Entries from April 2009 ↓

Build 5Z71

Build 5Z71 of Inform is now out for Mac OS X, Windows and Linux (Ubuntu, Debian, Fedora and Arch, plus command-line support for generic Linux and the XO laptop), with Solaris builds due to follow shortly.

Matt Arnold: Inform Workshop at Penguicon

Matt Arnold is considering running an Inform workshop at Penguicon. He writes:

It seems like a perfect fit to run an Inform workshop during Penguicon, a science fiction and open source software convention that I run in Michigan. The good thing about that arrangement is that the convention covers the overhead, like facility rental, computer lab, and audio-visual equipment.

One of the keys of creating this event would be to collect the locations of those who would be interested in attending, and how far they would be willing to travel to it.

People who might be interested in such an event should write to Matt at matt.mattarn@gmail.com.

Jim Aikin: Inform 7 Handbook for younger authors

Jim Aikin has announced a documentation project now in progress — a book-length guide to Inform written for readers in the 11-to-15 age group, and also for adults who are new to IF and programming. Though not yet complete, the project already contains quite a lot of information.

Jim has invited feedback and comments from readers.

Git Version 1.2.4

Iain Merrick has released version 1.2.4 of Git, his direct threaded interpreter for the Glulx virtual machine. Glulx is one of the two VMs on which Inform-written works of IF can be played – the other is the more traditional Z-machine, which can only handle smaller works; authors can choose which they want to use with the Settings panel in Inform. Git is generally faster than the reference implementation for Glulx, called Glulxe, and version 1.2.4 adds support for the new “Inform veneer acceleration” opcodes recently added to the Glulx specification, which makes it *much* faster still.

The speed gains are only realised when a story file is played back on v1.2.4 or later of git, so we’d ask all interpreter writers using git to upgrade as soon as possible. The speed gains also only show for a story file produced by Inform release 5Z71 or later, so authors of existing IF works which feel a little slow at present might want to re-release them using the new 5Z71.

There are details posted on RAIF.

Dr. J. McCall’s Classroom in the News

Dr. Jeremiah McCall uses Inform, IF, and other types of computer game in his history classes at the Cincinnati Country Day School. His work was recently written up in the Cincinnati Enquirer. The article doesn’t mention IF, but it does have some interesting comments from students and from Dr. McCall about the use of gaming in education.