Fin ‘N’ Kit DevLog #1

The Moo team is working on updating Fin ‘N’ Kit – an old mobile game I made two years ago with Gideros and Lua.

Because of some of the constrmain menuaints with Gideros when it comes to PC support, I’ve spent the day creating a Fin ‘N’ Kit C++ project using my Kuko framework, which is built on C++, Lua, and SDL2, with the intention that it will be our primary framework for all PC and mobile games (with Windows, OSX, Linux, and Android supported initially.)

In the Kuko framework, you can set up menus in .lua files, basically making use of Lua tables, so today I’ve mostly been working on menus.

So here’s some quick looks at the main menu and play sub-menu.


Screenshot-Fin 'n' Kit - Moosader LLC-1Haven’t worked on the Options or Help menus yet, but there is a language select menu in, with the languages English, Spanish, and Esperanto. We can add translations later, but these are the languages that people on the Moo team currently have expertise in.

The level editor is one of the big things to implement soon because that means that the Moo team can work on levels sooner, so we can get a collection of levels available for play upon first release of the game. Of course, we can also add new levels and themes over time.

The level editor will also be included in the game, just like with the current version that is available on Google Play.



Screenshot-Fin 'n' Kit - Moosader LLC-2Another thing that Lua is used for in the Kuko framework is language files, which allows us to have the game available in multiple languages. The menu lua files can take hard-coded text, or a text ID, which would correspond to a key in the language files.


Well, that’s all for now.



The software industry is such an exhausting one. If I could, I would work in another field, but I don’t have training in any other fields so I would not be able to make even half of what I make as a software development.


One of the constant frustrations is pay. It seems like when I check Glassdoor, I’m always paid less than the average software engineer, and definitely less than a senior software engineer. At this point, I probably should be hired as a senior but I never am.

Everyone puts the onus on the individual; You should have asked for that title or You should have asked for more money. I try, but it feels like I’m driving blind. Nobody is out there to support you or help you make that decision.

Nobody ever taught me negotiation skills. I’ve never negotiated a salary, even though this past year I’ve become aware that perhaps everybody else does, every time. But what are the rules? What are the methods? I don’t know. And with a recruiter in the mix, it seems even more difficult to negotiate a salary. Sometimes it seems like they might even be pitching me low to make me more desirable. But I can’t say for sure.

When you’re a minority in the field, you’re constantly hearing about how other women are usually paid less than men (and I have it the best-of-the-worst, as a white woman, many women of color get paid a huge amount less than the average white man in a given field). It’s such an unfriendly place to be. Everybody is so secretive about their salary, companies don’t want you to discuss it, it feels like the cards are stacked against you. How are you supposed to get ahead when you don’t have the resources you need to work towards it?

I like the Clef Handbook – which they have made Open Source. I sincerely hope that one day, Moosader becomes self sufficient and I can hire other people. I would like to make salaries transparent – it might not appeal to everybody, but I’m certain that there are people out there like me who are tired of feeling kept in the dark and taken advantage of.

I have such a different mindset for how a company ought to operate than the standard business.  I really hope my company can make a difference. It’s clear to me that no company is going to give me the kind of work environment I need in order to be happy, and I have to make it myself. Flexibility, freedom, fairness. I’m so tired of the 8-to-5, open plan layout, no-telecommuting style of job. I’m ready to work for myself – but I need to have an income. So I need to keep working.

I like Martin Fowler

I often want to reference these articles but forget the name (and sometimes Martin Fowler’s name, so then I have to go do a search for that one book I have that he wrote). This post is mostly for my own reference, but if you are interested, here are some really good posts on diversity in tech.

Mandarin Chinese Class Review #2

<< Mandarin Chinese Class Review #1


I didn’t have a lot of time last week to study, so now it is time to review!

 Tonal Sandhi

  1. Cannot have two third-tones next to each other: The first one becomes second tone.
  2. With certain words, like bù and yì, before another fourth tone these change to second tone.



Class was pretty fun tonight – we brought photos of our families to class and introduced them.

  • Mom: māma, Mother: mǔqīn
  • Dad: bàba, Father: fùqīn
  • Child/children: háizi
  • Son(s): érzi
  • Daughter(s): nǚér
  • Husband (formal): zhàng fū, Husband (informal): lǎogōng
  • Wife (formal): qī zǐ, Wife (informal): lǎopó
  • Older sister: jiějie
  • Younger sister: mèimei
  • Older brother: gēge
  • Younger brother: dìdi
  • Paternal Grandpa (formal): zǔfù, Paternal Grandpa (informal): yéye
  • Paternal Grandma (formal): zǔmǔ, Paternal Grandma (informal): nǎinai
  • Maternal Grandpa (formal): màizǔfù, Maternal Grandpa (informal): wàigōng
  • Maternal Grandma (formal): wài zǔmǔ, Maternal Grandma (informal): wàipó
  • Aunt (mother’s sister): āyí
  • Aunt (father’s sister): gūgu
  • Uncle (father’s younger brother): shūshu
  • Uncle (father’s older brother): bófù
  • Uncle (mother’s brother): jiùjiu

Numbers and Counting

  • 0: líng
  • 1: (yì when before a measure word)
  • 2: èr (with measure word: Liǎng)
  • 3: sān
  • 4:
  • 5:
  • 6: liù
  • 7:
  • 8:
  • 9: jiǔ
  • 10: shí

How many apples?
Jǐ gè píngguǒ?

