Inform 7: Public Beta

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Graham Nelson

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Apr 30, 2006, 1:48:09 PM4/30/06
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Inform 7: Interactive Fiction from Natural Language

The Inform design system for interactive fiction made its first
appearance on this newsgroup with the release of Inform 1 on 30
April 1993. Three years of rapid development followed until, with
a top-to-bottom code rewrite, the release of Inform 6 on 30 April
1996 became definitive. Much useful maintenance has been done,
while glulx support and a range of other minor features have been
added. All the same, the Inform in use now is essentially
unchanged from that released in 1996 and published in the
Designer's Manual of 2001.

The Public Beta of Inform 7 is released today. The outcome of a
three-year project of radical reinvention, this new Inform is not
a compiler alone: it is an application - initially running on Mac
OS X and Windows - which is simple to download, requires no
configuration or fuss to begin in use, and brings together the
editing, testing, indexing and publishing of interactive fiction
within a simple one-window user interface. No knowledge of
computer programming is initially required, and all documentation
is included within the interface. A new project, consisting (say)
of a couple of rooms and items, can be started and working in a
matter of about two minutes, using only the Inform application:
the source text is quickly typed and there is no need to create
folders, access a command-line interface or perform any other
extraneous tasks. At the other end of the writing process, Inform
provides new tools for testing and validating IF, and an
extensive suite of features for publishing.

The Inform user interface is based on a writer's manuscript book,
opened to show facing pages. The author writes on one page,
Inform replies on the other. This dialogue is not carried out in
the traditional form of computer programs, but in natural
language. The author might write, for instance:

"Buttons" by William Wonka

The Confectionary Workshop is a room. The Chocolate
Machine is here. "The Chocolate Machine has pride of
place. A lever and two buttons, one white, the other
brown, seem to be the only controls. On top is a
hopper."

A container called the hopper is part of the Chocolate
Machine. The lever, the white button and the brown
button are parts of the Chocolate Machine.

The Chocolatier's desk is here. "The Chocolatier
evidently works at the imposing green-leather topped
desk facing the Machine. It has three drawers with brass
handles."

The upper drawer, the middle drawer and the lower drawer
are parts of the desk. The upper drawer, the middle
drawer and the lower drawer are openable closed
containers. In the middle drawer is a sugared almond. In
the lower drawer is a Battenburg cake. On the desk is a
liquorice twist.

At any point the author may click "Go", and Inform will translate
the source text into a work of IF which plays on the facing
page, using an interpreter built in to the interface. In the
event of a mistake, Inform replies with descriptive Problem
messages, often tailored to guesses at the most likely cause of
the difficulty, and normally giving examples of correct and
incorrect usage. But if all has gone well, the author can
interact with this new fiction: at any point - for instance,
after opening the middle drawer and finding the almond - the
author can change his mind, perhaps amending "sugared almond" to
"pear drop" in the source text, and click Replay. This translates
the source afresh and replays the whole game to get back to the
same position: but now there is a pear drop, not a sugared
almond, in the drawer. Such a revision typically takes fewer than
ten seconds, and the author needs only to select the source to
change, retype it and make a single click. Moreover, Inform keeps
track not only of the most recent interactions with the project,
but of all previous games as well: these it weaves into a Skein,
graphically drawn by the interface, and which allows the writer
to test any of perhaps dozens of possible lines of play,
comparing them against previous solutions using the Transcript
panel, and so on. The solution(s), generated automatically from
the skein, can even be published as a walk-through as part of the
final work.

Inform is supplied with documentation which contains more than
250 Examples. Some 232 of these are complete source texts,
capable of being translated and played: and not only
theoretically capable of this, since a single click in the
interface will paste them into the editing window to be tried
out. Each Example comes with a short script of commands to put it
through its paces. Like the documentation, the Examples are not
so much a supplement to Inform but a part of the whole. Their
coverage was chosen after research through past postings, on this
newsgroup and elsewhere, by IF authors: we have tried to ensure
that Inform contains solutions to genuine needs found by authors
in the past. The natural language and rule-based approach of
Inform make it exceptionally easy to cut and paste pieces of
source text from one work to another: and the Examples together
make up a recipe book. Examples include not only such
"simulationist" problems as layered clothing, mixing of liquids,
the spreading of fire, and even the preferentially downward
diffusion of gases; but there are also numerous approaches to
conversation, to the interaction of people, and to giving
characters the ability to make plans and achieve goals.

