grimble grimble2000@btinternet:com // User Search

grimble grimble2000@btinternet:com // User Search

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Wondering how his question about sombody making a 3.4 VB SDK got to such a long boring string of posts

Feb 18, 2003, 1:05am
Hmmm ... I doubt that.

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Programming Languages

Feb 10, 2003, 8:27pm
I'd say its "concept" time, rather than a new language. If you are to make
the most of either C++ or Java you'll need to get to grips with OO to a
level where C++ makes a difference (i.e. not just writing C code and using a
C++ compiler). Otherwise its just syntax and you don't learn anything new
and rewarding.

If it was a straight choice, I'd say C++ is more straight forward,
especially for a windows developer, as it without all the additional
confusion of packages, runtimes et al. Not enough "get up and go" about Java
to feel like your making that early breakthrough to keep the interest. My
gut feeling would be a bit of reading into high-level OO concepts, then C++,
then ONLY OO in C++, then Java. Java makes much more sense when you have a
solid grasp of the underlying premises, which are too different to
procedural languages to make a simple transition using typical get-stuck-in
learning methods employed by the casual programmer.

If its used right (classes, classes, classes), C++ is a very productive
language and quick to learn with the right grounding. My thoughts ... feel
free to contradict.

Grims


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Programming Languages

Feb 18, 2003, 1:00am
Oh bloody hell! Well all I can say is that if you haven't even grasped the
basic requirements of C memory management, then you shouldn't be touching it
or C++ anyway. Having no garbage collection in C++, in my opinion, makes for
better understanding of his/her application by the developer as you're
forced to respect the context of an object or store.

Its not an "evil C++ memory error", its code written by someone who hasn't
made he effort to lean the fundamentals of a language. Of course, there are
so few free resources around for learning C++ on the web that its hardly
surprising someone would fall into that trap. Blimey Guv'nor!

Grims.

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Programming Languages

Feb 18, 2003, 12:01pm
heh ... Wasn't an attack, was pure, unadulterated frustration at reading
complete trash.

What utter crap, geesh! Surely you have to be making this up.


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Bot....

Feb 15, 2003, 1:36pm
Well not if you don't know it.

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Bot Help

Feb 18, 2003, 9:22pm
The main AW SDK documentation is available at www.activeworlds.com/sdk. This
documentation is for the C interface, but the COM wrapper commands are
pretty much the same with a few idiosyncracies (which I believe are
highlighted in the readme file in the zip).

If you have any further questions, best to ask in the SDK newsgroup.

Grims

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Xela and Avatar function

Feb 26, 2003, 10:49pm
Where is Alex recently? I've not seen him for some time now.

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Need Bot Script

Mar 9, 2003, 10:32pm
"Thoudands of lines of code" can be replaced by the creative application of
simple maths, binary operators and specific valued enums (a basic example
being the message box constants for buttons, default button and icon).

Grims

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Need Bot Script

Mar 31, 2003, 10:53am
Classes and arrays still need handling. If you're looking at cumulative
values (like those you described), careful selection of binary enum values
removes a lot of the work in identifying state. Its a basic programming
technique that, when used effectively, provides powerful shortcuts within an
applicaton.

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Suggestions for bot site features

Mar 8, 2003, 12:43pm
I hope this doesn't sound like out-and-out criticism, its just my thoughts
dumped into a post.

My expectations when I visited the site was for a site that it would provide
a hub for all things "Bots", but I was ultimately dissapointed. Things I
would like to find (and feel would be of help to development-type people)
are:

1. Information on SDKs for all platforms (VB, delphi, C/C++, Java, etc.)
where available, including news on alternative development methods (like the
java development environment package mentioned a while ago in the SDK
newsgroup, can't remember the link so sorry to whoever it was), download
locations, help sites, etc.

2. Links to development related sites (www.programmersheaven.com,
www.vbcity.com, various msdn.microsoft.com/library root pages for language
references, etc.). This might slow the tide of "how do I trim a string in
VB" type questions.