One apple.
Yī gè píngguǒ. (Yī pronounced like yí here.)

I have one little sister.
Wǒ yǒu yī gè mèimei. (Yī pronounced like yí here.)


  • Engineer: gōngchéngshī
  • Professor: jiàoshòu
  • Business person: shāngrén
  • Salesperson: tuīxiāoyuán
  • Doctor: yīshēng
  • Waiter, clerk, service person: fúwùyuán
  • Technician: jìshùyuán
  • Lawyer: lǜshī
  • Programmer: chéngxùyuán

Adjectives and Adverbs

  • Handsome: shuài
  • Ugly: chǒu
  • Cool:
  • Smart, intelligent: cōngmíng
  • Pretty, attractive: piàoliang
  • Good-looking: hǎokàn
  • Fat, stout: pàng
  • Thin: shòu
  • Nice, kind: shànliáng
  • Naughty, rambunctious: tiáopí
  • Tall: gāo
  • Short: ǎi
  • Small: xiǎo
  • Big:
  • Cute: kěài

Before an adjective, an adverb needs to be used:

  • Very: hěn
  • Extremely: fēicháng
  • Not too, not very: bútài

For example:

Is your cat cool?
Nǐ de māo kù ma?

My cat is cool.
Wǒ de māo hěn kù.

For small animals, the measure word is zhī.

I have one cat.
Wǒ yǒu yī zhī māo. (Pronounced like: Wó yǒu yì zhī māo.)

Do you have a pet?
Nǐ yǒu chǒngwù? (Pronounced like: Ní yóu chǒngwù? or Nǐ yóu chǒngwù?)

Rose’s Chinese Comic

My little sister Rose took a Mandarin Chinese class while she was attending Longview Community College.  Here is a small comic she wrote for the class. 🙂


Let’s Plays in Mandarin Chinese

I love Let’s Plays, and I think they’re really handy for when you’re learning a new language. If it’s a game you’re familiar with, you can usually figure out the context in which the player is speaking, which makes it a little easier to try to pick out words and sentences.

So, what are some Mandarin language Let’s Plays?

老吳 Laowu

江小M – SmallM ლ(⁰⊖⁰ლ)











Mandarin Chinese Class Review #1

Mandarin Chinese Class Review #2 >>

Tuesday nights I’m taking a Mandarin Chinese class through KU’s Confucius Institute. I need to review and practice speaking more, because even though I am listening and reading between classes, I get flustered when asked to actually speak. 🙂


Nǐ hǎo


What is your name?

Nǐ jiào shénme míngzì?


I’m called Rachel Morris.

Wǒ jiào Rachel Morris.

我叫 Rachel Morris.

My family name is Morris.

Wǒ xìng Morris.


What is their name?

Tā jiào shénme míngzi?

他 (or 她)叫什么名字

Please speak a little slower!

Qǐng shuō màn diǎn’r!


How do you say _____ in Chinese?

____ Zhōngwén zěnme shuō?

___ 中文怎么说?

Please say it again.

Qǐng zài shuō yíbiàn.



Chinese Practice Theater

(Visual Novel art by Halcyon and sei.chan)

Note that tone marks aren’t being updated based on tone sandhi rules.



I’m really bad at writing stories. I wish I were better, so I could make an altgame about what it’s like being a woman in Computer Science, and common experiences people experience. ;/

Rachel’s Mandarin Word List

Perhaps you’ve heard of the Swadesh list — a compilation of basic concepts, which can be useful to learn as a core set of vocabulary when learning a new language.

While learning Esperanto, it became more clear to me what kind of things I talk about and what words I use most often (whereas with English I just took everything for granted!), so that’s why I compile my own Word List when I’m studying a new language.

So… here is my word list! (Work in Progress!)


