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Comments by Charles Gilman

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Shortcodes[Subject Thread] [Add Response]
Charles Gilman wrote on Tue, Jun 7, 2016 06:55 AM UTC:

We really do seem to have been talking at cross-purposes. All that I asked for was a result, not a particular means of achieving it, and I am just as pleased that you have you achieved it in the way that you liked as I would have been with any other way.

Charles Gilman wrote on Mon, Jun 6, 2016 07:17 AM UTC:

I have now used shortcodes to add piece images to all my index pages - and shorten the "Pieces" section on several of my variant pages as well. How this squares with the clause "I am not in support of your idea" <a href="">here</a> I am not entirely sure, as shortcodes fulfil the more basic of my suggestions completely.

Charles Gilman wrote on Tue, May 31, 2016 12:46 PM UTC:

Further to my previous comment, I have successfully applied shortcodes to Tee Garden Shogi, which I was rewriting anyway, and two of my memory-heaviest variants, Flipped-Return Nichtschach and Anglojewish Chess.

Charles Gilman wrote on Tue, May 31, 2016 07:09 AM UTC:

Yes, that seems to work. I have undone that single change so that I can add the whole set of images that I am using to the master copies offline and add them page by page rather than piece by piece.

Charles Gilman wrote on Fri, May 27, 2016 07:03 AM UTC:

I tried to use shortcodes myself, and it seems to work within a comment, as follows:


It does not however seem to work on a post-your-own, as I tried using it to put a Bishop image beside the Bishop entry in Index B to Man and Beast and it showed the square brackets  and their content rather than the image. Any idea why?


The Lost Variant[Subject Thread] [Add Response]
Charles Gilman wrote on Fri, May 6, 2016 06:41 AM UTC:
The following files that I created on these pages can be deleted as their variants have all either been deleted or had their actual single array images replaced with virtual ones:

Spring Cleaning my pages[Subject Thread] [Add Response]
Charles Gilman wrote on Fri, Apr 29, 2016 06:41 AM UTC:
Having already rewritten most of my pages, and having discussed rewriting them again, I struggle to see how anyone could think that time is my issue! Any improvement takes longer than doing nothing. In any case, I now have enough practice writing virtual multi-cell images to cut and paste within the master document and replace the middle bit correctly than to paste the raw string of braces, tildes, and exclamation marks into the Diagram Designer. Nor only that, I can do the former entirely offline save for uploading the whole. I am currently adding movement diagrams to Man and Beast without even looking at them online. If I find errors when I do upload them the quickest way to correct them is by seeing how the page appears and changing the master document accordingly.

What I meant by inefficient was the problems that I have learned always accompany duplicate code. Over the last few years one of my major tasks at work has been refactoring and centralising tracts of duplicate code. The issues that I know of are that duplication takes up more space, is more susceptible to errors such as typos, and makes extra work if a sudden change is made. The first two I can see applying similarly to substituting another long piece of code. Single-array page will certainly use a single piece set for the array diagram, piece images, and (if any) movement diagrams, and I find it hard to imagine even a multi-array page (be it 3d or multi-subvariant) doing otherwise.

If my idea really is impossible, say so and I will live with it, but don't suggest ways of addressing an imaginary time issue by doing something even more time-consuming.

Charles Gilman wrote on Thu, Apr 28, 2016 07:07 AM UTC:
Fergus Duniho asks whether it is a problem that it takes a lot of code to add a single piece image before the text describing it. The answer, after much thought, is that it seems inefficient compared to the improvement in array diagram design. As well as eliminating huge numbers of individual piece - and empty cell - images on multiplayer variants and Neutral Subject Chess (Hans Bodlaender's ffen diagrams never worked with coloured images in all my time on these pages) it offered a wide enough range of piece images to allow me to replace 23 array image files, which I have relegated to the Recycle Bin on my own computer and do not expect to ever restore. It has even inspired me to discontinue Square Versus Hex and Xiangcata pages, whose diagrams were not suited for conversion at least with the board properly joined up, allowing deletion of 7 further files ¹.

Thanks more to eliminating piece images and Ascii Art from my pages' Setup sections, these now have a uniform simplicity, making Pieces sections look untidy in comparison. It is true that my initial use of drawdiagram.php highlights the duplication, but replcing one long string of code with another doesn't really address the issue. In fact it would not increase code much to substitute a complete movement diagram for each piece in 2d variants ². Is it really impossible to devise a table with one column of images based on a single setting and one column of text - with the two lining up appropriately horizontally, of course?

