Sunday, 12 July 2015

Initial release of MEMAPPER

It's released!

Wow,

Back in 2011 I incrementally developed five versions of this infamous tilemap editor and published them $deity knows where, probably in the initial F&C. Then I understood that spec was too simple, we needed a multilayered format. One which understood alpha channel and layer-transparencies Paint.NET-style. One which could rotate tiles in real-time. One which understood multiple maps per file, with multiple tilesets per file.

I created an interpration of this spec with Java. It was shit. I began a software-job, which negatively impacted the schedule. I spent most of 2012 trying to understand Linux and Lisps. April -13, I began with a new revision of clj-memapper. I hacked it till christmas and decided it was shit. I sulked until summer of '14. I hacked a better version in July, and for $deity knows why, left it rotting 80% ready for a year. Last weekend I decided that the image-thing I had tech-wanked over for two years would be the death of this thing. I wrote procedures that dump editor's state to disk and the inverse of that, plus fixed a few bugs, and released the damn thing.

Look!

It is released!

I repeat: the thing I've techwanked over for last four years is released. Feature-freeze of 2011 is finally implemented. Codebase doesn't suck. Everything is fine and underdocumented.

What's interesting is that if I do radical stuff like this more, this project called MERPG has a slight chance of shipping before my grandchildren roam the earth.

 What now?

If you have a project where you'd need tilemaps, with 50px*50px tiles, and actually understand clojure (enough to use the github-visible merpg.IO.out - functions) or are able to deduce the yet-undocumented file format (hint: editor produces zip-packages), please do give this thing a try. I'm certain there are ways to break the system, and I'd love to find them.

What next?

I'll need to document this thing. At least the file format, although one versed in Clojure (or EDN) can probably understand it easily. Do I have to create the documents that hold user's hand through the main use-cases?

After that I think a new blogpost will follow. There are some new techwankments I'd love to explore while waiting for the new story and any graphics to materialize.

Let me repeat:

MEMAPPER IS RELEASED. DOWNLOAD FROM GITHUB. 

It runs on Java, so it shouldn't matter which OS you run it on. Currently I've only tested it on Linux though, but I have no idea why it should refuse to run anywhere else. It needs at least a Java 6 JRE. I recommend the latest OpenJRE. As far as I know Oracle is still distributing ask-malware with their Windows-JRE.

Memapper is tested only on a powerful workstation. Due to Swing's software renderer and not-really-optimized code of mine Memapper might get high CPU Usage that drains laptop battery fast.

This is beta quality software. It doesn't implement Ctrl+Z - functionality (yet I hope) and might crash without a notice. If it does so, I'd love some sort of a report.

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