How to Draw the Path of a NavMeshAgent in Unity

One of the most convenient new features added to the Unity game engine is the NavMesh system. These built-in components allow for automatic pathfinding with minimal configuration in a scene. They also offer an impressive amount of customization out-of-the-box, such as dealing with more complex geometries and adding multiple custom agent sizes and step heights. Read more on How to Draw the Path of a NavMeshAgent in Unity…

Solving Bathroom Contention with MQTT: Atomic’s A2 Office Gets a PottyMon

It’s been nearly four years since Scott Vokes made the first version of the “Callaloo” bathroom occupancy monitoring system in our Grand Rapids office. As we grew in size and moved to a brand new building, I revamped and expanded the system to fit our new office. And now with our Ann Arbor office growing in both team and office size, it’s time that they got a Callaloo system of their own! Read more on Solving Bathroom Contention with MQTT: Atomic’s A2 Office Gets a PottyMon…

How Many Sprints Does it Take to Change a Lightbulb?

I haven’t touched a light switch in weeks. Over the past few months, I’ve been rolling out a smart light network throughout my house. To successfully complete the project, I followed a simple Agile process that we use all the time at Atomic to help clients navigate large software projects with lots of stakeholders. If you’re thinking about starting a software project, or you just want to play around with home automation, here’s what you’ll want to do. Read more on How Many Sprints Does it Take to Change a Lightbulb?…

Programming Meets Music with Sonic Pi

At the recent GOTO Chicago conference, Sonic Pi creator Sam Aaron gave a rocking presentation about his code-turned-music program, which is aimed at getting anyone from kids to professional musicians interested in software development. After the keynote, Sam gave a performance for the conference, an entertaining demonstration of the power of code. Read more on Programming Meets Music with Sonic Pi…

Design and Dance, a Graceful Pairing

This past year, I returned to one of my life-long passions: dance. In doing so, I was surprised to find a number of dancers who were also designers and developers. Thinking on this further, I believe there are a few key habits that designers can hone through, or borrow from, dancing.

Read more on Design and Dance, a Graceful Pairing…

How to Get the Most Out of Your Side Projects without Going Crazy

Lots of developers have side projects, but if you ask about them, they’ll probably say, “I’ve got a bunch of ideas and a few things in progress, but nothing I’ve finished.”

It seems to be a common theme. Lots of interesting problems and big ideas, but not enough follow-through. A lot has been written about how to break through this barrier—how to manage your time, how to hold yourself accountable, how to maintain motivation and interest… It all starts to sound an awful lot like work. Read more on How to Get the Most Out of Your Side Projects without Going Crazy…

Open Sourcing “Space Battle 2” – an RTS Game Ready for Your AI Player

With over 50 college juniors and seniors taking part, Atomic Games 2017 was a great success. This year’s participants built AIs to play a custom RTS written in-house here at AO. Since we had so much fun building and playing the game, we decided to open-source it: Space Battle 2: Resource Collectors. Read more on Open Sourcing “Space Battle 2” – an RTS Game Ready for Your AI Player…

Creating a Morning Information Radiator for your Android Tablet

I’m a very routine person. Every morning when I wake up, I grab my phone and look at a handful of things that give me an idea about what my day’s going to be like. I check my email, I look at my calendar to see if I have any meetings scheduled, I look at the weather which will sometimes influence what I’m going to wear, and I usually check out the news headlines to see if anything interesting is going on. Read more on Creating a Morning Information Radiator for your Android Tablet…

Stranger Things Alphabet Wall, Part 2: MQTT in the Upside Down

Yesterday, we created the hardware, decorations, and Neopixel software for a DIY alphabet wall from Stranger Things. But what if one of your friends gets stuck in the Upside Down*? It’d be nice if our ESP8266-driven project could make full use of its wifi capabilities and receive messages wirelessly. Read more on Stranger Things Alphabet Wall, Part 2: MQTT in the Upside Down…