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Some questions

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Re: Some questions

Postby Saka » November 25th, 2017, 8:24 pm

gameoflifemaniac wrote:How to create a file link/pattern image for a LifeWiki page?

Use the upload link in the left side.
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Re: Some questions

Postby gameoflifemaniac » November 26th, 2017, 4:38 am

OK, I've uploaded an image for my page, but I still have no idea how to put it on my page! My page: Cis-boat and cap.
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Re: Some questions

Postby Apple Bottom » November 26th, 2017, 7:01 am

gameoflifemaniac wrote:OK, I've uploaded an image for my page, but I still have no idea how to put it on my page! My page: Cis-boat and cap.


Answered on your talk page, but for the sake of documenting it here as well -- the filename of the image must match the value of the pname parameter in the pattern infobox. I've moved your image accordingly.

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Re: Some questions

Postby gameoflifemaniac » November 26th, 2017, 8:22 am

One last thing, I want to upload a RLE pattern/synthesis file for my page. But don't do it for me, just tell me how to do it, because this time I want to do this myself if it's possible.
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Re: Some questions

Postby Apple Bottom » November 26th, 2017, 9:43 am

gameoflifemaniac wrote:One last thing, I want to upload a RLE pattern/synthesis file for my page. But don't do it for me, just tell me how to do it, because this time I want to do this myself if it's possible.


You can't. Uploading pattern files happens off-wiki and is limited to admins.

You can put an RLE snippet on the wiki if you'd like an embedded viewer (create a page named "RLE:<pname>", e.g. "RLE:cisboatandcap", sans quotes of course). There's no point in doing this for still lifes, but it is useful for oscillators and spaceships.

To add proper RLE files and synthesis files to an article, it's best to paste them on the talk page of an article so an admin can upload them. See Talk:Odd keys for an example. (Extra tips: the more easily the RLE can be copied from the page and pasted into a file by an admin, the better; we're lazy. Also, give us time, we've also got day jobs and all that after all.)
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Re: Some questions

Postby dvgrn » November 26th, 2017, 10:56 am

Apple Bottom wrote:
gameoflifemaniac wrote:One last thing, I want to upload a RLE pattern/synthesis file for my page. But don't do it for me, just tell me how to do it, because this time I want to do this myself if it's possible.

You can't. Uploading pattern files happens off-wiki and is limited to admins.

You can put an RLE snippet on the wiki if you'd like an embedded viewer (create a page named "RLE:<pname>", e.g. "RLE:cisboatandcap", sans quotes of course). There's no point in doing this for still lifes, but it is useful for oscillators and spaceships.

Actually there may be a reason to do this even for still lifes, to make it trivial to copy the RLE directly out of the wiki page, without going and expanding sections of the infobox. Recent builds of LifeViewer, up to build 233 with the NOGUI option, can be set up to allow either image copying or RLE copying directly to the clipboard. See the LifeViewer pattern copy functionality section of the LifeWiki Tiki bar.

It seems like this might be the recommended way in the future to do secondary illustrations inside an article -- the ones that are currently done with "JavaRLE" links, e.g., the Image Gallery in this article. Right now, to replicate this article, it would be necessary to get the attention of an admin to upload "p48toadsucker.rle", where "p48toadsucker" is the pname of a pattern that doesn't have its own article. Using LifeViewer, any user can just put the RLE text directly into the relevant article instead.

Apple Bottom wrote:To add proper RLE files and synthesis files to an article, it's best to paste them on the talk page of an article so an admin can upload them. See Talk:Odd keys for an example. (Extra tips: the more easily the RLE can be copied from the page and pasted into a file by an admin, the better; we're lazy. Also, give us time, we've also got day jobs and all that after all.)

Might be a good idea to put together a semi-official summary of this new LifeViewer-mediated way of handling inline RLE in an article. LifeWiki documentation could use some more updating -- not too surprising since we're still kind of in the middle of trying out new methods here.

