[MUD-Dev] Looking for books...

Jeff Kesselman jeffk at tenetwork.com
Tue Aug 19 14:24:39 New Zealand Standard Time 1997

At 02:01 PM 8/19/97 PST8PDT, Greg Munt wrote:
>I know some of you have some reasonably-sized libraries, so I was 
>wondering if you might be able to recommend some books for me?
>   OOD

Hmm, this really breaks down into sub areas.  tehre are booskj on
"patterns" whicha re an intresting lanmguage-neutral read, adn then there
are books more specific to languages. What lnaguage are ou plannign to use?
Oen fo my favorite books is "Effective C++" which shows you what NOT to do
in C++ (ironicly every exampel is taken from anothre text, which brings up
the issue that you shoudl be wary of what you read...)
>   Compiler design

"Crafting a Compiler".  Great book, written by oen of the professors at my
Alma Mater (but I can't rememebr his name.)  Its my reference and bible
when I sit down to write a compiler.

A side note, Crafting a Compiler will, liek most good compierl boosk, first
shwo you how tow rite one "by hand" anbd then introduce the cocnept of a
compiler generator.  This is ebcause you cannot effectively use a compiler
generator without understnading something about how compilers are written.

Thsi book introduces a tool set written at UW-madison that nooen uses, but
the dieas are easily poortable to using either YACC and LEX (the most
common tools) or PCCTS (my personal favorite far and away above YACC and LEX).
>   Database design (esp persistence)

Hmm.  Persistance really is just saving state.  period.  But you are
correct that the msot efficient way TO save the state is to use well known
relational n
database techniques.  'fraid I dont have a ref for you on that though.  If
you have a local comp sci university they have to have a database class and
Im sure whatever textbook they use is fine.  There isn't really alot of
rocket science in datase beyond some nifty data structure.

>   Tree algorithms (esp R-Trees, et al) (all I can find are general 
>   algorithm books that discuss binary trees - sigh) 

Get a Data Structures book to start with.  Again, whatever your local uni
uses for its Data Structures class is probably fine.
>   Parser/NLP design

NLP is a very large and confusing (or confused) subject.  Ive looemkd for
decent books on this myself, al lI can say is good luck.

Most MUDS don't do NLP though, by far the mreo commo nsolutio nisa regular
expression matching. Simple, easy and pwoerful.

In terms of MUD parsers, this really is integrally tied itn oyour MUD
object model. I kwno of no boosk on this, mostly its an art passsed on

>   Memory management (perhaps)

Data structures again.

>This list could go on and on, so I'll stop here. I consider these to be 
>important concepts in mud design; how anyone can claim to have written a 

These are actually most of wehat you get ina d ecent Comp Sci degree.
Anyone writing software without such a degree or an equvelent education is,
you are right IMO, at a severe disadvantage.

I might add to do a good job with a MUD as they have developed you REALLY
need a machien organization course as well, because thats basic to the
design of virtual machines. 

Jeff Kesselman
Snr. Game Integration Engineer
TEN -- The Total Entertainment Network -- www.ten.net

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