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Re: current development

From: Simon Woodhead
Subject: Re: current development
Date: Thu, 30 Jan 2020 08:20:25 +1000
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 10.0; WOW64; rv:68.0) Gecko/20100101 Thunderbird/68.4.2

Hi folks, a little late to the party but I'll throw in my 2c as well.

I am the developer of bgLog (https://bglog.org) so I have bias in the
direction bglog is heading.

On 25/01/2020 9:04 pm, pviau wrote:

> But first a comment on UI/looks. I also do not share the view that gnubg
> is much inferior to XG there. Heck, I consider XG’s UI is its only weak
> point. It feels like a 1990’s Windows app, because essentially its
> creator (who is a fantastic guy) never cared much to evolve his UI
> skills beyong what he learned :-)

I agree and this was a prime motivation for me to develop bglog. In
recent years almost all backgammon books have been published using
diagrams created by bglog because they're simple, crisp and clean.
And versatile in the data they present.

bgLog can do much more though - 5 years ago I worked with Jeremy
Bagai to create FlashBack, a training system with more than 5000
positions including rollout data packed into a few Mb and available
on android and ios. Flashback has a (crude) ability to save selected
positions into a db. It's not rocket science.

> So if gnubg needs to improve its UI (which it does), from a visual point
> of view the starting point should be something like backgammongalaxy
> (the web site). Simple flat color schemes, as little visual noise as
> possible, everything geared towards efficiency for learning yet clean
> and elegant. And no, no 3D will ever help anybody learn to play better
> backgammon.

Agreed, and for this you need scalable diagrams which means you need
vector-based graphics.

> All of this can be done today, but it takes a combination of tools and a
> lot fiddling. This has to stop :-)

It just takes someone with online db skills. It certainly can be done,
and data can be synced with a server from an offline device easily

> Oh and finally: Android *AND* iOS have to be on the radar. Absolutely.
> Soon only dinosaurs will be carrying around a laptop everywhere they go.
> I was talking about myself there, but still even I may evolve one day...

Anything web/javascript based can be packaged into an ios/android app.
The work done recently by Theodore Hwa shows that the gnubg engine can
be separated from the UI. I interfaced bglog to that and got it working
reasonably well; it would not be a huge amount of work to construct a
web-based application with gnubg providing whatever services deemed
appropriate (roll-outs, match/move analysis etc etc). Of course, there
are some ethical and moral questions surrounding just how easy we want
to make it for people to abuse such a service, ie use it for cheating

If anyone wants specifics about bglog, contact me direct - I don't
want to hijack this good discussion :-)


        -Simon Woodhead.

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