Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Change Log: 1.52.1160/2.14.76

Manhunter. Current mood: no use for a hat.

With release 1.52.1160, I am taking a break from features to work some bugs and resolve some issues before I start on feature work for the Campaign Summary refactor milestone.

Also, due to the insanity happening over on Kickstarter right now, usage of the manager has roughly quadrupled in the last three days, and the amount of feedback (in the form of issues, blog comments, etc.) is at an all-time high. The net result for the Manager is that I've been working a lot of issues/bugs, and 1.52.1160 includes a number of critical fixes for issues that have cropped up since the Monday release.

And, while I'm on the subject, I would like to take one more opportunity to say a very sincere "thank you!" to everyone who has submitted issues this week.Without feedback, it is very difficult for me to tell what is broken, what works and what doesn't work, and so on, so keep those emails/github issues/comments/etc. coming!

Thanks again for using the Manager!

Sunday, November 27, 2016

Change Log: 1.52.1147 / 2.13.73

Current mood.

The Black Friday milestone is now closed.

That does not, however, mean that all Safari presentation and usability issues are resolved. I started hacking on them this morning and I just...don't care. I can't get motivated. The issue is still open, however, and I moved it into the next feature milestone.

(I think the greatest hope for getting this thing done in the near term would be if my favorite Safari user logged in during the next couple of weeks and re-lit the fire under my ass and inspired me to get the issue resolved. Otherwise...)

That said, this release does address a handful of general presentation and usability issues. It also refactors the way the API delivers user assets (i.e. settlements, survivors) to be more extensible and easier for the front-end guys to work with.

Release 2.13.73 is another major step forward for the V2 project.

In terms of V1 back-end improvements, the major progress here is some low-level refactoring to make requests to the API in a DRYer, simpler fashion. I also (finally) killed the old jQuery/AJAX "autoForm" dependency for no-refresh form submission, which feels awesome (because that thing was a pig and I've been hating it for close to a year).

None of those improvements are user-facing, per se, but it should improve overall performance and it makes the implementation of new features/functionality easier for me.

Saturday, November 26, 2016

Change Log: 1.52.1134 / 2.13.68

This one is a major release for both versions of the Manager.

In terms of V1 UI/UX and general usability improvements, 1.52.1134 adds a major new feature: cursed item controls on the Survivor Sheet. It also stylizes Fighting Art and Disorder info on the Survivor Sheet to emulate actual cards, which I think looks pretty cool.

(Do let me know if you disagree, however. I've been getting positive feedback on adjusting the Manager's visual style to look more in sync with the general KD aesthetic, but this might take that too far.)

On the back-end, 2.13.68 adds major new routes to the API and the V1 app has new hooks to start taking advantage of its methods and assets. The changes going out in this release basically pave the way for starting serious development on the V2 webapp.

(More details on the V2 project beta timeline should be available in the next couple of weeks, but they're definitely coming into focus and this release is a major part of that.)

Finally, in terms of what is still due from the Black Friday milestone (which is now one day late), there are only two items: a handful of Safari presentation fixes and bug fixes for a survivor normalization problem that effects settlements with the Beta Challenge Scenarios enabled.

I'm going to do a long/deep-dive QA session re: BF milestone tomorrow morning and I expect to be able to nail those down while I'm working through that.

Thanks again for using the Manager!

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Change Log: 1.50.1102

Release 1.50.1102 is a big one for Saviors (and the campaigns that use them).

This release revises how Savior status is handled on the Survivor Sheet, in the Campaign Summary view and on the Manager's back-end. The revisions are tantamount to a total tear-down/rebuild of the feature.

While I initially did not intend to revise Savior functionality in this milestone, I decided to pull in a last-minute suggestion for cleaning up the feature, and then once I started on it, I realized that I a.) wanted to run with it a bit and b.) take the opportunity to pay down some technical debt that I've been carrying for something like eight months (i.e. since Savior support initially went live in the Manager).

There are very few corrections in this release, but there is a slew of presentation and UI touch-ups in this release as well, including the final deprecation of the "Save" button at the top of the Survivor and Settlement Sheets.

(Which is kind of a milestone in and of itself: the button was originally added as a work-around and has been confusing users since it was added. It's nice to finally be able to be totally done with it.)

Finally, in terms of progress towards the Black Friday milestone, I think I'm going to end up hitting most of my goals by this weekend: as of release 1.50.1102, I've resolved 49 of the 53 issues in the milestone and I've basically got all day tomorrow to hack out the rest of it (including outstanding Safari issues, cursed item controls and adding support for the Manhunter expansion).

As usual, hit the jump for complete notes.

And thanks for using the Manager!

Monday, November 21, 2016

Change Log: 1.50.1075

  I just spent the last however-many hours in Safari. Survival = 0; Insanity = 20.  

As of  the 1.50.1051 release, most of the features included in this milestone are delivered, so release 1.50.1075 is mostly corrections/fixes and incremental progress towards the final milestone goals.