True, the number of pieces is not on the same scale as the total number of cells in the array diagram. FIDE Chess has 6 as against 64, for example. It does however soon mount up. Shogi has 10 pieces, including promoted forms - and more if one distinguishes Goldgenerals resulting from different promotions. Yonin Toyang Mitregi ³ has 8 piece types that are always array ones, 2 that are array in one variant and promotee in the other, and 6 that are always promotee - 16 in all. In 3d it mounts up still further. Ladies and Generals ³, as an extrapolation of Okisaki to 3d - has 30 piece types, 17 array and 13 promotee, and showing the array piece and its promoted for run together is a significant code saving. Weltschach, as an attampt to square the FIDE back rank in composition as well as number, has 29 array pieces once differently-promotable Stockbrokers are distinguished - which they now are.

If there really isn't any way of streamlining the Pieces section, fair enough, but it would be good if someone (not necessarily the FD, but probably an editor) could design one.

¹ Once I have decided whether to discontinue Kennet, eliminating two further image files, I will issue a full list so that they can also be deleted from the CVP website.

² I would be interested to know whether other CVP participants would welcome such a change. It would make particular sense in Nimrod Chess, Hunterbeest, their Bachelor forms, and Westfield Chess.

³ Rerouting appears to have broken the traditional links to this page, but they can be found by clicking my name, "Items invented...", and the relevant initial letter.

Charles Gilman wrote on Mon, Apr 25, 2016 01:56 PM UTC:
Oh, and of course space is the separator for rank lables and so could not be used within them anyway!

Charles Gilman wrote on Mon, Apr 25, 2016 06:51 AM UTC:
Plain HTML is of course what I am already using, but it does mean adding a lot of code each time I resume displaying images after text when I am calling the same piece set each time. Putting everything in tables would add even more, which is why I have not done so despite the aesthetic advantages.

I did wonder about turning it the other way, of incorporating text into multi-piece diagram. I realise, however, that it is not just a matter of putting the text in the rank labels as this would give problems if the text ran beyond the bottom of the neighbouring cell.

Charles Gilman wrote on Fri, Apr 22, 2016 10:43 AM UTC:
<p>One idea that occurs to me might be useful would be to have a way of setting a whole swathe of text to use a given piece image set. My conception of it would be that it would be between two markers similar in principle to the a href= and /a markers.</p> <p>The code in the piece set could then be inserted in braces and be intrepreted as inserting a line break followed by the image of the piece. Even better would be to set it out as a table with one column for the images and one for the text, with each perce on one row of the table. Either way the lines</p> <p>{M}The MARSHAL moves as a Rook or Knight.{.RJ}The CANVASSER moves as a Rook or Camel.{A}The CARDINAL moves as a Bishop or Knight.{.BJ}The CALIPH moves as a Bishop or Camel.</P> <P>within such markers specifying the Alfaerie-many set would present the description of each mixed-range Ecumenical Chess preceded by the image that I use for them.</P> <P>I have no idea how practicable these ideas are, but I would be interested to know, and I wish that I had thought to suggest it before embarking on my Spring clean! </p>

Charles Gilman wrote on Thu, Apr 14, 2016 07:52 AM UTC:
I have managed a further improvement with the new "no coordinates" feature - it has really cut down the length of some of the array diagram specifications.

Charles Gilman wrote on Mon, Apr 11, 2016 06:50 AM UTC:
Over the past two months or so I have used the new virtual single images, and this range of images in particular, to refresh my variant pages. They have allowede me to drastically reduce multiple uses of piece images and the related confusion. Where there still is multiple use, it is generally for pieces in different geometries. All the ones that were easy have been done, and most of the ones that I had to think more about. Over this week I hope to refresh even Flipped-return Nichtschach, Bachelor Hunterbeest, Hunterbeest, and Westfield Chess.

Of course I still have a few variants that do not suit this method of array presentation, and unfortunately but perhaps inevitably they are the ones that did not suit ffen diagrams either. Therefore I am still lumbered with a few actual single images. I am still minded to get rid of Square Versus Hex and Xiangcata on those among other grounds, if no-one calls for them to be retained. I am even wondering about Kennet, as suffragan bishops are a bit of a stretch and the variant is not really that distinctive of its setting. I have however managed to strip out such images in 3 player Honeycomb, Crouching Stepper Hidden Rider, Mixed Radial hex Chess, Heathen Europe Chess, and Yoto and as far as I am concerned the redundant image files can be deleted from the site. The space freed up should make it possible to add movement diagrams to my Man and Beast articles, and I can see a case for putting piece images on the index pages now that my choice of images is so much more distinct.

