Spawns and How You Use Them


  • Coder

    So, as I poke a bit more at Atlantis 2.0, trying to make the new spawn engine even more flexible, I'm considering different types of spawn visualizations. And I'm curious how people who use spawns... well, use spawns. And how they'd like to use them, in an ideal world.

    I've been considering a group-by-world option, as well as the ability to have 'virtual' spawns that contain the contents of several other spawns together, properly sorted by time. But I'm curious how useful that would be for people.


  • Coder

    Actually, as background for those not familiar with Atlantis 1.0, I should detail how spawns have worked there traditionally.

    Every spawn in Atlantis has a content view (usually an output area and an input area, but there was a special-case 'Notepad' spawn per-world you could pop up as well). Every spawn also has a colon-delimited 'path', like: Charbit@Game:Faction or Staffer@Game2:Staff:Coders

    Every 'window' is made up of a list of these spawns, along with a spawn style visualizer. The visualizer is responsible for drawing spawns in some style; it might be my beloved 'tree' of spawns, like:

    • Charbit@Game
      • Faction
      • Spam
        • Movies
        • Comics
        • Politics
    • Staffbit@Game2
      • Public
      • Staffstuff
        • Wizards
        • Coders
        • Help

    Where if 'Staffstuff' and 'Spam' are just points on a path and not actual spawns in their own right, they're unselectable folders that can be closed/open to show or hide spawns.

    But another visualization in A1 is tabs, where it would sort it like:

    [Charbit@Game] [Faction] [Movies] [Comics] [Politics] [Staffbit@Game2] [Public] [Wizards] [Coders] [Help]

    ...in effect, collapsing the tree into a single line of tabs.

    And of course, spawns can be ripped off into their own windows, docked into other windows, and so on.


  • Pitcrew

    @Sparks

    The 2nd visualization in A1 tabs is how I've used Spawns in Atlantis - and boy, I looove using Spawns. They keep everything all neat and organized, and I find the setup in world setting's to be pretty intuitive and easy to navigate. Really cuts down on distracting chatter and makes referencing other data/cleaning logs really straightforward.

    Hooowever: the only reason I don't use the the other options (the sidebar 'iTunes' style, or the older 'Stoplight' style), is that for reasons beyond my comprehension, selecting either of those options in Preferences does not create a side bar. They did once, long ago, but then one day it just stopped and all that happens is I see whatever Spawn Window was selected, sans tabs or options to switch to other Spawns.

    So. No idea why that happens.

    But? Love A1 Tabs, regardless. Love the Notepad spawn and the fact it saves notes across sessions.

    The only thing I'd like to see (unrelated to spawns) is -two- input areas, so I can work on poses in one and page/+bb/check +time or look or whatever in the other.

    But in terms of Spawns? I think the current layout options work! (Er, even if mine are a little busted for whatever reason...)

    Atlantis is SOOO wonderful to use. Kudos to you x 100 billion.


  • Pitcrew

    @A.-Meowley Try Command-Shift-S. It's the shortcut for hiding/showing the spawn sidebar.


  • Pitcrew

    I didn't like the sidebar. It felt cluttered having this massive (it felt that way to me at least) thing in my face all the time.

    I really liked in Potato how the spawn only showed when you were on the world it was 'attached' to. I miss that, a lot. It felt so much less cluttered to me and I would love, love, love if I could have that in Atlantis.


  • Coder

    @Auspice I can do something like that in A2, but how would you want it visualized? Just a list of spawns in that world alongside the input window? Or two tab bars, where one of them is the world and the other is the spawns within it?


  • Pitcrew

    @Sparks said in Spawns and How You Use Them:

    @Auspice I can do something like that in A2, but how would you want it visualized? Just a list of spawns in that world alongside the input window? Or two tab bars, where one of them is the world and the other is the spawns within it?

    I'd prefer two tab bars.
    Like:
    World
    -- Spawn A, Spawn B
    Because then you could still have the activity alerts show there

    So:
    World (2)
    -- Spawn A, Spawn B (1)

    It'd be so nice for my personal sanity if that was an option. It'd make my primary world 'bar' much cleaner since I'd just see the overall 'Worlds' and how much overall activity they have, then the specific spawns for the world I'm on.


  • Coder

    That wouldn't be too hard. I'll make a 'multi line tab' option for A2 as I flesh things out.


  • Coder

    @Sparks For me it would be super awesome if there was an option to make the CMD-# "switch window" shortcuts ignore spawns. So that way CMD-1 would be world 1, CMD-2 world 2, etc. The main thing keeping me from using more spawns is my reliance on those hotkeys and the awkwardness of having to do CMD-8 and whatnot to switch windows. I just use one for channel chat on my OOC alt.


  • Pitcrew

    @Roz said in Spawns and How You Use Them:

    @A.-Meowley Try Command-Shift-S. It's the shortcut for hiding/showing the spawn sidebar.

    Sadly this doesn't seem to do anything to toggle the sidebar into view again. Just get an error 'beep!'.


  • Pitcrew

    @faraday said in Spawns and How You Use Them:

    @Sparks For me it would be super awesome if there was an option to make the CMD-# "switch window" shortcuts ignore spawns. So that way CMD-1 would be world 1, CMD-2 world 2, etc. The main thing keeping me from using more spawns is my reliance on those hotkeys and the awkwardness of having to do CMD-8 and whatnot to switch windows. I just use one for channel chat on my OOC alt.

