Bug Fixing, Build Process.

Among all of the things that I have learned while working as a professional game dev, two very important things are 1) how to document and test bug fixes and 2) the importance of having a sane build process. I didn’t have a terribly good handle on either of these things when I first created Minim and as a result pushing out a release was a very painful process.

Bug Fixing

I’ve not always been good about keeping track of exactly which bugs I’ve fixed in a release, or which new features I’ve added. No longer! The past two days have seen verbose comments in my check-ins, which means I should be able to create a pretty exact changelog for the next release. Here’s my most recent check-in comment, to give you an idea of the kinds of things coming up:

Build Process

Creating and uploading new JAR files is not the hard part of doing a release. No, the hard part is making sure all of my online examples are up-to-date and making sure the Manual reflects any additions or changes to the API. The biggest pain with the examples is that the directory structure that I use on the website does not match the local directory structure, so it’s not just an easy drag-and-drop. I have my examples set up as a subdirectory in my Processing sketch folder, but what actually gets uploaded to the website are the contents of the applet directory that is generated for each sketch when I export it. Man, I would love to know a way to tell Processing to export an applet to a location other than the sketch folder, because then I could export to a directory structure that is the same as what’s on the web.

In any event, that’s a pain, and I need to figure that out, but I also finally got around to creating a subversion repository for all of the example source files. This will at least make it easier for me to tell at a glace which sketches need to have applets re-exported and uploaded. Maybe I can even figure out how to create an automated process for this. But, one thing I had to do before I could commit all of the examples, was delete all of the applet directories. To do that, I googled around and found this totally helpful batch file:

FOR /F "tokens=*" %%G IN ('DIR /B /AD /S *.svn*') DO RMDIR /S /Q %%G

That particular code will delete all subdirectories that match the name “*.svn*” under the directory it is executed in. All I had to do was change the name to match to “applet”. It’s all really clearly explained in this forum post and worked liked a charm.

So, that’s at least one part of my build process that’s been sanitized (by which I mean: made sane)!