Multiple commands?

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Alex Freeman

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Feb 22, 2006, 3:23:51 PM2/22/06
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Does anyone actually use the multiple commands feature in Inform and
TADS? It seems to that it's just extra work to type out "THEN " or ". "
at the end of each command but the last one rather than just hitting
enter after each command typed. I can't see any advantage to using that
feature.

Mike Snyder

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Feb 22, 2006, 3:58:51 PM2/22/06
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"Alex Freeman" <hype...@adelphia.net> wrote in message
news:wJCdnXCFNOPFVWHe...@adelphia.com...

And Hugo. And Adrift. And... probably Alan and others. :)

I do it when I'm re-playing a section I've been through before (especially
in moving on a known course), or when testing out stuff when writing a
walkthrough. I don't generally do it in normal play except in rare cases
(I'll sometimes "get note then read it" for instance). I probably wouldn't
notice (or care) much if it was missing, but that's just me.

--- Mike.


Greg Boettcher

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Feb 22, 2006, 5:38:13 PM2/22/06
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This was necessary in one Infocom game or another, where you had to
give commands to an NPC in the form of "BOB, N. GET SWORD. S"

It can also be used to make extremely tedious things only moderately
tedious. Try playing Annoyotron sometime and you might see what I mean.

Or, if you're debugging your own game, you can use that feature to
cut-and-paste a whole series of actions needed to get you to a certain
point.

Greg

Personman

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Feb 22, 2006, 9:17:59 PM2/22/06
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I don't think I've ever used it - it's just fewer keystrokes to press
enter usually, and you often need to respond to things that happen
after picking one thing up. The uses people have mentioned are all
valid though, so there's really no reason to get rid of it.

Perhaps there is reason to not point it out so prominently in guides to
IF, though. I think people use it a lot to say "Look! The parser can
deal with all kinds of wacky sentences! Or at least ones where you tack
a whole bunch of stuff together with keywords!" and that is really not
so very impressive, or useful to newbies.

Personman

Andrew Plotkin

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Feb 22, 2006, 9:34:39 PM2/22/06
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I think it had value in the days when interpreters were slow, and
hitting "Enter" between each command would actually block your typing
for a noticeable interval.

This is no longer true. (Except on PDA-devices? But there your typing
is already slow.) I suspect this is why I don't use the feature any
more. (If I ever did.)

One small exception: if I want to wait a long time (in a game which
doesn't implement "wait until 9:00"), I type "z.z.z.z.z.z.z.z" and
then repeat that. (By using up-arrow, which most interpreters support
to retrieve the last line you typed.)

Someone mentioned the use of "TURTLE, E. GET THING. W" in Infocom
games. That was perilously close to being an interface puzzle (as
opposed to a game-world puzzle), and I don't think it's a compelling
thing to support.

--Z

--
"And Aholibamah bare Jeush, and Jaalam, and Korah: these were the borogoves..."
*
You don't become a tyrrany by committing torture. If you plan for torture,
argue in favor of torture, set up legal justifications for torturing
someday, then the moral rot has *already* set in.

The Wanderer

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Feb 23, 2006, 12:14:42 AM2/23/06
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Alex Freeman wrote:

I use it both for repeated WAITing (as Andrew Plotkin mentioned) and for
navigating rapidly through a familiar series of rooms to get to one I
have decided I want to be in; I do not necessarily want to bother to
wait for the text to be displayed again (since I always operate in
VERBOSE mode, just from personal preference) before I enter the next
movement command. I'm aware that in reality the only effective
bottleneck on how fast the text appears is the speed at which my
terminal is willing to update, but the psychological effect of all that
text popping up is great enough to slow me down a bit.

(I do, however, never use "THEN ", and rarely add the space after ".".
As the author of one book on UNIX put it: lazy typists.)

--
The Wanderer

Warning: Simply because I argue an issue does not mean I agree with any
side of it.

Secrecy is the beginning of tyranny.

dwh...@gmail.com

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Feb 23, 2006, 6:23:25 AM2/23/06
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The only time I ever tend to use is for testing games and checking the
walkthrough I've made for them works properly. Rather than typing in
one command after another, I just type them all out in one long line in
a text document then copy and paste them into the program.