In terms of corrections, there are a slew of presentation fixes in this one, and most of those target Safari (at wide resolution).

A major goal of the Survivor Sheet Refactor milestone is to resolve presentation issues for supported browsers, to include (my arch nemesis/abandon-ware) desktop Safari, and this release puts in work on that long-standing issue.

There are also a few usability-related bug fixes in this one, the most notable of which is that the Hunt XP controls are now visible on the Survivor Sheet (the last release accidentally caused them not to be displayed at all: oops!).

In terms of features/improvements, there are some minor improvements to random survivor name picking and a general refactor of the Campaign Summary, but nothing major.

Finally, in terms of what's next, I've got a few more features I want to push before I call the Black Friday milestone complete.

Sunday, November 20, 2016

Change Log: 1.50.1051

OK, this is a big one: release 1.50.1051 pushes the biggest feature in a huge milestone as well as a major revision of the Survivor Sheet layout/presentation and backend.

(In short, this one's probably going to break a bunch of stuff, so be ready to report errors!)

By popular demand, the Survivor Sheet now has totally new controls for managing survivor attributes that allow gear and token attribute modifiers to be tracked from the Manager. Returning Departing Survivors from the hunt will remove all of these attributes.

It's a pretty huge feature and it took a few days to bang it out.

Also, the "Save" button has been removed from the Survivor Sheet, which no longer requires it: all of the controls on the Survivor Sheet either save automatically when activated OR they refresh/reload the page.

In addition to those major updates/upgrades, this release also does a lot to continue to normalize color within the application to look more consistent with KD generally.

Finally, on top of the normal bug fixes and corrections that find their way in to pretty much every release of the Manager, this one also fixes the Survivor Sheet anchors, so mobile users won't have to scroll as much, etc.

Thanks for using the Manager!

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Change log: 1.49.1029

After a couple of days off, I am back with more progress towards the Black Friday/Anniversary Release.

In terms of the ongoing Survivor Sheet refactor project, the major improvement/feature in release
1.49.1029 is free-text Survivor Sheet notes. These new controls a.) work without a page reload and b.) allow unlimited free-text notes to be appended to a survivor.

#bossy af
This release also adds colors to survivor epithets. The idea is to ultimately make them work more like "tags" in a traditional webapp, and have them contribute meaningfully to survivor organization and representation, e.g. on the campaign summary screen. For now, only a few epithets have colors, but I'll be revising that going forward to make the manager a little more...visually striking.

And, speaking of that, this release begins to deprecate the yellow/green/purple scheme in favor of more KD-ish colors.

Notably, release 1.49.1029 also adds some much-needed automation and settlement event logging around adding and removing principles.

In honor of the new Survival of the Fittest revision, the Manager now automatically applies "current survivor" buffs to all living survivors when principles such as SotF, Barbaric/Romantic, etc. are added (and removes those buffs if the principle is removed).

At any rate, I'm thinking about working on more expansion support this weekend and during the week leading up to Black Friday. Manhunter maybe?

Thanks for using the Manager!

Sunday, November 13, 2016

Change Log: 1.48.1004

Armor kit bundle!
Given the sheer number of new features and revisions I've been pushing lately, I decided to use the weekend to spend some time with the Manager and do some deep-dive QA/usability testing. The result is release 1.48.1004.

The main improvement/feature to come out of the experiment is one I hadn't planned: better tagging of returning survivors. Instead of the "R" in the upper-left corner of the survivor's asset link (e.g. on the Campaign Summary view) on the year they return, you now get a.) two different colors (one for survivors returning last LY, one for this LY) and b.) a numerical reference to say when they were a returning survivor.

Other than that, this one fixes some bugs, pushes some more epithets and does some general house-keeping.

More soon!

Thursday, November 10, 2016

Change Log: 1.48.995

1.48.995 is another baby-step towards the completion of the big Survivor Sheet Refactor project.

The only major change-ups in this tiny piece of the puzzle are that the Survivor Sheet toggles have some advanced prettiness/UX features now and the burger/sidenav now shows your favorite survivors.

In terms of the big picture, we're down to the final 10 (or so) issues that need to be resolved for the milestone to be complete, which is pretty cool: looks like I might just hit that Black Friday deadline after all.

Thanks again for using the Manager!

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Change Log: 1.48.984

This one's a bit of a patch/hot-fix for V1.

tl;dr I ended up breaking some controls on the Survivor Sheet in the last feature push (remember what I was saying a few posts back about baby steps?) and this release fixes those.

In addition to the fixes to the things I broke, this one also makes the Survivor Sheet less likely to have to refresh on an update. One of the high-level goals of the Survivor Sheet Refactor milestone is to make the Survivor Sheet less clunky overall, and having fewer page refreshes during normal use is a big part of that goal.

Hit the jump for release details. More feature/refactor news this weekend!

