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Node Based Interface

#1
I have to admit, having seen the last two videos that I'm really impressed with that interface as well, I'm already wondering where I can use it in my own projects :)

I know it's early days, but one thing I noticed is that it's sometimes quite hard to see where to go next, because there's just too many nodes on the screen.

I think some way to highlight nodes using colours (simpler to start with I think) and then maybe Icons. That way it becomes really easy to spot the "Engines" node or the "Cargo" node without having to hunt around the UI for the one node with the correct text.

I suppose you could even start with some simple generic mechanism, e.g. colour coded based on first letter, that would already help I think. The one danger though is that at the moment it's a really nice clean interface, and doing too much, i.e. too many colours, too many icons, could destroy that. I guess finding the balance and the best approach will be the tricky thing.
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Re: Node Based Interface

#2
That's kind what i thought for the map system he showed with different regions. Each region could have different colours involve to make them unique as well as easy to remember. This same kind of thing can be used for the data editor, to highlight specific parts that you are looking for..or allow the use of a search function within the data editor.
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Re: Node Based Interface

#6
I am a huge fan of being able to view data however I want to.

I would like the power to define a specific class of objects and then assign whatever color and/or format (dots, crosses, dashes, letters, shapes, etc... for small rendered objects or even for node borders when zoomed).

These user defined classes should be able to be more specific and override standard classes such as "player owned ship" or "asteroid".
Example: Assign "Magenta Uppercase Sigma" as "Sub-Capital Ships" of "Faction A"
or: Assign "Yellow Pentagon" as "Asteroids" with "Ore A > X" (where A is the ore type, X is the density of the ore)

P.S. It would be even cooler if I could define (via draw?) my own symbols or select from a set of procedurally generated symbols. Finally, it would be ultimately cool if I could also ask for what ever symbol I define to also have some sort of animation that I also define (like blink).
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Re: Node Based Interface

#7
Ashenraynor wrote:I am a huge fan of being able to view data however I want to.

I would like the power to define a specific class of objects and then assign whatever color and/or format (dots, crosses, dashes, letters, shapes, etc... for small rendered objects or even for node borders when zoomed).

These user defined classes should be able to be more specific and override standard classes such as "player owned ship" or "asteroid".
Example: Assign "Magenta Uppercase Sigma" as "Sub-Capital Ships" of "Faction A"
or: Assign "Yellow Pentagon" as "Asteroids" with "Ore A > X" (where A is the ore type, X is the density of the ore)

P.S. It would be even cooler if I could define (via draw?) my own symbols or select from a set of procedurally generated symbols. Finally, it would be ultimately cool if I could also ask for what ever symbol I define to also have some sort of animation that I also define (like blink).
Quoted for want
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Re: Node Based Interface

#8
Ashenraynor wrote:I am a huge fan of being able to view data however I want to.

I would like the power to define a specific class of objects and then assign whatever color and/or format (dots, crosses, dashes, letters, shapes, etc... for small rendered objects or even for node borders when zoomed).

These user defined classes should be able to be more specific and override standard classes such as "player owned ship" or "asteroid".
Example: Assign "Magenta Uppercase Sigma" as "Sub-Capital Ships" of "Faction A"
or: Assign "Yellow Pentagon" as "Asteroids" with "Ore A > X" (where A is the ore type, X is the density of the ore)

P.S. It would be even cooler if I could define (via draw?) my own symbols or select from a set of procedurally generated symbols. Finally, it would be ultimately cool if I could also ask for what ever symbol I define to also have some sort of animation that I also define (like blink).
It seems like this is the next logical step to what was pointed out here.
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Early Spring - 1055: Well, I made it to Boatmurdered, and my initial impressions can be set forth in three words: What. The. F*ck.
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Re: Node Based Interface

#9
I have several concerns with this idea, that mostly just boils down to it not appearing very information dense. You get a good broad overlook of stuff, and it is certainly straightforward to navigate, but its all submenus layered in submenus. I'm not seeing how it can give a good dense version of information.

Sometimes spreadsheets are handy tools to have around. I don't want to imagine what something like this would look like in the node interface. I highly doubt it would give you all that information at a glance.
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Re: Node Based Interface

#10
CutterJohn wrote:Sometimes spreadsheets are handy tools to have around. I don't want to imagine what something like this would look like in the node interface. I highly doubt it would give you all that information at a glance.
I would like the option to view my property in a spreadsheet.

