Hi, I'm Jay! and you're viewing my portfolio of random projects I've been up to here and there. Keep a look out for videos, free downloads or source code!
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Caros
Intelligent infotainment system for the car

2008 - PRESENT

A joint hardware and software endeavour to enhance the infotainment capabilities of our cars, my best friend and I worked on the Car PC project for a long time. We hit many limitations, in both hardware, software and integration but carried on.

The first task was to centralise all information and entertainment features to a custom built computer with a touch screen interface and harware mapping to steering wheel buttons. A database and network backend would provide up to date traffic and social media information that would affect the trip, as well as the framework for a GPS navigation system using Open StreetMaps data and a little A* algorithm.

The ultimate goal of the project was to implement an artificial intelligence, which would whiteboard all the information available to it such as driving behaviour, social network information, and voice synthesis and recognition based H2M interaction to present intelligent behaviour. The software system was built using .NET with Windows Presentation Foundation. This is an evolutionary project which in simple terms means we plan for it to continue to grow in features.



Blackstorm Alpha
Jet fighter arcade game


It's no secrete I love jet fighters. It's their superiority over the skies, their pure power and engineering that goes into these machines that make then so amazing. A few years ago during a boring lecture, I started drawing sketches for a jet fighter game. Every existing title had bored me so far, it had neither the excitement nor the overkill I craved.

That night for fun I did some research into game engines and ended up making a group of cylinders and boxes roll across a mountainous terrain. My addiction to this game grew and so did the encouragement of my friends who all wanted their hands on early betas.

So the Blackstorm Alpha project was concieved, and currently 15 good friends have their hands on the evolving game. I hope to plan to release it when it's ready (somewhat playable). Until then you can view the videos and blog posts about it!



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Kalq
Simple and minimalist calculator

2010

Why do software calculators try so hard to emulate their real world counterparts? Kalq is a tiny minimalist app which shows the answer as you type, there's no buttons, no equals sign, you don't even use a mouse.

It was first incepted when I was in grade 9 and tired of using the default calculator but made a quick VBS script to convert an equation from the clipboard to an answer. Suprisingly many people actually found it useful themselves, hence my uploading of it for free. It too is evolving, but with less priority than the top projects.

You can also get the source code from Google Code, but I'd wait for version 2 to come out this year!



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Vizr
A modern and humble launcher for Windows

2014

All those repetative things we do, those extra clicks and cursor movements. Vizr not only searches your start menu but allows you to add custom commands.

Why stop there? Something central to all these quick shortcuts should be extensible and not restricted to my own whims. Hence why the source is available on GitHub for you to fork and contribute to!



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Prime
Organisation focused file browser

2013

An alternative to Windows Explorer focused on organisation and situational awareness. Inspired by the Miller columns design (most notable in Apple's Mac OSX Finder).

The program remains minimalist with strong extensibility available planned for power users. My aim with this project is to figure out what annoys me most about Windows Explorer and find a solution.

Some such features continuing the heirarchy of a shortcut to a folder (instead of teleporting to the destination), grouping selected items into a new folder and marking items for actions,



Mango
Self-teaching aid on your mobile


A quick app I wrote up instead of studying for my language class, the testing of which luckily engraved what I needed to know into my head.

In many ways Mango will assist in self-teaching. That literally means you choose what you learn. What ever you need to remember, you put the data in and be presented with questions in different forms to help memorise.

The app is in private beta and needs work before it gets published.



University Capstone Thesis
Intuitive user interface to ambient computing


At the end of degree thesis (called a Capstone) my project was aimed at bridging the multitude of networks of sensors and actuators that will soon become household items into the hands of an ordinary non-technical user.

Abstract: As smaller and cheaper electronic devices obtain network connectivity, the possibilities of the Internet of Things grows exponentially. Ambient devices will soon pervade the ordinary home and office and be capable of controlling and reporting on many aspects of their environment. Configuring these agents to work together however requires domain-specific technical expertise, which prevents the average user from utilising the maximum potential from the synergy of hardware capabilities.

The solution involves removing the need for the user to consider the low level implementation, and instead shifting their focus purely to negotiating high level business requirements which any non-technical user could provide. This capstone project aims to develop a software system to bridge the gap between everyday users and these ambient devices through a natural language interface.



Vehicle Telemetrics Simulation
University Advanced Assignment


Given my experience with the Car PC project, I was designated technical lead for our advanced project for a difficult final year subject. Despite also working on the robot project that semester, I managed to draft a good high-level and low-level architecture as well as design the entire simulation in just a week.

The simulation featured an actual steering wheel game controller with vibration feedback on crashes, automatic parking and when going off-road! The point of the project was to show innovation in safety systems.

Along with interfacing with physical sensors and having background services for traffic algorithms the project was way overkill and I was sort of told off for spending too much effort on it, but it was so fun to make. The videos are worth a watch, preferably the traffic simulation when I turned all the lights green in the city. A lot of what I learnt new about the Unity engine I was able to put back into the Blackstorm Alpha project.



videos

Robot Factory Engineering
University Final Group Project


I was part of a large team chosen to setup a robot factory that would deliver casino chips into a tray and store them. While it sounded simple, it took weeks of design before development even commenced.

As part of the team in charge of the robot arms, we spent many nights in the lab prototyping, report writing and sleeping. The pure effort we put into this meant we all became good friends, appreciating each others efforts and going out of our way to help each other with their own issues.

The project was to be of the highest standard with strict compliance to many protocols including IEEE 830 / IEEE 1233. We successfully delivered the project on time, despite discovering some integration issues at 2AM of the due date.



Beta Portal for Labs
Private feedback and suggestions community


For any private beta testing for my projects I have a dedicated portal which handles feedback such as comments, tips and complaints. It works similarly to GetSatisfaction and UserVoice style web applications, however is deeply integrated currently with the Blackstorm Alpha project.

It was the limitations of the free versions of the aforementioned sites that led me to write my own. As more of my projects are finalised and published, I expect to detatch the jet fighter stuff and allow more general comments and feedback.

The difference with this tailor made feedback site is in what I as the admin can see, which is the commitment of the users and their value to the project. Not all users have the same stakes here, as some can be valuable stakeholders or partners and others just armchair critics. I am better able to consider the users experience, their history of help and many other factors to prioritise tickets and shift the direction and evolution of the project.



Universe In Hand
Particle gravitation simulator

2006

Universe in hand was a little program I worked on in high school which originally started off as a pixel generator. Learning more about physics it evolved to my environment and soon became somewhat of a particle accelerator like screensaver for me.

It would always be interesting keeping it on for a few hours and to see what it would draw. No matter what, floating point imprecisions and the random variables about the computer drawing the trails would always yield a different output no matter how similar the original conditions.

The project never made light but it was worth revisiting and seeing if I could at least clean up the code and at least give a download. Watch this space!



video