I expect we're all finding present times to be weird and unsettling. Generally I have as little to do with the outside as I can in normal times but it's different choosing not to go out to being required to stay inside. The fact that if I run out of something or forget something or just feel like going and getting some product there and then while I could go out for things it feels like an irresponsible and dangerous thing to do so like every one I'm just staying inside limiting my trips to shops as much as I can. I've tried ordering things but the system is so overloaded it's hard to get any sort of delivery or even pickup at most stores. I did manage to snag a delivery slot at safeway for today ordering last week sometime so that was lucky.
Restaurant delivery stuff like UberEats and so on seems to be running ok I've used that a couple of times doing my best to tip well as I don't envy those guys having to be out and about taking that risk. They instituted a leave at door option which sometimes works depending on if they can park and or get in. It feels like some of these restaurants that were not really delivery places before are going to be struggling.
I miss the routine of going to work every day that separation and structure it gave the days seem to blend together a bit and I've really lost track of what day or month or year it is. I also had got into the habit to get plenty of walks in every hour or so when I went for coffee I'd walk round while I drank it so I was getting my steps in, at the moment I've been trying to keep active and such but I'm inside a lot more.
I've been trying to differentiate my working time from play time by sitting down in my living room for work and using the work laptop for that, even if the screen is disappointingly narrow, rather than use my gaming rig and sitting up in the loft all the time. I'm getting a lot more use out of my coffee machine than I usually did a pack of grounds could last me months but these days I'm going through them pretty quickly.
Just before the outbreak I got a thing I backed on kickstarter which was a hilariously expensive tripod for my DSLR (a fancy lightweight job that compacts down to a small size for carrying about yet remains sturdy strong and capable enough to actually be of use with mirrorless DSLR with a larger lens on it). I set it up by my window so I could take pictures of the outside and the various birds I saw (mostly collared doves and crows as they are the only ones that sit still long enough for me to get a shot of them) using one of those mirror based reflector zoom lenses 500mm ish with a telephoto doubler. It gives me a pretty long view out the window even if the quality of those cheap reflector based lenses is not great low f stop no autofocus very shallow depth of field so almost everything you take is out of focus and produces somewhat muddy images with a lot of distortion artifacts even when they are in focus. I do feel a bit rear window and wonder if I will see perry mason kill someone and then bury them on the building site out the back of my window.
I'm part of a book club that meets one or two times a month and with shelter in place we've transitioned to a zoom based video conference version we've been having every week. It help give that human contact I would have gotten at work and the video gives you a face to face aspect as well as views of many many cats. I've also been having fun with zoom's virtual background feature where you can give it an image and it'll do it's best to composite it into the background like you had a green screen. It works pretty well and so far I've broadcast from space, the pyramids, and a desert island. It's interesting to talk to everyone about how they are doing at least one them had their husband get the virus and maybe got it too without testing it's always hard to tell they were both fine after it but it was sobering to know people who have caught the thing. Everyone seemed to be having trouble reading the books we picked out I guess these are times when we are looking for humor and comfort and I guess the picks we had didn't fit well in the changing landscape.
We've been using similar methods for work to communicate since way before this as we are a multi site operation with teams across the world working on the same project but mostly those are audio only as there are just too many people and too distributed to allow for video or people are presenting something anyway. We've been using it more than we had and a lot of people seem incapable of muting their mic which when they have a lot of background noise kids screaming while they run a blender or some sort of farm machinery in the background is kind of annoying.
Been using my VR gear a lot more regularly as a way to go somewhere without actually going anywhere. I've been using the Oculus quest with things like Beat Saber, Synth Riders, OnShape, and others to get moving and get some exercise. On the more game end of thing there have been some excellent new titles out with Half life Alyx and The Room Vr being personal favourites I also got round to playing Defector which I picked up around christmas but didn't play and was a fun if a little weird and janky in places Spy action thriller game a bit like playing a James bond movie. I even spent an evening playing Minecraft VR multiplayer via the Oculus link which worked ok but occasionally would cut out leave the head tracking working but showing a black screen to the display and require restarting, for some reason Minecraft VR doesn't work in Revive so I can't use the Index to use it. Minecraft in VR is a very different feeling than normal 2d variant the sense of scale is quite different with you standing about 2 cubes high the world feels a lot bigger in VR and the mobs are quite a bit more terrifying. One of my friends convinced me to get "From Other Suns" which is some vr sci fi ship based multiplayer thing but so far we've not actually tried it out.
I've been tinkering with VR for sculpting using a variety of programs mostly Oculus Medium. I'm still at the learning the tools and techniques stage but I think I'm improving a bit. I've tinkered with sculpting for modeling in blender as it's very powerful for organic shapes and even some hard object modeling but it's very tricky to get good results with a mouse and hard even with a tablet. With VR you can make the model as large as you like and since it's there in front of you in 3d space it makes more detailed precision work possible. Things like tilt brush have always been an amazing demonstration of how magical and creative you can be in a room scale vr but they don't work very well for producing usable models. With medium and some of the other vr modeling apps it feels like they are sophisticated enough that they could produce usable meshes. They probably would still need a retopology pass but that's more down to getting the polycount back to a realistic level. Ultimately I want to try modeling something in VR that I can then take and 3d print probably on the new resin printer and then maybe paint up or some such. Maybe try the same diorama thing I tried with making models painting them then encasing them in epoxy I did in the past I'm not sure.
My trusty Nintendo Switch has been by my side for a bit of quick gaming here and there. I played Animal Crossing a bit but found it got a little boring and it felt like I was just doing busy work. I tried out City Skylines on there which seemed to work pretty well for a game that was mostly mouse controlled on the PC. I mainly played Diablo 3 again running the latest season with a Barbarian build which is a lot of fun idle smashing of enemies with a big hammer.
Watching a lot of videos and some netflix was fascinated by the Tiger King documentary something where all the main players seem to be some stripe of monster all with their bizarre cults of personality and it just gets more and more crazy as the episodes progress with the real victims being the animals themselves. They just did another episode with basically a bunch of skype calls with some of the people involved hosted by joel mchale from his living room by the looks of it. I'm not sure that was necessary it felt a bit like a cash in "let's add another episode as people want more" sort of deal although it was interesting to see some of the people free from the editing and narrative impositions of the documentary allowed to give their opinions on the show and how it portrayed them. They also kept asking who they wanted to play them in the presumably inevitable Tiger King The Movie, which I'm not sure is something we need making. I guess I should try and watch the Witcher at some point too.
I guess we will run out of new TV and Movies at some point as there is nothing being made that can't be done via a conference call or filmed on an smart phone and what we have is what's left in the pipe and gradually depleting.
At least books and such will keep being made as authors all stay at home anyway :D
Anyway I didn't really have a point it was mostly just a rambling stream of consciousness set of thoughts so I should probably quit while I'm ahead. Stay safe everyone try not to go too mad :)