Damian Dollahite

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Feb 23, 2006, 9:49:50 AM2/23/06
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I must be the oddball around here (as if that wasn't already
well-known), because I use multi-command syntax ALL THE TIME. Anytime I
know the commands I'm going to enter in advance, I always stuff them all
on the same line, up to about five or six.

--
Ryukage

Boluc Papuccuoglu

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Feb 23, 2006, 10:26:05 AM2/23/06
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On Thu, 23 Feb 2006 02:34:39 +0000 (UTC), Andrew Plotkin
<erky...@eblong.com> wrote:

>Here, Alex Freeman <hype...@adelphia.net> wrote:
>> Does anyone actually use the multiple commands feature in Inform and
>> TADS? It seems to that it's just extra work to type out "THEN " or ". "
>> at the end of each command but the last one rather than just hitting
>> enter after each command typed. I can't see any advantage to using that
>> feature.
>
>I think it had value in the days when interpreters were slow, and
>hitting "Enter" between each command would actually block your typing
>for a noticeable interval.
>
>This is no longer true. (Except on PDA-devices? But there your typing
>is already slow.) I suspect this is why I don't use the feature any
>more. (If I ever did.)
>
>One small exception: if I want to wait a long time (in a game which
>doesn't implement "wait until 9:00"), I type "z.z.z.z.z.z.z.z" and
>then repeat that. (By using up-arrow, which most interpreters support
>to retrieve the last line you typed.)
>
>Someone mentioned the use of "TURTLE, E. GET THING. W" in Infocom
>games. That was perilously close to being an interface puzzle (as
>opposed to a game-world puzzle), and I don't think it's a compelling
>thing to support.
>
>--Z

Ironically, I used the multiple command/up arrow combo quite a bit in
the Spider & Web where you can't activate electronics for more than
one turn.

Mike Snyder

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Feb 23, 2006, 11:08:44 AM2/23/06
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"Damian Dollahite" <master....@gmail.com> wrote in message
news:43fdc...@x-privat.org...

> I must be the oddball around here (as if that wasn't already well-known),
> because I use multi-command syntax ALL THE TIME. Anytime I know the
> commands I'm going to enter in advance, I always stuff them all on the
> same line, up to about five or six.

It's just usually hard for me to do outside of the situations I mentioned
before (testing purposes, and simplifying known "walking" paths in a game)
because I don't know for sure what's going to be the result of the first
command. I tend to wait and see what the game tells me, before I jump ahead.

--- Mike.


Richard Bos

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Feb 25, 2006, 10:29:01 AM2/25/06
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Andrew Plotkin <erky...@eblong.com> wrote:

> Here, Alex Freeman <hype...@adelphia.net> wrote:
> > Does anyone actually use the multiple commands feature in Inform and
> > TADS? It seems to that it's just extra work to type out "THEN " or ". "
> > at the end of each command but the last one rather than just hitting
> > enter after each command typed. I can't see any advantage to using that
> > feature.
>
> I think it had value in the days when interpreters were slow, and
> hitting "Enter" between each command would actually block your typing
> for a noticeable interval.
>
> This is no longer true. (Except on PDA-devices? But there your typing
> is already slow.)

Not if they have a proper (if small) keyboard, like the Revo; but then,
I never noticed line processing being slow on the Revo.

The only reason I use . is for commands like "throw axe at dwarf. get
axe". It means that I can walk back through my history and repeat that
entire set of commands in one go.

Richard

Damian Dollahite

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Feb 26, 2006, 8:24:08 AM2/26/06
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That's true much of the time, but take for example "John's Fire Witch":

> WAVE WAND AND SAY "TAR-MOLAY"

There's very little reason to ever split that combination of commands
up, unless you suspect something will object to the first one. A more
elaborate example is a combination lock with N numbers; you know what
the combination is, you know nothing is going to interfere with you
entering it, so why not just enter all N commands at once?

--
Ryukage

eluch...@gmail.com

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Feb 27, 2006, 2:22:32 PM2/27/06
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Zarf wrote:
> Someone mentioned the use of "TURTLE, E. GET THING. W" in Infocom
> games. That was perilously close to being an interface puzzle (as
> opposed to a game-world puzzle), and I don't think it's a compelling
> thing to support.

Well since Z-machine interpreters tend to pride themselves for backward
compatibility it will be lept even if depreciated. I also remember one
of these puzzles from Curses.

Cirk R. Bejnar

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