The Pattern Pages howto still implies that pattern and synth files should be emailed to Nathaniel to be uploaded. But we're trying to spread out the maintenance work a little more than that nowadays, I think.

I'll start a new section on the Tiki bar about this, and also check in with Nathaniel, to see if we can come up with some kind of consensus as to how best to handle RLE contributions going forward -- and therefore exactly how to change that Pattern Pages checklist. Maybe there's a method that doesn't require littering the Talk pages with RLE, that also takes fewer steps by an admin to retrieve and upload it. (?)
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Re: Some questions

Postby Apple Bottom » November 26th, 2017, 11:15 am

dvgrn wrote:Actually there may be a reason to do this even for still lifes, to make it trivial to copy the RLE directly out of the wiki page, without going and expanding sections of the infobox. Recent builds of LifeViewer, up to build 233 with the NOGUI option, can be set up to allow either image copying or RLE copying directly to the clipboard. See the LifeViewer pattern copy functionality section of the LifeWiki Tiki bar.

It seems like this might be the recommended way in the future to do secondary illustrations inside an article -- the ones that are currently done with "JavaRLE" links, e.g., the Image Gallery in this article. Right now, to replicate this article, it would be necessary to get the attention of an admin to upload "p48toadsucker.rle", where "p48toadsucker" is the pname of a pattern that doesn't have its own article. Using LifeViewer, any user can just put the RLE text directly into the relevant article instead.


Good point. And yes, I agree, having RLE files on-wiki and (in principle) editable by anyone using normal wiki tools is preferable to the separate pattern upload mechanism we currently have.

In fact I think even the "main" pattern files could be stored that way. If necessary they could be protected to keep them from being edited by non-admins, but since wiki editing is already limited to manually-approved, trusted users, this may not be necessary.

I can see two downsides to doing this:

  • The cron job that currently generates the downloadable pattern would have to be adjusted. This shouldn't be TOO much of an issue, since whatever script is doing it could just use the MediaWiki API to get a list of page titles in the RLE namespace, download each page in raw format (?action=raw, or rather the equivalent API call), and then create temporary files and zip them up as required. The MediaWiki API itself is somewhat fluid and prone to incompatible changes, but using appropriate modules that encapsulate the API, this should not be an issue. The one remaining downside is that all this'd require coding work that someone'd have to do. (No, I'm not volunteering... I have very little time to spend on even the most basic LifeWiki-related tasks these days)
  • We currently have plaintext/Life 1.05/Life 1.06-format files for some patterns; these would likely go out the window in the medium to long term once we switched to this. Given that RLE has pretty much emerged as the standard for exchanging patterns I don't think this is a serious issue though.

The upside, OTOH, is obvious: regular users could contribute pattern and synthesis files without the need for admins to get involved. Everybody wins.

If we decided to (eventually) do this, we should consider whether we want a separate Synth: namespace to keep synthesis and pattern RLE files separate. (I haven't thought about this; just tossing out the idea.)

As an alternative to directly putting files on wiki pages it might also be possible to tweak MediaWiki to allow .rle file uploads in addition to media uploads. I've never tried this, though, and have no experience with how well MediaWiki handles non-media file uploads.

A third option that I personally think would be rather cool would be a dedicated MediaWiki extension that automatically produces files in any desired format (RLE for starters, perhaps other formats later) from the RLE snippet and the meta-information present in pattern infoboxes. Better yet, if the LifeWiki gains Lua scripting (present in recent MediaWiki versions), this could be implemented on-wiki in Lua as well. But again, someone would actually have to code it.

(On a related note I still think it would be nice if the pattern templates also automatically produced pattern information in a machine-readable microformat that's invisible to human readers. Something else I've not looked into at all yet, but it should be possible to rig up the templates to do this. On-wiki Lua scripting would be a great boon again of course.)

dvgrn wrote:Might be a good idea to put together a semi-official summary of this new LifeViewer-mediated way of handling inline RLE in an article. LifeWiki documentation could use some more updating -- not too surprising since we're still kind of in the middle of trying out new methods here.

