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I want this game. I have not seen a decent looking WWII aviation game since IL 2 Sturmovik and even then I felt the game was lacking.

I’ve always been a fan of aviation games, especially WWII-era ones. That was the real time of the ace and the beginning of the end of a certain breed of pilot. Advances in radar and missile technology were made soon after and dogfighting soon became a point-and-shoot arcade type game. Don’t get me wrong, I think that fighter pilots still have a very tough job it’s just that something has changed and it’s not the same as seeing a P-51 pilot step out of his plane with his brown flight jacket and aviator sunglasses.

Back to the game… I really hope it runs on my machine but I doubt it will. It really is time for an upgrade.

I have been getting the idea that almost all of my development time should be devoted to planning and charting the project, not coding or developing the system.

I can agree that planning is a huge part of a project but I really feel that doing a full system analysis and design for something small or even mid-sized is a little overboard. Creating feasibility studies and business analyses is just taking the project through some extra steps that are truly unneeded. Meet with the client and go through the necessary requirements and discuss the design with them, they’ll learn something as will you. However, here at Tech believe that customers really aren’t interested in the software that will be supporting them. I have to disagree with that. If they are not interested then it simply isn’t worth your time or effort to design the system for them in the first place. A client will make the time to have their system designed correctly and suited to their needs. True, they may not know exactly what they want, but they know what they don’t want.

It’s all in the balance and I don’t feel that the teachers here are getting that point across and I don’t know if it’s because they don’t believe that or if they just do not realize what they are saying. Hopefully things will improve throughout the semester.

Good news, my dad, brother and house weathered the storm. We have not heard much out of them since last night because they lost power around 9:30pm. We spoke this morning and they just passed along the news that the house was ok but that’s about it. I think they are just tired from staying up most of the night with no air-conditioning and a hurricane blowing around them.

I’ll have more pictures as soon as power is restored and my dad is able to get them sent to me.

A few questions were asked of me this evening, like what I thought of the hurricane and my home. I answered that this whole thing is surreal. I am 500 miles from my house and to think that the city I grew up in could be destroyed, partially or completely, just blows my mind.

My mom has finally made it to a shelter in Evant, TX (sorry, I’m not in the mood to link tonight). I know that a lot of people do not believe in prayer or even God but I do and I am sure that that is what opened this door for my mom. Had this shelter not been an option she would be sleeping on the side of the road somewhere in the Hill Country. It’s truly a blessing and by early evening tomorrow she should finally be in Lubbock. 18 hours of driving has had to have taken its toll.

Lubbock has already received three planes full of evacuees and more are sure to come. Will I help? If they need my help I will definitely be up there bright and early to lend a hand. I guess you could say this storm is a little more personal and I have some tie to it.

I still can’t believe what we are going to witness tomorrow evening.

My mom left Houston this morning at 6 a.m. and it took her over two hours to go approximately six miles. People are getting out of Houston in all directions and most of the freeways are at a standstill. I talked to friends whose parents were leaving at midnight and they are still stuck in traffic. The governor has given the order that all inbound lanes on I-10 and I-45 be closed and turned into outbound (north and west bound) lanes.

There is better news, Rita has slowly moved toward the north and weakened some. It is amazing to me that Houstonians are handling this so well. I am not sure if it’s because of Katrina or if they are just really worried about a Category 5 storm hitting the area.

Anyway, I’ll try to keep you up to date with pictures from my dad (who’s staying in Sugar Land) and his words.

Hurricane Rita is bearing down on the Gulf Coast and a lot of people have decided it’s time to get out of dodge. All of my friends here at school have been telling about their parents leaving Houston tomorrow morning around midnight and going somewhere safer. It’s starting to sound like midnight is the time to leave, so if anyone is in Houston and leaving at midnight, please take your camera so that I can see a midnight traffic jam.

My mom and brothers are set to leave Houston around 3am tomorrow and head here to Lubbock till the storm passes through while my dad is going to ride it out and make sure our house makes it.

Keep Houston and the surrounding areas in your prayers. There 6+ million people in Houston and the suburbs around it, this storm could have a heavy toll.

After a “yawner” of a game against Sam Houston State University, we are back in the news with ESPN stating that “Sure, USC scores 70 and everyone applauds. But the team that specializes in scoring? Nothing … until now. Cody Hodges and Texas Tech are among Craig James’ early season surprises.”. With a paid subscription you can read the full article here.

It was a great win for Tech, with 80 points being scored, even with the 3rd string in. Hodges has shown his might as a QB and with rising star Johnson at wide receiver there are even more options for the defense to be confused by.

Texas Tech, along with California, may be “sleeper” teams that have a chance to make to the national championship. With Texas being our main worry this year, if we can defeat them in Austin our odds at getting a national championship bid or just a plain old BCS bid would greatly increase.

This season for the Red Raiders is going to get interesting very quickly.

The first few weeks of school have been, to say the least, hectic. I am done volunteering with the evacuees as a lot of them have either found permanent housing in Lubbock or gone to live with relatives. It was an interesting experience and I am proud to have had the chance to do something to help those whose lives were turned upside down by the hurricane.

As far as classes go none of them seem very hard at all, there are just a few that are time consuming with stacks of paperwork for each of them.

Right now I am just trying to gather my thoughts and wrap my mind this idea: making money from homebrewed software while being a full time student.

I have had a few ideas for software on the backburner and I do not know whether to proceed with them or wait until I get out of school. My main concern has been providing support and maintenance once the software was released. I have spent many an evening trying to figure out the time commitments needed to create, support, and maintain the software but I do not really have any solid numbers.

Why am I confronting this now? Since I am a full time student and there are not a whole lot of technology related jobs in the area I am struggling for money. No I am not broke, there are just some needs and wants that I cannot afford. The Google AdSense ads are not cutting it and having to make $100 before they send you a check does not help.

This is basically the conundrum that I am stuck in now. Hopefully the time I take planning it out tonight will be well spent.

I was in a discussion with the current rift in American culture where we for some reason are so quick to judge and as a result ignore the real problem. We continued the discussion and a quote from Teddy Roosevelt was brought up. It is a quote from a speech that he gave in Paris in 1910 titled “Citizenship in a Republic”.

“It is not the critic who counts: not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles or where the doer of deeds could have done better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood, who strives valiantly, who errs and comes up short again and again, because there is no effort without error or shortcoming, but who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions, who spends himself for a worthy cause; who, at the best, knows, in the end, the triumph of high achievement, and who, at the worst, if he fails, at least he fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who knew neither victory nor defeat.”

Do not jump to conclusions. President Roosevelt later said that “Criticism is necessary and useful; it is often indespensable; but it can never take the place of action.”

Roosevelt knew that criticism was something that could not be done away with but he stood by his belief that taking action is much better than criticising while doing nothing. I feel that this applies to the entire Katrina aftermath and the things that some TV networks and people in general have decided to say and do. We are in a time of crisis, the last thing we need is criticism with no action. Right now this country needs to act and ask questions after the problem has been solved. This nation of finger pointers needs to grow up and just help each other. Who cares about political agenda, political side of the fence, and color, race, or creed.

I have spent some more time at the Reese Technology Center, which is where the evacuees in Lubbock are staying for now. A lot of them have mentioned staying here and settling down. It seems that the urge to go back just is not that great.

I will be spending more time out there next week and will hopefully have some pictures of the kids I have been getting to know. They are great and have the best outlook on what is going on around them. Every single person at Reese was rescued from their roof or from inside the floodwaters so they did not make it to the Superdome and their stories are pretty amazing. I am going to take some interviewing materials next time I am out there and will hopefully get some of their stories in recordings or at least typed.