Adventures in ARr


I’ve been thinking about dipping my toe in some AR (Augmented Reality) development, but have been waiting for a decent idea which I can shoe-horn some pirates into. I’ve also been waiting for Google to get their act together and release something akin to Apple’s ARKit, which they have now done with ARCore.

So the idea involves pirates and paper craft and pens: The 3 P Holy Trinity. What next beyond inky doodles in my notebook? Um, well. Some time to commit to it would be a good start. And a test device (say a 2nd hand Google Pixel ‘phone). Add that to some Blender3D models, hand drawn texture maps and Unity3D and I’m in business.

Anyone who wants to help, bung me a message¬†here. Must like pirates and fun. I’ll be at Brighton’s VR/AR meetup tonight in the faint hope that:

  • Anyone actually reads this blog
  • They will be at the same meetup

Let’s hope Nintendo’s Labo announcement helps raise the profile of folding stuff out of cardboard and thick paper.


The Cormorant


Here’s one from my small-but-growing rare postage stamp collection: An 1843 New Guinea Post Office stamp commemorating the pirate ship Cormorant. It’s a real beauty and I was thrilled to find it in amongst a load of old 1970’s Panini sticker albums at a Hassocks car boot sale, a year or so ago.*

The Cormorant was owned and captained by the Dutch pirate (and unordained priest) Joris van Beek¬†(1593-1654). It’s interesting and quite surprising that New Guinea chose to celebrate van Beek and the Cormorant as they were responsible for a great deal of plunder and damage to life and property around the Java seas. Perhaps it was because of van Beek’s curious and notable custom to hold regular religious services on board the Cormorant, where he blessed the crews of captured ships before he encouraged them overboard. Whatever the reason for the stamp’s origins, I’m jolly glad I’ve got one. It’s worth at least ¬£46.50 according to the Royal Mango Stamp Index.

* maybe it was Scaynes Hill. Memory is a bit hazy.

The Guillemot

First: Later this year I hope to print and publish a comic anthology book, containing stories from selected artists and myself. More news on this will appear as it progresses.

Second: I’m reading Daniel Defoe’s General History of Pyrates as research for a story set on the high (and low) seas. Once you get past the antiquated English spelling and grammar, it is a fine and Splendid history of divers banditti, Pyrates &c, with Many colourful descriptions of Famous Pyrates therein. It’s like 50p on Kindle, so go read it arrrrrr.