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Aristarchus



Joined: Mar 8, 2008
Posts: 46
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New "where-vessels" tool: shows your fleet on a map of the ocean Reply to this Post
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I got fed up of losing track of my ships, and wanted a visual display of what and where they were. So I wrote a program to do it. A picture is worth a thousand words, so:


Caveats:
  • It only works on Linux (and perhaps Macs if you install a pile of Perl and Tcl support libraries - I haven't tested that). A Windows port is probably not impossible, but I'll let Windows people think about that.
  • It doesn't know who owns ships unless you write a "notes file" which tells it. It would be really nice if this information was in the "where are my vessels" screen. (That screen shows your own vessels in a different colour, but this isn't reflected in the data you get from C-a C-c.)
  • It's a bit of an experts' tool, so you will probably want to read the documentation
You can download it like this:
git clone git://git.chiark.greenend.org.uk/~yarrgweb/ypp-sc-tools.main.git
Thanks to Copperkatie for help with icon design and to my crewmates in general for testing.
[Aug 28, 2010 8:25:01 AM] Show Printable Version of Post        Send Private Message [Link]  Go to top 
randy_chimp

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Joined: Jul 29, 2005
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Re: New "where-vessels" tool: shows your fleet on a map of the ocean Reply to this Post
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Last I checked hardly anyone used linux other than developers of some kind...
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Blockade Simulator
[Aug 28, 2010 11:18:57 AM] Show Printable Version of Post        Send Private Message [Link]  Go to top 
wrs1864b

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Re: New "where-vessels" tool: shows your fleet on a map of the ocean Reply to this Post
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OK, I've played around with it some more. Apparently, the mistake I made before is that I expected the "acquire" button to make a pop-up window to paste the information into and walk the user through the processes. As I mentioned to you earlier, I really didn't try hard since I saw you had been making a lot of changes to the testing version. Reading the documentation helped a lot.

All in all, I like it. Being able to visually see where ships are helps a huge amount.

It appears that your where-vessel program takes a slightly different approach than the Y!PP Ship Sort Tool spreadsheet and my ship parser perl script. In the latter two, the vessel information is stored on disk and you can look at it at any time. With your where-vessel program, it appears that it is intended that you use the "where are my vessels" button to acquire the data every time you look for ships. I suspect that most people would prefer to use possibly out-of-date information than have to update every time.

My "ship parser" is very primitive, but it does have a few things that your where-vessel doesn't have.

* As stated above, mine keeps track of the last-known list of ships. It detects the following changes:
** Changes in the ship name (someone used shangs to rename a ship)
** Ships that are no longer in the crew (sunk in a blockade? etc.)
** Ships that are new to the crew
** The lock status of a ship has changed

* Where-vessels has flags to denote purposes, mine has a similar system
** there is nothing to denote a ship is part of a blockade fleet.
** If a ship is for blockading, mine warns if it is not battle ready
** if a ship is for stock or trading, mine warns if it is not locked

* Mine has a large comment field where I put things like the amount of stock on blockade ships, which flag/pirate loaned me a ship for a blockade, which ship is assigned to which bnavver/XO, ships that have special meaning (first ship, gift, renamed, etc.)

Your where-vessel program has a "notes" file, which does some of the above, but I don't think it really works well enough. First, it seems to be keyed off of both the vid and the ship name, but the ship name can change. Second, unless there is some sort of warning/error in the notes file, you can't get a list of all your ships in a format that lets you create the notes file.

I don't know if you want to do the work, but putting a GUI front end on the notes file would probably be a big help to most people.

I suspect a lot of people would love a tool like this for blockades. One thing that would be very useful is being able to print out lists of which ships are assigned to which bnavver/XO. Keeping blockade fleets straight can be a pain and can make the difference between winning and losing the island.

Again, this is a very cool program. I will certainly be using it.
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Algol can not assert the truth of all statements in this post and still be consistent.
[Aug 28, 2010 11:34:38 AM] Show Printable Version of Post        Send Private Message [Link]  Go to top 
Aristarchus



Joined: Mar 8, 2008
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Re: New "where-vessels" tool: shows your fleet on a map of the ocean Reply to this Post
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With your where-vessel program, it appears that it is intended that you use the "where are my vessels" button to acquire the data every time you look for ships.

Well, actually, I just leave it up. If you don't close the program it doesn't forget where your ships are. But it would be easy to make it remember.
 
My "ship parser" ... keeps track of the last-known list of ships. It detects the following changes:

We do this by having all the ships listed in the notes file. Any ships not in the notes, or that have vanished, are reported in the notes loading messages. We don't track lock status that way, though.
 
Your where-vessel program has a "notes" file, which does some of the above, but I don't think it really works well enough. First, it seems to be keyed off of both the vid and the ship name, but the ship name can change.

This is one way to spot a ship having been renamed: that makes the notes not match up. It is a bit primitive in the way it reports it, but then renames aren't all that common.
 
Second, unless there is some sort of warning/error in the notes file, you can't get a list of all your ships in a format that lets you create the notes file.

If you run it with an empty notes file you'll get a warning about all the missing ships, which is exactly the thing that lets you create the notes file.
 
I don't know if you want to do the work, but putting a GUI front end on the notes file would probably be a big help to most people.

I'm not sure I like this idea very much. But perhaps it would be better, rather than trying to make one tool that does everything, to make the differnent tools talk to each other better. So for example, it might be worth somehow being able to take the output from your ship parser script, or a spreadsheet, and display it graphically. You could already do this to an extent, if you wrote a small program to turn your spreadsheet into a notes file.
 
Again, this is a very cool program. I will certainly be using it.

Thanks.
[Aug 29, 2010 6:16:27 AM] Show Printable Version of Post        Send Private Message [Link]  Go to top 
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