July « 2014 « Tidepool News

Hi everyone,

After some time off with family in Florida, I’m back coding Tidepool again, aiming for the all-important public alpha release on September 1st.

Between now and then, I’ll be adding in-game sketching, animating, and 3D structures (alpha 2).  I’ll also add Scratch-and-Etoys-style scripting, so players will be able to program their creations. (alpha 3).

At that point, Tidepool will be ready for the public  … it’ll be a scaled down Scratch / Minecraft hybrid, which should be of interest.

Unfortunately, Paula and I are at the edge of our funding.  We run out next month, just before going public and starting our crowd funding campaigns.

Please consider contributing $50 or $100 to help us get to the public release.  All contributions will someday be paid forward from profits to educational groups in Haiti.   They likely won’t be tax-deductible (as Tidepool is a for-profit venture), but I promise the money will go to good use, both now and later.

To contribute, visit:


If you know of anyone else who might like to contribute, please pass this along.  Contributing doesn’t require a special account.

Thank you!


Weeks of rest are good for the soul, though lousy for project momentum.  Here now as I start Milestone 2, I’m pushing the out-of-gas Cadillac down the empty country road — impossible to start, then slowly better.

During my break, I had ample time to reflect on the year’s worries, on my missteps, on the future.  Without the exhilaration of the first release to prop my spirits, the last seven months have seemed quite the ordeal.    Between the strain of the complexity and the stress of the schedule, I’ve been trudging with difficulty for some time now.  Add to this the familial wear of our self-imposed break-even budget and the ever-present loneliness of this huge and solo task … let’s just say that I spent my vacation with slumped shoulders and a thousand-mile stare.

Last weekend the prospect of starting up again seemed unthinkable, but as these things usually go, a few hours reminding myself of the full vision did the trick.  I watched all the videos and read the whole blog.  I read the business plan again and gave myself a good talking to.  Now I stand ready and eager to sally forth and finish, excited to start coding.

There’s a snag though, a pretty big one:  we’re broke, or will be next month.  Without September’s needed $5000, the project will necessarily stall in its tracks just before the pivotal public release.

Never easy, eh?   But what fun would that be?

Hi all,

Just a reminder that if the 3 minute quick start Tidepool video is *too* short, you can always watch the friendly, more complete tutorial:


Take care,

Hi [NAME],

I know you’re busy, but I’m still hoping you can spare ten minutes to try Tidepool (I timed it) …

1) Watch the new three-minute Tidepool Quick Start video (or skip it and read the in-game help):


2) Make an account with your own username and password by using your secret codename:    [CODENAME]


3) Use your account to download an installer for Mac, Windows, or Linux:


4) Install and open Tidepool and walk around a bit, melting and casting a few items.  (On Windows ignore the initial error)

Doing this will help me, since I can later tell people that X number of people have played Tidepool.

Take care,

| Main |