CompTIA Server+ and Low Poly People…

So, I missed a few posts over the past week or so. Actually, I’ve been really busy, but for a good cause. I’ve been fortunate enough to be selected by CompTIA to beta test the new Server+ exam. The busy part is all of the studying I am doing to try to pass the exam. I have a very short window of time in which to take the exam as well. Servers are not a new thing for me, but I have my doubts about passing the test, so I’m trying really, really hard to study up for it.

At work we use a few servers. From file hosts to PXE boot servers, but we don’t use them the way most of the IT world does. Here at work, our servers are offline and not connected to the internet at all. We manage and maintain nodes, as well as re-image them “remotely”, but by remotely, I mean that we do it in the same room from the servers to the machines. We don’t do patch management or updates, either. Some of our servers are running the same way they started out five years ago, because they are closed loop systems. Often component fail, but we don’t upgrade them, we repair them with pre-stocked and approved replacements of the exact same parts, even if those parts are no longer manufactured. Some of the motherboards and graphics cards we use have been out of production before we installed the servers. It’s just not exactly the way servers are typically used, especially in the scope of this exam.

Of course my server at home is a web, FTP, photo, and Jabber server, but I’m not sure that it’s being implemented the way a typical IT setup would be. It is only accessed by myself and my wife, and it is tied specifically to our cell phones with dynamic IP addresses. I manage users on a one on one basis, because there are only 2 users. Not your typical use case, for sure.

So, I’m doing a lot of studying. Fortunately for me, my company provides a video series specific to the Server+ exam, albeit the previous version of the test (of course, the one I’m taking is a beta, after all), which is free for me to peruse. I also picked up a Sybex Server+ book, which I’m reading through as well. Kindle readers can be really handy! If I had to order the book, I would lose a week of study time waiting for it to arrive in Alaska!

All of that to say I’ve been busy.

In the interim, however, I’ve been playing around with the Low Poly course lessons some more, and been trying to make some low poly people. There are several styles of low poly people, so I’m trying out a few of them. If you can see this posts pictures in your viewer, then hopefully you can see the little police man that I made. Well, I guess at the moment, he’s just a man in a blue shirt, but I was going to put a badge and tie on him later.

Linux – keep it simple.

Low Poly Course: Living Room Scene Completed!

livingRoomScene2

I finished my low poly living room! Well, it’s not like my living room, but it is my imaginary living room! Here’s a rendered image from it:

renderedLivingRoom

Now, in the course, the instructor actually had a modern living space, with a modern television as well. But during the video, he misspoke and said “VHS player” instead of DVD player. So, I couldn’t help myself, and I changed out the modern TV for an old school one! I even put a little VHS tape on the shelf underneath it.

True to the style, I did everything with cubes, even the “domed” TV screen. I really like the cartoon style look to low-poly 3D art, which is why I had to include the “rabbit ears” on top of the TV. It is, of course, period accurate, but more importantly, it emphasizes the comical appearance of it, at least, that’s what I was hoping for.

For the color scheme in the room, I actually went online and looked up “living room color schemes” and settled one that I based this look off of, so if it seems fairly pleasing to the eye, I can’t take all the credit for the color choices.

Anyways, I’m having a blast with this new course, and I hope you enjoy the low-poly models!

Linux – keep it simple.

Low Poly Course: Living Room Scene, getting started

livingRoomScene1

Well, I decided to take another course on Udemy.  I wanted to branch out a little bit from my usual routine and learn something that I’m not really familiar with. So, I decided to take a course on 3D modeling. There are a lot of options out there, but I decided to settle on this one: https://www.udemy.com/course/blenderlowpoly/,  The Ultimate Blender Low Poly Guide by Alex Cordebard, and I have to say, I’m loving it!

First, why I decided to take the course:

  • I was hoping it would help me model things for my 3D printer
  • I am also looking forward to some small 3D game design, but need models to do that.
  • I like the simpler, cartoon-ish style that has been a staple of “low-poly” 3D art.

Second, why I’m enjoying this course:

  • The instructor is so enthusiastic, it’s contagious!
  • Alex does a great job of explaining things in a way that is easy for a non-3D/non-artist to understand.
  • Everything is made from simple shapes.

The first “chapter” was about how to use Blender, which really helped me out. Now I’m on the second chapter, made up of several lessons, which show us how to make a low-poly living room scene. So far, so good! I can’t wait to see what this looks like when we’re done!

Linux – keep it simple.

Blender 2.8 and 2.81 turns everything white when I select an object.

Tl;dr – I didn’t figure out what was wrong with Blender 2.8 and 2.81 on Ubuntu. So I upgraded to the 2.82 alpha version, which works great. You can also go back to the 2.79 version, which also works great.

281vs279white

So, I’ve enrolled in a great course on Udemy, it is a low poly 3D modeling course, using Blender. It’s an awesome course so far! Alex, the instructor is really great at explaining everything to guys like me, who have absolutely no experience with this whatsoever. Another thing I really like is how excited he is about the material, and his enthusiasm is contagious! You can find the course here if you are interested: https://www.udemy.com/course/blenderlowpoly/

In the course, the instructor is using Blender 2.8, but the 18.04 repositories for Ubuntu only have version 2.79 available. Well, that would be fine, but the layout of the interface is actually different between the two, and I wanted to be able to follow the instructions verbatim while learning the ropes. So, I headed to the Blender website and downloaded the release version of 2.8. Unfortunately, it didn’t work right.

As you can see in the picture above, when I click on an object, the entire “view port” turns white. Then, when you move the object, you actually can’t see what you are doing anymore, as the object “disappears”. Thinking that was no good, I jumped online and found others had this specific problem also. Unfortunately, they just re-installed Blender, and that fixed it. But that fix didn’t work for me.

So, I tried out Blender 2.81a, which you can also download from their website, and it had the same issue for me. I tried running it in a terminal window so I could watch the output and try to troubleshoot, but it didn’t give any output for me to work with. I had no way of troubleshooting the issue.

Of course, 2.79 still worked great on my machine, but since the interface was different from the instructors, it made following the videos a bit difficult. So, I tried one last ditch effort, and went with the latest blender version: 2.82 alpha. I was a little concerned that there would be other issues, but everything worked and has been rock solid since I installed it.

282works

So, now I get the new interface, and I can easily follow along in the course! Sounds like a win to me!

Linux – keep it simple.