Sunday, November 6, 2016

Change Log: 1.48.976 / 2.11.55

Release 1.48.976 is another tiny release in the Survivor Sheet refactor milestone (which will also coincide with the anniversary release of the Manager, hence the slew of usability features).

This one adds two new features, one major and one minor:

  • the sidenav/burger now features a little form that encourages users to report issues and then emails me directly when they use they app to report them.
  • the Survivor Sheet cause of death controls have been completely refactored and placed into a modal window.
There's actually a lot of back-end refactoring that went into this one, especially in terms of the JS app, which I spent quite a bit of quality time with on this branch.

At any rate, Safari presentation issue clean-up continues with this release as well, but I still haven't gotten all of those nailed down yet. Obviously I'm going to keep plugging away on presentation issues as I work towards the milestone.

Hit the jump for full notes. 

Thanks again for using the Manager!

Change Log: 1.47.969 / 2.11.50

Default male avatar.
OK, I know I said I was going to do baby steps towards the complete Survivor Sheet refactor milestone, but once I started in on the Dragon King implementation...well, things kind of got away from me,

First and foremost, release 1.47.969 adds support for the Dragon King expansion as well as the People of the Stars campaign (including survivor constellations and the whole deal: it's all there).

(In the past, I have had some people ask about process, i.e. how I go from opening the box to implementing expansion support. If you're interested, I tried to block out all of the major features as GitHub issues, and you can read the full milestone details here.)
Default female avatar.

In terms of the Survivor Sheet refactor, this release keeps the ball rolling forward on that and adds better UI/UX for survivor avatar controls, survivor name changes, permanent affinity controls and a handful of other elements of the sheet.

This release also pushes a slew of presentation corrections and fixes. Many of those fixes are specifically targeted at Safari, but I have to say that the app is still pretty much unusable in that browser.

(All I can say about that is that I'm working on it and I plan to keep fixing presentation issues until we're back to here we were before the tablet resolution release went out and broke everything in Safari.)

Finally, this also pushes a few "quality of life" adjustments, such as a touched up the "new settlement" screen, which now includes "subtitle" text for expansion content (should help the new people who come in with the upcoming Kickstarter, etc.) and a top 10 causes of death table on the dashboard "World" panel.

There's even more in this release: hit the jump for details!

And thanks again for using the Manager!

Friday, November 4, 2016

Change Log: 1.46.930 / 2.11.46

Release 1.46.930 isn't super significant for V1, but 2.11.46 a pretty big deal for V2.

In the V1 release, you get a slew of presentation fixes and page reloads on survivor name changes become a thing of the past.

(Speaking of presentation fixes, I haven't got all of the Safari issues handled yet, but...God, there's a ton of them since the tablet resolution release and working through them is super tedious. Also: V2 is cranking, so there isn't a lot of time. Maybe...early part of this coming week?)

In the V2 release, I have added methods work retrieving and dumping survivors via API request as well as methods for updating survivors via API call. Once I tighten up the logging and the security on that, it'll go into service and that's a major piece of API background done and dusted.

Finally, in terms of expansion content, I think I'm just going to follow my heart and take a break from all of this challenging/tedious meat-and-potatoes stuff and implement the Dragon King: look for him to show up in the next release (or maybe the one after that).

Thanks again for using the Manager!

Thursday, November 3, 2016

Change Log: 1.46.911

Progress towards the Survivor Sheet refactor milestone continues!

Release 1.46.911 is another tiny V1 release that only pushes a small number of changes.

Most notably, this one includes a refactor of the Survivor Sheet epithet controls that removes the HTML drop-down lists and the need for page refreshes.

My emerging strategy for this milestone is to sort of baby-step through it, pushing features into production as I finish them.

I discovered today that my last big feature push badly broke presentation in Safari at wide resolution. In terms of volume, very few users of the Manager use Safari, but several...influential ones seem to prefer it, so I try to support it. Doing production releases in an incremental fashion, therefore, is meant to help avoid major breakages such as the one I'm dealing with this week in Safari.

At any rate, hit the jump for details. And thanks again for using the Manager!

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Downtime tomorrow morning!

The production host for both and needs a release-update/system restart, and I plan to do that tomorrow: Wednesday is a slow day and late morning is the slowest time for the system.

As usual, I'll post a warning via the YHBW box prior to the downtime.

Change Log: 1.45.908 / 2.10.40

This tiny release is actually kind of a big part of the next V1 milestone.

1.45.908 replaces a lot of the old-time/in-place navigation buttons and links with an upper-left corner hamburger menu. Some of you have noticed that I am trying to take the app in the Material Design direction, and this is part of that.

This is the first trial/test/alpha release of the hamburger refactor, so I expect some rockiness (and have updated the dashboard YHBW box to say as much).

In terms of what's next, keep an eye out for some presentation clean-up/optimization on the burger menu and additional progress towards the upcoming V1/V2 milestones before this weekend!