All posts by rannmann

Jake is a web developer who loves data and automation. He went to the University of Alaska Fairbanks and studied Computer Science and Information Technology. Most of his work is done in PHP, MySQL, and Javascript.

Posted On August 27, 2015By rannmannIn Developers

Hosting a Steam Bot on OpenShift Online

So you just finished your first Steam trade bot.  Or maybe you’ve done this a while and just read the updated tutorial using the simplified steam-user library.  Either way, if you don’t have a dedicated server, odds are you don’t have a place to host the bot long-term.  Sure, you could run it on your desktop and let it go offline when you reboot, but that’s certainly not ideal.  Or you could get a VPS for $5/mo, but you probably don’t want to maintain your own server and its security.Read More
Last year I wrote an article on creating a Steam trade bot which seemed to be pretty popular.  Since then, the core library has been updated to v1.0 and a majority of the API has been rewritten.  Variable names have changed, key functionality has been modularized, and a lot of the old code no longer works.  In this updated article I’m going to jump right into the code and libraries, but if you’re interested in core concepts, history, and setting up your environment for node, see the original article.  For IO.js youRead More

Posted On May 11, 2015By rannmannIn Tutorials

Tracking Down Ping Issues

We’ve all been there.  Fragging up a storm when suddenly you start jittering all over the place and can’t land a single shot.  You press tab only to find that your ping has suddenly jumped up 300ms. Why is my ping bad? Truth is, there’s no way for anyone to answer that for you without more information.  Let’s run through one example together and take a look at all the things it could be. Eliminate the Obvious Is everyone on the server lagging?  If so, it’s most likely the server or the datacenter.Read More

Posted On January 13, 2015By rannmannIn Tutorials

Creating and Managing FirePowered Donations

FirePowered Gaming is 100% reliant on donations to operate.  Every dollar from community members is put back into the community in the form of operating costs (servers/software) and prizes (keys/bills/buds/games).  If you like what we’re doing and want to help out, you can donate TF2 items or pick from one of our two donation packages ($5 and $7 monthly). Payment Methods TF2 Items: We currently accept Mann Co. Supply Crate Keys which grant 10 days of donor perks.  We plan to implement other TF2 payment options relatively soon (likely Bills and Buds within theRead More

Posted On December 2, 2014By rannmannIn Developers

Creating a Steam Trade Bot with Node.js

Update 2015-07-25: node-steam v1.0 recently was released.  A lot of the functionality of node-steam has drastically changed with this update.  Make sure to install version 0.6.8 when following this guide.  A new version of this article using node-steam 1.0 and trade offers can be found here: The first part of this article provides some background into Steam trade bots, what options are available, how to setup your system to use Node, and some of the packages you’ll need to get started.  Beyond the first section, I’ll stop talking in generalizations and focus onRead More
Bills Hat

Posted On November 3, 2014By rannmannIn Tutorials

Play TF2 and Win Prizes

Every week since FirePowered Gaming has existed (we’ll just forget about that first week for now), we have given away a Mann Co. Supply Crate Key as part of a raffle.  As I write this, we have given away 77 keys through these raffles, not including all our event and donor giveaways.  All in all, we’ve handed out around $500 in prizes in our first year and a half. Having a simple raffle each week is nice and all, but it doesn’t require much interaction between players.  We figured we should tryRead More

Posted On November 3, 2014By rannmannIn News

A Blog for Blogging – Death of a Newsletter

I’m lazy. Not the regular kind of lazy but awfully, horribly lazy when it comes to things like writing. In April, Kricys and I started a community newsletter with the intention on sitting down once per month and writing up what all happened and what sorts of things we were planning behind the scenes for next month. The idea was great, but it turned out to be a lot more work than originally planned. It turns out writing cross-platform HTML emails is complicated (if you don’t want it to be mangled inRead More