Starting to come together

I’ve done a bit more work on my website, now. It’s still very much a work in progress, but at least I’ve created the various sections that I plan on writing. I’ve also uploaded a game I wrote – Animal, Vegetable, Mineral, which can be found in the code section. It’s based on an old Amstrad game that I used to play, which in turn was based on 20 questions. The code is fairly basic -it runs in a command line, the user has to decide whether an object should be prefixed with ‘a’ or ‘an’ (if the user forgets then it isn’t handled) and it only knows a handfull of animals, vegetables and minerals- but it’s still a pretty fun little game.

Back to the website, the sections I’ve created are Code and Guides, to suppliment the About, Blog and Photo Gallery sections, all of which are fairly standard.

The Code section is where programs I’ve written will go. The aforementioned AVM game lives in the Code section, as will the C++ wordcount tool I wrote, when I get around to uploading it. Revision has to take priority over working on my website. Eventually, I plan on uploading my final year project to the Code section. It needs a little more work before I release it to the world, though.

The Guides section is where I plan on writing short intro guides to various technical things. Take LaTeX, for example. My University department recommends the use of LaTeX for both second and third year projects, but doesn’t give us any pointers as to learning it. Not that learning it is that difficult, but I feel that the guides I used could have been a bit more helpful in places. The guide I plan on writing will basically say “This is what you need to install, use this program and not that one, this is what you need to do, this is what this error message means.” It won’t be a replacement for more fully featured guides, such as the LaTeX WikiBook, but it will act as a good primer for newbies, I hope.

More: Some stuff about AVM

When I get around to it, I plan on upgrading AVM in several ways. Firstly, I’d like to give users the ability to create their own categories. Each category will have its data stored in a seperate file. The plan is to make it so that by simply dropping a datafile into the ‘files’ directory, a user could add a whole new category to their game. This is actually fairly simple.

Another thing I want to do with AVM is to swap the tree based system to a tagging one. Each known object should be tagged with the answer to each question instead of living at a particular point of the question tree. That way, the questions can be chosen so as to cut down the number of possible answers as quickly as possible. I haven’t really thought this idea through very well yet, but I think it has potential. In fact, I think it’s what most AVM-type games do…

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