alpha « Tidepool News

Hi everyone,

I’ve just posted five videos of me describing the entire Tidepool design, from a player’s perspective.

Apologies for the production quality.  My goal was to describe the whole thing as quickly as possible.

These are not yet public, so keep the link to yourself.

Take care,

Hi everyone,

Here’s an update on Project Kismet . . .

RIGHT BRAIN: Paula and Isabel are actually having fun with it now, which is cool.

LEFT BRAIN:  Tidepool (the client) is now synchronizing with Storymill (the server).  This is a big deal.



OTHER NEWS:  This week’s book chapter is a letter to my daughter when she’s older.  Have a read.

Take care,

Hi everyone,

Here’s the latest Tidepool screencast.

And the newest book chapter.

Take care,

Hi everyone,

Paula, Isabel, and I had our first multiplayer Tidepool romp yesterday, which you can see here (1st four minutes).

This represents the culmination of quite a lot of new work:



The significance of these under-the-hood changes may be unclear, which is why I wrote a book chapter about it when I started.

Take care,

Hi everyone,

I just finished the Tidepool 0.1 (alpha 1) release candidate, which you can see here.

We’ll have our “shakedown team” kick the tires a bit first, then release to all of you next week.

Till then, here’s the latest book chapter.


I hope you’re having a great start to your summer.  Isabel, Paula, and I have been biking and playing, loving the warm weather.

Tidepool’s really coming along.  Looks like we’ll be “code complete” by Halloween and finished by Christmas.  I’d love to have a short Tidepool chat with you in the next week or two.  I’m nearly always available, just let me know when.

In other news, we’re opening things up to investors again, looking for the last $40,000 we need to finish, offering another 16% of our business. I’ve attached the most recent business plan in case you’re interested or know someone who might be.  To invest with a credit card and monthly payments, go here:

You can also give smaller amounts to help us get there.  All money given will ultimately be paid forward from profits to educational groups, so you’re giving to both Tidepool and future causes. Have a look at our Contribute section to see the giving levels and perks:

To see the current state of Tidepool, watch our new Alpha 1 Preview video.  Remember, this is a very early Tidepool version, with much more functionality to come.

We go live with the Tidepool alpha in a few days.  We found and fixed 35 bugs during shakedown and need a bit more testing.  Watch your email for instructions.

Till then, here’s the next book chapter:

Take care,



Hi everyone,

Tidepool alpha 1 is ready to download!

Be sure to watch the preview video if you haven’t already.  It teaches you how to use Tidepool.

Let me know if you need help remembering your password (if you made an account) or codename (if you didn’t).

Also, keep in mind that “alpha” means “there will be bugs.”   It’s a testing version, one of nine before the final version at year’s end.

If you do find a bug, please describe it in an email and send it to [EMAIL HIDDEN].   You can also send your suggestions to the same address.

To see the current bugs & suggestions, scan the list on the right of our tracker’s home page:

The Windows version shows a small error when you first run it.  Simply close this.  It’s harmless.

Have fun!  And remember that Tidepool Time is 12 noon ET every day.  Log in then to play Skedaddle with us!

Take care,

p.s. here’s the next book chapter:

p.p.s. if you’re running Linux, you currently need an NVIDIA graphics card with the latest NVIDIA drivers.

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,

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 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!