The Pattern Pages howto still implies that pattern and synth files should be emailed to Nathaniel to be uploaded. But we're trying to spread out the maintenance work a little more than that nowadays, I think.

I'll start a new section on the Tiki bar about this, and also check in with Nathaniel, to see if we can come up with some kind of consensus as to how best to handle RLE contributions going forward -- and therefore exactly how to change that Pattern Pages checklist. Maybe there's a method that doesn't require littering the Talk pages with RLE, that also takes fewer steps by an admin to retrieve and upload it. (?)


Yowch, sounds like that page needs updating indeed. Yes, we definitely should document our current routines.

I also agree keeping clutter off of talk pages is a good idea. Perhaps a special noticeboard would be good for this? Something akin to the Tiki bar (which also shouldn't be cluttered), say LifeWiki:Pattern upload requests or so. This would collect all files to be uploaded in one place. (If we decide to do this, we should probably either archive this page occasionally, or separate it by month/quarter/year/whatever right from the start, to keep it from growing too large and causing issues.)
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Re: Some questions

Postby dvgrn » November 26th, 2017, 12:57 pm

Apple Bottom wrote:The cron job that currently generates the downloadable pattern would have to be adjusted. This shouldn't be TOO much of an issue, since whatever script is doing it could just use the MediaWiki API to get a list of page titles in the RLE namespace, download each page in raw format (?action=raw, or rather the equivalent API call), and then create temporary files and zip them up as required...

Just a quick note on a relatively minor side issue:

We've never really standardized uploaded RLE files' header format. When I upload things, I generally include a bunch of information in this format:

#N {pattern name}
#O
{author name}
#C {description}
#C {link to forum topic if applicable}
#C {link to conwaylife.com/wiki/ article location}


Also sometimes

#C {link to actual conwaylife.com/patterns/ RLE file location}

Comments embedded in the pattern file provide an extra level of traceability, which often turns out to be useful when someone is looking through a miscellaneous collection on the Internet somewhere, years or decades later, and is trying to figure out where a particular pattern came from.

Example: http://www.conwaylife.com/patterns/loafer_synth.rle --
#N loafer_synth.rle
#O Matthias Merzenich
#C 8-glider synthesis of loafer found 18 February 2013,
#C based on 18-glider synthesis found by Adam Goucher on 17 February.
#C viewtopic.php?f=2&t=1031#p7465
#C http://conwaylife.com/wiki/Loafer
x = 34, y = 31, rule = B3/S23
33bo$31b2o$32b2o$9bo$bo8bo$2bo5b3o$3o3$5bo$6bo$4b3o$24bobo$25b2o$25bo
2$27bobo$27b2o$28bo$31b3o$31bo$32bo7$5b2o$6b2o$5bo!

The tradition for raw RLE pages is to throw away everything including the x/y/rule line, and just post headerless RLE... which might not be such a good idea, if we're going to be seeing more non-Life-rule patterns on the wiki in user namespace pages. I suppose in a way it will help guard against non-Life patterns getting into the main LifeWiki, but that seems like an ugly accidental kind of protection.

I just tried the experiment of changing the raw RLE for the weekender to include comment and header lines. The infobox LifeViewer seems to handle them fine, though wiki markup makes the raw page display a little strangely. Also, Ctrl+C from the popup LifeViewer gives you valid RLE, but it's headerless RLE with LifeViewer comments. Looks like any header lines from the raw RLE page just get removed. Here's the text from a copy operation using LifeViewer Build 233:

Code: Select all
bo12bob$bo12bob$obo10bobo$bo12bob$bo12bob$2bo3b4o3bo2b$6b4o6b$2b4o4b4o
2b2$4bo6bo4b$5b2o2b2o!
#C [[ THEME 6 GRID GRIDMAJOR 0 THUMBLAUNCH AUTOSTART ]]
#C [[ GPS 7 TRACKLOOP 7 0 -2/7 THUMBSIZE 2 ]]
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Re: Some questions

Postby Apple Bottom » November 26th, 2017, 3:48 pm

dvgrn wrote:The tradition for raw RLE pages is to throw away everything including the x/y/rule line, and just post headerless RLE... which might not be such a good idea, if we're going to be seeing more non-Life-rule patterns on the wiki in user namespace pages. I suppose in a way it will help guard against non-Life patterns getting into the main LifeWiki, but that seems like an ugly accidental kind of protection.


