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Thursday, November 15, 2012

Back to coding

I know it has been a while since I've done anything new... It has been a busy month. I started doing some more coding this week, and I've found and fixed a few bugs. (Why does nobody tell me about these?? If you find bugs PLEASE send me an email so that I can fix it!)

Here's some stuff I've been working on:

Auto Respond:

1) A pretty big bug fix - I noticed that Auto Respond would sometimes toggle itself off. I was wondering why... what is causing this. It seemed kind of random, but I finally figured it out. It was something in the Dock Settings Menu. I figured out what was causing the problem, and it has been fixed. (It may not have been an issue if the dock options were not enabled. I'm also no 100% sure that this bug affected the free version.)

2) I fixed a small bug on the schedule tab, which cause 12pm to be shown as 0pm when using 12-hour clock.

2a) While on the subject of the scheduler, the changes made in the SDK have set me WAY back in the development of the scheduler. They depreciated some of the code I was using, and I need to figure out how to use the new methods.

3) I've made settings on 4.0+ devices take effect immediately. I'm not sure if the same is true for Pre-4.0 devices. (I know I tried it once, but it didn't work quite as well as I had hoped.)

4) Google just released a new SDK, so I'm going to look at the new options in the SDK and the "support" API to see if there is a way for me to unify the menu across Android versions again.

5) I don't think anything needs to be changed for the app to support Android 4.2, but I will be looking into that as well. (Especially once some 4.2 ROMs are released for the Galaxy Nexus, and I can test on an actual device.) I would actually like to look into the possibility of adding something into the "quick settings" area of 4.2. Not sure if apps have the ability to add toggles to that list, but it would be cool if I could make that a reality.

These changes are still a work in progress, and are not fully tested as of now. I will likely be fully testing them, across multiple Android versions, in a couple days. Once they are fully tested, and confirmed working properly, I will release an update.

As always, the app is available on the play store:

Both versions are still purple for epilepsy awareness month, and all purchases of the paid version still go to the Epilepsy Foundation.

GUI Euchre:

I have some changes that will be made in my Euchre game as well. I've found a few small issues (listed in the known issues document on the download page) and I plan on fixing those later this week. Not too many people actively use that program, so it's a little lower on my to-do list. The issues that are present are not pressing issues either. They do not greatly effect the usability of the program, they're just small things that annoy me when I play.

I want to take some extra time to re-do the AI in the game as well. Since I programmed it, I find it a little too predictable. There are also times when I think the computer players call trump too often, or they take risks that are not necessary to take, and other times they are quite risky enough. I want to add some more random events into their logic, making the players a little less predictable, but also try to make them play smarter. Some of my logic is built on too specific triggers, and I want to work on that.

Having never taken a class or read anything about AI design, I am learning as I go. It's kinda tough to teach yourself a concept like AI design, but I think I'm doing pretty well with it. I would like to eventually be able to build in selectable play styles, or difficulty settings, but that's kinda tough to do in a game like euchre. I'd first need to learn different play styles, then perfect them, then program them.

if you want to check out the Euchre game (as it is now) you can get it here: bit.ly/GUIEuchre