[WF-Announce] Re: [WF-General] WorldForge Project Update

Alistair Riddoch alriddoch at zepler.org
Sat Dec 18 11:08:40 PST 2004

First of all let me offer my apologies to everyone, and particularly to
Anders for failing to contribute to Project Update in time. Life has been
very full recently, and I have had difficulty focusing on new tasks.

Here in case anyone is still interested is my update on the things on which I
have been working.


Progress on cyphesis has been relatively good recently. I have been working
pretty steadily on it, and making some good headway. I have been trying
to stick to a regular monthly release cycle pretty successfully, and have
been getting a reasonable number of downloads.

See the various release announcement for info about new features.

Cyphesis is now close to the point where it can be used as an AI client
for another server in addition to being used as a small easy to manage server.

Help Wanted

I welcome volunteers to work on new AI and object rules for cyphesis, to
expand the world it simulates. New AI in cyphesis will still be used when
the core server for Mason becomes indri, as cyphesis will still be used for
running AI. Object rules developed in cyphesis will be portable to indri,
as the two servers use the same standard file format for storing rule data.


The long term development version of Atlas-C++ has been developed to the point
that it is now in advanced testing in Eris and other components. It should
now be very close to API freeze, shortly followed by a stable release.


I have been working with James on both branches of Eris. On the stable
branch, we have been improving compatibility, and fixing some bugs. On
the development side we have been improving the API and providing feedback
for Atlas-C++ testing.


I have been carefully considering the possibility of adding the excellent
tree code developed by lakin into Mercator. I don't yet have a concrete
plan for this, but strongly feel that Mercator is the right place for
code to generate and store tree data. Rendering code would be separated and
integrated into the clients.


Apogee is no longer progressing in terms of features, but does still serve
two purposes. It was the first test platform for the new Eris API, and
it provides in-game rendering code required by equator. I have also been
using it as a test platform for developing object mesh attachment for
cal3d, and I have now worked out how this is done. I plan to get object
attachment working in sear during the new year.


Equator the editor client is currently not moving due to higher priorities
elsewhere, but is not deprecated. Expect to see more movement here once
the need for an editor client becomes more pressing.

Help Required

I am looking for volunteers who have knowledge of gtkmm and OpenGL programming
in C++ to push ahead with equator.


Over the last few months I have made good progress with the much needed GUI
code for sear. I plan to get the basics of a workable GUI sorted out
in the new year once the next release of cyphesis is done. After this
I plan to work with Simon in the area of object mesh attachment. I think
James is currently looking after a volunteer to work on porting to the new
Eris API.


Cyphesis development has mainly been driven by the requirements of Mason,
and I refer frequently to the Mason design docs to determine what to work
on next.

I hope to find time to extend the Mason design in the future, as more
of the current design becomes implementable.

In particular I am interested in working on a combat system once more of
Mason is implemented. I have been working on some ideas for a system which
is quite different from the convention used in most MMORPGs.

Packaging, Releases and Distribution

I have pushed out a number of releases of various packages over the last few
months, all of which have attracted quite a few downloads. The most noticeable
change is the increased push towards using the sourceforge.net download
facility rather than encouraging users to download from our ftp server.
While the sourceforge.net system has its flaws, its key advantage is that
it is backed by a well maintained network of fast mirrors. This allows us
to make downloads available to far more people.

More recently I have been working on creating binaries more suited to
distribution by statically linking most of the libraries. I have now
successfully created a distributable binary of sear, and hope we can
create an easy to use single package for sear at future releases.

Alistair Riddoch
alriddoch at zepler.org
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