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pyremius
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Join Date: Oct 2005
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Old December 9th, 2013, 07:17 AM
4th try writing this request and it keeps morphing as I go, mostly getting bigger (of course). Everyone, please add comments, suggestions, and especially questions as they tend to help me clarify my ideas.

Basically, what I would like to do is create a Topic in Realm Works for each PC in the game. The Hero Lab Portfolio would be linked to the Topic, as would the Player Journal.

Ideally, the Realm Works Player Journal and the Hero Lab Journal would be dynamically cross-updated, and any other appropriate Realm Works fields (Race, Gender, Class, etc.) would take their data from Hero Lab.

Hopefully I'll come up with more to flesh out this idea, but this is the preliminary pass.
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gamemasterbob
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Old December 14th, 2013, 11:07 AM
RW already has the ability to import stat blocks from HL and it can bring up hero lab to edit the data. Edit the data in HR, save the portfolio and then close HL. RW knows the stats have changed and asks to update.

I don't know if this is what you have in mind but this works for me very well.
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pyremius
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Old December 14th, 2013, 12:12 PM
I'm looking for something more asynchronous. Currently, if the Hero Lab Profile isn't opened through Realm Works, Realm Works doesn't recognize that a change has been made. Currently I'm sitting here with distinct copies of the same PC open in different instances of Hero Lab: one launched from last week's addition to Realm Works, and one launched from the copy which was updated with new notes.

I think what I was trying to say before is that I wanted Realm Works to have the option to link to an external Portfolio, instead of only embedding the Portfolio within Realm Works. That way anything the players do with their characters can eventually be automatically reflected in Realm Works instead of having to remember to go through all possible topics and look for Portfolios to delete and re-add.

An alternative would be to allow Hero Lab to access Portfolios stored within a Realm (and still do the dynamic datamining), but that seems less valuable as it fails in any instance where there is no Cloud access for the players.
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davidp
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Old December 14th, 2013, 01:04 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by pyremius View Post
I think what I was trying to say before is that I wanted Realm Works to have the option to link to an external Portfolio, instead of only embedding the Portfolio within Realm Works. That way anything the players do with their characters can eventually be automatically reflected in Realm Works instead of having to remember to go through all possible topics and look for Portfolios to delete and re-add.
The issue with this is that having it stored externally doesn't allow it to be synced with the rest of the Realm Works data. Lets say you have it stored on E:\MyData\Player1.por and create a link to that location. Now you sync your realm up to the cloud and down to another computer... And that other computer doesn't have an E: drive. Now what? We have thought of these various scenarios and don't have good, intuitive ways of solving them, so the easiest is to have it reside in Realm Works and then it can keep track of all changes. The intent is that you would be effectively transferring ownership to Realm Works for the files and that then any changes would be initiated through Realm Works.
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pyremius
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Old December 14th, 2013, 02:41 PM
I figured there would be some sort of problems like that, which is why it should probably be an additional link type, so that the current option is still available.

Currently I'm using DropBox for player Portfolios, so any computer from which I can sync to the Realm Works Cloud I'll also be able to use to access the Portfolios (giving Hero Lab access to your Cloud service would work as well).

I suppose a necessary flag for the Snippet would be "Did not sync" - if Realm Works can't access the file when it loads the Realm it marks the snippet so you're aware the data might be old.

Doesn't look like anyone's found a use for the idea yet, so not a very valuable addition to the code. Even less valuable if a player's copy of Realm Works can provide "live" access for their copy of Hero Lab - which would be a great feature which would help justify players purchasing Realm Works instead of using the free web access.
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rob
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Old December 16th, 2013, 02:14 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by pyremius View Post
Currently I'm using DropBox for player Portfolios, so any computer from which I can sync to the Realm Works Cloud I'll also be able to use to access the Portfolios (giving Hero Lab access to your Cloud service would work as well).
One item high on the todo list is to allow an external object to be specified as a URL. That way the object contents permanently live elsewhere, such as in Dropbox. Realm Works would then cache the contents locally just like a web browser. You'd always have the object locally, although it might not be the latest version if you're offline. Once you go online, the latest version could then be retrieved.

The only problem with this model is that it's basically a read-only model. Uploading revised contents to the URL would be different depending the provider (Dropbox vs. Google-Drive vs. SkyDrive vs. your personal website vs. ???). So it would be quite useful for static material, but not so useful for dynamic material like a portfolio.

We've already got some features planned that center on players managing their PCs, which are similar to what you've outlined above. Those should start getting some attention in a few months, after all the high-priority stuff is added. Managing portfolios is a piece of the puzzle.

Quote:
Originally Posted by pyremius View Post
Even less valuable if a player's copy of Realm Works can provide "live" access for their copy of Hero Lab - which would be a great feature which would help justify players purchasing Realm Works instead of using the free web access.
That's part of the road map for integration between Hero Lab and Realm Works.
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