Dust 514, some EM2 teasers and statistics

As you might have heard, CCP announced Dust 514, their console MMORPG. And then announced it was to be integrated with EVE, especially with alliances and corporations. I just don’t see how it can work, honestly.

Half the point of EVE is the userbase is a very mature one and the sort of crowd who sit in their room playing with internet spaceships. Does EVE really want to get the Halo players of the world contributing to the game? I honestly don’t think so. It’s a very snobbish view, I know, but the average console gamer probably doesn’t want to spend their time liasing with alliances and planning the takeover of space from other alliances with internet spaceships they can’t see. What’s in it for the Dust 514 players, anyway? A mission system that could easily be done with some clever AI, from what I hear. I remain highly sceptical and look forward to seeing what CCP has planned in further detail- if they make it work it’ll be fantastic. But it’s a big if.

On a much lighter note, I’ve got some snippets from EM2’s new API integration. We’re being really thorough with this so far; we have seperate workers to download and process the API, meaning we can get around the API-being-slow bottleneck by having 3-5 workers just downloading and a few doing the processing (which is quick). What we also wanted to do was give you, the user, tons of control over what information we load into EVE Metrics. Read on for detailed information. Continue reading Dust 514, some EM2 teasers and statistics

Is Battleclinic in need of a doctor?

I spent a few hours yesterday and today poking around Battleclinic’s killboard. Say ‘Battleclinic’ or ‘Griefwatch’ to anyone considering themselves a web developer or EVE third-party dev and you’ll probably receive a derisive snort or a simple laugh; it may have a lot of data, but the interface is pretty horrific. And I mean horrific. In the course of my prodding, I noticed that the kill detail page- the page that shows a single kill related to a character- doesn’t actually list a date or time for the kill.

Now, that’s pretty important information. If I’m looking through BC to see someone’s kills, I’d like to see when those kills were. Say I’m crawling it for a corporate applicant’s kills- if the kills were a few years ago I don’t care about them as much as if they were last week. So, me being me, I looked around to work out how to file a bug report. Their forums looked like the place, so I registered with a non-me username and a mailinator address. I’m not a huge fan of spam so I try and keep my real email restricted to people rather than automatons.

All going well so far. I browsed to the ‘Bugs’ forum and made a new thread, then went to get a mug of tea. Then it got interesting. Continue reading Is Battleclinic in need of a doctor?

Of OLAP and T3 (Plus more on projects)

Blimey, it’s been a while since my last post. I hasten to add that this delay comes only by virtue of the fact that I am exceptionall busy with various projects right now. I thought an update might be appropriate, in any case.

I’ve spent most of my time working on EVE Metrics. There’s some very cool, very powerful changes coming up soon; early Feb saw the introduction of much more accurate prices and indexes, with a newly improved algorithm for calculating the average prices of items. But even better is some of the new stuff coming in the next few weeks- notably the implementation of a fully-fledged OLAP warehouse for EVE Metrics, which will open up some very awesome possibilities in the long run.

Also under the scalpel this month has been the API system. EVE Metrics will support full and limited keys when it comes to the API. However, there will be a quirk; if you want to make use of other people’s API data, for example to see more detailed market analysis with transactions hooked in and so on, then you’ll have to share your data. This means if you want to benefit from other people’s data, you must reciprocate and share your data for the benefit of others. Your data will, in all cases, be used for global averages, but entirely anonymously; for example, the number of transactions per day on a given item may include data from your API, but nobody would know it. This system will hopefully encourage users to share data more often than hide it. I’m planning to make this an opt-out system, with the choice to opt-out given on the API key page as part of the form. It’ll be really hard to miss, and those who are paranoid or wish to hide their activity completely can check the box to opt out.

I released accVIEW a few days ago, and it’s had quite rapid takeup from corporations. It’s a service that lets you perform background checks on prospective new members to your corporation- the basic tool lets you view skills, characters on an account, and various bits of information like their corp details, CEO, and so on. The premium version (For the low cost of 150mISK) lets you see the applicant’s wallet journal (with tools to show suspcious transactions and filter the results), as well as their recent kills/losses.

EVE’s M10 expansion, Apocrypha, should be awesome. Tech 3 is going to be great- lots of people complain about the skill loss and the fact that it’ll make FCing a nightmare. Well, no. The skill loss makes sense, and provides an interesting new dynamic to EVE. FCing- well, those who complain about T3 making FCing impossible are evidently not up to scratch as FCs. It’ll give FCs a real change and challenge for the first time in years. The wormhole stuff will be an interesting thing to watch pan out- there’s lots ot potential there, and it could end up being a lot of fun…

Nexus is progressing slowly but surely; the large amount of data we’re gleaning via an API-scraping installation for Sc0rched Earth is helping no end with development, and we’re busy tidying things up behind the scenes and refining some of the interface to make more sense. Once I’ve gotten ActiveWarehouse’s ETL library working properly, my next step will be to break out Photoshop and my text editor- EVE Metrics, ISKsense, maybe accVIEW, and the new MMMetrics site (Which will be launched soon) are all going under the knife and getting a serious facelift. And then it’s on to even more awesome stuff for EVE Metrics!