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PostPosted: Mon Apr 28, 2014 6:13 pm 
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Extension Requests and General Discussion

This is a semi-officially-recognized but highly informal place to discuss the state of I7 extensions in general, and to post rambling statements desiring vaguely-defined extensions meeting your exacting - though nebulous - specifications repeatedly until you give up and write your own extension, cribbing heavily off of Conversation Framework by Eric Eve and muttering darkly* to yourself.

And, preferably, a few useful and concise suggestions about possible extension needs that will spark aspiring I7 authors to contribute a lasting gem to the community.

*Please don't do too much of the muttering-darkly path. It drives our insurance rates up.


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PostPosted: Tue May 06, 2014 7:56 pm 
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Is there some sort of restriction on posting topics in the Technical Development board? I'm not seeing the "New Topic" button that I see elsewhere.

I ask because I genuinely have a useful and concise suggestion.


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PostPosted: Tue May 06, 2014 7:59 pm 
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I imagine there's a script that creates a thread automatically for each extension uploaded to the I7 site.

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PostPosted: Tue May 06, 2014 8:07 pm 
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Actually we're just making them manually!

Yeah this board will be reply only. You canmake requests in this topic, or in the Inform board.


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PostPosted: Tue May 06, 2014 9:05 pm 
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Oh. Well here's my request: I would like an extension that makes a segmented substitutions for different kinds of casing. So you could write "[upper case]some stuff[end casing]" and the stuff would get printed in upper case. Or, and this is the one I really want, you could write "[capitalize]some stuff[end casing]" and the first letter of the stuff would get capitalized.

This may seem trivial, but I have just been writing something where I'd like to put a couple of lists at the beginnings of sentences and OY GEVALT. One list came from Emily Short's Complex Listing extension and I had to write about seven different phrases to be able to tell the phrase that actually prints the text that I wanted to start with a capital letter. The other seemed like it should be a simple "[A list of things that...]", but the list started with a number, and the "[A list of]" call doesn't capitalize numbers.

This seems like it would either be pretty simple to do or very complex. The interaction with Complex Listing in particular seems like it might be kind of hairy; since the phrase in Complex Listing that does the work ("dump list") directly says stuff instead of generating a text/indexed text, perhaps the only way to do this is to use Text Capture to buffer the text inside the substitution, apply the casing to that, and then spit it out? Oy gevalt, again. But without something like this Inform will be pretty intolerant of different ways of constructing sentences.

In general, I wish the list writer weren't so inaccessible to Inform 7, though its behavior is clearly quite involved so I can see why it's something of a black box. Also, since there isn't a thread for Complex Listing, it would be good if it could be made to play nicely with numbers (it produces output like "You can see here a pencil, a paper, an eraser, a clipboard, a desk, a desk, a desk, and a desk") but that would be hard to do.

EDIT: OK, so that wasn't exactly concise.


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PostPosted: Tue May 06, 2014 9:24 pm 
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Requests for extensions can go on the general Inform forum, since you're really asking "how do I do this". (Any programming question can turn into "there should be an extension to do this", but that doesn't mean they should all go in this thread.)

The answer to your question is, unfortunately, that this is very complex. It is Text Capture territory from the get-go.


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PostPosted: Wed May 07, 2014 5:17 am 
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Does the forum software not support sub-sections? Just seems a bit odd why it's under "Technical Development" and not "Inform 6 and 7 Development".


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PostPosted: Wed May 07, 2014 5:37 am 
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It does, but we decided to put it here. I can't remember why anymore.


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PostPosted: Wed May 07, 2014 6:13 am 
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So is there an official policy about what this thread is for? I'd thought my extension request was in line with vimes's and Dannii's posts, and I put it here because it involves segmented substitutions which in turn seems to involve I6 which in turn means I'm really asking "how can someone else do this" rather than "how can I do this," but I can take it to Inform 7 development if necessary.


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PostPosted: Wed May 07, 2014 7:40 am 
I wonder if this would be right for this board.

"Flexible Windows" seems to be a very useful, oft-used extension with a very spotty history, several versions, tracked and untracked bugs, and it's a bit of a mess. I'd welcome a thread here that could make sense of it all.


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