Six "worked examples", too large to fit sensibly within the
Inform application, are posted at the website in full source
text. These include the three samples of Inform's output posted
last month: "Bronze", "Damnatio Memoriae", and the ever-popular
"The Reliques of Tolti-Aph". But there are also three new works
by Emily Short: "Glass", and the first two episodes from a
five-part series called "When in Rome".

The arrival of Inform 7 does not mean the departure of Inform 6.
While outwardly the two languages could hardly be more different,
the Inform 6 compiler is an essential part of the inner workings
of Inform 7: so it will continue to be maintained and supported.
Those presently using Inform 6 may safely choose to continue to
do so, or to use I6 for some projects and I7 for others, just as
they prefer. In particular, a new release of I6 is also out
today: compiler 6.31, which sanctions five patches for bugs found
in 6.30. This is the form of I6 built into the Public Beta of I7.
(I am also pleased to say that the Inform 6 Designer's Manual is
back in print, in both hardback and paperback editions.)

Works of IF written with Inform 7 comply with the Treaty of
Babel, and Inform recommends the use of two Z-machine
interpreters similarly compliant with the Treaty: Windows Frotz,
for Windows, and Zoom, for Mac OS X and Unix.

The new Inform may be found at the long-standing Inform website:

http://www.inform-fiction.org/

In closing, I must thank my co-authors: Emily Short, who wrote
the Examples; Andrew Hunter, who created the Mac OS X user
interface; and David Kinder, who adapted it for Windows, in an
independent feat of coding. Dozens of other people have helped,
too, on what has been a very long road: I am grateful to all of
those I have met along the way.

Graham Nelson
30 April 2006

Chephren

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Apr 30, 2006, 2:20:11 PM4/30/06
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That shit is insane.

Aaron A. Reed

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Apr 30, 2006, 2:31:49 PM4/30/06
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This will obviously take days to fully dig in to, and my download of
the OSX version is still pending, but skimming through the (three
pages!) of features is mind-blowing. I'm almost more excited about the
new IDE for working on Inform than the syntax of the new language.
Being able to change something and immediately recompile and jump to
the part of the game you were just in is _fantastic_... to name one of
many awesome looking features.

At the very least, it looks like this will take a _lot_ of the drudgery
out of writing IF... which can only lead to less of the great,
unrealized games being abandoned, and more polished, professional IF
out there for us all to enjoy.

Bravo to everyone who helped make this possible.

Rioshin an'Harthen

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Apr 30, 2006, 2:48:00 PM4/30/06
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"Graham Nelson" <gra...@gnelson.demon.co.uk> wrote:
> Inform 7: Interactive Fiction from Natural Language

[snip]

> The Public Beta of Inform 7 is released today. The outcome of a
> three-year project of radical reinvention, this new Inform is not
> a compiler alone: it is an application - initially running on Mac
> OS X and Windows - which is simple to download, requires no
> configuration or fuss to begin in use, and brings together the
> editing, testing, indexing and publishing of interactive fiction
> within a simple one-window user interface. No knowledge of
> computer programming is initially required, and all documentation
> is included within the interface. A new project, consisting (say)
> of a couple of rooms and items, can be started and working in a
> matter of about two minutes, using only the Inform application:
> the source text is quickly typed and there is no need to create
> folders, access a command-line interface or perform any other
> extraneous tasks. At the other end of the writing process, Inform
> provides new tools for testing and validating IF, and an
> extensive suite of features for publishing.

[snip]

I've been expecting this, it feels like, for ages. And I'm happy to
say, I am amazed at what has been done. Thank you, Graham,
and thank you to all who helped.

