Jump to content


Photo

Manual as Web page(s)


  • This topic is locked This topic is locked
19 replies to this topic

#1 philcha

philcha
  • Members
  • 22 posts

Posted 13 May 2007 - 10:57 PM

Should the manual be issued as 1 or more Web pages? That's the one format that's guaranteed to be usable by all players, since they download the mod via their browsers.

Quick View doesn't show the pics. Wordpad shows the pics, but does not treat the Table of Contents as links. MS Word is fairly expensive.

Web pages would actually be easier to use than a Word doc because Word does not provide "Back" and "Forward" buttons (not even in "view as web page"), which would be handy for e.g going back to the Table of Contents for quick access to another section.

#2 Ash

Ash

    Foxtrot Oscar.

  • Undead
  • 15,526 posts
  • Location:England
  • Projects:Robot Storm
  •  Keep calm and carry on.

Posted 14 May 2007 - 10:21 AM

What do you mean, 'should'? You make it sound as if you've done work on it, which you haven't. 'Could you' would be a better way of wording it. And the answer is no, because most unit descriptions on RS website will be taken verbatim from the manual anyway. There'll be more IN the manual, but the vital stuff will be on the site.

The manual will be in word doc format inside a zip, or in pdf format. probably the latter. This may remove the hyperlinks but what the hell.

Making it into webpages is unnecessary work for zero benefit...besides you can drag word docs into IE anyway AFAIK...


If you don't have word, use WORDPAD. Sure it doesn't treat hyperlinks but hey. You can easily find MS Word on the net if know where to look. Or use Adobe as I'll be releasing a PDF version with next RS release...

Edited by Paradox, 14 May 2007 - 10:23 AM.


#3 FoRSAkeN_oNe

FoRSAkeN_oNe

    Nexus Commander 00756

  • Members
  • 291 posts

Posted 16 May 2007 - 07:18 AM

Should the manual be issued as 1 or more Web pages? That's the one format that's guaranteed to be usable by all players, since they download the mod via their browsers.

Quick View doesn't show the pics. Wordpad shows the pics, but does not treat the Table of Contents as links. MS Word is fairly expensive.

Web pages would actually be easier to use than a Word doc because Word does not provide "Back" and "Forward" buttons (not even in "view as web page"), which would be handy for e.g going back to the Table of Contents for quick access to another section.


Wait, people actually *pay* for MS Word? :sleep:
Posted Image
Posted Image

And on the eighth day, god created kbyhil.hjfvgchtnm jhv o9, nhp;.
----------------------------------------------
Be young, have fun, taste ZOMGWTF.

<_<' ...Good day. -F1-

#4 Athena

Athena

    Embody the Truth

  • Undead
  • 6,946 posts
  •  Former Community Leader

Posted 16 May 2007 - 07:21 AM

http://www.openoffice.org/ A good, free open source alternative to MS Office programs.

I would advise to release a PDF as well, they tend to be smaller in filesize.

#5 Ash

Ash

    Foxtrot Oscar.

  • Undead
  • 15,526 posts
  • Location:England
  • Projects:Robot Storm
  •  Keep calm and carry on.

Posted 17 May 2007 - 02:59 PM

Which is what's gunna happen...altho to be fair even though it's a hundred meg unzipped it's less than 10 when compressed... :p

#6 Allied General

Allied General

    C&C Guild

  • Hosted
  • 6,918 posts
  • Location:United Kingdom
  • Projects:AGSA
  •  Modder

Posted 17 May 2007 - 09:08 PM

lolz delete the unit pictures or put those on site like was done on most other websites

the manual should be boring text :p
Posted Image

#7 OmegaBolt

OmegaBolt

    Lost In The New Real

  • Hosted
  • 6,272 posts
  • Location:London, England
  • Projects:Red-Resurrection
  •  O'Bolt

Posted 17 May 2007 - 09:10 PM

I think site is a good idea, plus no work is even required for the conversion so there is no reason not to imo.

Posted Image

Posted ImagePosted ImagePosted ImagePosted Image


#8 Nemoricus

Nemoricus

    Dragon Awesomeness for the Win!

  • Project Team
  • 1,110 posts
  • Location:My cave
  • Projects:FC Alpha tester, Enigma Advisor

Posted 17 May 2007 - 11:27 PM

lolz delete the unit pictures or put those on site like was done on most other websites

the manual should be boring text :)

Why?