    This is the main reason I want the sub-tabs for spawns. Because I want to use more spawns, but then I end up with waaaaaay too many windows to use hotkeys.


  • Pitcrew

    I don't know how feasible it is to do with the framework you have built, but one thing that I've always really wanted whenever I've interacted with MU* clients like Atlantis or Potato is being able to just have them move outputs within the same window, instead of making a tab/subtab that you have to switch to or partition. It's possible that you can and I just missed it, since I don't have much experience with either.

    For example, when I was (briefly) playing Arx I had this setup to handle the spam:
    this

    Maybe it's not a high-demand issue or anything, but I'd loooove another client that lets you pull extraneous conversation/information out of the main flow of the game without actually clicking off of it.


  • Coder

    @faraday I can certainly do that, but you can actually turn that mode off and bind specific keys to specific spawns. Like, for me, Command-0 is always my testbed world, Command-1 is always Orianne@XFNYC, Command-3 is always Aislin@Arx, Command-Shift-3 is Aislin's 'Faction' window, Command-4 is Hallie@BSGU, etc. Sadly, the hotkey configuration UI doesn't show things quite right under El Cap, because for whatever reason the library I used works perfectly well but just doesn't return a Unicode string describing a key sequence any longer. Another reason to finish A2...

    @EMDA Atlantis actually supports that inasmuch as you can rip any spawn out of its window and into another. You could emulate this pretty easily by using the 'tab bar' style, ripping all the spawns out of one window and into another, and then just sticking that window next to the first one. I could certainly make it support docked-in chunks like that in A2, though.


  • Coder

    @Sparks That wouldn't work too well for me personally given the way I've gotten used to using the app (spacially oriented depending on which windows happen to be open), but thanks for the heads up. @EMDA's suggestion is neat too. I'd be curious to try out having a chat window at the bottom with poses at the top. Not sure if I'd like it so not a big deal or anything though. Random kudos: I love Atlantis!


  • Coder

    @faraday said in Spawns and How You Use Them:

    I'd be curious to try out having a chat window at the bottom with poses at the top. Not sure if I'd like it so not a big deal or anything though. Random kudos: I love Atlantis!

    This actually could be done in A2, if I expose the functionality. See, A2's new spawn/windowing system isn't just "here is a spawn, and a window of them" but rather made up of several things.

    A window contains 'pages' (think of them like spawns; that's what they're still called when exposed to the user) and an 'index' (the normal spawn visualizer lists). But unlike A1, a spawn isn't just a monolithic block. Pages have a 'layout', and that layout contains 'blocks'. Output window is a 'block'. Input window is a block. World info is a block.

    Right now, programmatically, it's easy in A2 for me to go, 'instanciate a new input block, and add it to this page' and have the layout account for it automatically. So it wouldn't be hard to make something where the spawn had two output blocks.

    Atlantis 1, internally, was basically 'client construction kit'. Atlantis 2, internally, will be even moreso; once it's done, it should be easy to design new styles of spawns and new types of content blocks.


  • Coder

    @faraday said in Spawns and How You Use Them:

    Random kudos: I love Atlantis!

    Well duh, who doesn't.

    @Sparks: I can't remember the last time I used spawns. Occasionally I turn them on to push channel noise off to the side while deep in code, to "turn off" channels without turning them off. Having "n" windows for spawns alongside a main window would do what I'd love to do: Keep half an eye in something "in another window".

    As I do code quite a lot to take advantage of the window width, I'd probably want some way to set all spawns the same width of the world window with, say, a quick script.

    Randomly: I love Atlantis.


  • Coder

    When coding, I tend to 'shut down' on the Coder bit, but be active on another bit to chat, talk, answer questions. I got fed up with Spawns constantly distracting me when in that heads-down mode, but they were great at all other times.


  • Coder

    @Rook said in Spawns and How You Use Them:

    When coding, I tend to 'shut down' on the Coder bit, but be active on another bit to chat, talk, answer questions. I got fed up with Spawns constantly distracting me when in that heads-down mode, but they were great at all other times.

    So, one thing I've been considering is making spawns less 'concrete', so you can stick them together to view everything or retroactively turn them on and alter scrollback, etc. It sounds to me like that could work nicely for you, so that you could turn off spawns when in 'heads down', and have everything slip into a single thing, but turn it back on with a single click when done Heads Down Mode.



  • @Sparks said in Spawns and How You Use Them:

    So, one thing I've been considering is making spawns less 'concrete', so you can stick them together to view everything or retroactively turn them on and alter scrollback, etc. It sounds to me like that could work nicely for you, so that you could turn off spawns when in 'heads down', and have everything slip into a single thing, but turn it back on with a single click when done Heads Down Mode.

    So, I don't use Atlantis (because I don't have a Mac, and I'm pretty sure that it's Mac-only, yes), so I guess take this with a grain of salt, but: Personally, I've always hated spawns because they create a new window that I have to pay attention to.

    But if we could combine two of the options mentioned above -- have it just go to the other half of the screen (maybe a little checkbox or something?) and have it pull all that stuff retroactively (another little checkbox maybe?) I'd probably actually use them, because that sounds like a hella nice feature to have.


  • Politics

    I'd love to have access to Atlantis, but I don't have a Mac. Maybe a version for Windows? No? Okay. :(


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