Digital Nexus 2001 report
Optimus/Dirty Minds/The Lab
Some of you may have already heard from me (or from my personal profile on Ojuice) how much I dreamed to visit a demoparty for the 1st time in my life and see how really fun it is. Heh, and now I did it, so what? ;) Lol, no! It was really nice for the first time, I never regret being there, I would have regretted it if I hadn't been there. I remember that I was not in a good mood at the first day I entered the partyplace, the main reason was that I would come to the party without having anything to participate in the compos while I really wanted to and I was doing some code in the summer for that. Didn't catch up with the deadlines. :( But after I have released a lame 3-effect-coding preview just for the sake of seeing it in the big screen and after I have stopped being anxious and had fun with the people I met there, my mood rose up a lot. At the end I returned to my home really, really happy! :)
One of the main things that raised up my mood at the last days of the party, except the whole fun, the people I met, my lame stuff shown on the big screen and the whole new experience for a newbie like me, was the fact that I had seen at this party the Greek demoscene raising from the dead, or let's say better making a new timidly beginning. Old and newbie Greek sceners met again, new unknown before Greek democoders found out the party showing their works, few people tracking or pixeling on their computers, enthusiasm and more enthusiasm, plans and more plans and few demos, gfx and music presented in the compos. A real Greek demoparty after 4 years of silence! You know, the last real demoparty was Gardening97 held in Patras, and after that there was silence... Digital Nexus 2001 was the real beginning of the new Greek demoscene.
I feel btw that I have done some good work too on the rise of our scene too, especially on the net by building webpages, a mailinglist using which old and newbie Greek sceners communicated again and were informed about the new party and generally spreading the news on the net about the rebirth of our small scene. Of course the rising of the Greek scene owes mostly the people who organized the party and the sceners (Especially the ASD group for finishing at last a new serious demo in the Greek scene, their winner Cadence and Cascade) who visited and participated in the compos too. Now I see a lot of enthusiasm, old groups have contacted us being surprised to see our little scene starting again, even old sceners who were pessimistic about a new Greek scene, they became now really enthusiastic about the whole thing, and I had just seen that after the party (E.g. see how crazy they went on pouet about CNC. Yeah! That was the next day after the party ;) and there are more to come...
But I forgot to tell you a few more infuse about the demoparty before I start my report. It took place in Athens/Greece in a room of the National Metsovio Polytexneio from 31 August to 2 September. Actually the 3rd day was for the Quakers so we left one day before. I have seen more than 30 people with more than 20 PCs there, and at least 20 of them were sceners. The first party I ever met and the beginning of a new Greek scene. Wow! I think it's time though to stop with the infuse (more coming later) and start my narration from the very beginning. But where to start? I found it! Let's start from the train station :)
I remember arriving very early in the morning in the train station of Thessaloniki, actually half an hour earlier than the meeting I arranged with the other scene friends of mine from Thessaloniki. It was supposed to meet there Nuclear, Vvas, Nina, Amoivikos and Navis. Actually I found Navis there who came 1 hour earlier than our arranged date, 'cause he had heard a wrong info or something. And while we sat down and were waiting, he started telling me a funny story of how he and Amoivikos had lost the train some years ago when they wanted to travel to one of the Gardening parties. (Heh, what really happened is that: It was almost the arrival time of the train. Amoivikos told to Navis: "I am going to the toilet, ok? Just 2-3 minutes, I don't think that we will lose the train just for 3 minutes!" And when he came back from the toilet,. guess what! It took the train less than 3 minutes to arrive, load with passengers and leave the place!!! They lost it!?! Ugh :P This old story btw happened in Katerini where the two sceners are from. Funny indeed! =) Anyways, we were waiting until the other people came, we bought tickets and headed for the train. Before leaving this place, Amoivikos didn't forgot to say goodbye to all of us, oh yes, I forgot to tell you that Amoivikos decided not to come to the party for some reasons. He woke up in the early morning and came there at the station just to wish us farewell. What a good guy! :)
I never remembered before what it is like traveling with the train. It took us 6-7 hours to arrive in Athens and it was tiring. I should have thought of bringing my Gameboy with me! Only Nina had a Laptop with her and she opened it for a short time to show us her 2d "almost" particles she has done using a gfx library from Nuclear. Then Navis helped her improving her particles improving the sine movement and adding some additive blending to them (They were just sprites blitted one upon the other before..). I could almost see nothing on her laptop cause I was from the opposite side of the seats and I should break my neck to achieve that. :( I was just wondering what the few other passengers sitting near us would think about us when hearing our technojargon.