A website manual may be good. I don't personally know.
Posted Image
Posted Image
Posted Image

#9 Jeeves

Jeeves

    I write the interwebz

  • Members
  • 4,156 posts
  •  Friendly neighborhood standards Nazi

Posted 18 May 2007 - 03:46 AM

Making it into webpages is unnecessary work for zero benefit

I've already offered to htmlify anything Apollo needed, and in terms of the manual in such a fantastic format I can only say "hell yea!"
Srsly. Easily caters for online and offline usability, can look so much better and be so much more accessable and navigationable than word, and so much smaller.
Also, if RS is still going to be using XCC launcher, the "manual" thingo in that would open any webpage stored, rather than the folder.
It would be a better way of doing it, and even if you cbf, I can :p
Hell, for me its probably easier to translate it into HTML than wait for Word to open :)

World Domination Status: 2.7%


#10 philcha

philcha
  • Members
  • 22 posts

Posted 26 May 2007 - 01:12 PM

Not PDF! Try Googling for "PDF sucks" to find a million reasons for not using PDF. Some of my top ones:
  • Does not re-flow to different screen resolutions or window sizes.
  • Fonts are fuzzy because optimised for printing rather than reading from screen.
  • Acrobat still destabilises systems. And takes forever to start up.
The RS home page offers online documentation (is it current?). It would be less work to start with Web pages and keep the online and downloaded versions in step than to keep Web Pages and some other format in step.

The online version is wrapped in rstorm.cncguild's standard layout. I assume this is provided by PHP code, since the URLs of individual pages are all the same PHP file with different parameters. That actually makes it easier to convert the layout for offline use (since the offline version should not have the site's standard menu links). But that's easily done, by putting the same content in a different PHP-generated wrapper, which is just one PHP file. There are at least 2 ways to get plain HTML files from this for the downloaded version:
  • For each page, View Source and Save.
  • Automate this by making the PHP wrapper for the offline version save the generated HTML as stand-alone files - you just have to create a PHP output buffer before generating any HTML then write its contents at the end. You could even totally automate it to produce and HTML manual with just 2 click. Even with this refinement the PHP coding is about 1 hour's work that only has to be done once.

Edited by philcha, 26 May 2007 - 01:40 PM.


#11 Ash

Ash

    Foxtrot Oscar.

  • Undead
  • 15,526 posts
  • Location:England
  • Projects:Robot Storm
  •  Keep calm and carry on.

Posted 26 May 2007 - 01:38 PM

Maybe on YOUR computer it does. I've had 73 pdfs open and fully loaded at the same time (half were through Firefox too I might add) and had no problems...

I also have absolutely no problems reading the fonts.

And every time I resize the window, so too does the pdf I am viewing. Alternately, I just hold ctrl and use the scrollwheel to perfect the transition.

Personally I dunno what you're bitching about. You're gunna be getting, like, 3 formats...the original word doc in a zip, the pdf format and also however much Apollo decides to put up on the website. One of them is going to suit you. And if not, grit your teeth, close your eyes, think of England and use Wordpad, or alternately get OpenOffice or dl the adobe reader and make do...obscure file formats are really not necessary in this day and age. Especially when there are free progs..

Edited by Paradox, 26 May 2007 - 01:39 PM.


#12 philcha

philcha
  • Members
  • 22 posts

Posted 26 May 2007 - 01:43 PM

... obscure file formats are really not necessary in this day and age.


Since when are Web pages an obscure file format?

#13 OmegaBolt

OmegaBolt

    Lost In The New Real

  • Hosted
  • 6,272 posts
  • Location:London, England
  • Projects:Red-Resurrection
  •  O'Bolt

Posted 26 May 2007 - 04:41 PM

Well at the end of the day it IS Apollo's call.

Posted Image

Posted ImagePosted ImagePosted ImagePosted Image


#14 Ash

Ash

    Foxtrot Oscar.

  • Undead
  • 15,526 posts
  • Location:England
  • Projects:Robot Storm
  •  Keep calm and carry on.

Posted 26 May 2007 - 04:55 PM

Since when are Web pages an obscure file format?

You wanted fucking HTML Help files first off... :p

Now let me go back to your edited post and tear that apart again.

Not PDF! Try Googling for "PDF sucks" to find a million reasons for not using PDF. Some of my top ones:

  • Does not re-flow to different screen resolutions or window sizes.
  • Fonts are fuzzy because optimised for printing rather than reading from screen.
  • Acrobat still destabilises systems. And takes forever to start up.

All those only happen to you. They don't happen to me. Maybe you should invest in a better computer?

The RS home page offers online documentation (is it current?). It would be less work to start with Web pages and keep the online and downloaded versions in step than to keep Web Pages and some other format in step.

No, it's not current. It will BE current once the bloody new version is sent to me, I sort the manual out, and we can release all three versions of documentation at once! ;)

The online version is wrapped in rstorm.cncguild's standard layout. I assume this is provided by PHP code, since the URLs of individual pages are all the same PHP file with different parameters. That actually makes it easier to convert the layout for offline use (since the offline version should not have the site's standard menu links). But that's easily done, by putting the same content in a different PHP-generated wrapper, which is just one PHP file. There are at least 2 ways to get plain HTML files from this for the downloaded version:

  • For each page, View Source and Save.
  • Automate this by making the PHP wrapper for the offline version save the generated HTML as stand-alone files - you just have to create a PHP output buffer before generating any HTML then write its contents at the end. You could even totally automate it to produce and HTML manual with just 2 click. Even with this refinement the PHP coding is about 1 hour's work that only has to be done once.

I honestly FAIL to see what relevance this had. At all.

Seriously dude, I don't understand and cannot digest where your bitching is coming from here.

