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Author Topic: PSA TO ALL MODDERS - PLEASE READ!  (Read 13692 times)

skullywag

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PSA TO ALL MODDERS - PLEASE READ!
« on: November 15, 2016, 04:29:32 AM »

Hi everyone,

Im putting this here in the hopes it gets seen by more people, we are getting a lot of issues recently about hashing and other wierdness.

Please do not use things like building_base def from core, you should be defining ALL abstract defs inside your mod, do not depend on any external ones, yes they may work but what is happening is all the values are using default values and not the one ones you think its using, this causes LOTS of issues. DO NOT DO IT.

So again if you have a "base" def, it MUST be defined inside your mod, spread this to everyone, it causes no end of issues and is hard to track down.

Spread the word.
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1000101

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Re: PSA TO ALL MODDERS - PLEASE READ!
« Reply #1 on: November 15, 2016, 06:38:03 AM »

More details on this topic can be found in the post I did a several months ago.

MODDERS PLEASE READ, Abstracts and how they should be used.
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kaptain_kavern

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Re: PSA TO ALL MODDERS - PLEASE READ!
« Reply #2 on: November 15, 2016, 09:59:17 AM »

I'm trying to repeat this to all as well

Canute

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Re: PSA TO ALL MODDERS - PLEASE READ!
« Reply #3 on: November 15, 2016, 11:02:27 AM »

Maybe you should start a MOD-inspector/police.
Any new mod that get released should tested if it fit into the rules.

If not the topic should be moved back to the unfinished area.

Maybe create a test-mod, this test-mod should cause errors if it get activated together with the other one.
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1000101

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Re: PSA TO ALL MODDERS - PLEASE READ!
« Reply #4 on: November 15, 2016, 12:44:22 PM »

Quote from: Canute
Maybe you should start a MOD-inspector/police.

I don't think it's the communities responsibility to error check peoples mods.

Modders should be doing everything they can to properly test their mods and make sure they are correct and have as few potential conflicts as possible such as modifying core assets without good reasons and not just "I don't really know what I'm doing and this is a work around to make it work".
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MightyGooga

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Re: PSA TO ALL MODDERS - PLEASE READ!
« Reply #5 on: November 15, 2016, 05:06:02 PM »

Bumping this. It seems important.
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1000101

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Re: PSA TO ALL MODDERS - PLEASE READ!
« Reply #6 on: November 15, 2016, 05:21:55 PM »

Doesn't really need bumping (or PSAs) as the main thread explaining all this has been stickied for months.
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skullywag

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Re: PSA TO ALL MODDERS - PLEASE READ!
« Reply #7 on: November 16, 2016, 03:12:45 AM »

You think people read stickies.....they are invisible to most users....trust me i do UX for a living.
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Shinzy

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Re: PSA TO ALL MODDERS - PLEASE READ!
« Reply #8 on: November 16, 2016, 05:44:00 AM »

You think people read stickies.....they are invisible to most users....trust me i do UX for a living.

but they're so dry and dull, skully!
There has to be a better way!
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Nommy

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Re: PSA TO ALL MODDERS - PLEASE READ!
« Reply #9 on: November 16, 2016, 10:06:51 AM »

Quote from: Canute
Maybe you should start a MOD-inspector/police.

I don't think it's the communities responsibility to error check peoples mods.

Modders should be doing everything they can to properly test their mods and make sure they are correct and have as few potential conflicts as possible such as modifying core assets without good reasons and not just "I don't really know what I'm doing and this is a work around to make it work".
Most modders are probably just players who want to add or change something, don't have a programming background and aren't going to be prepared to spend hours and hours boringly researching how to do it perfectly. If someone who knew what they're doing spent a couple of minutes looking at their work, then a couple more giving some feedback in regards to foreseeable problems, good and bad practices etc it would make a huge difference to the overall quality of the mod, wouldn't it?

I mean sure it's not your responsibility and you can sit back and say 'you should just write perfect mods' but if you really want better compatibility I don't think that approach is going to yield very good results.