And so we finally arrived in Athens. It was 7:00 o'clock at the evening. I even tasted one small part of the city and the means of transportation of Athens again, even the latest build underground transport station (How the hell is it really called?) I had really long time to visit Athens, perhaps even since I was in school? Sooo, we were just there in the city trying to find the place. Nuclear phoned Alias Medron who was already in the place and we found him among with Zafos outside the Metsobio Polytexneio (For non-Greek people btw: It is the Polytechnic university of Athens). At last! I felt like home. A place full of computers, computer freaks and fun! Hooray!!!
We chose our place by leaving our bags on an empty table. There were few computers there at the beginning and almost known of us had brought a computer except Nina with her laptop. (Something that I regret about, although I still don't really know if it is easy to carry my whole computer equipment from a far place at all. If I only had a car, and a driving license actually ;) I was walking around the place watching the few people, most of them were playing Quake. Most sceners hadn't arrived for the moment at the party place. That time, by asking around, I found Bad Sector, a really crazy 16-year-old guy from Samos, one of the guys I wanted to meet there at most. Then I showed him where the other guys were and he introduced himself to them with a funny manner and then all my friends laughed because everyone was wondering who this guy called Bad Sector really is (You have to know various facts that happened before, like a fight in the Greek demoscene mailinglist between Bad Sector and Nuclear about DOS vs Windows to understand how furious where these two guys to meet together ;).
After that, the other people went outside to get something to eat and they left me to keep watching of their bags. I said Ok and so I was supposed to have taken the responsibility of their stuff they left on the table. We were walking around and talking with Bad Sector, me being anxious about the bags and him being bored that the other guys didn't came back in the party place. Bad Sector told me several times to leave the place and forget the bags as he was bored and as he had to go to his aunt's home to carry his computer to the partyplace. But it would be lame to leave the place as people told me to take care of their stuff. That time I was asking people around, if they had seen Rex. He is a CPC scener, the gfxist of our group Dirty Minds, and we just talked the previous day through phone about meeting in the partyplace. And there I found him! After we talked a little, Bad Sector was sooo bored that he asked from Rex to take care of my friends bags! Damn!!! I was still anxious about leaving a scener I just met for the first time the responsibility to stay there alone keeping an eye to our stuff. :P But it was Bad Sector's idea, and Rex said "Ok, no problem!" before I could react! And so we were out on the city heading for Bad Sector's aunt home leaving a friend just met, alone at the partyplace! How lame of us. :P The funny thing was, when we noticed in the 1st floor of Goody's (A Greek Fastfood place, like what McDownload's is) in the opposite side of the road, 3 familiar people sitting there, eating and still laming around there while we were bored and were alone at the partyplace. Lol! It was my friends. ;) But still it was not wise to leave the partyplace, their stuff unprotected and another just met scener alone there. :(
So we moved to find Bad Sector's aunt but she was not there, only his uncle. I was anxious cause I wanted Bad Sector's computer in order to code some more stuff and release a lame contribution for the party. I needed that computer! Perhaps we would get it after midnight, still good. Bad Sector would take a nap that night and I would start coding on it. We moved back to the party place. I was anxious to find the other people there saying to me "Where the hell were you". I found them. Someone told me that Rex had left the place and asked me to phone him back when I come back. Damn, I didn't had his phone with me! The solution was to phone my mother who gave me Antitec's phone on the Gas Station where he works and then I phoned Antitec to get Rex's phone. But I couldn't reach Rex on the phone. :P
That night, we were waiting and waiting, we were looking at people watching demos, few ones were tracking and pixeling, new sceners were coming in the place and setting up their computers and in the night I went to carry on Bad Sector's computer that his aunt brought with the car. After a tiring carriage from the car to the party place, we discovered another fucking problem. There was no power supply cable!!! Damn, laws of Murphy! But it was so easy, we asked around and another guy had one left. Mission accomplished! The computer was on it's place and I clicked on the power button with yearning! That night, I showed to Bad Sector what effects I had coded since one month in the DJGPP(C) Compiler he suggested me to use, like some additive blended trail blobs