Non Breaking Space Show № 76: Sean Vanaman — Making of Firewatch

Sean Vanaman

Today’s Non Breaking Space Show guest is Sean Vanaman. Sean is a video game designer, writer, and podcast host. He was the co-project leader and lead writer of The Walking Dead,and Puzzle Agent 2. He also wrote the third episode of Tales of Monkey Island, and was the designer of Wallace & Gromit’s Grand Adventures, and the writer of the third episode, Muzzled. He is one of the regular hosts of the Idle Thumbs podcast. 

Sean co-founded the new video game company, Campos Santo, and their first game, Firewatch, is an emotional first person adventure game that centers around the character, Henry, a man whose love life is in free fall. He takes a job as fire lookout in the Shoshone National Forest as a way to isolate himself and numb him from his problems. His only contact with the outside world is through a walkie talkie to his supervisor, Deliah, another lookout on a tower many, many miles away. Within the lush, stytlized, and expansive forest they unravel mysteries that could endanger their very lives.

Topics discussed with Sean Vanaman:

  • 3:50 → How should the game be labeled and promoted to potential customers?
  • 5:00 → We decided to market the game like a movie, to promote the story and the world
  • 5:40 → The benefits of being a genre-less game?
  • 9:00 → What is it like as a creator to sit down with people who are playing your game?
  • 10:20 → Working as a team lessens self-consciousness regarding project.
  • 11:40 → What was launch week like?
  • 14:00 → How was the game’s setting was influenced by the Shoshone National Forest?
  • 17:01 → Feeling of loneliness and isolation in Firewatch.
  • 21:05 → Visiting real lookout towers.
  • 22:30 → Visiting locations in England vs. the U.S.
  • 23:10 → About Olly Moss’ artwork and posters
  • 26:30 → About the game development process
  • 29:20 → What comes next after Firewatch?
  • 30:15 → Building a video game development company.
  • 32:00 → Casting voices for the video game character
  • 34:00 → Casting the wrong person for episode 1 of The Walking Dead
  • 37:35 → The man voice actor auditions
  • 43:30 → What did you wish you knew before leaving another company to work for an game-making independent studio?
  • 51:00 → About that “all text” game intro
  • 53:30 → Why some of the marketing is different from what is seen in the game.
  • 56:45 → The possibility of making more games similar to Firewatch,
  • 1:02:01 → About the podcast and podcasting network, Idle Thumbs: How does it fit into the schedule? How does it keep the creative fires going?
  • 1:05:02 → What are you excited about now?

Nothing Compares 2 U and that’s why the Non Break­ing Space Show is still free of charge along with show notes and resources: Non Break­ing Space Show № 76: Sean Vanaman — Making of Firewatch

Non Breaking Space Show № 75: PixelJam — Indie Game Development

PIxelJam

Today’s Non Breaking Space Show guest is PixelJam. Based out of Asheville, NC, Miles Tilmann and Rich Grillotti make up the leadership of PixelJam, an indie game development company. Since 2005, they’ve created their own video games mostly in the retro pixelation format that defined the look and feel of 1980s console games such as Gamma Bros., Dino Run, and PotatoMan Seeks The Troof. However, some games have other visual styles like Glorkian Warrior, show they can shed the retro feel and still make an engaging game. They’ve also produced mobile games for late night cable station, Adult Swim, such as Hipster Kickball and Pizza City. 

Topics discussed with PixelJam:

  • 21:20 → Lessons learned in making games over a long time.
  • 30:30 → What’s the baseline for getting coverage for your game?
  • 31:00 → What language are Pixel Jam using for their new games?
  • 33:00 → Any changes in tools used for editing graphics for games?
  • 34:40 → Using Kickstarter and crowdsourcing sites for game development.
  • 40:00 → Find out how many Kickstarter projects Christopher Schmitt has backed.
  • 45:20 → PixelJam’s ideas on building better crowdsourcing apps.
  • 51:00 → Talking through the desperation of crowdfunding campaigns.
  • 53:00 → What’s PixelJam’s next project?