I'll head off back to the drawing board, testing out different
features of I7. :)


James Cunningham

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Apr 30, 2006, 2:48:19 PM4/30/06
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God damn it, Nelson, I have *finals* next week and the *actuarial exam*
two weeks later. Couldn't this have waited?

Best,
James

Stuart Moore

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Apr 30, 2006, 2:53:04 PM4/30/06
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Chephren wrote:
> That shit is insane.

Maybe, but I'm willing to bet it is in a very brilliant fashion! This
sounds a daring idea, let's see how it works!

--
Stuart "Sslaxx" Moore
http://sslaxx.livejournal.com/

ChicagoDave

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Apr 30, 2006, 3:09:25 PM4/30/06
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Three cheers for Graham, Emily, Andrew, and David!

Hip Hip Hooray!
Hip Hip Hooray!
Hip Hip Hooray!

David C.

Stuart Moore

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Apr 30, 2006, 3:20:33 PM4/30/06
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I've never seen much like this before, that's for sure! I *like* it! If
only more languages were like it. I'll have to see if WINE can run the
Windows version of the UI/etc I think...

Bit of Python influence there with the use of whitespace instead of {}?
And how easy is it to write extensions for I7? Are they written in I6
with a Natural Language interface defined in I7? Entirely in I6?
Entirely in I7?

What about classes and inheritance? Does something like "This is a
generic box. It is a generic object. It is a container." that something
else like "This is a white box. It is [based upon] a generic box." work?
And, on those lines, what about multiple inheritance?

I noticed http://www.inform-fiction.org/I7/doc175.html has a command
called "if the score is greater than 10, [...]". Would "if the score>10,
..." work as well?

Giovanni Riccardi

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Apr 30, 2006, 3:36:26 PM4/30/06
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Graham Nelson ha scritto:

> Inform 7: Interactive Fiction from Natural Language

Congratulations, Graham!
Just downloaded the new systema and started reading the documentation,
but I didn't find anything about I7 in languages other than English.
What about that?

Giovanni

jameshcu...@gmail.com

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Apr 30, 2006, 3:53:52 PM4/30/06
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The Inform 7 pages don't display correctly in Opera (Windows, v 8.5):
the top image and menu are displayed as they're loading, but then they
disappear. The links are still there, they're just ... invisible.
Safari (latest version), OmniWeb (5.1, 5.5), Firefox (Windows) are all
fine for me.

Superficially: I don't care much for the sideways tabs on the OS X
version; I rather prefer the along-the-top tabs for Windows, which I
can read without feeling like I'm looking at a naughty magazine. Those
button-style tabs aren't used very much anymore anyway.

Rikard Peterson

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Apr 30, 2006, 4:05:59 PM4/30/06
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"" wrote in
news:1146426832.8...@j73g2000cwa.googlegroups.com:

> The Inform 7 pages don't display correctly in Opera (Windows, v
> 8.5): the top image and menu are displayed as they're loading, but
> then they disappear. The links are still there, they're just ...
> invisible. Safari (latest version), OmniWeb (5.1, 5.5), Firefox
> (Windows) are all fine for me.

Opera (8.53, Windows) displays the site fine for me. I can't say why,
or why your browser has problems, though. Just mentioning.

Rikard

Al

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Apr 30, 2006, 4:09:26 PM4/30/06
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Hooray ! ! ! Finally ! ! ! !

Kudos to Graham and all others involved in the project.

Now to get into the documentation

jameshcu...@gmail.com

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Apr 30, 2006, 4:19:21 PM4/30/06
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Rikard Peterson wrote:

> Opera (8.53, Windows) displays the site fine for me. I can't say why,
> or why your browser has problems, though. Just mentioning.
>
> Rikard

That's odd. I just upgraded to 8.54 and it's exhibiting the same
behavior.

Screenshot:

http://locker.uky.edu/~jhcunn3/informsite.png

The last Opera 9 weekly build (http://my.opera.com/desktopteam/blog/)
displays the Inform 7 site correctly.

Giovanni Riccardi

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Apr 30, 2006, 4:25:06 PM4/30/06
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jameshcu...@gmail.com ha scritto:

> Screenshot:
>
> http://locker.uky.edu/~jhcunn3/informsite.png
>
> The last Opera 9 weekly build (http://my.opera.com/desktopteam/blog/)
> displays the Inform 7 site correctly.