morphing in various 2d shapes and moving around, the same blobs zooming and applied on 3 dimensions and used as 3d light particles and a sphere and eggball(?!?) mapping routine for the end. Forgive me about my fake technojargon by the way but I don't find any other words to describe my fx. ;) Btw, my scene friends are always making fun of me about the new revolutionary original namings I find about various demoeffects, like "toing toing effects", "eggball mapping", "blurred textures" (meaning the bilinear filtering of the 3d accelerated cards ;) or "this object has great wireframe" (meaning that it has great 3d detail, and so the wireframe looks too complicated!) Lol! Ohh, I remember also the funniest moment when I was with Bad Sector and Navis watching my code and Bad Sector started laughing his ass out and so did I and Navis, cause of the silly naming I was giving to my subroutines and to my arrays (E.g. the really crazy ToingToing3d subroutines or the Baloma1, Baloma2 arrays, where baloma means "Patching" in Greek =)
I had also shown to some people my 1st wolfenstein3d engine (aka raycaster) I coded on Quickbasic just for fun, a very early preview btw, one version without textures at all and the other with unoptimized textures only on the walls (Ohh, and bad keyboard handling, damn Qbasic!). It was nice to see people saying good words about my effects and my progress as a newbie, even if I knew that my effects are still very oldskool and simple and I still have too much to learn on democoding.
There was only one problem. Bad Sector was soooo bored without his computer and so I couldn't touch it until he would go to sleep. He was sitting and working on my code and the final result was merging the 2d trail blobs with my sphere mapping routine, you can see the result in one of the pics I have for you. Then I wanted to do something and we almost fought for one computerplace there! I must have won I guess. :) But Bad Sector was again bored and couldn't stand without his computer. So I told him that I will just fix one routine and I will go to sleep. I just passed the 3rd rotation from an old Qbasic program on C and applied them on the 3d particles, rotating a particle cube. Then I understood that I was too tired and it was impossible to do anything for the compos here, especially as I had not my own computer with me, so I went to sleep unsatisfied and left Bad Sector do his own work there.
I was too tired and it was almost impossible to sleep with so much noise and in a so hard place (We were sleeping on tables) I didn't slept that much. In the morning, I woke up and saw Bad Sector still coding on his computer. What was he doing? He was trying to fix his polygon rasterizer routine which was soooo buggy! Funny thing was when he told me that he was so mad with it that he was thinking to forget software rendering and move to OpenGL. It made me lol when thinking his old fight with Nuclear about oldskool vs newskool coding. ;) Of course, I hope it's a joke, because he left our group The Lab (Where me, Nuclear, Amigo, iM and another guy is) just for that, because Nuclear wanted to code on windows and accelerators but Bad Sector insisted in the old good ways. Btw, he is now formed a new group called Nasty Bugs where I belong too, wanting to code oldskool Dos demos! Damn, I am now in 2 PC groups but I have done nothing until now. :P
Oh man! I was all the time talking to you about what I did with Bad Sector. Heh, indeed, Bad Sector told me that he was all the time with me and that he would be bored if I hadn't visited the party at all. :) Anyways, after that I phoned Rex in the morning and I found him. He told me he would come. Good! Btw, I forgot to tell you about 2 new never known before Greek sceners we found on the place the day before. They had showed as a 3d engine with flat, translucent and light sourced 3d cubes(Oh my!) they had coded in Pascal. I didn't knew the guys before and it's great to find newbie sceners out of nothing on a demoparty who have already something to show. Well, these guys had left the place in the previous night. And they came back the next morning (this means that time about I am narrating you right now) to show us what they have coded all the night in their homes! They did a small intro without music, with few translucent cubes, even some textured ones and a 2d bump mapping with a simple presentation and few greetings at the end to the DN2001 people they met there. They just decided to participate to the compo just for fun. They gave me their entry to hand it to the organizers because they would leave the partyplace again. It was good that they decided to increment the demo contributions just with something simple. So nice that I got obsessed that time and I decided to connect something simple too, just for the contribution! I was obsessed cause I found the motivation to participate and show something mine on the big screen no matter how lame it is. I just thought that it would be a good thing to increment the participation of the dead Greek scene, even if it was a lame prod. And so I did!