3. Unravelling the apparent mysteries of the SDK (i.e. understandable
tutorials on property surveys and terrain surveys/maintenance being obvious
candidates here based on the number of queries that come through).

4. Forums - Not discussion/"please help me wipe my nose" forums like the AW
newgroups seem to have become, but more akin to those available on sites
like www.perlmonks.org, where ideas and code are volunteered with moderated
comments/alternatives/enhancements posted against them. I think this would
prove very popular (IF you are prepared/have the time to review the "posts"
before adding them to the thread). Nothing wrong with having interim
discussion threads on each item where anyone can post comments, but the main
item content would be strictly maintained by yourself.

5. Source Code libraries (both whole functional areas as well as code
snippets) ... I would see this being closely related to the previous item.

6. Full Bots (with good documentation - augmented by yourselves if
possible/necessary). Obvious examples of omissions would be Xelagot,
Preston, Magsbot, etc. (with the appropriate owners approval of course).

7. Generic "helpers" available for download (like ActiveX DLLs or C DLLs
callable from C, C++ and VB) for common functions such as Session Table
management, object management, etc. that allow these things to me handled by
a defined interface rather than including code in an application to support
them (lots of possibilities here - good for newbies especially where things
like session management will be a mystery and a simple call to a DLL in the
Avatar Add/Change/Delete event handlers would maintain the list and a few
methods to query the list).

8. Another nice idea (I think) would be something along the lines of
www.asynchrony.com where AW related projects can be proposed, appropriately
skilled teams formed, etc. and the deliverables made available (if possible)
through the site. This would encourage developers interested in AW to
interact more, sharing skills and knowledge, the end result (hopefully)
being less disperate "releases" of bots by individuals and more (sorry about
this to those that "release" bots) useful and well thought out offerings.
Experience could be gained by all those taking part in a project improving
the group as a whole. Maybe even have the concept of one or two "tag-along"
newbies who can watch from the sidelines but still be involved in the
project. Some projects can be "open source" to act as a reference for
newbies (or anyone) after completion. The "helpers" mentioned above could be
good test cases for this perhaps?

No offence, but the site currently seems like "KAH and Bowen's Bot Stuff"
which I don't think is your intention. I would think you'd want to get to a
point where AW were gagging to include a prominent link to your site on
their SDK help pages (and on other sites too) - where your site not only
augments the information available on the AW site, but becomes an essential
part of learning and improving skills related to AW SDK development.

My feeling is that, if you want to succeed bigtime with this and actually
make a difference to AW bot developers, there needs to be something that
makes the site interesting as a "home" rather than just a reference or
download resource site. In my opinion, some of the more interactive items
above would go towards achieving this.

I think there is a need for a dedicated "bot" site, but it should offer more
than a few downloads and news items. I'd lose the "the rest ..." section
too, and keep it focussed entirely on what you're trying to achieve. I'd
even say focus directly on the development side, with just a download page
for the finished articles.

Everyone has their own views on sites like this, but these are my thoughts
and I hope they're helpful,

Grims.


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Suggestions for bot site features

Mar 8, 2003, 1:04pm
Why was the followup for this set to "bots" only? Surely this is relevant to
SDK also.

Grims

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Suggestions for bot site features

Mar 8, 2003, 1:10pm
Fair enough ... shame though. Perfectly valid reason for a cross-forum
discussion.

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Suggestions for bot site features

Mar 8, 2003, 2:21pm
I didn't mean any of it as disparaging/critical in any way.

I'd really like to see SOME resource appear that pulls this group of
developers together. Everyone has something to offer in here, but there's
too much "look what I've done, take it or leave it" going on, driven by
their own needs (which often vary from others needs). Things like Asynchrony
encourage people to be instigate projects that they cannot complete on their
own. How many "I need someone to make me a bot that ..." posts do we see? If
these people are left to at least be involved in an organised project to
meet their needs, then there'll be less annoying "Give me stuff" posts
around. Most people involved in things like AW SDK development are there
because they enjoy learning and being involved in things. Unless I've
totally misjudged the developers in this group, there will be interest in
joint projects.

