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  1. (Syntax) Translate the phrase body of "which description is..." into a state machine implementation

    I think I briefly mentioned this a long time ago, but given the news
    that closures will be added in a future version, I think it ought to
    be restated in depth: I propose adding an NI feature to facilitate
    writing "to decide which description is..." phrases, by translating
    the phrase body into a state machine implementation based around a
    closure.

    (Caution: long technical discussion follows, some based on speculation
    about I7 features yet to come. For now, this is just something to
    think about, and possibly -- I hope -- refer back to some time after
    this upcoming release.)

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      1 comment  ·  Admin →
    • (Namespace) Make compiler smarter about abbreviating object names

      Have the compiler allow abbreviations where they're unambiguous but
      choose the shortest match otherwise. For instance, if we have:

      The car key is a thing.

      And somewhere else:

      The car is a thing.

      Then could the compiler be made to assume that, since there's an identifier
      called 'car', 'car' by itself always refers to the car and never to the car
      key (although 'car' could otherwise be taken as a reference to the 'car key'
      if 'car' had not been defined as a separate identifier).

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        1 comment  ·  Admin →

        This is a good idea but very difficult to implement; we will see whether it
        turns out to be possible.

        There are also possible hazards. At present, ambiguous names are resolved partly
        by seeing what names are closer in the source text; this is useful in resolving
        ambiguities between extensions and the main source. We are concerned that
        implementing this feature might introduce errors which the current implementation
        resolves correctly.

      • Add a "the first ..." phrase

        Similar to the "the only ..." request, I propose a "the first... " phrase.

        There are times when all you care about is finding something that matches the description. "A random" will on average iterate through all the things of the kind 1.5 times. With "the first" it could stop as soon as it finds something that matches.

        This would be useful: for cloning objects with Dynamic Objects.
        Exhaustively processing a list when the processing will alter the list. In flexible windows I do:

        while the number of g-unrequired g-present childless g-windows > 0:
        repeat with h running through g-unrequired…

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        • (IDE) Skein accessibility

          Work to make the skein more accessible to visually-impaired users: currently it is not useful to them.

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          • (Programming) Allow conditionless definitions

            To allow definitions such as

            Definition: the orange is citrus.

            including no condition at all.

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              planned  ·  0 comments  ·  Admin →
            • (Programming) Clearing a list with "now"

              Be able to empty a list simply by saying

              now L is empty;

              rather than having to truncate a list to 0 entries.

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                planned  ·  1 comment  ·  Admin →
              • (Output/printing) Add an activity for room name printing

                Would it be possible to make the printing of a room’s name (in bold, at the top of a room description) into an activity? –Or, perhaps more usefully, make the entire process of “printing a room description” an activity.
                 
                I’ve often found myself wishing that I could refer to the printing of a room description as the context for printing a room’s name. Specifically, it would be nice to be able to create a rule for printing the name of a room that capitalizes it when printing a room description or constructing the status line, but not under other…

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                  1 comment  ·  Admin →

                  This would not be hard to do, but we have tried to be conservative about the number of activities created (and even so there is a very large number of them). Currently it is not too difficult to replace the single rule that generates this room title, so you can in theory create such an activity yourself if you wish.

                  So the question here is whether this seems useful enough to enough people to be worth putting the extra bulk into the Standard Rules (and therefore also into the documentation).

                • Implement Inform 7 IDE as HTML5 Web Application

                  Title says it all. Would it be valuable to develop I7 as a web application that compiled server-side and returned results to client or ran app in client/server paradigm? If so, is this a good idea?