We had 1 hour left before the deadline (even if it was proved that they allowed us more time) and we rushed to connect my 3 effects plus some more stuff if we could do it. Everything were going fine, Bad Sector was sitting on the computer cause I am a really slow guy and he is hell fast. :) Sometimes I just couldn't take care of what the hell changes was performing on my routines in order to connect them. I had lost sight and if something wrong would happen, I couldn't tell what it was in the way he was typing and scrolling up and down. It was on the last effect where there was a lame bug and we almost did more than 15 minutes to find it. I was anxious cause everything was going fine until then! Damn! And it was funny though, first it was funny when he showed me the screenshot he would use on my sphere mapping. It satirized his fight with Nuclear about DOS as I mentioned above. :) If you get our "demo" (which we never intended to release, but someone added it on ftp and pouet) you will see our lameness and how funny it was that anxious moment. And you will see the other funny thing that remained in my mind. I told him that we should also made a screen from scratch showing the credits which would just appear with a simple fade on the beginning. He opened a program and painted something really fast with silly fat lines, in the way we were drawing on Paintbrush when we were kids! You know what I mean I guess!!! Funny, because we were laughing and that time came my CPC friend and gfxist Rex and was laughing his ass out when he saw us drawing a lame 5minute screen of our "demo" (God makes it a demo!) Atsou (which is a sound of sneezing :). It was some lame moments of working in 1 hour for presenting something really lame coding preview of what I hadn't caught up to finish in the summer, and it was fun though, really fun to see people looking at us fixing our lame thing at all! At the end, we didn't included the Atsou bitmap because of a lame bug, but we forgot it inside the Zip file we gave to the organizers. Heh, our organizers had asked us if there was a File_id.diz or nfo file in our contribution which we forgot to include, but I guess the lame BMP worked out about that! =)
And so we handed our contribution and the other guys contribution too to the organizers. My soul was released, damn I am crazy. At least I will say that I had seen my own stuff on the big screen for one time in my life and so I want be anxious about that anymore. Deadlines sucks! Especially when we lazy suckers thing that we can finish a demo in 1 month before the party (and I was spending most of my time to get used on C rather than code my effects as I remember. I knew only Quickbasic before, and some Z80 assembly too in fact, but I don't think that this applies ;). Better luck next time!
After that I went with Bad Sector to Goody's to take something to eat. Bad Sector told me that his head was going to break after that 1hour Marathon of anxious coding! I told him, sorry for that, at least I will be released from my anxiousness of seeing something on mine, even how lame it is, in the big screen. After that we returned at the partyplace. It was perhaps the best moment of the party for me. My mood started to raise up! I was released from my anxiousness and I just went to find my CPC friend Rex whom I had forgot until then. He was sitting there with Alias Medron/Padua (the 1st and only Greek C64 scener I know and was glad to meet at the party) who was showing him some C64 demos through an emulator. I came there and I found Rex so excited about them. He had never seen some of them before and he was asking me if we could do something like that on the CPC. I kept saying to him "Look at this demo! Look how cool the C64 scene is and how lame we are on CPC!" and he was so obsessed and he was keeping watching C64 demos on Medron's PC. There was also Zafos and CjDib there watching. We used all the place there to show 8bit prods to the people. I brought my CD with full of CPC emulators and Demos there. It was an orgasm of 8bit in the place, we even raised the volume up so that jerky bleepy sound would be heard all over the place! Really funny moment!!! Then some PC sceners came and Medron showed them the C64 jewels and they were amazed for a moment I guess. ;) I remember when I joked with Nina and I told her to have a look so that she will learn to be a better C64 scener next time, hehe. ;) Btw Nina was presented to me as a C64 scener who had coded a Gouraud shader when I first met her but that was fake, a lame joke organized by some nasty Greek scener out there who knew my obsession with Female Geeks + C64scene! Grrr! If someone learned that fake fact on #C-64 then I am sorry, I just can't keep my mouth shout before I am sure about something. :) Really fun after all! We showed CPC productions to Medron too, but the CPC demos were so inferior to what Medron had seen on C64 though. :) The best time of the party for me, especially when I forgot any deadlines at all and my anxiety about contributing at all and had fun with our 8bit show and the people there!
