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McTaff
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Old February 14th, 2015, 04:09 PM
A few thing to improve the out-of-realm interface of Realm Works and the behaviour of sync/queries.


New feature: Perform Sync.

A large button on the menu bar (or similar) which closes the realm, syncs it, and reopens it to the same topic


New feature: Close and Sync.

Another large button on the menu bar which closes the realm, commences a sync, and returns you to the desktop.


New feature: Task Tray icon.

This icon would be able to show the status of the realm as opposed to the state of the cloud.
Coloured grey with a black cross = Not logged in
Coloured blue/question mark = unable to communicate with server
Coloured yellow/lightning bolt = Communicating (please wait)
Coloured orange = Sync required (recently edited content needs to be synced)
Coloured green = Synced (since last edit)
Coloured red/pulsing = Currently Synchronising (do not shut down)
... when you hover over the icon with the cursor, progress bars/percentages would be displayed when communicating or syncing, any error messages if unable to communicate, and tooltips for if a sync is required or realms are up to date, etc.


New feature: Startup

Realm Works could start a lightweight program which adds the task tray icon, and patiently does nothing on start up, until an arbitrary time period has passed (user defined from 15 seconds to 20 minutes). Then it would log in, query the servers (to check the status of all realms) and display the colour green or orange, depending on if the realms are synced or not. Another option would allow Realm Works to auto-sync either all realms, or all realms they are a player of when this happens. Furthermore, a background task to sync the realms on demand would also be an option. (see below)


New feature: Context menu for task tray icon.

By right clicking on the task tray, you would get menu options such as this:
- Check status of all realms (default behaviour for left click?)
- Open Realm Works Launcher
- Open (last) Realm
- Open (last owned) Realm
- Sync All
- Sync All Player Realms
- Log out
- Log out and exit

Of course, not everyone wants to automatically log in (a small percentage of users might open two computers at once with Realm Works installed on both), so an option to remain logged out would be required, only logging in when you perform a manual task through the context menu that requires it.


Purpose:
Remove the dialogue boxes requiring you to hit "ok" to confirm things are finished.
Cut down number of clicks required to perform operation.
Streamline the log-in and sync processes.
Enable users to see the status of any realms they are involved in without having to boot the launcher
Enable users to sync realms they are involved in without having to boot the launcher
Enable players to hit one button to close Realm Works, and sync, and be able to see the progress of the sync without referring to another window.



New feature: Launcher has a "close and update" option.


The launcher opens a browser window to download an update, and then complains Realm Works is still open. (a) can Realmworks download the update itself? (b) can Realm Works close itself when you hit 'download update' instead of waiting for you to close it? There is already an option to continue working and ignore the update, so no need to stay open if you choose to update.
-----------------------

Okay, so these aren't ridiculously important updates, but simple additions like this is what will make Realm Works a slick, streamlined program that gives you the flexibility to do things in the background, see status at a glance, and remove the requirement to constantly keep clicking to move things along.

- McTaff
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AEIOU
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Old February 14th, 2015, 04:43 PM
Nice polish items. I hope they aren't huge coding sinks so they can maybe be worked on while other major features are in progress.
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Parody
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Old February 14th, 2015, 07:04 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by McTaff View Post
New feature: Launcher has a "close and update" option.
This has been there on and off through the last few versions. This update round Realm Works is back to downloading through the browser (or it was on this machine, anyway) but in some previous versions it has downloaded and run the update itself.

For your other things: I don't want a tray icon or anything that runs at startup. Adding a Sync button to the main interface is already on their radar.

If they were to make Syncing more convenient, I'd rather have auto-Sync on closing a Realm.


Last edited by Parody; February 14th, 2015 at 07:14 PM.
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McTaff
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Old February 15th, 2015, 01:19 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Parody View Post
<snip> I don't want a tray icon or anything that runs at startup. Adding a Sync button to the main interface is already on their radar.
Understood, some people don't like task tray icons. Personally I do, as a lot of functionality can be added without running entire programs.

Of course, this could be added as an option - no need to force people to use it.
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McTaff
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Old February 15th, 2015, 01:21 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by AEIOU View Post
Nice polish items. I hope they aren't huge coding sinks so they can maybe be worked on while other major features are in progress.
I wouldn't expect these to be high on the priority list. After all, they aren't a feature which adds value to the product itself.

I'm no coding genius, so I don't know if they'd be big or small projects. But they'd certainly make life easier when they do.
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Gord
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Old February 22nd, 2015, 12:21 PM
I would agree with the statements that those are very nice polishing the UI items that would make life easier.
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Imper1um
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Old March 3rd, 2015, 07:41 PM
Jeezus, this thing needs to be able to Sync without closing...and also, I need to force syncs with anyone connected. The fact that they can have an older version until they exit and are notified of new changes...well, that hurts.
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Sleepwalk
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Old April 21st, 2015, 04:47 PM
+1 for syncing without closing the realm. I know I've heard others ask for various types of auto-syncing behavior. While that might be nice, I would just be happy with having a button that I could click while the realm is open that would sync the current realm. Doesn't need to behave any differently than the sync button in the launcher, just let me do it without closing the realm.

I recently got player edition licenses for my players. During the first session, I revealed some stuff in RW, and one of the players was running it on his laptop, and he asked what he had to do to see that in the player edition on his laptop. I explained that I would have to close my realm, then sync, then reopen it, and after that he would have to follow those same steps. It would be much nicer if it were just a matter of me pressing a sync button, then him pressing a sync button.
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MNBlockHead
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Old April 22nd, 2015, 08:30 PM
I wonder if the Web version will help with this. If I sync the GM edition, I would hope that those accessing player view in the Web version won't have to log out and back in. Maybe, just "refresh" if the page they are currently on was updated. I have high hopes that the Web version will make this a more useful at-table player aid. Just being able to access the information from an iPad would make the player view more useful.
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Sentro
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Old May 2nd, 2015, 06:10 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by McTaff View Post
... After all, they aren't a feature which adds value to the product itself.
i disgree that this isn't a feature that adds value. Both players and GM's would benefit from this. I regularly add content to my campaign and its annpying that you have to out-in to fix what players see. I have a player version running on my second pc, just to make sure they can see what i want them to see (and how) and (make sure they dont see what i do not intend them to see.)

So i am doing the open-edit-close-sync-open routine on two machines. I see value. there needs to be a button: sync and players need to know there is new content so they sync. (im running PbP games so i have no direct communication with my players).

i am Paul Fijma www.fijma.eu | DM Sentro www.pbpgamer.eu | Akimotos www.akimotos.eu
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