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Potential Can of Worms
#1
I am going to "chew on the old bone" that is Tutorials... (not exclusive to Naalaa - but can apply)

I can only speak for myself...

When "I" was a kid things were different... We had heard of Televisions but could not afford one.  We had to have a licence to operate an electrically powered radio... Dad worked. Mum looked after my brother and I and kept the household in one piece. We had a small car. A larger car would use too much fuel even though petrol was less than 20 cents per litre... The average wage in Melbourne was about $240 per week

Games. There were no consoles or home computers. They would not exist for at least 15 to 20 years... We had to use "what was at hand" combined with our imaginations... A simple stick. A wooden stick or tree branch. In an instant, that stick, would become a sword or a spear or a gun... All we had to do was say that it was so and our imaginations would take over... My brother and I, for the most part, would actually "get along". We had fun... until "life" got in the way... lol

Fast forward to 1979... That was when I built my first "kit computer" (1K ram machine code with cassette interface) Our house has had a computer(s) of some shape and or form ever since...

The one thing that I miss greatly... between "having fun" with my brother and 1979, was the use of my imagination... Sure, it would take another route via Astronomy, but there was always a computer on the desk... Gone are the days of "The Stick"... I have used many stick since, but never the same way... a shame on my part...

The "way" we play has changed? For the better? Depends on "who" is answering. We no longer play "together"... No. Networking a game, in my opinion, is not "together". There is no running, jumping, climbing or scraping of the knees. Crumbs. The most movement seen today is: Hands reaching for keys or the mouse or snacks as we "sit" in our chairs staring at the avatar of our friends as we "blow them away"... Do not get me wrong, those game are cool to play, but to me, they do not compare with the imaginings of "a stick". I suppose "my" version of fun would be considered "archaic"...

Computers, with all their "pros" and "cons" are with us and will be for some time to come... So... the point of all this "babbling"? The exercising of our imaginations... What has all this to do with tutorials? For me, game creation, was never taught. It was something that you "picked up" over time. Until someone would suggest, "Here is what 'I' did...", and the concept of tutorials caught on... We watch movies; read books; travel to "inspire" the imagination... Tutorials can do just that... Not only teach us "how" to do something but to "train" the imagination so that we may never need a tutorial again...

"Where can we find these tutorials?", you may ask... Well, for old guys like me, I am always looking for them... Will I find any that are specific to the gaming engine of choice? (In this case - N7)  There are plenty of tutorials for "point and click" engines - not even going there... 

I still have my "actual" hard copy of the User Manual for my old Amstrad CPC464 (1984) that I "still" use today... via an emulator of course... lol  Why? Because, not only does it illustrate the use of 'every' command, it gives a workable example listing of the use of each command... I cannot stress enough how important is the need for complete documentation...

Again, what has this got to do with tutorials? Tutorial AND documentation should be used in "concert"...

I apologise for the rantings of an old guy, but with a dwindling imagination, rantings may be all I have left... lol

J


ps: Marcus. I was not "picking on you" in regards to documentation. I am sure, given time and upgrades, the current documentation will change accordingly... (did I dodge a bullet? lol)
May your journey be free of incident.
Live long and prosper.
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#2
I know what you mean Johnno.....I do feel a little sorry for the generations that came after us who haven't been able to experience the pleasure that simple "games" from our imagination gave us. It was a different time, when we were free to play football in the road without too much fear of getting hit by a car....there weren't many around where I lived in the 1960's.

As for N7 documentation, it's difficult. I think this is a hobby for Marcus? If so, he should concentrate on what he enjoys about it. I am grateful that he also allows us to share in it. We can maybe help by continuing to share our own efforts on the forum, with plenty of comments in the code,,,,,it won't be the best code, but we all know that there are usually several ways to achieve the same goals in coding.... hopefully then, the real experts like Marcus and cvirus (and others) will give constructive criticism that we can learn from.....
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#3
I worked for Yellow Pages as a Senior Mainframe Computer Operator for many years... The one part of the job included the importance of documentation. Every batch program that ran had documentation about what it did, its effect on other files and the most important for us, recovery steps if and when the job failed. We had shelves full of these documents. Saved our bacon on many occasions... 

Apart from actually writing the programs, creating the documentation, would seem to be a thankless task... Everyone praises the program and most would not give a second thought to the efforts of the Document Writer.

Regardless of whether N7 is a Professional or a Hobby language, documentation in my opinion, is critical. The development team of Naalaa, compared to most, is quite small (Marcus: not a reflection on your skill level...) so "man-power" is limited. I am going to probably create a "hate mail group" by suggesting this... Perhaps "we" can lighten Marcus's work load by expanding the current documentation by adding "example" snippets for each command? Perhaps, if the file is not too big, it can be added to the "F1" (help) menu or perhaps a HTML file?

What do you think?

J
May your journey be free of incident.
Live long and prosper.
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#4
Hi Johnno,
For me, most of the main commands already have examples to illustrate them in the "examples/basic" folder of the N7 distribution, which I find very useful. Are you thinking of adding more narrative to these types of examples, or doing something different like a word document for them, rather than an N7 file? Are there specific commands that you think need more explanation?
All the best - Kevin.
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#5
Hmm... It is probably me being a bit "picky"... I am used to having 'all' commands listed with a sample piece of code to demonstrate... eg: QB64 accesses its help file using F1 etc... This accesses a collection of all 875 commands in individual text files and occupies something like 1.6mb of space... as I mentioned earlier, my Amstrad manual has all the commands with examples (about 53 pages). In either case, I only have to go to one source for info and samples. Convenience would be the word... As for a specific Naalaa command, nothing that comes to mind... But, as I work my way through conversions and samples, I will probably come across some "curly" commands... I too find the sample pages useful... I think I may have worn out my welcome with documentation. I suppose it will always be a huge job to keep it up-to-date... Change of subject... Tutorials... Moo Ha Ha...
May your journey be free of incident.
Live long and prosper.
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#6
I totally agree Smile Every command should come with a small example. And it should all be in html-format. And it would be nice if it could be connected to the syntax help thing (F1), maybe a key/way to load the example in a new tab?

While visiting my father for a week I've been working on a game. I'll wrap it up, post it here and then focus on the documentation/help. I don't think it will be that much work, actually.
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#7
Haha, I've written 42 examples so far, many, many more to go. But a system where you press F1 a second time to load an example already works. Then I gotta make a html-version of the reference document and add the examples to it.

I'm not sure what drugs I were on when I wrote: "I don't think it will be that much work, actually."
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#8
The "Document Writers", who were programmers themselves, we hired at Yellow Pages took almost as long to produce all our manuals as it did to write the programs... Very big job... then there was the ongoing updates... As I mentioned earlier... Everyone remembers the program but do not give a second thought to those who labour on the documentation... *sigh*  THIS user will NOT forget the work that you do... whoever you are... lol

ps: "42"? I remember the number "47" popping up in a LOT of Star Trek episodes... But "42"? Sounds familiar... Oh yes! Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy. The answer the computer gave to the question, "What is the meaning of life?"
May your journey be free of incident.
Live long and prosper.
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#9
the num 73

i think
pause from forums is a good option for hot days Wink
BASIC4ALL FORUM:
http://basic4all.epizy.com
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#10
Just want to write that I still AM working on this. It's slow though, since me and my woman spend most of our time on renovating a room (I admit I'm not much of a handyman ...)
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