Maven was launched to Mars on November 18th 2013. Time from orbital insertion:
I am a computer scientist and games lecturer based in the Games Design department, part of the Faculty of Arts and Creative Technologies at Staffordshire University. I am currently the Award Leader for Computer Games Design & Programming which has been running successfully for over six years and is TIGA accredited. Previously, I have taught computer science and software engineering and I am currently working in the area of computing gaming focusing on engines, rapid prototyping and AI systems.
I have been a programme validator for Newcastle College, Edge Hill and Oxford Brookes universities (where I was also an external examiner) and I have taught on specialist MSc courses in Hong Kong and Kuala Lumpur.
Being an all-round space nut, I did my PhD on the modelling of artificial biospheres. This may lead to models of biomes and bases for Mars colonisation and beyond. If you want to read up on this topic and all of its diverse research strands then take a look inside the Projects folder on the link to the left or simply click here.
I work extensively with both Epic's Unreal Engine (UE4) and the Unity 3D Engine. The former is used for large-scale and group work while the latter is used primarily for the rapid prototyping of game ideas/mechanics and game creation for mobile platforms. I use a variety of languages in my work but typically use C#, C++, Lua and Python and have a habit of making my life more complicated by inventing various gaming frameworks for use in my classes. Some of these projects can be seen in the Projects section of this site.
As you can probably guess, my gaming interests follow my space interests. If it's space-based, I've probably played it from the original Elite to EVE: Online. Fly it like you stole it.
- Published on Tuesday, 14 July 2015 20:28
All seven of our current awards have now been TIGA accredited! This is great news and follows a day of intense scrutiny by members of TIGA's accreditation panel which is formed from industry professionals and educational advisors. Here's the list of awards that have been accredited (including mine at the bottom):
- BSC (HONS) COMPUTER GAMES DESIGN
- BENG (HONS) COMPUTER GAMES DESIGN
- MENG COMPUTER GAMES DESIGN
- BSC (HONS) COMPUTER GAMEPLAY DESIGN AND PRODUCTION
- BENG (HONS) COMPUTER GAMEPLAY DESIGN AND PRODUCTION
- MENG COMPUTER GAMEPLAY DESIGN AND PRODUCTION
- BSC (HONS) COMPUTER GAMES DESIGN AND PROGRAMMING
NASA LDSD Test Flights 1&2 + Info
- Published on Friday, 12 June 2015 11:53
NASA has recently tested its LDSD (Low-Density Supersonic Decelerator) system which is a fundamental part of its plans to get humans to Mars. This plan involves getting large, heavy payloads safely down to the Martian surface. Standard approaches used for robotic missions will not work for these much larger payloads so NASA engineers have come up with a plan for slowing down lander craft which uses a ballute (combined balloon and parachute) and supersonic parachute. The following videos discuss the technologies and show the first two test flights that took place in Hawaii.