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Re: [Bug-gnubg] Invert direction - bug / feature request + gnubg IDs

From: Michael Petch
Subject: Re: [Bug-gnubg] Invert direction - bug / feature request + gnubg IDs
Date: Fri, 19 Dec 2014 11:58:13 -0700
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 6.3; WOW64; rv:31.0) Gecko/20100101 Thunderbird/31.3.0

On 2014-12-19 11:33 AM, Wayne Joseph wrote:
> I could be misunderstanding, but this single line would seem to me to be
> easier to copy and paste. I don't really see the value of separating them
> onto two lines, especially as you explained that generally the position ID
> is not very useful on its own (and I guess pasting the match position in on
> its own is not that useful either).

I'll offer some insight on this. GNUbg has been around for a lot of
years (late 90s)and parts of it have evolved and in some cases GNUbg
legacies prompt this kind of discussion.

In the old days (up to about the mid 2000's) the MatchID and PositionID
were separated. If you were to download an old version of GNUbg from
that era you had to enter the matchid and positionid separately on the GUI.

Eventually some people viewed the two line display as cumbersome. GNUbg
itself can parse multiline and single line (matchid:positionid). The
problem is that some other software may only accept one or the other.
Coincidentally this past month this issue came up again in this thread
when using control-C to copy a position to the clipboard.


Some people like it one way, some the other. Beyond our software others
use these ids in their tools. Today I discovered that going to a one
line combined ID (aka a GNUBGID) actually prevents mindcentergames.com
board generator from working properly. It prefers the multiline
Matchid/Positionid to be entered and will not accept it on one line
(effectively making 1.04.001 copy GNUBGID incompatible)

So try this. Go to http://www.mindgamescenter.com/#!bgdiagram:

and enter an example:

GNU Backgammon  Position ID: DCBwdwcE8IE9Qw
                 Match ID   : cAngAAAAAAAA

It should create the board diagram. Now try to enter the one line variant:


It will present an error "Incorrect XGID or GNUBg ID. Please use the
instructions above."

However if you remove the colon and put both parts of the id on separate
lines it will work:


In an ideal world all utilities should probably support both formats to
stay compatible with older and newer versions of GNUbg. The
mindgamecenter issue illustrates what happens when we make changes to
the IDs. We may inadvertently be breaking existing tools that may expect
things in a more specific format.

I personally prefer the combined form:


Michael Petch
GNU Backgammon Maintainer / Developer
OpenPGP FingerPrint=D81C 6A0D 987E 7DA5 3219 6715 466A 2ACE 5CAE 3304

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