So why not move mods to another section if they didn't meet certain quality and compatibility standards like Canute suggested? I don't see the problem with that. It would only encourage people to write better quality mods and information on how too I guess. If there were some standards or guidelines then anyone could flag a mod for not meeting them and point them to info on how to fix it.

skullywag

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Re: PSA TO ALL MODDERS - PLEASE READ!
« Reply #10 on: November 16, 2016, 10:16:07 AM »

Well then we might as well just tell the modders where we find an issue in their threads. Its not our jobs to check modders code.

The issue is how do we find the mods with the problem?

So a question for you modders out there, would you want someone to check over your mods before submission?
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kaptain_kavern

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Re: PSA TO ALL MODDERS - PLEASE READ!
« Reply #11 on: November 16, 2016, 12:28:37 PM »

My thoughts :
So a question for you modders out there, would you want someone to check over your mods before submission?
Not at all.
And some of us already are doing this by asking friendly at someone else. It is something I try to do when asked (even if it feel strange as I still consider myself a "beginner") and in a "larger" view, collaborations in all forms, like the chat server and some collaborative projects on Github per exemple, brings greater mods and teach/spreads best practise well.

Recently I learn how collaborative projects are also great for better practise as well. While working with Spoonshortage on "A Dog Said" and Coercion on "Animal and Plant Pack"; I feel like I learned from them, and from the process even, more than I gave/explain.

Now about making collaboration "mandatory" ... It's something complicated.
IMHO all we can do as a community is trying to provide knowledge and try to organize it (for easy access). You can't force someone to have good practise. This people has to really want to release something clean by himself (and will have to spend some times searching how to do things properly).

Most modders are probably just players who want to add or change something, don't have a programming background and aren't going to be prepared to spend hours and hours boringly researching how to do it perfectly. If someone who knew what they're doing spent a couple of minutes looking at their work, then a couple more giving some feedback in regards to foreseeable problems, good and bad practices etc it would make a huge difference to the overall quality of the mod, wouldn't it?

I mean sure it's not your responsibility and you can sit back and say 'you should just write perfect mods' but if you really want better compatibility I don't think that approach is going to yield very good results.
This actual thread (and the related already pinned post) are exactly that :
Some more versed modders noticed something (because they were taking some of their time to help other debugging mods) and shared the information with the rest of the community.

My point being, it has to come from the modder. I can't imagine in any way someone asking for help being totally ignored by every other modders we have in here (just look in the Help Subforum or have a look at how things are going on the modding Discord server; already).

Don't be shy, come ask precise questions (not just a "please-make-my-mod" thread) in the Help subforum, on the mod's Github page, PM the modder directly, etc

But you'll never become better at anything without spending time to do actual research/documentation/preparation or at least practise (talking about modding or anything here) - My point being : becoming good takes time (I know it because  I'm not considering myself good yet ^^)
« Last Edit: November 16, 2016, 12:43:31 PM by kaptain_kavern »
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1000101

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Re: PSA TO ALL MODDERS - PLEASE READ!
« Reply #12 on: November 16, 2016, 05:04:44 PM »

Quote from: Nommy
Most modders are probably just players who want to add or change something, don't have a programming background and aren't going to be prepared to spend hours and hours boringly researching how to do it perfectly.

Ahh, so the lay person who draws a stick man should find his local artist to flesh it out and make sure the proportions are correct, etc?  No.  Never gonna happen.  You either don't learn a skill and suck and are rightly called out on it or you learn a skill, get better and are given the credit that you are due for your efforts.  You don't get to piggyback on other people hard work and there are no excuses to try.

Quote from: Nommy
If someone who knew what they're doing spent a couple of minutes looking at their work, then a couple more giving some feedback in regards to foreseeable problems, good and bad practices etc it would make a huge difference to the overall quality of the mod, wouldn't it?

No actually.  It means that the market would be flooded with products which are marginally better than absolute crap but still crap and no products of any quality because the people who can produce the goods of quality are wasting all their time and efforts turning absolute crap into marginally better than absolute crap.  It's ones own responsibility to "git gud".

Quote from: Nommy
I mean sure it's not your responsibility...

Finally something we can agree on!

Quote from: Nommy
...and you can sit back and say 'you should just write perfect mods' but if you really want better compatibility I don't think that approach is going to yield very good results.