The SDK newsgroup has phases of being a general chat forum and for the
content that IS relevant it would be great to have a single resource of
quality information to point to as a useful reference.

It will need some commitment obviously but if you can introduce a site that
gets this group of eternal individuals to work together, it can only be a
benefit and maybe even encourage AW to progress the SDK more rather than
concentrating on the browser. Currently, SDK updates seem to be purely as a
consequence of new features in the browser rather than having new non-visual
interaction possibilities as the driver in their own right.

This group could be so much more productive and enjoyable, its such a shame
to see it whimper in and out of life over and over again.

Grims


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I wish I wish I wish...

Feb 10, 2003, 1:38pm
Excellent one! The words "stick", "that", "pipe", and "smoke" spring to
mind.

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seed object function

Feb 10, 2003, 8:09am
yeah, but some people just insist on not applying any common sense when
reading a post just so they can post a smart-ass remark.

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seed object function

Feb 10, 2003, 8:14pm
<Grimble points down/up to the next post in this thread> ... See what I
mean??

Grims

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seed object function

Feb 10, 2003, 8:43pm
What makes it really annoying (to me) is that its not even one of the stupid
wishlist items that get posted here. Its short, simple, and makes sense as a
wish for AW and yet three people have chosen to jump on a single mis-placed
word.

This world is a fecking mess, it really is.

Grims

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seed object function

Feb 11, 2003, 6:25am
Do you read? Can you understand acknowledgement if you can read it? One of
these two answers is "No".

Hint: "Its short, simple, and makes sense as a wish for AW"

Grims


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Imbedded Robots

Feb 20, 2003, 8:14am
Hey TZ ... check out the name of the newsgroup.

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Imbedded Robots

Feb 20, 2003, 8:51am
Well thankyou for that clarification TZ ... although I am still
none-the-wiser regarding your reasoning. I didn't mean "you stupid dope,
can't you f**king read?", I was merely indicating, in a short and sweet
manner, that you were explaining that something can't currently be done in a
wishlist newsgroup, where existing limitations are not an issue (but likely
development/implementation considerations and costs are).

Grims

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Imbedded Robots

Feb 20, 2003, 7:50pm
The time has come ....

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I wish for a reflection obejct action

Feb 12, 2003, 9:36pm
One step further on the idea (same implementation basically) is remote
cameras. They've been mentioned before but on the back of a lame "wouldn't
it be cool if we could put a camera in one place and be able to view what it
sees on a picture object somewhere else" ticket (Ugh!).

Remote cameras really need to be native to the 3D engine (like WildTangent
provides through portals) but they're better suited for closed environments
like gaming levels, and are usually strategically placed to avoid too much
additional rendering work.

Nothing wrong with putting a reflection distance parameter on the command
though (with a max distance enforced by the browser) ... that would
encourage builders to use them intelligently to decent effect.

Since I'm blabbing about WildTangent WebDriver (I use this as an example of
something I've tried out, its not a plug which would be pointless anyway)
.... There are a few things in it that would be great to be able to use in a
decent world in AW (especially surface shading which I think would add some
impressive effects to scenes). To be honest, I have no idea what RenderWare
supports or is capable of as its too darned expensive to justify playing
with.

I've strayed somewhat, but you get my drift.

Grims

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terrain editing rights

Feb 14, 2003, 12:55am
At one object per cell with terrain data (not blindly one object per cell),
I don't believe this represents a significant impact on either, and any
impact that it does represent is far outweighed by the benefit it brings to
a building world that wants to share terrain rights.

I think the bot is more intelligent than its given credit for in terms of
managing its own memory and querying the terrain objects. Experienced
developers generally have more than sufficient foresight in such matters.

Grims.