For those in a sacred vow with Brienne of Tarth, Non Break­ing Space Show is still free of charge along with show notes and resources: Non Break­ing Space Show № 75: PixelJam — Indie Game Development

RWD Summit: Flexbox and CSS Grids

In her Flexbox and CSS Grids talk at RWD Sum­mit in March 2016, Rachel Andrew shares her thoughts on work­ing in new layout technologies for web builders. Here are my notes from her talk:


  • Problem with our layout methods: 
    • Describing layout in markup with “DIV-itis”
    • Cost to learning layout methods to tame HTML/CSS to get the layouts we want
    • Trying, but “failed promise” of separation of source and display
  • Flexbox
  • CSS Grid Layout 

Non Breaking Space Show № 73: Tammy Everts — Web Performance

Today’s Non Breaking Space Show guest is Tammy Everts. Tammy has spent the past two decades obsessed with the many factors that go into creating the best possible user experience. As a senior researcher and evangelist at SOASTA, she researches the technical, business, and human aspects of web & application performance.

Topics discussed with Tammy Everts:

  • 3:00 What was Tammy’s first connection to the web?
  • 3:24 Owning Uber
  • 4:06 “I own 20 different domains”
  • 5:24 Activity Impact Score
  • 9:26 Your own site, visitors determine performance impact
  • 11:20 How did you get into performance evangelism?
  • 13:47 When a client see user testing once…
  • 17:30 The Super Bowl Infographic
  • 20:30 The Consumer Performance Index
  • 22:01 What is synthetic data?
  • 28:00 There’s no Unicorn Metric
  • 28:59 Who is using mobile?
  • 30:17 What is the fastest growing demographic using mobile?
  • 33:33 People go straight to smart phones, never owning a laptop
  • 35:15 Tablet performance sucks. Why?
  • 37:45: “I don’t want to be a big pep rally for tablets, but…”
  • 40:16 What are the biggest performance issues that you see?
  • 46:53 Tammy’s book, “Time is Money”
  • 50:02 What Tammy is excited about in the future?

For those still on the Tamagotchi OS platform, Non Break­ing Space Show is still free of charge along with show notes and resources: Non Break­ing Space Show № 73: Tammy Everts — Web Performance

Non Breaking Space Show № 72: Arianne Stiles — Submitting Talks to Conferences

Arianne Stiles

Today’s Non Breaking Space Show guest is Arianne Stiles. From Austin, Texas, we talk with Arianne Stiles, ½ of Environments for Humans. Environments for Humans produces over a dozen of virtual front-end and UX design conferences every year as well as the first web builder conference for CSS, CSS Dev Conf, which is coming up this October in San Antonio, Texas.

Topics discussed with Arianne Stiles:

  • 2:45 What’s the difference between online speaking and conference speaking?
  • 10:37 How has double-blind voting helped with talk suggestions at Environments for Humans conferences?
  • 18:00 Overcoming imposter syndrome and talking about your experiences.
  • 23:30 One key thing to have on your website to help a conference organizer.
  • 30:00 A disagreement about “it depends”
  • 37:00 How to describe your talk when submitting for a conference.
  • 44:20 What has been Ari’s favorite presentation?

Non Breaking Space Show is still free of charge for those using Windows XP along with show notes and resources: Non Breaking Space Show № 72: Arianne Stiles — Submitting Talks to Conferences

Non Breaking Space Show № 71: Simon St. Laurent — SXSW Interactive, Fluent Conf

President speaking at SXSW

Today’s Non Breaking Space Show guest is Simon St. Laurent. While I endure the SXSW Interactive invasion of Ausin, Texas, Simon returns from this year’s Fluent Conf. 

We both talk about tech trends they saw from our respective points of view.