Actually the problem is the size of image: 541 KB!! The entire site
(without download and documentation) could fit in half of that size!

Giovanni


Aramael Musitello

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Apr 30, 2006, 5:13:00 PM4/30/06
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Stuart Moore wrote:
> I've never seen much like this before, that's for sure! I *like* it! If
> only more languages were like it. I'll have to see if WINE can run the
> Windows version of the UI/etc I think...

Did you try that? Cedega (5.1) doesn't seem to like the installer.

> Bit of Python influence there with the use of whitespace instead of {}?

You misspelled Haskell. :-)

A.

Stuart Moore

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Apr 30, 2006, 5:32:14 PM4/30/06
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Aramael Musitello wrote:
> Stuart Moore wrote:
>> I've never seen much like this before, that's for sure! I *like* it! If
>> only more languages were like it. I'll have to see if WINE can run the
>> Windows version of the UI/etc I think...
>
> Did you try that? Cedega (5.1) doesn't seem to like the installer.

Same with vanilla WINE.

>> Bit of Python influence there with the use of whitespace instead of {}?
>
> You misspelled Haskell. :-)

Haven't seen Haskell, so I have no clue.

Eric Forgeot

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Apr 30, 2006, 5:45:20 PM4/30/06
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jameshcu...@gmail.com wrote:

> The Inform 7 pages don't display correctly in Opera (Windows, v 8.5):

just for the record, it has also problems with Konqueror, not in the front
page, but all the text in the other pages is mixed up, it's like the lines
are written on top of the previous ones.

Appart from this, I'm just very excited about this new, and I'll reboot very
soon to test it on macosx. But I'm also wondering how it will be for the
linux / unix users, and also for non english writers.

Congratulation to all the authors for this huge work.


Giles

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Apr 30, 2006, 10:04:46 PM4/30/06
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Mr Nelson! This is truly outrageous!

And I mean that in a Jem and the Holograms sort of way.

Today would be a terrible day for my home connection to bug out (shakes
warning fist in direction of house)

Victor Gijsbers

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May 1, 2006, 5:17:35 AM5/1/06
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Graham Nelson wrote:

> The Public Beta of Inform 7 is released today. The outcome of a
> three-year project of radical reinvention, this new Inform is not
> a compiler alone: it is an application - initially running on Mac
> OS X and Windows

Any idea when a Linux port will be available?

Regards,
Victor

J.P. Tuttle

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May 1, 2006, 8:03:26 AM5/1/06
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Haven't tried it yet but...

dude...

it looks AWESOME! This is the kind of stuff computers should be doing
:-)

-- J.P.

efor...@yahoo.fr

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May 1, 2006, 8:46:42 AM5/1/06
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I installed it on my wife's computer (xp), and copied the resulting
files. I don't unsterstand why this .msi installer is so incompatible,
I think also it won't be installable on win98 computers unless people
install a bunch of new software.

On Linux, I tried to run the extracted inform7.exe, and it required
internet explorer :(
I installed it (the IE6, I don't think it installed really well) with
the winetools, and so I could see the main page of Inform 7. But when I
started a new project, I couldn't go any further.

Stuart Moore

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May 1, 2006, 8:57:36 AM5/1/06
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An Internet Explorer dependency? Hmmm... does the Mac OS version require it?

James Cunningham

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May 1, 2006, 9:02:36 AM5/1/06
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On 2006-04-30 17:45:20 -0400, Eric Forgeot <pri...@private.pri> said:
>
> just for the record, it has also problems with Konqueror, not in the front
> page, but all the text in the other pages is mixed up, it's like the lines
> are written on top of the previous ones.

What version of Konqueror are you using? I'm using 3.5.1 and I can
report absolutely no problems with the Inform 7 site.

(Yes, I run everything. *Everything*, I tell you. If I had a dime for
each browser I use on a semi-regular basis, I'd be wealthy. -er.
Wealthier. Than I am now. Which wouldn't take much. I'd probably
have a dollar.)