But, I believe that a correctly implemented nodal interface would be far superior to the spreadsheet view.

Unfortunately that X3 list that you posted doesn't do a great job when the amount of objects you have exceeds the screen space, which forces you to hide some class types or assign homebases to find your ships quickly. If you were able show relevant information below/near each ship node, much like is in the X3 property list, you shouldn't have a problem seeing all your objects more quickly than in a linear interface because you should be able to quickly zoom into the next level of the interface.

The nodal interface that Josh has shown displays visual depth to the first+ level below the current level. Imagine you have 200 ships and you are viewing owned objects at a node level that (please forgive X3 terminology) shows your M5/M4/M3/M8/M6/M7/M1/M2/TS/TP/TM/TL/Sat ship classes. First, you should be able to see how many objects are under each one of those nodes, helping you to pick the correct node quickly. Second, from what Josh said about node "memorization", you should learn very quickly that "TS" ships are always at 6-o'clock (for example). In a couple of clicks you would be viewing the status of all your "TS" ships.

It would be great if players had the option to view the node layout differently (i.e. change the top level from "ship class" to "ship location", etc), and if players had the ability to choose what data is displayed near the node.
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Re: Node Based Interface

#11
CutterJohn wrote:I have several concerns with this idea, that mostly just boils down to it not appearing very information dense. You get a good broad overlook of stuff, and it is certainly straightforward to navigate, but its all submenus layered in submenus. I'm not seeing how it can give a good dense version of information.

Sometimes spreadsheets are handy tools to have around. I don't want to imagine what something like this would look like in the node interface. I highly doubt it would give you all that information at a glance.
I'm certain it will get to that point - it will just require exploring new layouts as well as being clever about crafting nodes such that their children are visible from higher layers and can provide information without drilling all the way down. A "my property" node, for example, could display several children to the right in a linear layout - sector, health, orders, etc. Those nodes could then be organized in a list or a tiled display, and the effect would be basically the same as that screenshot!
“Whether you think you can, or you think you can't--you're right.” ~ Henry Ford
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Re: Node Based Interface

#12
JoshParnell wrote:I'm certain it will get to that point - it will just require exploring new layouts as well as being clever about crafting nodes such that their children are visible from higher layers and can provide information without drilling all the way down. A "my property" node, for example, could display several children to the right in a linear layout - sector, health, orders, etc. Those nodes could then be organized in a list or a tiled display, and the effect would be basically the same as that screenshot!
If that is the case, then I salute you sir. :thumbup:
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Re: Node Based Interface

#13
I know what I would like to see. Perhaps others might find this useful aswell.

The ability to create fast points or shortcuts to particular nodes.


E.g. I can create a quick shortcut node which links to a particular section of my inventory. Upon click the shortcut it instantly loads up the node based UI and moves to the exact location of the shortcut.

I can see this being useful in a way of making bookmarks for the universe map. Making shortcuts which allow you to quickly look at a specific part of the map.



Just an idea.
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Re: Node Based Interface

#14
I also like the idea of keys that will jump to bookmarked views. It reminds me of the best text editor of all time: BRIEF. (Yes.)

Which reminds me: any sign that this visually excellent editor might include an extensible macro facility for automating commands and a regex parser for advanced search-and-replace operations?

Like BRIEF had?

:)
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Re: Node Based Interface

#15
Deadlyapples wrote:I know what I would like to see. Perhaps others might find this useful aswell.

The ability to create fast points or shortcuts to particular nodes.

E.g. I can create a quick shortcut node which links to a particular section of my inventory. Upon click the shortcut it instantly loads up the node based UI and moves to the exact location of the shortcut.

I can see this being useful in a way of making bookmarks for the universe map. Making shortcuts which allow you to quickly look at a specific part of the map.

Just an idea.
First off, Welcome! :wave:

Second, I think Josh mentioned at some point having bookmarks for different points of interest in the map. Since the node-interface will be the map, I can imagine that extending the functionality so this makes perfect sense.
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Early Spring - 1055: Well, I made it to Boatmurdered, and my initial impressions can be set forth in three words: What. The. F*ck.

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