As 2012 begins and we venture forth on bigger and better explorations into technology here at Cemetech, I'd like to glance back over the major developments of 2011. I had planned to make this review a part of the Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays; Upcoming Projects news post, but circumstances unfortunately decided otherwise. The silver lining is that I will be sending this out as an email to our absent members, to let them know what's happening at Cemetech and remind them of Cemetech Contest 8. Although our members were busier than ever with school, work, and life this year, we succeeded in publishing a respectable number of popular programs and projects, and activity on Cemetech flourished. We continued our focus on TI graphing calculator programming while making huge strides into Casio Prizm coding. In the coming year, we have plenty of individual and Cemetech-wide projects planned, some of which have been announced, and others of which are still under wraps.
The year of 2011 started off with globalCALCnet successes built upon the eight-year-delayed release of fully-functional CALCnet 2.2 at the end of 2010. The first globalCALCnet-enabled calculator joined Cemetech's IRC channel in early January, after which my and Merthsoft's CALCnet Chat 1.0 client was released so that all TI-83+/84+ calculators could join IRC and/or chat amongst themselves. gCn reached internet-wide popularity with a Slashdot article, and then followed up with my Obliterate 1.0 networked scorched-earth game and the introduction of Doors CS 7.2 with direct USB gCn support. Cerzus69's impressive grayscale game Benumbered 2.0 joined the lineup of high-quality grayscale ASM calculator games at the end of March. Around the same time, I purchased a Casio Prizm color-screen graphing calculator, and shortly thereafter wrote a scathing editorial, Casio Prizm: Why TI Calc Coders Should Abandon the Nspire CX. TI responded by reaching out in June with Lua for the Nspire, but many at Cemetech remained skeptical.
Later in the summer, Cemetech's web browser for graphing calculators, Gossamer 1.0, joined Doors CS 7.2 Beta 2 in further advancing the state of the art of calculator programming. July saw growing popularity of that project, and the final month of the summer brought a summit of three Cemetech admins in Maine that led to two fascinating new focuses for Cemetech, space exploration and x-treme sports. A port of Obliterate 1.0 for the Casio Prizm was released in September, SourceCoder 2.5 gained Prizm BASIC support in October, Merthsoft published a refined Periodic Table for the Prizm in November, and a public beta of Tetrizm for the Prizm was released in December.
In 2011, many of Cemetech's hardware projects reached fruition or were resurrected. Cemetech's old instant-party system returned as PartyMode 2.0. The internet at large was fascinated to see a calculator and a floppy drive playing music, the video for which garnered 47,000 views and 106 likes in about a month. As far as hardware, the year ended with my door-mounted E-Paper information panel finally completed after a year.
Covering a few final miscellaneous items of news, contests, community news, reviews, statistics, and good friends abounded. Jonimus and Merthsoft were both promoted to full administrators in April, just as Merthsoft released a Minesweeper game for the Prizm. On the suggestion of Cemetech moderator Swivelgames, Cemetech acquired the Cemete.ch domain in May, and continued to maintain active Facebook, Twitter, and Google Plus accounts (go subscribe to them all if you haven't already already!). Kerm and many other Cemetech users submitted entries to TIForge's impressive zContest, and Cemetech hosted the ASM portion of the contest judging. On their inspiration, Cemetech announced Cemetech Contest 8, focused on arcade games. The deadline is January 22nd, so you still have plenty of time to enter if you haven't already. For the first time in its history, Cemetech pulled two wins out of ticalc.org's 2011 Program of the Year voting, with four projects in the running from two authors. Finally, Cemetech's weekly Have Calculator, Will Program (HCWP) teleconference breezed past the one-year mark in now nearly fifteen months old.
Here's to another year of successes and good coding fun!
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