Currently I feel that I hate writing the manual for JADE. Having much more fun programming JADE in one reason for that feeling. But not the only. So I have been wondering what's up and I have come to some conclusions.
There are some areas in which I feel I succeed:
- Development is organized decently. We have the project management tool for JADE that I visit regularly and use primarily to decide what to change, what to fix and what to ignore (for now). (Hint: Use it ;-) ).
- I use this blog quite regularly to discuss major design questions, updates, etc. It could be even more steady but after years of being mostly silence I am happy with the current state of communication.
- If you are interested in the details of JADE development and want to get steady updates you can follow me on Facebook (or just register for the updates). I yet have to get better in this areas because I also would like to have a Twitter account for the updates (and don't use my regular Twitter account for that as there are many business related people following me there and I don't want to confuse them too much ;-) ). Additionally I should make more heavy use of Google+ (put me in your circles if you like). But to do that more effectively social networks either need to interact better (which probably still will take some more pressure before they do that) or I need a better tool that Tweetdeck to post messages on more than one channel (but as far as I know Google+ yet has to open its API for writing). So I guess I need to be more disciplined in this area.
- We have the forums for discussion (and although I rarely find the time to participate I read them regularly).
- The game itself gets frequent updates and I'm having a blast developing it.
Only the manual is a work area about which I am unhappy.
So what's the reason for it?
Basically things are very simple: I hate doing ASCII manuals these days. While I love fiddling with Adobe Indesign and cool layouts for role-playing games (before the JADE revival I spent a lot of time with Hexer & Helden, Gaia Gamma and The Fantasy Game and I have an extremely cool initial prototype for a Shadowrun clone with amazing images lying around... heck, I even fiddled with the ADOM RPG for a time) I just hate typing ASCII texts.
So the consequence is clear: The JADE manual needs to be more attractive than plain ASCII. But what do you think? Basically I see three options:
- Remain classic and do an ASCII manual. I hate every second of that ;-)
- Be a bit more slick and do an HTML manual.
- Be classy and do a stylish PDF manual with links and everything.
My vote is clear: #3.
Anybody concerned about that?