Another group of pages that I have been unable to edit are, of course, the ones predating post-your-own. It would be useful if an editor could use the new system to match with later variants (e.g. Magna Carta to use a subset of the piece images in 3d Magna Carta, Pink Panther of those in 2 Jewels, Mitregi of those in Mitregi with compounds of duals). On only one page, however, is it urgent to change the array diagram as it is currently misleading. This is Bachelor Kamil, which should have the array image:

Trouble making submissions[Subject Thread] [Add Response]
Charles Gilman wrote on Tue, Mar 29, 2016 11:02 AM UTC:
"I just finished rewriting membersubmission.php and membersubmission2.php to use PDO methods instead of mysql functions. Please let me know how it works."

It is worse than ever. This time all I get is a blank page, when trying to edit index information not just on that page but on any page of mine.

Charles Gilman wrote on Tue, Mar 22, 2016 08:42 AM UTC:

Charles Gilman wrote on Mon, Mar 21, 2016 01:53 PM UTC:
So far, things have been going well - it hardly seemed worth mentioning in a comment as my updates were so evident in "What's new". I have now, however, encountered another problem. When trying to update Commedia dell'Arte Chess I get the message "Error Performing UPDATE Item query: You have an error in your SQL syntax; check the manual that corresponds to your MySQL server version for the right syntax to use near 'Arte Chess', Categories='2d,Large,Shape', ModifiedDate='2016-03-21', YearInvente' at line 1". It is, I suspect, due to the apostrophe in the page title.

Charles Gilman wrote on Mon, Mar 7, 2016 07:47 AM UTC:
At present I seem unable to edit even the pages that I could edit before - which I have been trying in order to add "&board=210.102.021" to the end of my hex ones as suggested. I am getting the message "This error (HTTP 500 Internal Server Error) means that the website you are visiting had a server problem which prevented the webpage from displaying. For more information about HTTP errors, see Help." Hopefully this is an unrelated issue which will be resolved soon.

Charles Gilman wrote on Fri, Mar 4, 2016 03:47 PM UTC:
I am still getting the error, including with 125%...

Regarding Paolo's question, I e-mailed updates to old-style pages years ago that have still not been posted.

Charles Gilman wrote on Fri, Mar 4, 2016 08:00 AM UTC:
It does not seem to have made any difference. If I click on "more information" I get the message "This error (HTTP 403 Forbidden) means that Internet Explorer was able to connect to the website, but it does not have permission to view the webpage. For more information about HTTP errors, see Help."

Charles Gilman wrote on Wed, Mar 2, 2016 07:58 AM UTC:
Pages on which I am getting the 403 error now include 125% Shogi/XQ, BacCanCat, Index B to Man and Beast, Man and Beast 06, Nearlydouble Chess, Pass Variants, and Yonin Toyang Mitregi. Ones that I have succeeded in editing can be seen clearly on the list of recent updates. Being unsuccessful is all the more annoying now that the advice "Please don't use JavaScript, multiple images, or Ascii Art" is given, as for the most part this is what I am trying to remedy!

Multiple=letter piece codes in Diagram Designer[Subject Thread] [Add Response]
Charles Gilman wrote on Wed, Feb 17, 2016 08:27 AM UTC:
When I try to put in:

for Haiku Shogi (using the Spearman image for a multi-colourable Coppergeneral) I find that the orthogonals labelled 0 both get squashed. It happens even if I reduce the scale. Any ideas why that might be, and what to do about it?

Trouble making submissions[Subject Thread] [Add Response]
Charles Gilman wrote on Wed, Feb 10, 2016 07:57 AM UTC:
I have had error 403 again, this time with two pages that have no comments - BacCancat and Pass Variants. Any ideas, anyone?

Multiple=letter piece codes in Diagram Designer[Subject Thread] [Add Response]
Charles Gilman wrote on Wed, Feb 10, 2016 07:52 AM UTC:
I have tried that, although I may have misunderstood "Just put nothing between two spaces". Could you show an example of how the finished string would read?

Charles Gilman wrote on Tue, Feb 9, 2016 08:02 AM UTC:
Is there any way of suppressing the rank numbers and file letters? Mini Fivequarters is another obvious candidate for conversion, but it has a more complicated system of identifying cells.

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