Screenshot app - development and testing

tobiasn

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We got a version of the app running and a new thread: http://forums.civfanatics.com/showthread.php?t=469334

________________


As Bowsling suggested, here's a dedicated thread for this ;)

What we propose to do is this:

- Screenshots from the game gets uploaded to a private team-shared dropbox
- Those screenshots gets auto-published on a secure web-app that we're mocking up for this purpose
- A select number of screenshots from the last 3-5 rounds will be auto-published in this forum, in a dedicated thread for fun and profit. :goodjob:

When a turnplayer, or anyone else, takes screenshots of our game, please make sure you have DropBox installed, and have got access to our screenies folder (TheFastWorker - and I need your DropBox emails to invite you). Then follow these steps:

1. Create or open sub-folder for current turn number (TheFastWorker/turns/XXX)
2. Save the image in that folder
3. Arbitrary step to make this look harder :scan:

I've yet to start coding for real, but if the Euro cup is as boring as last time, I expect to be finished before the quarter finals. :mischief:

UPDATE: I made it with a day in hand. Weee. Test link here: http://tfw.tobiasn.net/tfw/ u/p: cfc/ftw

Comments, inputs and emails (your dropbox account email) to those that will take screenshots much appreciated.

unFAQ:
How, what, why??
It's cumbersome to upload screenshots to CFC. Third party sites suck and tend to publish your images, has ads and upload caps.
Dropbox is free, we have acres of space, and you never have to click an upload button ever, just save the image to a folder and you're done

What is this DropBox magic and how do I get it?
If you don't have it, get it here. (If you use that link to sign up I'll get a little bonus space that will come in handy when it fills up with screenshots).
Did I mention that it was free?

What's this "web app" that you'll make?
It's a mashup of the dropbox-php library Dropbox' Linux Deamon, me googling PHP.net documentation, jQuery, as well as some free hosting. It'll host some of the pictures securely, and make sure it's easy to find and link to images in here, by giving BBcode links to the images for instance.
 

Caledorn

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My email is (my forum nick here at CFC) and then just add gmail.com (now that the email has been collected I thought I'd edit it away) :) I do use dropbox (and thanks to HTC I have nearly 30 gb storage there because of this phone for the next two years), and you can send me any git info to the same address :)

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Aivoturso

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Thanks for getting the ball rolling Tobias. Since I'm not fond of idea of a random bot picking up my e-mail after the game when the forum turns public, I'll send my adress to you on a PM :)
That's a pretty cool idea. It does however require (well.. to be smooth and nice ;) ) adhering to some naming conventions, like a rule that every turn gets a new folder with just a number, or a prefix like /turn-15/, and that these "special" screenshots are the same amount every time. No biggie though, and something worth checking out.
I don't think the number of screenies needs to be constant. We can have a maximum number say ten (that can be later updated if need be). Then if the folder has less pics than the maximum number, web app will just create single pixel images of forum background colour. Or it can be a small inoffensive images, e.g. a dark brown fleur-de-lis, if we prefer to see the place holders.
 

Caledorn

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I just realized that if we actually do this, we can release the screenshots to the public for a time after the game is done as a learning resource for players who might be interested. Since I originally joined the previous MTDG because I wanted to learn more, I hope others on the team like that idea too. :)

And by the way. If we are to use a private webspace with a login to access the screenshots I can provide hosting space with unlimited space (I get my hosting at a company located in Oslo, Norway, for free since I am a friend of both the owners :)). Let me know if needed. Everything like PHP, MySQL etc is available.

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2metraninja

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I've seen people use tadada instead of @ and toddytod instead of . :D
 

tobiasn

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I've prodded the php library a little bit. I get it to fetch images from my public dropbox. I've yet to implement any logic. I think I'm just setting up all the hard file-logic in the app and feed it as json, so i can have fun i js/html setting up the front end. But it depends on how much time it takes.

When I get a little further I'll post the git repo in here so you can look at the code and collaborate.

