Tuesday, September 21, 2004

Mad Hatter Progress

I tried out the newly named "Mad Hatter" version of Croquet again
today. This is the name that David R and I have given the TeaTime
version of the system that he has been working on. The good news is
that much of it seems to be working. The transfer of simple worlds
between my PC and Mac seemed to go well. I found a number of problems,
none of which appear to be serious, but show-stoppers for the time
being nonetheless.

- When my avatar entered the remote world the remote machine received
an error in the TStandIn for the avatar. A TStandIn is just a simple
representative of the object that is created as soon as a message is
sent to that non-existent object on the remote machine. The TStandIn is
placed inside of the world and both fields the incoming messages to the
object and begins the process of loading the object from its originator
machine. I would have thought that by definition the TStandIn could not
signal an error because it is supposed to be a universal message
handler. I guess I was wrong about that.
- For fun, I tried running a small world on my Mac and a huge world on
my PC. This failed on the PC somewhere inside of the morphic objects
that are hung inside the world. In fact, I don't think that these
objects are supposed to be sent, so I may have some obsolete code here.
- When I removed the morphs in the world, I got another error. This was
with just a TFlag and a TMyCube. Not much to transfer at all. This may
be a message synchronization problem as the TFlag is constantly sending
future messages to itself.
- The other problem, and one that I am quite a bit more concerned about
is with the speed of data transfer between machines. I do have some
strategies for dealing with this (see below with the imposters) but I
am not quite certain just how much of a problem we have to overcome
until I get the whole thing working.

I will be seeing David tomorrow and already sent him the error report.

I also sent a message to Andreas about the current speed issues with
the TParty object (not to be confused with the TeaParty object - though
of course they will be).

I also received a message from Mark McCahill that he should have a
version of the object caching system done tomorrow. This will be
essential for both Mad Hatter and Jasmine.

Not much I can do on the Mad Hatter front, so back to Jasmine...

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