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                  • (Programming/Tables) Table replacement

                    Since we now can both continue and amend tables, it seems natural
                    to also be able to replace them completely. The columns would still have to be
                    the same, but the previous contents would be discarded. For instance, to
                    replace the final question options, one must currently write

                    Section 1 - My custom final question options (in place of Section SR2/12 -
                    Final question options in Standard Rules by Graham Nelson)

                    Table of Final Question Options
                    [etc]

                    Here, it would clearly be less work to write:

                    Table of Final Question Options (replaced)
                    [etc]

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                      planned  ·  0 comments  ·  Admin →
                    • (Output filtering) Ability to redefine an apostrophe

                      Different handling of apostrophes. For some languages like French,
                      Italian, maybe Spanish as well, it may be useful to be able to disable the
                      replacement of apostrophe by " and replace quote by something else ([quote] or
                      ["], etc).

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                      • (Documentation) Provide a plain text version of the Recipe Book

                        One exists for Writing with Inform, but it would be nice to have the Recipe Book in this format as well. (Or, if it exists, it would be nice to have it linked from the same place on the Inform website as WI.)

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                        • Remove "carried" and revise handling of implicit actions

                          "My suggestion would be to abolish 'carried' in action specifications (as in Eating is an action applying to one carried thing) and replace the carrying requirements rule with a new rulebook that's responsible for all implicit actions (including the existing implicit takes). This would make it easy to unlist an implicit action rule an author doesn't like or doesn't need and replace it with one s/he prefers. For example, instead of way the implicit take for eating currently works, an author would be able to write:

                          implicit action for eating a portable edible thing:
                             carry out the implicitly taking…

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                          • (Parsing) Strip full stops from topics before parsing them as topic understood

                            If someone is using the topic matching system and they type ASK EMMA ABOUT FISH., that doesn't match "fish" because of the period/full stop, but we obviously don't want to strip out punctuation until after we've done the first bit of parsing and separated commands and so on. It would be possible to fix this with Punctuation Removal, but it's such a common issue that it would be preferable for the standard library to handle it.

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                              1 comment  ·  Admin →
                            • Let "showme" display temporary variables

                              Currently, code like:

                              repeat with item running through things:
                              showme "Checking [item]: valid."

                              ...will fail, claiming that the text substitution is a "temporary thing, long gone by the time it would need to be printed." But this is not in fact true in this case, and would be a useful thing to be able to check.

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                              • (IDE) Allow Save Debug Build to output a gblorb instead of an ulx file

                                Currently, when the Save Debug Build option is used for a glulx project, the game file that is created is not blorbed (.ulx extension) and contains no multimedia resources. This makes it very difficult to test multimedia games. Story files with multiple graphics windows and sound both need to be tested outside of the IDE (the former because of screen-spae issues, the latter because Zoom does not yet support sound). There are ways to get around this, but they involve dropping into I6 to define the DEBUG constant to enable built-in debugging commands, while at the same time using an…

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                                • (Programming) Ability to refer to objects in terms of their heading

                                  Manipulation of objects based on the heading in which they
                                  occurred, as in

                                  All rooms in Section - first floor (living area) are in the Ark Quarters.

                                  or

                                  If the player is in a room in Section - first floor (living area) then...

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                                    This might be possible to do, but in initial discussions there is no consensus
                                    that this would be a good idea. Barring more persuasive argument, we are
                                    inclined to leave the current behavior alone.

                                  • (World model) Make talking actions apply to visible things

                                    Currently, answering it that, telling it about, and asking it
                                    about require that the person being talked to be touchable. It is proposed
                                    that this be changed to "visible" instead. There are some implications for
                                    the conceptual picture of what is going on - speaking in this way becomes,
                                    perhaps, a less intimate act - but it seems more rather than less
                                    realistic.

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                                      planned  ·  0 comments  ·  Admin →
                                    • Restarting clears prior actions for future recompile/replay requests

                                      Requests to recompile and replay will not perform any actions taken in the last play-through prior to a "> restart" command being issued.

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                                          1 comment  ·  Admin →
                                        • (Programming/Tables) Adding default values in table columns

                                          The ability to declare a column of a table to have a default
                                          (non-null) value unless the author overrides this; as in

                                          Table of Drugs
                                          drug cost
                                          a drug a price (usually $1.99)

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                                            planned  ·  0 comments  ·  Admin →
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