If by "sit back" you mean "put hours upon hours of hard work sometimes in 20+ hours straight per session for weeks to improve my skill and become the best that I can at it" then yes I do just "sit back".  Unfortunately for those people who put no effort into anything, they will have no skill in anything.  output = input.  If you put no effort in then except crap out, but don't expect someone who has put the effort in to fix it for you.

Quote from: Nommy
So why not move mods to another section if they didn't meet certain quality and compatibility standards like Canute suggested? I don't see the problem with that. It would only encourage people to write better quality mods and information on how too I guess. If there were some standards or guidelines then anyone could flag a mod for not meeting them and point them to info on how to fix it.

Again, it's nobodies job and it would be the absolute height of conceit to judge someone elses work like that.

I have no problems helping people and will give them as accurate information as possible, but I will not waste my time going over everybodies mod to make sure it plays nice with everyone elses.

That's what it means to be a modder.  You decide when you make the mod to take on all the shame and glory that goes with it based on your own skill or the skill of your team.  If you feel like you don't know enough...DON'T DO IT.  It's a pretty simple concept.  Modding is software development, the only difference is the scale of the operation.  If you aren't a car mechanic or don't know anything about cars; if you aren't a builder or structural engineer; if you aren't medically trained; why would you think you could do any of the tasks related to those fields with any degree of success?  Software is exactly the same.  If you have no skill or training then your success will be very limited and nobody will be there to follow behind you to tell you where you went wrong and how to fix or improve it.

TL;DR

Realistic expectations of results at the end include realistic evaluations of our own skills at the beginning.  Don't rely on anyone fixing it for you, nobody cares more about your project than you do.
« Last Edit: November 16, 2016, 05:06:53 PM by 1000101 »
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Nommy

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Re: PSA TO ALL MODDERS - PLEASE READ!
« Reply #13 on: November 16, 2016, 06:55:28 PM »

The issue is how do we find the mods with the problem?

So a question for you modders out there, would you want someone to check over your mods before submission?
I'd like to have any mods I did checked if I did any modding for this game again and I always appreciate any feedback on how I can do something better especially if it impacts performance in any way.

As far as finding problematic mods goes, if there was something like a stickied checklist of things a mod needs to do to be as reliable and compatible as possible then anyone could take a look at someone's mod and say in their thread if it complies or why not.

Like this defining abstracts issue, documenting base stuff which is changed or overridden etc, and IDK, anything else which is going to help insure it will work with less problems.

IDK if that's practical but it would be good to know when considering installing a mod if it's free of known issues and has all potential compatibility conflicts properly documented and perhaps that could be done by saying if a mod complies with some set of standards.

Could something like that work?



kaptain_kavern, it's good you ask and collaborate but not everyone will.


1000101, I was not clear on what I was suggesting. I didn't mean force people to spend time working on other peoples mods. I meant voluntarily looking over other people's work, giving feedback and a way to distinguish mods which meet some quality standards from those that don't, like maybe a separate release forum (perhaps not the best method), or a notation saying they comply perhaps.

I expect people would appreciate feedback like how they haven't defined some abstract class they're using and the consequences of not doing so and I'd consider letting someone know that to be helpful rather than conceitful. Wouldn't you?

Tammabanana

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Re: PSA TO ALL MODDERS - PLEASE READ!
« Reply #14 on: November 16, 2016, 07:36:29 PM »

Maybe you should start a MOD-inspector/police.
Any new mod that get released should tested if it fit into the rules.

Mod-police would be a huge deterrent to newbie modders joining the community. The subtext of the existence of mod-police is, prove you're good enough to be one of us, and if you fail our test, suffer public humiliation! And I say this as a newbie modder joining the community; I don't think I'd bother if I knew I had to pass some kind of test. I much prefer the idea of putting your mods out in the wild, for interested people to use if they want, ignore if they want, and write back with feedback and bug reports if they want. I feel like that method selects for judges who are more invested in making your mod even better, and in making you a better modder - as opposed to designated judgy Judges invested in making sure everybody's stuff is compliant with everybody else's stuff, which is a task destined for frustration all around.

Documentation, checklists, reference materials - these are great, and I've seen a bunch of people put some out there, and they're stickied, and that's something I want to help contribute to when I've learned more, too. But keep in mind that Rimworld itself is still in Alpha - the code is changing with every release. That makes standardization, documentation, and troubleshooting really freaking hard.
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