Oh yes, we should definitely reconsider that. Thinking back to when RLE snippets were introduced, I don't recall why we did away with the x/y/rule line either.

Non-Life patterns shouldn't be an issue, I believe. In some cases they may actually be desirable -- I don't think anyone would object to a pattern file for the HighLife bomber, for instance; I certainly wouldn't --, and in general I don't think we're going to get many. What little may creep in can be cleaned up on a case-by-case basis.

As far as rolling the downloadable archive is concerned, the script handling that could also be taught to look at the patterns' rule and only include patterns from Conway Life -- if, again, this is actually desired and we want to exclude non-Life patterns entirely. Another option would be to move them to a subdirectory in the archive, "alien/" or so, perhaps further broken down by rule.

dvgrn wrote:I just tried the experiment of changing the raw RLE for the weekender to include comment and header lines. The infobox LifeViewer seems to handle them fine, though wiki markup makes the raw page display a little strangely. Also, Ctrl+C from the popup LifeViewer gives you valid RLE, but it's headerless RLE with LifeViewer comments. Looks like any header lines from the raw RLE page just get removed. Here's the text from a copy operation using LifeViewer Build 233:

Code: Select all
bo12bob$bo12bob$obo10bobo$bo12bob$bo12bob$2bo3b4o3bo2b$6b4o6b$2b4o4b4o
2b2$4bo6bo4b$5b2o2b2o!
#C [[ THEME 6 GRID GRIDMAJOR 0 THUMBLAUNCH AUTOSTART ]]
#C [[ GPS 7 TRACKLOOP 7 0 -2/7 THUMBSIZE 2 ]]


Hmm. I suppose LifeViewer should be taught to keep comments (#N, #O, and #C lines) intact and pass them on when a pattern is copied. This should be easy enough to implement -- Rowett?

Yes, wiki parsing will make RLE appear a little strange. action=raw works, but tells the browser to save the file rather than displaying it. There might be a configuration option in MediaWiki to change that, though this is beyond the level of what mere sysops can do. ;)

MediaWiki also has <nowiki>...</nowiki> tags to suppress wikitext-parsing of (parts of) pages. There might -- might!, I'm really guessing -- be an option to toggle this for an entire namespace.

...actually, looking at MediaWiki's settings there's nothing that immediately suggests either option exists. Dang.
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Re: Some questions

Postby rowett » November 26th, 2017, 6:40 pm

Apple Bottom wrote:Hmm. I suppose LifeViewer should be taught to keep comments (#N, #O, and #C lines) intact and pass them on when a pattern is copied. This should be easy enough to implement -- Rowett?

The copy functionality in LifeViewer just copies whatever is in the source element. It doesn't remove comments.

Code: Select all
#N loafer_synth.rle
#O Matthias Merzenich
#C 8-glider synthesis of loafer found 18 February 2013,
#C based on 18-glider synthesis found by Adam Goucher on 17 February.
#C viewtopic.php?f=2&t=1031#p7465
#C http://conwaylife.com/wiki/Loafer
x = 34, y = 31, rule = B3/S23
33bo$31b2o$32b2o$9bo$bo8bo$2bo5b3o$3o3$5bo$6bo$4b3o$24bobo$25b2o$25bo
2$27bobo$27b2o$28bo$31b3o$31bo$32bo7$5b2o$6b2o$5bo!
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Re: Some questions

Postby dvgrn » November 26th, 2017, 7:04 pm

rowett wrote:
Apple Bottom wrote:Hmm. I suppose LifeViewer should be taught to keep comments (#N, #O, and #C lines) intact and pass them on when a pattern is copied. This should be easy enough to implement -- Rowett?

