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  1. Fix broken links on the learn page

    http://inform7.com/learn/manuals/

    The links for both "Writing with Inform" and "The Recipe Book" are broken.

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      1 comment  ·  Admin →
    • (Syntax) May conditional relations directly consult a rulebook

      As is, we must use a To phrase (and global variables) as a go-between, just as the "can see" and "can touch" relations do. But this is such a powerful pattern that I feel it merits fluid expression:

      The friendship rules are a rulebook.
      Likability relates a person (called X) to a person (called Y) when the friendship rules succeed with X and Y.
      A friendship rule: if X is.....

      I think of this compound construct as a very good "design pattern" for Inform 7, much like using an amendable table to define kinds-of-value while holding all of an extension's…

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      • Show a list of recent projects on the splash page

        The splash page currently lets you start a new project, open the most recent project, or browse to open another project. The third option is alright if your projects are all in the one place, but if they're not it's a bit of a nuisance. Instead, a list of the most recent 5 or so projects could be shown for you to choose between (still with the option to browse if needed.)

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        • (Programming) "involving" to refer to both noun and second noun

          Ability to write

          Instead of doing something involving the baseball: ...

          as shorthand to catch both the case where the baseball is the noun and the one
          where it is the second noun; and perhaps also

          Instead of doing something indirectly to the baseball: ...

          to catch only the one where it is the second noun.

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            planned  ·  0 comments  ·  Admin →
          • (Releasing) Have "release along with private source text" still build HTML

            When releasing along with source text, I note that marking the "source text" as "private" not only doesn't link it but also skips the generation of the typeset HTML version; the only effect the statement has is to copy in source.txt. Personally I'd prefer it to still generate the HTML source; just not to link to it.

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            • Abstract out block value initialisation/shell code, for use with other phrases

              When you use block value types (indexed text etc) the code a phrase produces is actually placed in a SHELL function, with the head rule function instead being used to initialise the block value and close it down when finished.

              It would be useful to be able to do this with other functions. I am having a look at refactoring Flexible Windows, as it is very slow because every time you change a window it runs a bunch of code. If we could use the same sort of stuff as block values do, then the window configuring could run once,…

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              • note unknown (uniquely occurring) words in certain compiler errors

                There are certain compiler errors that are often produced by typographical errors. It would be nice if the Inform 7 compiler were able to detect that one of the words in the offending line appeared nowhere else in the code, and issue a comment like "It looks as though 'tchochke' appears nowhere else in your code; is it perhaps misspelled?"

                This would save me some time staring at a particularly tricky syntax and trying to figure out where it went wrong when the mistake was that I left out the second t in "tchotchke" (admittedly choosing a word I can't…

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                • Clarify the problem report for top level "let..." phrases

                  Currently writing "Let Cave be a room." outside a rule raises a problem report that "You wrote...but I can't find a verb here that I know how to deal with, so I am ignoring this sentence altogether."

                  This might be a little hard to understand for anyone who hasn't absorbed all the relevant documentation. I7 takes great pains to produce helpful messages, which is the only reason this one stands out.

                  A more tailored message would be splendid, a la "You wrote "let Cave..." but that suggests that Cave should be or begin a temporary name for something. I expected…

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                  • MoveFloatingObjects should set self when calling found_in

                    (This was originally a bug report, but jesse suggested moving it here. See http://inform7.com/mantis/view.php?id=594 for original post.)

                    The problem is that MoveFloatingObjects is not sufficiently flexible for extensions that want to make new and better kinds of backdrop.

                    Way back in the I6 days, the MoveFloatingObjects routine would call "i.found_in()" to decide whether i should be in or out of the location. But in the rewrite to the template system, this was changed to:

                    address = i.&found_in;
                    m = address-->0;
                    if (m.call(real_location) ~= 0) ...

                    The difference is that the old way set "self" to i (for the duration of…

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                    • (IDE/Compiler) Provide a better compiler response when a command is indented below the end of a rule

                      I do this all the time. Consider the following code:

                      Check an actor going (this is the automatically open closed doors rule):
                      if the door gone through is not nothing and the door gone through is closed:
                      if the actor is the player, say "(first opening [the door gone through])[command clarification break]";
                      silently try the actor opening the door gone through.
                      if the door gone through is closed, stop the action.