Topics discussed with Simon St. Laurent:

  • 5:00 Main topic of conversation at Fluent Conf this year?
  • 11:00 What happened from Angular 1 to Angular 2?
  • 13:56 Design stuff at Fluent Conf
  • 17:40 Are we shifting from native apps to web apps?
  • 18:40 Christopher proposes removes subscription service day
  • 21:11 Classic mobile tools with service worker for web apps
  • 26:00 No wearables, big VR presence at SXSW
  • 30:00 President Obama delivers keynote at SXSW
  • 31:40 President’s remarks on strong encryption vs government backdoors
  • 37:42 Bringing WIFI to rural, low-income areas
  • 43:50 SVG at Fluent Conference

Non Breaking Space Show is still free of charge to those without SXSW badges along with show notes and resources: Non Breaking Space Show № 71: Simon St. Laurent — SXSW Interactive, Fluent Conf

Non Breaking Space Show № 70: Zell Liew — Responsive Typography

Zell Leiw

Today’s Non Breaking Space Show guest is Zell Liew. Zell is a writer, freelance web designer & developer based in Singapore. His down-to-earth articles — especially those recently published on the topic of responsive typography — make it easier to understand for both designers and developers.

Topics discussed with Zell Liew:

  • 3:20 What got Zell into the web?
  • 9:30 What’s the difference between EM and REM type sizes?
  • 16:00 Vertical rhythms for typography
  • <a href="http://goodstuff oxycontin pills.fm/nbsp/70#t=20:20">20:20 What are people’s main struggles with vertical rhythms?
  • 29:10 Are you a Javascript or a CSS person?
  • 37:50 What else are you passionate about these days?
  • 40:20 Tips for creating responsive images

Non Breaking Space Show is still free of charge to crossing guards along with show notes and resources: Episode № 70: Zell Liew — Responsive Typography

Non Breaking Space Show № 69: Allison Wagner — Career Path to UX Developer

Allison Wagner on Non Breaking Space Show

Today’s Non Breaking Space Show guest is Allison Wagner. She has worked at Happy Cog as a UX developer for over 6 years, building sites for high-profile clients such as Nintendo, MTV, Harvard, Ben & Jerry’s, and Shopify. 

She specializes in architecting custom front-end frameworks designed to scale and integrate. She lives in Philadelphia and enjoys traveling, outdoor running, and #konmarie in her spare time.

Her formal training is in design and advertising. She attended Temple University in Philadelphia, graduating with a BA from the School of Communications. 

She started coding her own web designs, and found her true passion to be in development. As she honed her skills, she garnered a sincere appreciation for standards-based development practices, believing whole-heartedly in the importance of an accessible web.

Topics discussed with Allison Wagner:

  • 3:30 Allison’s career path to development
  • 15:30 Expressive CSS
  • 22:00 Using Patternlab and Atomic Design
  • 28:50 Allison travelling and working adventures.
  • 35:00 Picking a good AirBnB location
  • 42:00 Working at the same place for a long time vs moving on quickly
  • 50:22 The magic of tidying up.
  • 53:27 Is your workspace actually working?
  • 54:45 Running and getting active.
  • 1:03:28 Career path for developers 

Non Breaking Space Show is still free of charge to high school teachers along with show notes and resources: Episode № 69: Allison Wagner — Career Path to UX Developer

Podcast: The Non Breaking Space Show

I’ve started a new project called The Non Breaking Space Show with Chris Enns and David McFarland.

It’s always good to have a mission statement of sorts when starting out on a endeavor official website

Our mission for this podcast is to interview the best and brightest in the industry.

While the show might be new, we’ve already spent time reaching out to great people to talk about hot web design and development topics:

In Episode No. 1 of The Non Breaking Show, Dave and I interview Ethan Marcotte on diving deep into Responsive Web Design.

In Episode No. 2 of The Non Breaking Show, Dave and I interview Paul Irish on web education, HTML Boilerplate, Modernizr and future of web tools.

In Episode No. 3 of The Non Breaking Show, Dave and I interview Emily Lewis on Microformats, Schema.org, and freelancing.

Also, we’ve had our first-ever crossover show with Chris Coyier and Dave Rupert from the Shop Talk Show.

First, catch the first parter over Shop Talk Show No. 8 with Dave McFarland, Chris Enns and myself. 

Then in a very special Episode No. 4, we talk with Chris Coyier and Dave Rupert about CSS pre-processors, Git and Github.

Listen and subscribe to The Non Breaking Show.