Thanks for your emails btw. I'll set up our file vault later this week. :)
 

tobiasn

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Hey guys, I've made some real progress now. I've got a dropbox folder syncing beautifully with a server conterpart, exposing the right directories and whatnot. It's actually only missing a little front-end logic, the "Current turn" + last 5 turns "cloned" folders that we'll make a sticky for I guess, and the security.

Tomorrow (I hope) I'll make the folder structure with some demo images, do a little testing, and share the folders with you. If all goes to plan, I'll also be able to show you some kind of front-end. :)

DaveShack, I saw you used the link to sign up for Dropbox, thanks! :) I got a little bonus for that. Much appreciated!

Oh btw, I called the app "The Fast Worker" :D
 
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Oh btw, I called the app "The Fast Worker" :D

I love the name! Thanks so much for putting this together, I think it will be a huge help.

Does anyone have a spreadsheet template from a prior game that we can use to track demos in this game? I could pull one up that I found from one of Sulla's games on RB, or look for a newer one since Sulla's is several years old and has probably been improved upon...
 

tobiasn

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Hehe, no, I did wish for Sweden or Denmark to get us some Scandinavian pride. Oh well, at least the volley from Zlatan yesterday was killer. ;) I do support England though. So I was happy yesterday.

anyway: NEWS - I got the app working. :goodjob:

Check it here: http://intimki.no:81/tfw/

The turn links opens a slideshow of the images in that folder. Whenever you make a new folder AND put images in it, a new link appears. (When the image has synced to the server -- depends on your upload speed and the size of the images. It takes about 10-20 seconds where I am).

The turn links are sorted alphabetically. They get their name (number) from the name of the folders. There's some other logic to it as well, so please adhere to the folder structure. It should be dead simple to understand. I'll update the opening thread with some instructions for dummies.

Those of you that have supplied mail addresses will get a Dropbox invite shortly. You can test it all you want. :)

Latest turn-pictures:
All screenshots can be accessed through a link like this:
http://intimki.no:81/tfw/image.php?turn=0&pic=0

The 0's represent a zero based index of turns and pictures.
turn=0 is the latest turn (the folder with the highest number), turn=1 is the turn before that, etc etc.
pic=0 is the first picture in that folder, pic=1... you get the point.

If a picture is not found you ask? Well, test this then: http://intimki.no:81/tfw/image.php?turn=8&pic=0 :D

These are image URLs, not html pages, so they can be used in [IMG] tags on the forum, no problem.


I need some help with testing in IE -- how much does it break? I've only tested it in Chrome, FF and Opera on mac.

@Caledorn - I ditched Github and just developed the app inside a Dropbox folder (that also syncs to the server :D). Right now it's all hosted at a friend's rig, cause I needed to to some monkey business to the server. If you have a VM with some Ubuntu flavor available, PM me ssh user with sudo rights, and I can migrate it quite easily.
 

2metraninja

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I need to look around to have better impression, but can you make add-on (or changes?) to the code, so it have something like button "generate IMG links for all the pictures in this folder" in a pop-up or something, so it can be copied and pasted in the turn log post. Once all the pictures the turnplayer wanted to show are in the post, then he can very easy to add comments about each of them. To my experience sorting, linking, etc all the pictures is the major work in these reports. If you start with all the pictures you wanted to show and talk about, then it is way easier to add the text.
 

tobiasn

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I have the code ready for that, there's just one bug I'm trying to figure out. But yeah that's available shortly. :)
 

2metraninja

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Great! (minds think alike, as one fine lady used to say to me some time back...)
 

tobiasn

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I found the bug. I was removing the SPAN after I inserted it :D oh well.

So, now there's a small line of embed code beneath all the images. It's pretty straightforward to pop all of them up in an overlay too. I'll do that later.
 

Caledorn

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I've caught the influenza, so I'm out of commission for a few days. Will take a look when I feel better. Thank you, Tobias :)

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