It was the time when Rex had to left because he was bored to wait for the compos to start. I said goodbye to Rex and gave him a CD with a demoscene collection I had brought too (I spread it to 2 more people I guess). In fact the compos really started several hours after in the night.
Before that, Nina had showed me what she has coded with her friends on VC++. First she showed me the 2d sine moving particles she had coded on the train with Navis and then she showed me a nice sine distortion of a really nice ASD logo. I liked that better than the first one. In fact, she doesn't have anything to do with C64 at all (that was a joke as I said and I am sorry if I informed you wrongly, due to my enthusiasm) but she is interested on the PC scene and on democoding. She is actually PR on ASD group at the moment. :) The first female scener I have ever met in fact. After that I learned something else from Nuclear. The fact that Amoivikos had finally decided to come in the 2nd day at the party! It seems that he was so jealous thinking of us having fun in the party and him staying home and studying for his exams. :) So almost everyfuckingbody had visited at least for one day the party! Some came and some left sometimes, there were 2-3 well-known sceners I didn't catch up to meet cause they left. I remember that time that Raoul Duke also came, another newbie scene friend I wanted to meet there at the partyplace. I remember that he regretted it the next day for not coming earlier.
I was so tired and I was still waiting for the fucking compos to start. They closed the lights. They carried the computers and the projector. They set it on a wall. It was big. Around 3.5 * 2.5 meters I guess. I had never ever seen a demo on a big screen. It was sooo cool! They were kept showing and showing and showing, various famous PC demos, even few Amiga demos in DivX. It was looking really cool and the compo machine was kinda a monster for every fucking demo there exists (I don't remember for sure, but I think it was an AMD at 1Ghz) and everything ran so smooth and big! One of the best moments for the party attenders.
We sat down and watched while the compo started. The first demo entry was mine. Ohh, I felt ashamed that moment showing my own stuff. :) Then they showed the other entry of the other 2 newbie guys we met, to leave the best for the end. The Cadence and Cascade demo from ASD, actually the 1st Greek accelerated demo ever and a serious Greek demo after 4 years of silence! It's the one that several of you have heard about from www.pouet.net, where several of my Greek friends got exaggerated and voted for it (and even opened a thread there) raising it's popularity a lot. And we had a discussion there about Greek people voting the demo based on nationality. Lol! Kinda lame? At least it shows that Greek sceners where really enthusiast perhaps exaggerated with the reborn of the Greek scene after the end of the parties and that's a good sign for our little scene. Anyways, let's get back to the point. After that we had to vote. I was voting for the first time. This was easy cause there were 3 demos to choose, one being mine and the other being superior to all. :) (Damn! Don't think wrongly that I voted mine for a 2nd, it went 3rd of course, cause it's no sense voting yourself.) And then we waited for the gfx compos. 4 entries. They were not signed (To avoid namevoting) but I could already guess the creators of 2 of them ;) And the music compos after that. 7 entries. Not like the old Gardening parties but I expected less from our inactive scene. Other more pessimistic people expected no compos at all...
