Sunday 26 August 2018

Importing is finished (no it isn't....!)

Well, the hard work of doing the import module is finished. It will import plain text or from the PDF source I have checked with no issue. I am very happy with this, and I continue to be very pleased with how Spell Engineer has turned out code-wise.

So what do I mean by 'no it isn't!'? Well, I found that there are a lot of sources out there, and not all of them display in the 'correct' way (or even a bloody sane way!). There are several plug-in functions for NPCE, and I'll have to go through these for Spell Engineer as well. I'm on the lookout for some help here - if you find a format that Spell Engineer doesn't cope with, let me know. Send me the source or link me it so that I can work with it.



Sunday 19 August 2018

Importing, what a load of work!

I started working on the 'Import' function of Spell Engineer today. I see the 'Import' part as being the USP of the Engineer Suite - to take a chunk of text and automatically sense where everything should go so that transferring a Spell, NPC, etc to Fantasy Grounds is the work of 2 or 3 clicks. It is fundamental to what I want the package to do.

Spell Engineer has been done in entirely the opposite order to NPC Engineer, and for the most part has benefited from that.

NPCE started life as a script for extracting information from a text file. It didn't even have a GUI in its earliest incarnation, and certainly no way to enter all the information from scratch. Slowly, it grew - GUI for the Import, GUI for all the information, user input for everything, graphical whizzbang then parsing.

SPE knew it was going to do all of the above from day 1, so the first action was to create the GUI (to inform me of the information needed), make it user friendly, then deal with the output and parsing so that it was functional. Now I have to build in the import and it feels so much harder! There's a fair bit of coding just to even see the results of anything I do, and 2 buttons to click each time, and so on. I am glad it's a relatively small data set otherwise I'd need to find a neater solution to my workflow.

Pfffft, first world problems, eh? I'll shut up and get on with it :)  The news here is that 'Import' is being worked on!


Wednesday 15 August 2018

Damn bugs, creeping into our software, creating all our jobs....

I've posted a new version tonight. A couple of people spotted a seemingly-innocuous bug, but it is actually quite nasty. I'd cocked up some code, and traits couldn't be deleted. That's the innocuous part. However, the code was deleting actions instead, which is the nasty part.

I'm really sorry about that, folks. Check any NPCs you recently edited in case you inadvertently deleted an action or two. :(


Tuesday 14 August 2018

Loving my new computer!

After a couple of months of work-related stuff, I have finally got back into the programming. One of the bars was the fact my old system was taking 15 minutes or more to be usable through disk thrashing, and I was getting the odd blue screen of death. The system was basically unusable, and certainly no place to trust coding to!

Luckily, all the extra work came with some extra money, and the donations I had received from some of you fine people helped enormously too (you bought my lovely new monitor, in fact!) I spent the last week or so building the system and installing everything (and having great fun in the process), and so now there was no excuse to put off programming!

I jumped straight in with an issue that has been annoying people since I started NPC Engineer - the enforced alphabetical sorting of Traits and Actions. I'd had ideas, and I felt they were achievable. I met with success, and so I got the bug again :)

There's been a couple of other additions and improvements, so be sure to check out the change log!