Tuesday, August 19, 2008

== August 19 == The day after.

Hehe, it was a close one! I wasn't even sure myself, but at the end I made it... just narrowly squeezed in. It was a really interesting experience to code 1k lines or so in the last couple of days, then debug, playtest, debug some more, and finally tidy it up. Intense!! There's nothing like the smell of burning asphalt in the morning...

On a more technical note, here's how it's looking right now:
1) A working client, with game-world representation of both RFTS and Risk.
2) Several semi-working algorithms to play RFTS.
3) A fully functional Risk bot, which successfully plays the game, with some moderately complex control-flow, and decision making algorithms.
4) A "genetic" framework, which reads, writes, and decodes "genome" files, which specify bot behavior.

Here's what's missing:
1) An "evolutionary framework", to automatically pit bots with different genomes against each other, and slowly breed a set of successful solutions. For now, I'll provide a guide of how to manually tweak genome-files, to affect the robot's behavior in a desirable way.

Here's what needs more work:
1) Certain core algorithms in the bot need to be scrutinized further, to tweak them to the desired condition.
2) Re-visit the genetic framework, such that it would allow for different genetic formats between rulesets.

All in all, and with due humbleness and realization of its shortcomings and such, I feel that presently the project is in decent shape. In the few days that remain of summer, I'll work on tweaking the project further in the desired direction of... taking over the universe! (or is it multiverse by now? whichever.)

As to my experience of GSoC, it was such a booster and catalyst of my rather modest skills. After all, I'm a second-year CS student (3 Java courses, 3 math and theory courses behind me), and taking on a project of this magnitude and difficulty was somewhat of a gamble. I also really enjoyed interacting with the Thousand Parsec community. Hope this project prospers, and lives to see true exposure in the public. The open source community was a new thing for me, both software and concept wise, and I do feel priviliged to have entered this community as a contributor, with some responsibility on the shoulders.

Well, thanks for baring with me. This might just be the last post here (unless there's something important and relevant to say later on) . So long, and thanks for all the fish!


Victor Ivri (vi1985)
You can find the project in the git repo here: REPO

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