English Esperanto Mandarin
To be Esti Shì
To say Diri Shuō
To be able to Povi Nénggòu 能够
To have Havi Yǒu
To want Voli Xiǎng
To wish to Deziri (?) Yào
To need Bezoni
To must do Devi Yīngdāng 应当
To like Ŝati Xǐhuān 喜欢
To not like, dislike Malŝati Bù Xǐhuān 不喜欢
To love Ami Ài
To hate Malami Hèn
To ask Demandi Wèn
To request Peti Yāoqiú 要求
To answer Respondi Dáfù 答复
To stay Resti Dòuliú 逗留
To go, leave Iri, Foriri
To come, towards speaker Veni Lái
To come, towards listener Veni
To see Vidi ? ?
To hear Aŭdi ? ?
To begin Komenci ? ?
To end Fini ? ?
To search Serĉi ? ?
To find Trovi ? ?
To give Doni ? ?
To take, obtain Preni ? ?
To carry Porti ? ?
To know, learned Scii ? ?
To know, met Koni ? ?
To think Pensi ? ?
To have the opinion Opinii ? ?
To play Ludi ? ?
To feel, emotionally Senti ? ?
To seem Ŝajni ? ?
To walk Marŝi ? ?
To run Kuri ? ?
To sit Sidi ? ?
To stand Stari ? ?
To buy Aĉeti ? ?
To sell Vendi ? ?
To create Krei ? ?
To write, work on Verki ? ?
To read Legi ? ?
To agree Konsenti ? ?
To disagree Malkonsenti ? ?
To understand Kompreni ? ?
To not understand Ne komprendi ? ?
To follow Sekvi ? ?
To open Malfermi ? ?
To close Fermi ? ?
To break Rompi ? ?
To choose Elekti ? ?
To eat Manĝi ? ?
To drink, non-alcoholic Trinki ? ?


Wikipedia article on Chinese pronouns

Person Singular Plural*

I, me
Exclusive Inclusive
we, us
we, us
Informal Formal 你們



(s)he, him, her
they, them



Household Items










Computer Science

(Hey, I’m a programmer!)


Beginner Phrases


English Esperanto Mandarin
Hello. Saluton. nǐhǎo 。 你好。
Good bye. Ĝis la revido. zàijiàn 再见
How are you? Kiel vi fartas? nǐ hǎo ma? 你好吗?
I’m doing (very) well. Mi bonfartas. wǒ hěn hǎo 。 我很好。
Welcome. Bonvenon. huānyíng 。 欢迎。
Please. Bonvolu. qǐng 。 請。
Thank you. Dankon. xièxie 谢谢
I’m hungry. Mi malsatas. wǒ è le ! 我饿了!
I want to sleep. Mi volas dormi. wǒ xiǎngshuì jiào 。 我想睡觉。
Do you want to go? Ĉu vi volas iri? nǐ yào zǒu le ma ? 你要走了吗?
I want some potatoes. Mi volas iom da terpomoj wǒ yào jǐ ge tǔdòu 。 我要几个土豆。

Sentence Structure Notes

Noun = Noun

English Esperanto Mandarin
I am a programmer. Mi estas programisto. wǒ shì chéngxù yuán。 我是程序员。


Noun = Adjective

Wikipedia entry on Chinese adjectives

English Esperanto Mandarin
She is beautiful. Ŝi estas bela. tā hěn piàoliang。 很漂亮
She is very beautiful. Ŝi estas tre bela. tā hǎo piàoliang。 好漂亮
That cat is black. Tiu kato estas negra. nà zhī māo shì hēi de 只猫是黑的


Noun Verbs


Noun Verbs Verb


Noun Verbs a Noun


Noun Verbs Verb Preposition Noun


New “Mandarin Chinese” section

I’ve spent a lot of time learning conlangs such as Esperanto, Láadan, Ido, and Toki Pona. Usually, while I’m learning a new conlang, I will make a website for it. For conlangs, there are a lot less resources out there than there are for natural languages, so while I might make a Twitter account for Spanish-only posts, I haven’t yet made a website for my target languages.

However, I think that building these webpages really help me learn, as well as organize the resources I find over time. While learning Esperanto, I was constantly referring to my own website as a sort of directory of knowledge, music, and videos I had found in the past.

So, I’ve decided to add a section to this Rejcx webpage for new languages that I’m learning. Instead of making a whole new website, it seems like a better idea to put all that stuff here. 🙂

So, I’m starting out with Mandarin, as that is what I’m currently learning. When I go back to Spanish I’ll add a Spanish page. And other languages? Who knows!

Learning Mandarin in Kansas City

On my Mandarin page, I will post up resources I am using to learn Mandarin Chinese, including websites, apps, etc.

However, I’m also taking a class through the Confucius Institute through the University of Kansas. Starting out with Conversational Chinese 1 with my boyfriend. We’ve both done some studying beforehand (him a lot more than me), but I’m enjoying getting practice speaking with other people, and having a native speaker to correct mistakes.

My little sister also took Mandarin Chinese at Longview Community College, so I could potentially practice with her as well! Yay!