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Encroaching

Feb 20, 2003, 8:32am
Now you're getting into areas that will get messy (just from a requirements
point of view, not even from coding and storage) as time goes on - I think
you're pushing the envelope of cost-benefit here. I would expect such a
feature to have a significant impact on the current storage and registry
aspects, as well as attempting to identify what is "shared property", when
it becomes "non-shared property", when that cell becomes "non-shared",
changes in object positioning, orientation or even shape/size, etc. I mean
would any object overlapping that cell become "shared property"? Who has the
right to delete/change "shared property"? When does someone become unable to
make property "shared" or change existing "shared property". If person A
deletes their "shared property" in a cell to replace it, does the cel become
the owner of the other participant?

Too many questions and too much effort/cost for a minor feature that only
worldowners who open their world to potentially untrustworthy builders would
make use of. Otherwise, you have privs which can be set on a temporary basis
to alow someone to overlap your work, the option of having no registry at
all plus the obvious bot functionality (Hmmm that reminds me ...).

My opinion of course, but I think its a minor issue.

Grims.


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Encroaching

Feb 20, 2003, 8:47am
Ummm ... I'm commenting on the feasilbility of the item ... not trying to
explain that AW doesn't support it now *boggle*. Perhaps you should work
on that resistance ;O).

Grims

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Encroaching

Feb 20, 2003, 9:06am
As I said, there is a mire of requirements nightmares before you even get to
the code. If someone can identify all the ins and out, document them, and
still believe that the item is worth the effort involved in the work they
have just done plus the identification of suitable solution options plus the
development and testing costs, then fine. I just rattled off a few
complexities off the top of my head, but you can see that the scope of such
a change would cover several core building related areas (hence higher risk
in the change) and leave questionmarks over the ownership of property in the
future (as one potential drawback).

Its all about identifying all the requirements and assessing the risk and
potential benefit of the change. If you can say 100% that you can identify
all the issues involved and still come up with prudent solution that won't
take 2 over man-weeks to implement (including your "thinking time") then I'm
happy to accept that I have an over cynical view of it. A solution with a
ball-park development estimate of anything more costly than 2 man-weeks, to
me, doesn't justify it being looked at for a fringe item. The later in the
development that the errors are found, the more expensive it becomes to fix
them - just work out how much the 3.4 Beta has costs in real terms - Ouch!!

Grims.


[View Quote] Actually, I think it could be done pretty efficiently, but it would all
depend on how it's coded.

AW 3.1

Feb 20, 2003, 9:08am
Have you just discovered this newsgroup as new, unconquered territory TZ?

Grims

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AW 3.1

Feb 20, 2003, 7:31pm
heh heh ... funny.

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SDK ...

Feb 20, 2003, 8:43am
Its been a while since I put a new wish in here, so I thought I'd drag up an
old one. We have a new version of AW on the horizon, with a few changes to
the SDK - some of which are useful, some of which are necessary to support
the new browser functionality (i.e. approximately 1 million new world
attributes), but nothing on the scale of the "Object click events now
include the Object X, Y, Z, Description, etc....." revelation.

One item that contiunues to raise its head from developers is the rather
lacking "AW_EVENT_OBJECT_DELETE" event attributes, currently residing in the
"it would be so much more useful if" category for most developers. The wish
is, of course, that the object attributes be included in the event like the
"Click" event now has ... so that a deleted object can be restored should
this be necessary without the need to query the cell in case someone does
delete it.

I'm not trying to second guess any reasons its not been addressed previously
(like at the same time as the click event got the benefit of these useful
attributes) or the difficulty associated in implementing it. I would like to
know, though, whether this one item pencilled in for a future realease, or
whether its technically a big issue because of legacy code.

This request gets brought up a lot by SDK users, so a timely appearance
would be welcome. I was disappointed to see that it wasn't included in build
29 as it gives world management bots the power they need to rectify "issues"
with deletions. While I'm here ... if possible, identifying the object
number/cell of the deleted object in the AW_EVENT_OBJECT_ADD event (for an
object- move) would also make a lot of people's lifes much much easier.

Ta,

Grims.

Global Chat

Mar 1, 2003, 7:24am
*slap*

The attachment is greyed out on my OE too (Deleted now?)

Grims

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