years and 265 days ago

Now Playing

What am I listening to right now?
Is music playing on my computer right now?

The last 5 songs played:

Dropkick Murphys
Dropkick Murphys - Dropkick Murphys - 05 - 3rd Man In

Teen Idols
Just friends

Hazy Shade Of Winter

Dirty Needles


You can't hear this music since it's playing on my computer. I have no plans on letting you hear this music on the website. Don't want to get in trouble, you know!

Photo Uploads

You can send me photos and files here: YouSendIt.com.
In a nutshell, you upload your zipped up photos (up to 1GB) to their website. Then I will get an email from YouSendIt.com telling me that your file is waiting for me. Send me an email if you have any questions.


©1996-2009 Ryan Retting

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