Best,
James

Sophie Fruehling

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May 1, 2006, 9:01:52 AM5/1/06
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efor...@yahoo.fr writes:

>I think also it won't be installable on win98 computers unless people
>install a bunch of new software.

FWIW, I just installed it on one, without any problems whatsoever.

--
Sophie Frühling

The cube tastes like sugar. You are suddenly surrounded by a herd
of moose. They start talking to you about a moose-load of things.

James Cunningham

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May 1, 2006, 9:09:46 AM5/1/06
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On 2006-05-01 09:02:36 -0400, James Cunningham
<jameshcu...@google.com> said:
>
> What version of Konqueror are you using? I'm using 3.5.1 and I can
> report absolutely no problems with the Inform 7 site.

I take that back - I'm getting the behavior you describe, overlapping
text, but only on the "About IF" page. Every other page seems fine.

Best,
James

James Cunningham

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May 1, 2006, 9:15:29 AM5/1/06
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On 2006-05-01 08:57:36 -0400, Stuart Moore <N...@SPAM.HERE> said:

>
> An Internet Explorer dependency? Hmmm... does the Mac OS version require it?

Nope. (Of course, it would be rather absurd ...) IE stopped being
shipped with Macs at OS X 10.4, and I do not possess it.

I can't imagine what Windows Inform 7 requires IE6 for. Viewing of help files?

Best,
James

Stuart Moore

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May 1, 2006, 9:25:12 AM5/1/06
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If it uses CHM files for its documentation, then most likely.

d.ki...@btinternet.com

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May 1, 2006, 9:48:50 AM5/1/06
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James Cunningham wrote:
> I can't imagine what Windows Inform 7 requires IE6 for. Viewing of help files?

Yes. The help, index and progress pages all show HTML, which is done
through IE. The requirement is not IE6, though: only IE5 or better.

David

d.ki...@btinternet.com

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May 1, 2006, 9:51:36 AM5/1/06
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efor...@yahoo.fr wrote:
> I installed it on my wife's computer (xp), and copied the resulting
> files. I don't unsterstand why this .msi installer is so incompatible,
> I think also it won't be installable on win98 computers unless people
> install a bunch of new software.

It's been tested on a Windows 98 machine that had little installed on
it other than updates from Windows Update, and seemed fine.

> On Linux, I tried to run the extracted inform7.exe, and it required
> internet explorer :(
> I installed it (the IE6, I don't think it installed really well) with
> the winetools, and so I could see the main page of Inform 7. But when I
> started a new project, I couldn't go any further.

You'll have to provide a bit more detail to get any help, I think ...

David

Stuart Moore

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May 1, 2006, 10:01:10 AM5/1/06
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Yes, but the question then is: how well does IE5 install via WINE?

d.ki...@btinternet.com

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May 1, 2006, 10:31:57 AM5/1/06
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Stuart Moore wrote:
> Yes, but the question then is: how well does IE5 install via WINE?

There I can't help you. Still, it can't be that uncommon a requirement
for Windows programs these days ...

David

Lorenzo Marcantonio

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May 1, 2006, 10:42:54 AM5/1/06
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Stuart Moore wrote:

> Yes, but the question then is: how well does IE5 install via WINE?

IIRC there was a way to install IE under WINE, but also IIRC it is not
permitted by the IE license (something like 'can be used only on a
windows operating system')

Google for "internet explorer" wine. Be careful since results varies
with the wine version in use...

Stuart Moore

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May 1, 2006, 10:45:31 AM5/1/06
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Undoubtedly not. However, that doesn't help people who don't use Windows.

Graham Nelson

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May 1, 2006, 10:59:28 AM5/1/06
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The OS X interface uses Apple's WebKit software to render HTML, I
believe: this is essentially the core of Apple's browser Safari, which
in turn derives from Konqueror. No copy of IE need be present on one's
machine, thankfully.

Philipp Lenssen

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May 1, 2006, 11:10:08 AM5/1/06
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Great news, the approach looks very promising.

By the way, you guys might wanna change the Inform front-page... the
cover image, which loads before the navigation, is half a megabyte
big...

