I just sat down and plotted out a few ideas for an addon that I'm thinking of writing, but I thought I'd check here first in case anybody has any comments, ideas, or pointers. Maybe it's been done before, I wouldn't want to reinvent the wheel.
Basically the idea works like this: The addon scans through your tradeskill windows every time you open them and spams an addon channel with everything you can create/build/do, ranging from your first aid recipes to your enchanting, cooking, alchemy, jewelcrafting, et cetera.
If you have a certain rank in the guild (as I'm writing this for my guild only I can hardcode it), the addon doesn't only broadcast, but also listens to the addon channel. Using a slash command, the officers would be able to bring up a window with the information that it has picked up about people and copy it. We would then paste it into a webpage that parses the text and stores everything to a database. Then, on our guild homepage, one would be able to check who knows how to craft item X, what items person Y can craft, etc, etc.
The syntax would be simple; something on the lines of:
Greipur,[Elixir of Lion's Strength],[Elixir of Minor Defense],[Minor Healing Potion], et cetera.
Where the first thing is the player's name, and the rest is items he/she can craft.
So ... any suggestions? comments? ideas? Things I should think about before I get started?
On some further thought, I figured that this was a bad way of handling things.
Instead of listing the items that people can make, it is probably far better to link the ID of the spell that creates it. That way, one can simply list a series of numbers corresponding to the alchemy, enchanting, blacksmithing, etc _spell_ that creates the item or the enchant.
This specific addon category is very sparsely populated, despite the obvious benefits.
The only addons I know that try to do something similar are:
with the latter (dbCraft) seemingly the more robust of the two.
Still I'd be very much interested in alternatives...
no addon has made its mark in this category yet so it's mostly virgin lands.
If I might make a suggestion.
Don't limit your ambitions too much :)
Maybe not for the first iteration of development but would you consider keeping the possibility open
for a more general purpose crafting database?
Maybe down the road an ability to provide server-wide crafting information?
It should only include high level recipes of limited availability that produce "BoE/U" results.
Limited availability = source is a drop or maybe extended to include reputation rewarded recipes
(resistance gear as an example)
That list of "interesting" recipes would have to be hardcoded so the mod doesn't get flooded with
a million low-level and irrelevant information.
Source of the information could be:
- manually adding crafter name and picking from list of crafts.
- if you are yourself a crafter with one of the list of monitored crafts and you choose to share that info
send out the info in small chunks once a week (day?)
- scan /trade for crafting links and add the poster if one of the "monitored" ones is found?
at a minimum the 1st option, others would be nice but not necessary..
a personal "scratchpad" of crafting info would also be a great step forward to the current situation of
abusing the friendlist or taking paper notes for that.
For both the guild (and server if you choose to develop in that direction as well) an ability to filter
what is listed further by skill-level/rarity/whatever would be very nice as well as an export.
Heh, sorry for the wall of text as you can guess I'd be excited to see something develop (even a guild-only solution)
If everything goes as planned with this, and I get it working the way I want, I could very well imagine creating a second addon based on this one where people type in a slash-command and get a box with information regarding their own Trade Skills which they can then paste onto a homepage that I can put up. This would then contain their server, faction and character name, making it easy to find exactly what you're looking for.
Of course, it'd be very easy to exploit by just changing the copy/pasted information to contain somebody else's name and/or server, but I'll tackle problem that once I get there. :-)
I would broadcast the spell ID and the item ID... unless they're always the same.
Also, don't spam *every* time. Annonuce once on the first time, once when a new item is learned (probably with some built in delay to catch mass-training), and once when a client asks.
Also, what's the point of restricting access to officers? The information can be useful to everyone, and the more people caching and relaying offline player's infos the better. Hell you could even flag in the UI that the information was not received from the actual party and thus may be out of date.
The point in Officer-Only is that we will be pulling this information from the addon and using in a database on our guild homepage, so that people can, in the comfort of their living room, just browse the guild homepage and quickly see who can craft what.
The reason for not broadcasting the information to everybody that has the addon is mainly to avoid getting huge files that need to be processed every time you log in. Having a relatively large high-end raiding guild where many people have alts leads to large databases, something that I'd like to avoid having to parse every time a person loads the game. I'd much rather put it somewhere else.
you can store itemid strings very efficiently, look at PeriodicTable. You wouldn't have to "process" them unless a query was made (by the UI or thru comm). With a little majicks, you could even avoid a good deal of processing on comm if you wait a random period for someone else to answer before you do. But yea, all that majicks is extra processing.
However, you're more likely to persuade people to install if it gives them access to the data too. People don't like running silent clients just cause their guild demands it. You would still get your info, and they'd get an advantage as well. I mean hell, you're collecting the data for their use anyway, why not allow them access in game and out?
Also you may wish to take the "it's already been done" approach. Check out http://freewithmats.com/ it's pretty nifty. Have your people who are willing to craft for others and who are willing to install a mod for it register there. And they can also advertise to anyone else on the server too... it's a really neat site, sucks that only one guild on my server is really using it.
I thought long and hard about how one should go about doing this. it's rather simple (read backwards).
Load the addon up, Open Up each Craft that you want to share.
open the Choice's UI (/gccui), that will give you a long ( and often ugly list ) of everything you can craft in the tab, tabs seperate each craft.
Once your selection is made, click publish to guild and it get's sent off.
From that you can open up the browser (/gcb) and see everything from there.
the comms & synch'ing systems are not quite polished off.. but it is functional.. i need a wider testing group to play with it and brake it so i can make it better.