                      Note the full stop after the "silently try the actor opening the door gone through" command. The compiler should be able to detect the invalid command after the full…

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                        1 comment  ·  Admin →
                      • (IDE) table extra-column errors are unclear for large tables

                        If I have a table like the following:

                        table of q
                        x(tab)y(tab)z
                        1(tab)2(tab)3
                        4(tab)5(tab)6
                        7(tab)8(tab)9(tab)10

                        The error the IDE displays shows the whole table and not the specific line. I can use PERL to figure this out on my own, but it is messy. Could the IDE show only the first line that fails?

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                        • Allow constants I7 constants to be linked to I6 constants

                          Currently you can define constants only for kinds of value in Inform 7. You can define variables and objects with the "translates into I6" syntax, but you can't use that to define them with a I6 constants. Well variables can, but they're not treated as constants in I7, and you can't use them in tables for example. You can't define an object constant by the translates syntax because you'll get an I6 error about using the name twice. It would be useful to be able to bring an I6 constant into I7, especially if it's not limited to kinds of…

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                          • Support for bundling old game files into a Blorb archive

                            A long-running complaint about IF systems is that every new release of a game breaks compatibility with old save files. This is a manageable nuisance with old-fashioned native interpreters -- you can keep your old game files, or delay upgrading until a convenient time. A web interpreter gives the player no control: the author installs an upgraded release, and players find that their save files have effectively disappeared.

                            True backwards compatibility of save files is a very difficult problem (which is why this is a *long-running* complaint). It requires much more game file introspection than Zcode/Glulx currently provide, and that…

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                            • (Windows/IDE) Auto-size the toolbar buttons based on the height of the toolbar images

                              I'd like to customise the icons used in the Inform toolbar. I find the default icons a bit blurry, and "un-Windows-like". I've found that I can replace the icons by editing/replacing a few PNGs in the Images subdirectory. It'd be great if Inform could make allowances for differently sized (smaller) toolbar icons. This would also make a primitive form of skinning possible for the Inform IDE.

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                              • Allow custom relation to specify object tree structures

                                Object tree structures are the most efficient in Inform, but they are limited to only the built in relations. If you have relations between non-model world things it would be potentially possible to use object tree structures for those relations. This would help to model the Flexible Windows system, and probably for conversation models too.

                                I don't think this functionality should be exposed directly to Inform 7, but if those relations were defined in the template code rather than in ni itself, then it might be possible to add extra relations which use the object tree.

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                                • Revise Writing with Inform (main manual/documentation)

                                  Writing with Inform needs a reorganization of material, as well as comprehensive reference materials to accompany it. We plan to do this, but not immediately. Currently we are constantly revising the documentation and adding or removing sections as the language changes, so it is not practical to do a ground-up rewrite until the language stabilizes further.

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                                    planned  ·  5 comments  ·  Admin →
                                  • (Actions/world model) Make it easier to create new accessibility rules

                                    Currently it's tricky/annoying writing new accessibility rules because one has to separately check the requirements on noun and second noun, as shown in the "Electrified" example:

                                    if the action requires a touchable noun and the noun is electrified, say "You fear touching [the noun]." instead;
                                    if the action requires a touchable second noun and the second noun is electrified, say "You fear touching [the second noun]." instead.

                                    But internally I6 does have the information about which object-that-needs-touching we're looking at. We just need to expose it to I7, with something like

                                    To decide what object is the touching goal: (or…

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                                    • (IDE) Add smart bracketing to IDEs

                                      For punctuation that changes text color, the IDE should supply the terminating mark (after the cursor) when the initial mark is typed. In other words, if I type "[", the editor would automatically insert the "]" immediately after the cursor. This would prevent the entire source code below the insertion point from having to be converted to the new color, something which can create lengthy waits (and even crashes) in larger projects. It should be smart, however--place an opening quote mark or bracket directly before another character, for example, and the auto-closing should not occur.

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                                      • (Debugging) For the annotation * to be added back to Inform

                                        Intended so that people can note comments in transcripts
                                        without the game interpreting their remarks as commands. (this is a feature of the Inform 6 6/11 library)

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                                          1 comment  ·  Admin →

                                          This would hardly be difficult, but we removed it because we had the impression that it annoyed more people than it helped. If feedback shows this to be wrong, we can reconsider.

                                        • (IDE/Win) Add a "search in Documentation" option in context menu

                                          In internet surfing I use quiet often the select-the-text and mouse-right-button mechanism to launch searchs (google searchs).

                                          It would be great to have a similar feature in the Source tab.

                                          (Actually I select the text, copy it, paste it in doc-search-textbox and then press return key)

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