The copy functionality in LifeViewer just copies whatever is in the source element. It doesn't remove comments.

Indeed it doesn't. Looks like when I did that test, LifeViewer was still using the old copy of the raw weekender RLE, for whatever reason (browser caching? user error? I thought I had been careful to refresh the page...)

It certainly seems to be working fine now. You do also get the LifeViewer-specific comment lines added on at the end, but that doesn't seem like a terrible thing.
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Re: Some questions

Postby gameoflifemaniac » April 16th, 2018, 7:55 am

Are there any woman users here?
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Re: Some questions

Postby calcyman » April 16th, 2018, 1:47 pm

gameoflifemaniac wrote:Are there any woman users here?


I hope you mean 'female Lifenthusiasts', in which case there are a few: Shannon Omick, 'thunk', Susan Stepney, and Kellie Evans immediately spring to mind. There are probably many others as well.
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Re: Some questions

Postby Majestas32 » April 16th, 2018, 2:58 pm

One of the majestas alts too (but not me)
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Re: Some questions

Postby gameoflifemaniac » April 17th, 2018, 12:02 pm

calcyman wrote:
gameoflifemaniac wrote:Are there any woman users here?


I hope you mean 'female Lifenthusiasts', in which case there are a few: Shannon Omick, 'thunk', Susan Stepney, and Kellie Evans immediately spring to mind. There are probably many others as well.

How do you know thunk is female? When she introduced herself, she didn't reveal her gender.
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Re: Some questions

Postby Apple Bottom » April 19th, 2018, 1:46 am

gameoflifemaniac wrote:How do you know thunk is female? When she introduced herself, she didn't reveal her gender.


Also, and this is mostly for the OP -- why is it even important?
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Re: Some questions

Postby gameoflifemaniac » October 2nd, 2018, 9:52 am

Nevermind.
In the p52 gun page, there is an outdated version of the gun on the right side which has been reduced. How to change it to the reduced version?
I deleted this post and reuploaed it the third time, and on the second time nobody answered for a few days. You're really that blind? :x
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Re: Some questions

Postby 77topaz » October 2nd, 2018, 4:41 pm

gameoflifemaniac wrote:You're really that blind? :x


Maybe people would be more inclined to respond to you if you weren't always so unnecessarily rude.
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Re: Some questions

Postby dvgrn » October 2nd, 2018, 6:02 pm

gameoflifemaniac wrote:In the p52 gun page, there is an outdated version of the gun on the right side which has been reduced. How to change it to the reduced version?

... Yeah, I have to admit that the small-font note at the end slowed down my response by a few hours. It's just plain more fun to respond to polite requests than to peevish demands.

The question certainly deserves an answer, though. It can be quite a puzzle to sort out how the LifeWiki templates interact to magically produce an animation, especially since the RLE of the pattern isn't stored with the article and there's no really obvious direct link to where it is stored.

If you check the Recent Changes log, you'll see that calcyman updated RLE:Period52gun to match the latest version of the gun pattern, a couple of days ago now. The stats in the article infobox were updated at the same time.

Those are the two places where changes needed to be made. If you're making a new article with a LifeViewer infobox animation, the other important detail is that the pattern name in RLE:pname has to match the pname given in the article infobox parameters.

Fair warning: capitalization matters. If RLE:Period52gun got moved to RLE:Period52Gun, the LifeWiki infobox template system wouldn't be able to find it.

The exception is that the first letter of the pname gets auto-capitalized when you're creating RLE:pname, and that's okay. See the final link above -- the pname is "period52gun", but when calcyman created RLE:period52gun, the entry appeared under RLE:Period52gun.
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Re: Some questions

Postby gameoflifemaniac » October 3rd, 2018, 1:28 am

Nevermind. Someone did it for me.
Sorry I'm so
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