Aramael Musitello

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May 1, 2006, 11:20:21 AM5/1/06
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Stuart Moore wrote:
> Aramael Musitello wrote:

> > Did you try that? Cedega (5.1) doesn't seem to like the installer.
>
> Same with vanilla WINE.

I shall try the install on Windows/Copy over/sort out IE thing this
evening. Having played with it at work during a, um, break, I found the
interface breath-taking. This is literate programming with a tuxedo.

> Haven't seen Haskell, so I have no clue.

Well, it's the old story: there's a programming language feature;
somebody mentions a language which has that feature, so somebody else
can't restrain herself from mentioning another language which also has
it, despite the lack of relevance.

A.

efor...@yahoo.fr

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May 1, 2006, 11:52:56 AM5/1/06
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I'm using the lastest Konqueror version 3.5.2 and on another computer,
version 3.5.1. On the other computer it looked fine at first, but after
a few pages it began to mixed up too. On "About IF" as you pointed it
out, but also on "Writing" (only 1 column). The "Download" part is
preserved, while on the 3.5.2 version it's also overlapping.
It's the 1st time I'm experiencing this on a webpage with konqueror.

John W. Kennedy

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May 1, 2006, 12:44:10 PM5/1/06
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There is a curious bug illustrated here.

************************************************************************

"Tiny forest" by "John W. Kennedy"

A forest room is a kind of room.

To avoid briars:
if going inside or going up or going down,
say "You can't go that way.";
otherwise
say "The briars in that direction are impassable."

Instead of going nowhere from a forest room, avoid briars.

The Clearing is a forest room. "You are in the middle of an ancient
forest, much overgrown by briars. There is a nasty-looking bog to your
south. A path heads east." East is the Mighty Oak. Instead of going
south in the Clearing, say "You take another look at the bog and
reconsider."

The Mighty Oak is a forest room. "There is a tremendous old oak here. A
path heads west to the clearing. There is a greasy-looking bog to your
north." Up is the Treetop. Instead of going north in the Clearing, say
"You take another look at the bog and reconsider."

The Treetop is a room. "Now you are here, you can see the forest
stretches out to the horizon."

*************************************************************************

The bog to the south of the Clearing works fine. The bog to the north of
the Mighty Oak does not. The problem actually seems to be related to the
particular direction. North and In always fail. South always works.

--
John W. Kennedy
"The blind rulers of Logres
Nourished the land on a fallacy of rational virtue."
-- Charles Williams. "Taliessin through Logres: Prelude"

Andrew Plotkin

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May 1, 2006, 12:59:56 PM5/1/06
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Here, John W. Kennedy <jwk...@attglobal.net> wrote:
>
> The bog to the south of the Clearing works fine. The bog to the north of
> the Mighty Oak does not. The problem actually seems to be related to the
> particular direction. North and In always fail. South always works.

Your source code says:

Instead of going north in the Clearing, say
"You take another look at the bog and reconsider."

Shouldn't that be "Instead of going north in the Mighty Oak"?

--Z

--
"And Aholibamah bare Jeush, and Jaalam, and Korah: these were the borogoves..."
*
"Bush has kept America safe from terrorism since 9/11." Too bad his
job was to keep America safe *on* 9/11.

John W. Kennedy

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May 1, 2006, 1:01:29 PM5/1/06
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Please, please, please, please, PLEASE add an otherwiseif construction.

if (condition1) begin;
say "First condition.";
otherwiseif (condition2);
say "Second condition.";
otherwiseif (condition3);
say "Third condition.";
otherwise;
say "Neither first nor second nor third condition.";
end if.

...instead of...

if (condition1) begin;
say "First condition.";
otherwise;
if (condition2) begin;
say "Second condition.";
otherwise;
if (condition3) begin;
say "Third condition.";
otherwise;
say "Neither first nor second nor third condition.";
end if.
end if.
end if.

