Weird skein behavior on Mac OS 10.5

I’ve been having some problems with the skein in Mac OS 10.5. I wonder if it’s because I’m using the Frankenstein IDE where the old app is working with the new libraries.

I saw a problem before with test commands where some individual commands were being skipped. I thought it might have something to do with the fact that I’m using Basic Screen Effects to pause the game and wait for a key at certain points. So I tried to duplicate the problem with a small script and found something even worse!

I typed the source into my usual “tmp.inform” project, ran it a couple times, then looked at the skein. What I saw had nothing to do with what I was playing! I had to trim the skein down before it started accepting new paths again.

After that, I couldn’t quite duplicate the problem – whether or not a command was generated by “test me”, the output would sometimes show up as different after the pause, but then it would look okay on the next turn. I never got to the problem where any commands were actually lost.

I also had difficulties with the skein, test commands, and Simple Chat - because Simple Chat only accepts single digit option numbers as input, I assume.

Has anyone else been able to track down any weird skein/transcript behavior, or does anyone have a suggestion for other tests I could run on it? And where is the documentation for the IDE? I swear I saw it when I first looked at I7, but I can’t find it now. All I have to go on is Aaron Reed’s quick demo video.

Okay, here’s something. I tried changing the commands within “test me” and the skein is now refusing to update again. It took 3 or 4 tries before the change registered. But sorry, I’m not sure what I did differently, switching back and forth between two different strands didn’t seem to do anything, recompiling didn’t do anything… maybe it was switching to Firefox and back that finally did it?

Hmm… I bet it was because the game window was waiting for me to press SPACE.

Anyway, either I need to find some documentation on using the skein and transcript, or there are some bugs to fix… any help at all would be appreciated, because right now I feel like I’m unable to properly test my projects.

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I’m not sure about the weird later behavior you experienced but your first observation is definitely correct. The wait for any key phrase in Basic Screen Effects results in weird skein behavior, probably for the exact reasons you presented above.

I have that phrase at the beginning of my game and it caused all kinds of duplicate threads and diffing problems. Once I commented that line out the skein worked as expected.

My plan is to finish the testing and uncomment the wait for any key phrase for the release.

So, thanks for reporting your problem because it was helpful for me a decade later :).

Yeah, you have to be a bit careful when using anything that waits for input, as skein commands count as input. Often special prompts are recorded in the skein too, but not always. And there can be other complications.

In my case I was using “Real-Time Delays by Erik Temple” which by default allows time delays to be skipped by pressing keys, and this meant that when recording the skein it didn’t store any keypresses during the delay but when playing it back the next command was input too early and resulted in skipping the delay but also skipping the command.

I worked around that by making it do things a little differently in testing builds so that skein replay would work as expected again.