Greetings and Salutations, Folks!
This week, we receive a visit from one of our younger, yet very busy, authors, Cybeloras. He has been known for a few different offerings, but we had to pick something - so we have decided upon his Guidelines, SpeedyLoad, and TellMeWhen AddOns.
Cybeloras comes to us from Spokane, WA where he is finishing up his last year of high school. He will be attending Eastern Washington University, beginning in the Autumn, to study Computer Science.
Cybeloras has contributed his GuideLines, SpeedyLoad and TellMeWhen AddOns to the WoW community. These successful projects, however, were the result of a learning curve for this gamer.
When first working with AddOns, Cybeloras found tables particularly confusing.
“For whatever reason, I could not seem to figure them out,” he said. “I resorted to using two different tables to store pairs of data along with convoluted code to manage [the data].”
This process, which Cybeloras used when making his first code Sting Tracker, was frustrating.
“When I go back and look at [Sting Tracker], it makes me want to cry,” he explained. “But I suppose every programmer wants to cry when they look at their first code.”
Luckily, Cybeloras did not give up on programming and turned to various WoW community resources for help in making Sting Tracker. The idea behind this AddOn was to “facilitate the now outdated mechanic of serpent sting maintaining its damage bonus when refreshed by chimera shot.”
“The WoW AddOn community in general was extremely helpful in creating my first AddOn,” he said. “Tutorials on Wowpedia and the resources on WoW Programming were also vital to my beginning as an AddOn coder.”
Now, Cybeloras is in charge of GuideLines, SpeedyLoad and TellMeWhen, which all demonstrate different complexities and levels of completeness.
“GuideLines and SpeedyLoad are, for the most part, feature complete,” he said.
He said the only change users would notice for Guidelines is making saving multiple layouts that are easy to switch between possible. SpeedyLoad’s goal remains simple: giving users the fastest loading screens possible. Cybeloras continues to check every patch to possibly increase the AddOn’s performance.
TellMeWhen is a different story.
“Between my ideas and user suggestions, I don’t think I’ve ever had a time when I wasn’t actively working on a new feature,” he explained. “My philosophy for TellMeWhen is that it should be easy for new users to get into and start configuring, but powerful and versatile enough to allow for the most complex configurations imaginable.”
Cybeloras’s new project is a new icon type for TellMeWhen called Combat Event, which would allow virtually anything to be tracked.
“[Combat Event] can track anything that can be seen in your combat log and allows filtering by spell, source, and destination,” he said. “It makes TellMeWhen quite possibly the most versatile AddOn out there.”
Some examples of what Combat Event could track include when poisons fade from the weapons of a rogue during a raid or when cooldowns expire.
In addition to the three AddOns we are discussing, below, Cybeloras has quite a few offerings, which can be found from his profile page.
When not working on AddOns, Cybeloras enjoys playing WoW on the Mal’Ganis realm, along with his friends guild, “Strat.” Besides 10-man raiding or PVPing with his guild, he likes to play other games (like Skyrim), study, or go out with friends.
Guidelines is one of those must-have AddOns for anyone contemplating a reworking of their User Interface(UI). It helps in this often difficult task by providing a grid to more easily line up UI elements, rather than relying upon guess-work or more creative methods, such as placing tape on the screen or hovering with a ruler.
Upon loading, all you will see are the two rulers, which you can move from side-to-side/top-to-bottom by right-clicking. All you need to do at that point is either find the numerical position on the screen you require or decide where, depending upon how things look, and then left-click and drag from the ruler toward the other side of the screen; simple and intuitive.
TellMeWhen (TMW) is a one-stop shop for all of your combat needs, from Cooldowns on abilites, to knowing that you need to re-apply poison, and, well, everything. Everything, you say, well, nearly. TMW can react to 110 conditions.
The nifty part, here, is that you choose an icon, which can show all the time, only when the condition you specify is, or is not met.
Here we see how easy it is to configure text to show when an event occurs.
And this one - yep, you guessed it, you can set TMW to yell at you, or play another sound, when something happens!
Although it could be overwhelming, Cybeloras has some nice documentation in the extended 'Description' on the download page. In addition, there are some videos that have been submitted by TMW fans, that go a long way to showing exactly what is needed to get everything all set and running. By working slowly and methodically, no one should have much of an issue when setting it up. Cybeloras even has a forum set up where folks can view or get help when creating more customized actions.
As noted on his page, the main issue people encounter is that they do not enter the event name exactly as it appareas in-game, so be certain to double check those if you run into trouble.
SpeedyLoad (SL) is a bit of a trickster. Through a bit of behind-the-scenes magic, it reduces the wait during loading screens, except the first. SL does this by simply unregistering some 'unneeded' events and then re-registering them after the loading screen. With some quick testing, there was a definite difference, with no discernable negative impact.
No pretty pictures for this one, since that is sort of the point - to reduce the amount of time you have to waste by looking at them!
Although WoW is fairly good about keeping loading screens to a minimum, the amount of time you spend sort of blankly staring at them each day/week/year, likely adds up to quite a sum.
With that, we will wrap things up for this edition, FireFans. We appreciate Cybeloras taking the time to entertain us and definitely look forward to discovering the next 'card' he pulls from his sleave!
Have a safe, enjoyable (with much game playing!), and prosperous 2012, folks!
'Into the Fire' is brought to you by Curse. In addition to some other features, we primarily highlight not only the work, but also the people behind it. We do this by inviting some of our AddOn Author friends to bring their AddOns and tell us a bit about themselves and their creations - beckoning them into the fire, if you will. =)
Feel free to contact Nechckn, via site PM, if you have any particular Authors about whom you would like to know more, AddOns you cannot live without, or quirky questions. We will not normally reply to individuals, but will try to include the people and topics you find of interest.