You're getting the faction descs, verbatim from the manual, on the goddamn website. That is about 80% of the frakkin' manual right THERE, undownloaded.

You're getting the manual, in full, in .doc format, which you openly admit you CAN open, even if some functionality is lost. I have even GIVEN you a freeware alternative that'll let you view it with NO loss of functionality.

You're getting the manual, in full, in .pdf format, with minor functionality loss.


What do you WANT from me?! A frakkin' Shakespearean sonnet? I am NOT doing a HTML help file, nor am I doing this moronic idea of giving offline webpages. The ONline site WILL BE updated and made current as and when, and you're additionally getting downloadable stuff... What exactly are you actually bitching about?!

#15 Jeeves

Jeeves

    I write the interwebz

  • Members
  • 4,156 posts
  •  Friendly neighborhood standards Nazi

Posted 27 May 2007 - 12:45 PM

The online version is wrapped in rstorm.cncguild's standard layout. I assume this is provided by PHP code, since the URLs of individual pages are all the same PHP file with different parameters. That actually makes it easier to convert the layout for offline use (since the offline version should not have the site's standard menu links). But that's easily done, by putting the same content in a different PHP-generated wrapper, which is just one PHP file. There are at least 2 ways to get plain HTML files from this for the downloaded version:For each page, View Source and Save.Automate this by making the PHP wrapper for the offline version save the generated HTML as stand-alone files - you just have to create a PHP output buffer before generating any HTML then write its contents at the end. You could even totally automate it to produce and HTML manual with just 2 click. Even with this refinement the PHP coding is about 1 hour's work that only has to be done once.

To introduce myself to whoever the hell you are, I'm the guy who will be porting Para's spiffing work into the spiffing xhtml standard. In responce to the above, wtf? Seriously, go back a bit, learn some html, learn some php for all I care, read what you just wrote, apply some logic, and stop being weird.

World Domination Status: 2.7%


#16 Ash

Ash

    Foxtrot Oscar.

  • Undead
  • 15,526 posts
  • Location:England
  • Projects:Robot Storm
  •  Keep calm and carry on.

Posted 27 May 2007 - 03:21 PM

Oh. Fair enough. Looks like you ARE getting a html help file after all. :lol:

I maintain it's unnecessary but if it keeps him quiet then hey...who am I to complain? :rolleyes:

#17 philcha

philcha
  • Members
  • 22 posts

Posted 31 May 2007 - 09:30 AM

What a charming bunch of flamers!

First I make a simple suggestion about the format of the manual, with a few reasons for it, and Paradox goes ballistic at considerable length and eventually some profanity.

Then I looked at how the downloaded and online versions could easily be kept in step, and Jeeves condescendingly suggests I should learn some HTML and PHP and apply some logic.

For Jeeves' information:
  • I already know quite a lot of PHP and HTML - I've developed Web sites using them.
  • The "wrapper" technique I described is a standard way of building Web pages on servers that use PHP or other server-side programming languages, and RS's online pages show the usual evidence of having been built in this way.
  • My suggestion on how to automate the generation of a downloaded HTML manual is a simple extension of this technique.


#18 Ash

Ash

    Foxtrot Oscar.

  • Undead
  • 15,526 posts
  • Location:England
  • Projects:Robot Storm
  •  Keep calm and carry on.

Posted 31 May 2007 - 05:04 PM

Ehm, dude, seriously. NOW what are you bitching about? :ninja:

How about we just say 'no we're doing this our way'? And maybe you'll lay off and let us actually make the stuff rather than telling us how we're doing it wrong?

If you're so experienced, you must surely have a computer capable of handling Adobe...:ninja:


Oh and incase haven't noticed...I'm profane pretty much ALL the time. Don't flatter yourself.

Edited by Paradox, 31 May 2007 - 09:44 PM.


#19 Jeeves

Jeeves

    I write the interwebz

  • Members
  • 4,156 posts
  •  Friendly neighborhood standards Nazi

Posted 01 June 2007 - 03:44 AM

lol, quite. Complaining about para expressing himself profanely is like asking the moon not to orbit :p

Basically my views are view source and save sounds silly if you know how to write it, and relying on php is a bad idea is people want to view it on their pc, as I imagine the majority of gamers here don't use a php enabled server to view manuals.
CSS & JS, if unavoidable. If opened via the mod launcher it won't matter if theres more than one file, it looks for an opens index by default. Clean and simple also means minimal knowledge if it needs editing later, and js would likely only be used for an embeded common menu. :)

World Domination Status: 2.7%


#20 philcha

philcha
  • Members
  • 22 posts

Posted 22 June 2007 - 09:31 PM

.... relying on php is a bad idea is people want to view it on their pc, as I imagine the majority of gamers here don't use a php enabled server to view manuals.


Looks like we have a misunderstanding. I was suggesting that one person with a PHP-enabled PC (as I have) could run a PHP script which: walks the directory structure; copies CSS, JS & images to an output directory structure; and generates pages in the offline manual's wrapper and writes them to the appropriate place(s) in the output directory structure. Then: check results; if OK, ZIP and FTP to the site from which other RS enthusiasts can download.




0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users