Tag Archives: projects

PiFace Digital Review

I was selected by Element14 to write a review for the PiFace Digital.

2013-05-20-21.04.50-768x1024

They were kind enough to ship me a free one, so I’m only going to link to the review on their page:
http://www.element14.com/community/roadTestReviews/1457

Here is the purchase link:
http://www.newark.com/piface/piface-digital/daugther-card-pi-face-expansion/dp/48W3976?COM=rasp-accessory-group

I’m currently working on a project to control and monitor the garage doors in my home.  I will document that project here once I’m able to work on it more, and get something working.

Xbox Live Stats

I stumbled upon IBM’s Many Eyes today, and decided to play around.  They have some great graphing tools for both data and word usage.  I intend to play with more options later, but since my xbox live tracker is no longer active, I decided to clean up my database, and put some of the data to use.

I began collecting data December 21, 2009, and stopped on January 5th, 2011.  The script did grab some gameplay from 2009 and earlier since it would grab the last few games in a players history, but it does focus heavily on gameplay from 2010.

I decided to use information relevant to the games first.  No surprise here, the Call of Duty games are mopping up, followed by the Halo franchise.  They are followed by a few other staples such as GTA IV, Gears of War 2, and Red Dead Redemption.  My personal favorites didn’t do so well.  Borderlands barely deserves a mention at #15, but Forza Motorsport 3 is all the way down at number 35.

To see all of the fields visualized, you will have to click either the link to the chart, or the link at the top of the chart itself.  You can switch between fields using the drop down menus at the bottom of the chart.

Xbox Live Player Data Next, I decided to take a look at individual gamers.  This is a little bit more fun, because it lets me profile who is the biggest Xbox Live whore.  Pardon the spoiler, but SiC 0, I’m looking at you. For the graph below, I gathered the following data points.  Some might need some explanation.  Again, you will have to click the link at the top of the chart to see all the fields visualized.

  • Games Played: This only indicates the number of games my script found in the last year.  Some players have more games that they have played in the past.
  • Observed GS (Gamerscore): This indicates the gamerscore the player has achieved from the games I observed while the script was running.  It does not take into account games that were played before the script ran.  I used this for some of the other calculations, because it is more relevant than the other gamerscore.
  • Reported GS (Gamerscore): This is the gamerscore that Xbox Live reports the user has achieved.  This takes into account all games the player has played in the duration of Xbox Live.  Unfortunately, I do not know what they are.
  • GS Difference: This is the difference between the observed and reported gamerscores.  This statistic is pretty useless, but kind of fun to track.  Users who signed up for Xbox Live during 2010 will have a 0.  For other gamers, higher scores typically indicate a lot of activity in the early days of Xbox Live.
  • Achievements: Much like Observed GS, this is the number of Achievements a player has earned amongst the games I observed.
  • Achievements Per Game and GS per Game: This is the number of Achievements and Gamerscore divided by the number of games played.  My old GTP friends represented heavily in this one.   It points out the Xbox rockstars who stick around and master a game before moving on.
  • Gamerscore per Achievement: This is basically a worthless statistic, especially since it is so even.  It was just on the spreadsheet, so it went along for the ride.

Now, here is the chart, Xbox Live Player Data by Gamertag

Of course, looking back, I’m I’m wishing I’d tracked other points of data, but this was still kinda fun.

…and I haven’t been completely lazy lately.  I’ve just had a few projects lately that I decided not to write about for one reason or another.

Edit: for those curious, here is a spreadsheet with the info.
https://spreadsheets.google.com/pub?hl=en&hl=en&key=0AlnEwe1KzwEedDdoNS1yTGhyNENzN0tPbzBHenpITVE&output=html

Xbox Live Tracker: Update

Well, my previously mentioned Xbox Live Tracker (blog post) will no longer be receiving updates.  I was dependent on an xml feed hosted on DuncanMackenzie.net, but that was taken offline in January.  Microsoft actually hosts their own API.  It’s invite only.  Since I’m using it for non-commercial uses, I have a chance of being accepted.  I may look into requesting access at a later point in time, but there are no definite plans.

For now, I’m going to leave the site up in archive mode, showcasing the last active state of the tracker.  It appears that the last successful run was January 5th.

I’ll miss the feed.  It’s a shame that it’s gone, but I can appreciate the resources it took to run.  I don’t know if I’d show the same amount of good will, especially knowing that some were profiting off of it.

I’ll be updating the site to reflect changes.

XBOX Live Tracker

Project is no longer live.  Please read update from 2/4/2011

Starting in January 2010, I was cooped up at home, filling my idle time with videogames.  Well, that only kept me occupied for so long, so I decided to make better use of my time, creating an xbox live tracker.

It is currently hosted at gamertagops.ryanveach.com

The principle behind the tracker is pretty simple.  I created a python script to go out and fetch xbox live information once an hour.  This information was logged into a MySQL database, which is accessed on the website through PHP.

Thanks to a service hosted on duncanmackenzie.net, my python script is able to grab information on a per user basis.  The script grabs account information, such as the correct formatting for the gamertag, gamerscore, current online status, a brief history of games, and a few other tidbits of information.

A gamertag must be entered into the system by manually adding them to the database.  They do not show up on the site until the next time the script is run.  The data is stored in a 5 table database.  Game titles are automatically added when they are observed from the xbox status.

Currently, the project is not under active development.  It may be integrated with other projects, but further development on it’s own is unlikely.