(I don't care about the precise "otherwiseif" keyword. Other languages
have used "elif" and "elsif", in which spirit perhaps "otherif" would be
suitable. And, since I7 has "else" as an alias of "otherwise", I suppose
"elif" or "elsif" would be appropriate, anyway. But, whatever it's
called, PLEASE put the function in. Even bloody Fortran has it nowadays.)

I6 covers part of this function with switch/case, which I don't think I7
needs. But, absent switch/case, otherwiseif is wanted the more.

By the way, are "and" and "or" expressly defined as short-circuiting?

John W. Kennedy

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May 1, 2006, 1:16:28 PM5/1/06
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Andrew Plotkin wrote:
> Here, John W. Kennedy <jwk...@attglobal.net> wrote:
>> The bog to the south of the Clearing works fine. The bog to the north of
>> the Mighty Oak does not. The problem actually seems to be related to the
>> particular direction. North and In always fail. South always works.
>
> Your source code says:
>
> Instead of going north in the Clearing, say
> "You take another look at the bog and reconsider."
>
> Shouldn't that be "Instead of going north in the Mighty Oak"?

Yes, it should. The bug is still there with the correction made. (I went
half mad trying to track this down.) "Instead of going north in (room)"
is overridden by "Instead of going nowhere from (kind of room)", but the
reverse happens when the direction is south or in. (I haven't tested
other directions yet.) Merely changing the direction is necessary and
sufficient to alter the behavior. (From an abstract viewpoint, of
course, the "south" behavior is correct and the "north" is not.
Instances should override prototypes and not the other way around.)

John W. Kennedy

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May 1, 2006, 1:20:04 PM5/1/06
to
"Instead of going north from Wicket" is apparently ignored outright.
"Instead of going north in Wicket" works as expected.
"Instead of going nowhere from Wicket" works as expected.
"Instead of going nowhere in Wicket" is rejected.

The first one, of course, /must/ be corrected, either to be handled as
expected or else rejected. But it might be nice to make both "from" and
"in" work in all cases, if it's not too painful.

John W. Kennedy

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May 1, 2006, 1:22:46 PM5/1/06
to
Sophie Fruehling wrote:
> efor...@yahoo.fr writes:
>
>> I think also it won't be installable on win98 computers unless people
>> install a bunch of new software.
>
> FWIW, I just installed it on one, without any problems whatsoever.

I seem to remember that the MSI installer is not native to Windows '98,
but can (or could?) be downloaded from Microsoft, and that many users,
over the years, have installed it willy-nilly, as it is widely used.

jaunty alan

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May 1, 2006, 1:24:20 PM5/1/06
to
i am utterly astounded. having great difficulty taking this in. i see
that it's a "wrapper" around 6, but still. totally floored by this.

what a gift - thanks to everyone involved. Emily and Graham and ooo
anyone. thank you

efor...@yahoo.fr

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May 1, 2006, 2:27:09 PM5/1/06
to
I tried on a win98 partition, I had to install the msi installer,
reboot, and after that it asked for the micorsoft data access
component, with I d/l too, reboot and I could use it.

Don't misunderstand my intervention, probably it's not very nice to
come and argue about the fact the installer doesn't work on linux, the
main program can't be launched etc. :(
You've made a really amazing piece of software, I'm just bitter we
can't run it with an emulator on linux. About the errors given by the
emulator, it's probably because it wanted to read the html for
displaying the documentation pane, and my IE6 installation was not
fully fonctionnal (I don't know how to test this), so it's probably not
relevant to copy them here.

I've played a bit further with Inform 7, I really can't believe what it
can do. It's the 1st time I'm so surprised by the possibilities of such
a software. It can even create nice-looking EPS map from the source...

d.ki...@btinternet.com

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May 1, 2006, 4:58:26 PM5/1/06
to
Eric wrote:
> Don't misunderstand my intervention, probably it's not very nice to
> come and argue about the fact the installer doesn't work on linux, the
> main program can't be launched etc. :(

That's fine :) I'm happy to make some changes to the code to help run
it under WINE, though the IE requirement isn't likely to go away,
unless someone rewrites the appropriate bits to use the Gecko engine.