After the end of the compos I remember the organizers asking me where the hell the guys whose demo I handed are. You know, the one with the cubes, the 2 newbie sceners we met on the place. They weren't even there to watch their own intro on the big screen! Even one month after the party, I still can't find their entry either on the DN2001 page or in the ftp. They are Wcf and Messiah, I hope to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org if they happen to read this report. Another thing I remember was when I had my photographic machine with me and one guy came (I think he was Amoivikos) and told me "Ohh, you were the guy who was flashing all the time behind us in the compos?" :) Lol! But the legendary(?!) photos of people watching demos on the big screen are in the 2nd film which I haven't finished yet. :(
Few. I was so tired. I was wondering where Bad Sector really was. Oh, I forgot that poor guy! I remember when he asked me to come and show him some assembly code to plot a pixel on CPC, through his emulator on PC. But we never did that. Cause I was with the other guys. And then I was searching for him. I found him, I think he went to sleep to his aunt? I am not sure. I think that he had created that night the webpage of our new group aka Nasty Bugs. I don't really remember if I had slept that night. It was almost morning. Medron was showing for Nth(N tending to infinite :) time the Second Reality 64 conversion on C64 to Zafos, Raoul Duke and Nina (She still had to take her lesson of how to be a C64 scener for dummies :) it was almost morning. I learned from Bad Sector that our coding preview got the 2nd place. But I didn't cared at all actually and I thought that the demo with the Cubez should be 2nd, cause they had at least a slight presentation and design, it was an intro without music and ours was a coding preview of 3 effects without music. Perhaps people love me more. :)
After that I learned from people that we would leave the party in the morning. I only remember when I was outside with Bad Sector and he wanted to take something from the kiosk and I was anxious because I should be in the partyplace, cause we would leave for the train station but he insisted and so we did. And then when I came back, people told me "Where the hell were you again! We are gonna miss the train." Blame Bad Sector again. :) I went to the place running to get my bag, I said goodbye to the people there and rushed to find the guys. We were all fine, it had ended and we were going home. We took the train, another 6 tiring hours and I was finally home at Thessaloniki. It has ended well and I return happy in my home. Funny thing is that I had exams on Linear Algebra the next morning, the funnier thing was that my head was working very right in the exams and I was understanding very clearly, the funniest that I didn't pass the lesson (I guess I will see myself creating my 1st 3d engine and from the other side still giving that fucking lesson for n times! :P Wouldn't my wolf3d engine be proof for my teachers to pass the lesson ;) And then, I logged in the net, after the party had finished, seeing so much enthusiasm on the net just one day after, I updated my page, I uploaded photos, people uploaded prods, people flooded pouet :) etc.
It was over and it was great experience. I was in bad mood when I went to the party but then suddenly everything changed! I came back very happy with my 1st demoparty experience ever. :)
Oh my god! This is big. Better luck next time! You will tell me that I may have written too much, some big parts of my text talking about what me and some other scener did and not about the whole party or something. But it was a narrative story of my visit at the party and these were what came out of my mind. It will be really funny for me and my Greek friends who attended the party to read this one, but I don't know if the other sceners find it boring. I hope not! Whatever..
What sceners were there?
Well.. Optimus, Nuclear, iM, Amigo, Bad Sector, Navis, Amoivikos, Nina, Rex, Alias Medron, Emc, Mot, Gotcha, FM, Amusic, Zafos, Raoul Duke, CjDib, Night, Daremon, Zouzoulos, Oddie, Psyche, Wcf, Messiah and the organizers of course (Apomakros, Cybernoid, Abishai), this means 28 sceners.
1st Cadence and Cascade by ASD
2nd Atsou by Optimus & Bad Sector
3rd Cubez by wcf & messiah
1st Atomic Bubblegum by iM/the Lab & fm/deus
2nd Corpses of Dreams by Amoivikos/ASD
3rd Born to be Wild by mime/grid
4th Flight by Alias Medron/Padua
1st Frogs by moT/deus
2nd Stuck in the Chimney by aMUSiC/Split Infinity
3rd Challenger by Alias Medron/Padua
4th X-Place by Amigo/the Lab
5th Changes by Amoivikos/ASD
6th The Theater of Magic by CjDib
7th Melodied by Darkrose
That's all. I think I have to close now cause I didn't understood that my article is 30kb!!! The future? Of course, an enthusiastic newborn Greek scene (Old sceners from various groups are willing to come back in action again, new groups are being formed, an active scene after 4 years of silence!) and the Digital Nexus party will continue I guess, now that everything has started on the scene and more prods will be in the next party I think. Plus some other people from Patra who want to organize a demoparty called ReAct2002 at Eastern. Oh hell, I have to start working for my own contributions, lot's of Greek new stuff coming up! No more deadlines please ;) Anyways, have fun!
Have 2 go now...
of Dirty Minds/The Lab/Nasty bugs/whatever... :P (Mostly Dirty Minds I guess...)