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tech tantra thursday
   - behind the cosmic curtain with Bill Eberle

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for friday august 19, 2011

Cosmic Encounter® Online at Facebook     article



Cosmic Encounter® MindWhat “online-only” alien (what alien which could only exist online) does Bot Memory make you think of? Give your idea a Cosmic Alien name and power.


tech tantra fb thread

Bill Eberle: Bot Memory: there are four online aliens that have private knowledge of other aliens' pods because of their alien power - Mind, Philanthropist, Trader, and Vulch - and two whose power allows public knowledge of their pods - Clone and Filch. All aliens have private knowledge of their own pod history, pods lost to the Plague and jettisoned to Pod Salvage, pods given to another player in compensation, and pods traded to the Trader. Additional public knowledge includes pods jettisoned to Pod Salvage after they have been revealed in an encounter . . .

Jefferson Krogh: This is a tough one.

Bill Eberle: It will be a challenge. The article is kind of a "things to remember" and check list guide to help my programming. I'll be updating and expanding the article as a public reference when I start the project, which is now on hold for awhile until after we complete testing and a release of some other changes to the game engine. If I have time I may start with some thinking and code for the Java hashes I plan to use as storage for Bot Memory. The first release for Bot Memory will be for the Mind. Later we'll add some other aliens which should have private pod history knowledge. Then pod history knowledge for all Bots. Also, in keeping with my philosophy for the current Bot AI, I'm planning to create some per-game randomness for each Bot instances' memory; like humans they'll have good days, so so days, and bad days.

Bill Eberle: Jefferson, I was so focused on the AI Bot Memory challenge that I forgot about the challenge of creating a new Bot Memory “online only” alien. One idea that comes to mind would be The Nerd which would be able to call up various gadgets, e.g. a pod list device that would show a list of all Pods played by different players and jettisoned to Pod Salvage (very useful for humans with poor Pod counting skill, aka memory), another device showing player turn history and all encounter outcomes in the game, a game statistics gadget which he could call up and use to goad other player with recitations of their terrible statistics, etc. Note, this last gadget might even gather information from our game history database tables and show statistics for both the current game and for all games ever played by the player using the alien the player was now playing, etc.

Jefferson Krogh: I'm glad you're going to give the bots more memory, by the way. There have been a few times when I've yelled at the bot, "you know Clone has a 40! He's already played it 213535 times!"

Bill Eberle: Yep! A worse case scenario where not having at least some pod history memory is “embarrassing” for the poor old bots.



Cosmic Encounter® Online at Facebook     article     NERD




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