September 19, 2008

Ultimate Austin

Wednesday September 17, 2008
6:30PM Pick-up game
Riverside Dr Field, Austin, TX
Weather: 88 F, Mostly Sunny
Field: dry
Perfect conditions for Ultimate.

Yesterday I returned from the Project Darkstar team's visit to the Austin Game Developer's Conference. It was a great show and most of the people I talked to (from small independent game developers to big name companies like EA and Sony to college professors and students) seemed genuinely interested in exploring what Project Darkstar can do for them. Highlights of the week included my well received talk on Project Darkstar during the Sun sponsored open source day, the many hours of talking to people on the expo floor about Darkstar and the Project Snowman demo, and Karl and David playing a gig on the guitar and bass during open mic night at a local bar. The real highlight of the week though? Yes. Ultimate Frisbee.

On Sunday night, the first night after we all arrived, some of us were hanging out at the sports bar downstairs in the hotel. Somehow the fact that Keith, David, and I regularly play ultimate at lunchtime came up during conversation, and Mike, one of our Bay Area team members was immediately interested. He used to play ultimate years ago, and decided that we should all play at some point during the trip. Now, I was all for it. In fact, before flying out to Austin I had looked up potential Austin games on UPA's pickup listings website. Unfortunately, there didn't seem to be any that would coincide with our schedule. This didn't matter to Mike, though. He said he was going to get a game organized from the people we had. By Wednesday evening, he had scrounged up six people for a small game, he had walked twenty blocks to buy a disc, and he had scouted out a field for us to play.

So on Wednesday after the show ended those interested in playing trekked down to the field and to our surprise, there was a large group of people throwing frisbees around and getting ready to play a game! In fact, there were so many people there that we had enough to play two full 7v7 games. Whatever game this was it wasn't listed on the UPA website or perhaps the field was moved. Nevertheless, it was great luck and it was good to get some ultimate in. The only problem for me was that I didn't come to Austin prepared with the proper footwear and was stuck playing in my walking sneakers. After standing on the expo floor for the majority of the three days prior, my achilles were really aching (and still are today). Hopefully that will clear up soon.

In any case, it was a great trip and great to play some ultimate down in Austin.

Ultimate Statistics (since January 2008):
Total Games Played: 98
Total Hours Played: 113

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