Colloquium Archive

Basic Video Game Development

William Kendrick, President, Linux Users' Group of Davis (


First time game programmers should be careful not to delve directly into development of massively multiplayer online role playing games, but should first start with the basics: snake game, 2D mazes, and simple space shooters. Bill Kendrick, who never really got BEYOND such simple but addictive games, will discuss the very basics of game design and development. Using the popular OpenSource 'Simple DirectMedia Layer' library (, he'll construct a simple interactive action game in the C programming language. SDL's advantages include cost, simplicity, wide usage and support, numerous add-on libraries, and the ability to target many popular Operating Systems, including Linux, Windows, MacOS and OS X, BeOS, classic Amiga, and even the Sega Dreamcast video gameconsole.

Discrimination Of Single Base Pair Differences Among Individual Dna Molecules Using A Nanopore

Veronica DeGuzman, Nanopore Laboratory, University of California, Santa Cruz


The protein toxin alpha-hemolysin form nanometer scale channels across lipidmembranes. Our lab uses a single channel in an artificial lipid bilayer in a patch clamp device to capture and examine individual DNA molecules. This nanopore detector used with a support vector machine (SVM) can analyze DNA hairpin molecules on the millisecond time scale. We distinguish duplex stem length, basepair mismatches, loop length, and single base pair differences. The residual current fluxes also reveal structural molecular dynamics elements. DNA end-fraying (terminal base pair dissociation) can be observed as near full blockades, or spikes, incurrent. This technique can be used to investigate other biological processes dependent on DNA end-fraying, such as the processing of HIV DNA by HIV integrase.

Maya Programming: Making Tools To Make Magic

Chad Morgan, LucasArts, San Rafael


Maya has been used to make combatants in Gladius battle, Spiderman swing through New York City, and gave life (and fur) to Stuart Little. But even the most talented artist is limited by the capabilities of the tools at hand. Luckily, Maya is greatly extendable through the MEL scripting language and the API. Come see how easy it is to make Maya do whatever you want it to do.

Object-Oriented Versus Procedural Versus Data-Centric: A Small Case Study

Christine Bouamalay, Network Systems Engineering, SBC, San Francisco


Let's consider the attempt to "automate" an existing procedure which creates a simple model routing traffic demands on a network. Prototyped by an engineer, the original uses Excel spreadsheets with embedded macros. What's the best design approach to use in "growing" this into a web application? We'll compare and contrast several approaches: "traditional" procedural coding in Perl; object-oriented using Java/JSP, and data modeling based on both an RDMBS and "XML database."

Emerging Technologies And The Changing Payment System Trust Model

Richard Hite, VISA


The value of the Visa brand is its acceptance as a de facto global currency; i.e., the best way to pay and to be paid. A major factor in the acceptance of Visa branded cards is the merchants "trust" that if the CVM is correctly performed, i.e., the merchants perform their responsibilities as required by the Visa International Operating Rules (VIOR), the merchant will be reimbursed by the Acquirer for those transactions. The Acquirer, on the other hand, trusts that the Merchant has performed the necessary steps to validate the authenticity of the cardholder. When the merchant fails in this responsibility, the bond of trust between the merchant and the Issuer is broken along with trust relationships that make up the remainder of the transactional trust chain. New technologies based on integrated circuit cards and cryptography are being used to secure these trust relationships.