David

Stuart "Sslaxx" Moore

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May 1, 2006, 5:17:48 PM5/1/06
to

Gecko might be better, seeing as it's more cross-platform compliant,
thus making one common dependency.

Wei-ju Wu

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May 1, 2006, 6:48:18 PM5/1/06
to
Miranda !

L. Ross Raszewski

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May 2, 2006, 12:25:25 AM5/2/06
to

That's all well and good, but every single windows users has IE, and
almost none of them have Gecko. So this change would make life a
little easier for Linux users and a little harder for windows users.
Which would be fine, except *it's a windows program*. What you
*should* be calling for is someone to port the damned thing to linux.

John W. Kennedy

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May 2, 2006, 7:43:37 AM5/2/06
to
L. Ross Raszewski wrote:
> On Mon, 01 May 2006 22:17:48 +0100, Stuart \"Sslaxx\" Moore
> <ssl...@gmail.com> wrote:
>> d.ki...@btinternet.com wrote:
>>> Eric wrote:
>>>> Don't misunderstand my intervention, probably it's not very nice to
>>>> come and argue about the fact the installer doesn't work on linux, the
>>>> main program can't be launched etc. :(
>>> That's fine :) I'm happy to make some changes to the code to help run
>>> it under WINE, though the IE requirement isn't likely to go away,
>>> unless someone rewrites the appropriate bits to use the Gecko engine.
>> Gecko might be better, seeing as it's more cross-platform compliant,
>> thus making one common dependency.
>>
>> --
>> Stuart "Sslaxx" Moore
>> http://sslaxx.livejournal.com/
>
> That's all well and good, but every single windows users has IE, and
> almost none of them have Gecko.

Hardly "almost none". And, heck, it would be doing users and the world
in general a favor to give them yet one more reason (as if any more were
needed) to install Firefox.

> So this change would make life a
> little easier for Linux users and a little harder for windows users.
> Which would be fine, except *it's a windows program*. What you
> *should* be calling for is someone to port the damned thing to linux.

A proper Linux version would probably be a good idea. Or a Java version
-- Java already has an HTML-display widget, so it would be easy, in one
sense, to port the Windows version of I7 to Java, though, of course, it
would entail translating the code itself to Java. (The wrapper code,
only; the I7 engine could remain in C or whatever Graham uses.)

mathew

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May 4, 2006, 1:18:19 PM5/4/06
to
L. Ross Raszewski wrote:
> That's all well and good, but every single windows users has IE, and
> almost none of them have Gecko. So this change would make life a
> little easier for Linux users and a little harder for windows users.

Not at all. You just *ship Gecko embedded in the application*.

There's even an ActiveX wrapper for it, to make it easier to replace IE
with it.


mathew
--
<URL:http://www.pobox.com/~meta/>
My parents went to the lost kingdom of Hyrule
and all I got was this lousy triforce.

David Kinder

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May 4, 2006, 1:49:47 PM5/4/06
to
mathew wrote:
> There's even an ActiveX wrapper for it, to make it easier to replace IE
> with it.

Unfortunately I7 uses rather more of IE than the Mozilla ActiveX wrapper
covers. However if you're willing to do the work to switch it, I'll accept
patches ...

David

Jacob Nevins

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May 6, 2006, 10:21:51 AM5/6/06
to
efor...@yahoo.fr writes:
>I think also it won't be installable on win98 computers unless people
>install a bunch of new software.

I thought that too, but I tried it (3K56) on a Win98SE machine and it
was all right, actually.

The .MSI file worked smoothly (I wasn't expecting it to be recognised).
When I came to run Inform itself, it complained that it needed
Microsoft Data Access Components (MDAC) 2.6 or later.

I searched for that on MS' download page, and installed MDAC 2.61.7326.6
(2.6 SP1)[*], and after that Inform 7 worked fine.

This machine already had IE5 and all the critical and recommended
updates from Microsoft that I've been able to find.

(BTW, is it just me, or does all this seem a bit UltraWord(tm) to anyone
else?)

[*] The precise (long) URL I got it from, in case it's useful:
<http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=0e1e4fae-4abe-4cf7-b522-2c4cfce25de6&DisplayLang=en>

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