[MUD-Dev] Re: Prepositions and parsing

clawrenc at cup.hp.com clawrenc at cup.hp.com
Thu May 8 12:29:48 New Zealand Standard Time 1997

Aside: I've been really hoping to get some more RP type members in
here.  I suspect we tend to get more than a little buried in the
technical aspects of the games and lose sight of the RP underpinnings
(me especially as I don't RP at all).

In <Marcel-1.09-0508162555-b49Ky&5 at Gryphon.iaehv.nl>, on 05/08/97 
   at 09:19 PM, Marian Griffith <gryphon at iaehv.nl> said:

>On Tue 06 May, clawrenc at cup.hp.com wrote:

>> What with the recent discussion of parsers and methods of parsing
>> commands, and old entry from my to-do list popped up:
>> Support for prepositions such as "under", "on top of", "behind" etc.

>Jumping in the middle of a discussion with my first post to this

Go for it.

>...and at the risk of pointing out what's been said many times
>before.. You should start out by knowing where things are with
>respect to each other. At the moment it seems that games only know
>about 'inside' and 'outside', and there's no 'real-thing feeling' to
>them when interacting. I.e. they have no size, weight or true
>position. Unless you have those there seems to be little point in
>thinking about more complicated ways of locating things.

True.  I'm attempting to resolve this from several angles, including
moving to a real coordinate space system, giving objects dimensions,
doing collision detection for things like trying to fit a dragon thru
a mousehole or a boulder into a purse. etc.  I suspect to really
resolve the job I'll have to move to a 3D graphical system (I'm
already leaning that way), but I'd like and try and resolve the
virtual aspects first (which text represents perfectly),  

I really want to to make objects generic.  I want some player to be
able to take some clothes, a couple branches and a broomstick, make a
scarecrow, cast a spell on it to animate it, and Voila!  Have a
mobile.  I want a player to be able to take a couple pebbles, put them
in a small box, seal the box, and instantly have a rattle.  It this
interpretive behaviour of objects that I think is the *real* key.

As a start on such, given a coordinate space say, (and no, the user
won't ever see X,Y,Z coordinates) the question is how to parse and
handle prepositions.  I know the LIMA MUDLib can do it -- anybody here
familiar with it, or want to dig into it?

J C Lawrence                           Internet: claw at null.net
(Contractor)                           Internet: coder at ibm.net
---------------(*)               Internet: clawrenc at cup.hp.com
...Honorary Member Clan McFUD -- Teamer's Avenging Monolith...

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