My break over, I headed back to work last Thursday and right back into our Finaling period on NFL Head Coach. So far, we’ve been able to keep it 10 – 11 hour days with weekends off. So far, so good. One of the nice things about working for EA is you get to go to special NFL events. As part of research for NFL Head Coach, this past weekend, I was able to go up to the Annual Owners and Coaches’ Meeting taking place here in Orlando. We were able to interview most of the coaches in order to get ideas for the game. One of my co-workers did most of the talking but I got to meet the following coaches: Bill Cowher (Steelers), Marty Schottenheimer (Chargers), Dick Jauron (Bills), Andy Reid (Eagles), Jim Mora (Falcons), Mike Holmgren (Seahawks), Jack Del Rio (Jaguars), and Mike McCarthy (Packers). Bill Cowher is going to be on the cover of NFL Head Coach and I got to show him a build of the game, which we filmed for marketing purposes. If any of the footage makes the light of day, I’ll be sure and post a link. Meeting all of them was great and a excellent resource for ideas for our game.
On Wednesday, we had several magazines come to visit Tiburon in order to get a first look at NFL Head Coach. Gamespot and IGN have both written pretty good previews of the game. This week we also announced that the game is officially entitled “NFL Head Coach” and that Bill Cowher is going to be on the cover. We also announced the ship date of: June 20th. The feedback was pretty favorable and we are all looking forward to getting this game done so we can see the reaction of the fans to the game.
I had some time today so I added a few features to Frenchville today. First, you will notice on the right of the page is “Jason’s News Shelf”. This is a list of tech news stories that I find interesting. This is provided by a site called digg. They call it a “social book marking” news site. Basically news stories are added by and voted upon by the users. The more “diggs” a story gets the higher it is elevated in the list of popular stories. The stories on “Jason’s News Shelf” are stories that I’ve “dugg” recently. Another addition is my Xbox Live Gamer tag under “Jason’s Game Shelf”. This shows the most recent games I’ve been playing on my Xbox 360 and other Xbox Live stats. Finally, I’ve added Google Ads and search on the left. The Ads are free and if I get some click throughs, then I get some money. So, I figured why the hell not.
Jennifer went to something different tonight. It’s called Super Suppers. You get together with friends and make meals that you go home and freeze and have later in the week. One of her friends at church heard about the place and so they went to check it out. She thought the place was the best thing since sliced bread. She came home very excited and with meals for the next 12 days.
Since I’m still off from work I took Abby and Emily to pre-school this morning. I usually take Abby on Tuesdays and Thursdays and we talk about what she’s learning in school. This morning we talked about counting. I was surprised that they had been working on counting to one hundred. I asked Abby if she could and she took off counting. She did pretty well. She had trouble bridging between thirty and forty, however. She went, “38…39…80…81…82”. I didn’t correct her and she continued, “88…89…40…41…42” and then, “49…80…81”. I felt we were going to get into an endless loop, so when she got to “89” for the second time, I corrected her that the next one was “90”. Then it was smooth sailing to “100”.
One of the good things about staying home from work while the girls are in pre-school is that Jennifer and I can get out to a restaurant. Isabelle is so much easier to take out that Abby ever was. I remember us going to eat at Jason’s Deli in Round Rock because the place was so loud it would drown out her cries. Isabelle just sits there in her carrier and laughs and has a great time. Jennifer feeds her a jar of food and Isabelle feeds herself a bottle of formula while we eat. The real question is: was Abby bad at eating out or have we’ve gotten better at parenting? I’m leaning towards the former.
One thing that’s nice about living in Orlando is baseball’s Spring Training. About half of the Major League Baseball teams spend the month of March down in Central Florida. The Houston Astros’ home is South Orlando in Kissimmee, about a forty-five minute drive from where I live. The past two years, I’ve made it a point to make it out there to see at least one game and this year was against the Detroit Tigers. One of the nice things about Spring Training is that the stadium is small and pretty much every seat is nice and cheap. Well, I couldn’t get anyone to go with me, so I went myself and I’m glad I did, because I got monster seats: first row right behind home plate. It was great. The batters were warming up right in front of where I was sitting. I took some great pictures of the Astros baseball players. The Astros ended up loosing, but it was a nice day to have a hotdog, some peanuts and to get some time away from all the estrogen in my house.
Sorry it’s been a while again. I just can’t seem to get back into writing on Frenchville. This week we started our finaling period on NFL Head Coach. That’s where we stop working on new features that will be in the game and just work on fixing bugs. That’s also the time where I put in the most hours. So, sounds like a good time to take a week off. I was approaching my limit on PTO, so my boss told me to take a week off so that I don’t hit the limit. I can’t complain with that. So, I’ve been home since Thursday and I don’t go back to work until next Thursday. You would think that we would get out and do stuff, but we’ve really just been hanging around the house. We did go play putt-putt golf on Thursday, but that’s the extent of our excursions.
The terrible three’s have arrived from Emily. She just doesn’t listen to what we are saying. She is just off doing what ever Emily wants to do. Jennifer and I are reaching our wits end. Today she pushed Isabelle over and she bumped her head. Emily ran for her life once Isabelle started screaming.
Speaking of Isabelle, she has really been getting around the house. She crawls pretty much every where now and can walk down the edge of the couch. Yesterday she’s started wheeling herself around in this walker we have. We’ve been using it for weeks now, but it hasn’t been until recently that she’s noticed that she can roll herself around. Today’s picture is actually a movie. It’s suggested for high bandwidth Internet connection because it’s almost 8 MB. Isabelle has a special interest in this plastic duck.
I finished The Da Vinci Code yesterday. It was pretty good. I guess I was expecting much more since the book was so popular. To tell you the truth, Angels and Demons was better. I can’t wait to see the movie. Unfortunately a preview for the movie spoiled the ending of the book for me. I kept waiting for this one particular scene to happen and guess what? I happened at the end of the book. Overall, though, I thought it was a good book. I’ve now read all of Dan Brown’s books. I really like him as an author and I plan on reading anything he writes in the future. Now I’m back to the Dark Tower series again: Wizard and Glass.
I finished The Da Vinci Code. It was pretty good. I guess I was expecting much more since the book was so popular. To tell you the truth, Angels & Demons was better. I can’t wait to see the movie. Unfortunately a preview for the movie spoiled the ending of the book for me. I kept waiting for this one particular scene to happen and guess what? I happened at the end of the book. Overall, though, I thought it was a good book. I’ve now read all of Dan Brown’s books. I really like him as an author and I plan on reading anything he writes in the future.