[vworld-tech] Straw poll...what are people working on?

ceo ceo at grexengine.com
Tue Dec 23 06:40:02 PST 2003

I'm just wondering what kind of tech people on this list are working on 
at the moment...

Personally, I'm working on two vworld projects:

1. A modular MMOG server system, based upon a two-layer architecture. 
Lower layer has two purposes:
  - abstraction of the execution environment
  - offers very useful and common functions for MMOG servers (e.g. 
high-level functions for distributed-system comms, e.g. provides 
distributed and local logs, e.g. easy access to transaction-processing
system etc)

Upper layer contains lots of modular systems that are mostly only 
loosely integrated. A typical example is a geographic system for 
handling all sorts of game maps, providing efficient algorithms for 
reading/altering the map, and for getting particular subsets of 
mobs/players on the map very fast etc.

Another example is an efficient HTTP server making it easy (almost 
trivial) to export any game-data / systems to the web.

2. A much simpler system that shares the same architecture, but with a 
grossly simplified lower layer - there's no clustering, no distributed 
systems code, etc.

Almost no development goes into the lower layer (it's complete and too 
simple to need much further development), so all the R&D is in creating 
new upper-layer modules. At the moment, we have production-ready modules 
for e.g.:
   - A rules-based system that makes it easy to rapidly develop and 
alter all the game-logic (the technology is fairly simple, but effective)
   - templating systems that interface directly into asynch I/O libs 
(there are some pretty good general-purpose templating systems, e.g. one 
of my favourites is Velocity, but they're never integrated with asynch 
IO. This is a major pain). General purpose, so used for everything from 
dynamic speech systems (for NPC's) to PHP3-esque HTML.
   - database abstraction system. Mainly to cover the wholes and 
incompatibility horrors of SQL. Also to remove most of the boiler-plate 
code which is an inevitability of SQL development (...unless you already 
have a high-level DB API on top of your SQL)


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