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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    UK
    Posts
    1,461

    A request concerning the removal of Lorebook and data.lotro.com

    Hi,

    As you all know, each day we are getting closer to seeing the new forums, and it's an exciting time for the community. There are certain things each of us may look forward to: faster access, no logging out mid-post, refreshed forum skins etc.

    With the changes to the forum we will also wave a sad 'goodbye' to the Lorebook. Over the past 6 years it has grown to provide a wealth of information to gamers through its guides and game data (items, quests etc). Whilst it has not always been updated, without it many guide sites offering item searches, and plugins such as Tulkas and Lotro Compendium, just would not exist.

    I am sure Turbine has many reasons for removing the Lorebook and it's data.lotro.com API, and I will not question their decision. What remains now is to work out an efficient way for these sites and plugins to keep updated without access to data.lotro.com

    I have recently been building Tulkas to work within Rift's addon environment. One of the most handy things Trion provides is an easy and fast access to their items list, which is frequently updated.

    ftp://ftp.trionworlds.com/rift/data/

    The file Rift_Discoveries_<date>.zip</date> contains .xml files that list all the items, deeds, quests, and recipes.

    Not only does this make my job easier as a plugin author, but it also allows a host of sites to provide the data to their users (as an example, http://rift.zam.com/ is very similar to Lorebook).

    If Turbine could provide a similar downloadable file, then not only would it be possible for sites and plugins to keep up to date, but someone could hopefully recreate a similar Lorebook-style site with this wealth of information.
    I am not sure on the process that Turbine use to export the game data for data.lotro.com, but hopefully with the same process it would be possible to get a full download of the files instead.

    Please consider it Turbine
    Thanks
    Last edited by Galuhad; Jun 28 2013 at 12:48 PM.
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  2. #2
    Q: What are they saying about your request in the Lua forums?

    iirc Lua code is strictly beta. Lua programs are written by external devs (not turbine employees). Lua code distribution sites are not Turbine sites and so are not under their aegis.

    I'm not sure what forum access you want?

    Many people are being pointed to: http://lotro-wiki.com/ for player based and maintained game information.
    Perhaps check there for what you want?
    Last edited by SabrielofLorien; Jun 28 2013 at 02:01 PM.
    Whoever says “I” creates the “you.” Such is the trap of every conscience. The “I” signifies both solitude and rejection of solitude. Words name things and then replace them. Whoever says tomorrow, denies it. Tomorrow exists only for him who does not seek it. And yesterday? Yesterday is Kolvillàg: a name to forget, a word already forgotten.

    The Oath: A Novel by Elie Wiesel

  3. #3
    The main barrier to this is that there are a lot of unused or unimplemented items, quests, NPCs, etc. in LOTRO's data. It seems that there is no easy way for Turbine to tell what's actually in the game and what isn't.

    When this data has been exported for use by data.lotro.com and the Lorebook in the past, everything had to be manually flagged for inclusion by a Turbine employee. Since Trion keeps track of discovery information for every server, they can do that automatically. (If it has been discovered, it gets included.)

    Would you be satisfied with a set of data from LOTRO that makes no guarantee if a particular item, quest, deed, skill, location, etc. is actually available to players? Is there a threshold at which it wouldn't be useful? (For example, if 10% of the data were "bad"?)

    If none of this matters for your particular application, it might not be too much work for Turbine to export the data each time the client gets updated.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Posts
    7,583
    Quote Originally Posted by Fredelas View Post
    Would you be satisfied with a set of data from LOTRO that makes no guarantee if a particular item, quest, deed, skill, location, etc. is actually available to players? Is there a threshold at which it wouldn't be useful? (For example, if 10% of the data were "bad"?)
    Yes. As long as the information is consistently exported, it shouldn't be too bad to flag parts which aren't accessible to players (blacklisting) that portion of the data as it goes forward. We can flag or unflag its active status ourselves.

    Plus. Most of the 'unavailable' information isn't necessarily something we don't want to see as players. It gives us up and coming looks into content. Allows historical glimpses into no longer active content. It would encourage Turbine to keep their build trees more separated, to not put things into live builds we aren't supposed to know about yet. Give inquisitive players nothing to fear for seeing information exposed by existing methods.
    Crell-L85-Champion - Riddermark ; Swego-L85-Burglar ; Kotvi-L95-Runekeeper
    Delego-L85 Hunter ; Stodden-L51-Captain ; Edhul-L61-Loremaster
    Deglorion - SoA XP Disabler

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Crell_1 View Post
    Yes. As long as the information is consistently exported, it shouldn't be too bad to flag parts which aren't accessible to players (blacklisting) that portion of the data as it goes forward. We can flag or unflag its active status ourselves.

    Plus. Most of the 'unavailable' information isn't necessarily something we don't want to see as players. It gives us up and coming looks into content. Allows historical glimpses into no longer active content. It would encourage Turbine to keep their build trees more separated, to not put things into live builds we aren't supposed to know about yet. Give inquisitive players nothing to fear for seeing information exposed by existing methods.
    If you have access to future information wouldn't you be restricted by NDA? How would that affect your app or usage?
    Whoever says “I” creates the “you.” Such is the trap of every conscience. The “I” signifies both solitude and rejection of solitude. Words name things and then replace them. Whoever says tomorrow, denies it. Tomorrow exists only for him who does not seek it. And yesterday? Yesterday is Kolvillàg: a name to forget, a word already forgotten.

    The Oath: A Novel by Elie Wiesel

  6. #6
    Originally Posted by Fredelas
    Would you be satisfied with a set of data from LOTRO that makes no guarantee if a particular item, quest, deed, skill, location, etc. is actually available to players? Is there a threshold at which it wouldn't be useful? (For example, if 10% of the data were "bad"?)
    Quote Originally Posted by Crell_1 View Post
    Yes. As long as the information is consistently exported, it shouldn't be too bad to flag parts which aren't accessible to players (blacklisting) that portion of the data as it goes forward. We can flag or unflag its active status ourselves.

    Plus. Most of the 'unavailable' information isn't necessarily something we don't want to see as players. It gives us up and coming looks into content. Allows historical glimpses into no longer active content. It would encourage Turbine to keep their build trees more separated, to not put things into live builds we aren't supposed to know about yet. Give inquisitive players nothing to fear for seeing information exposed by existing methods.
    10% of a database being inaccurate can be an awful lot of wrong items. Depending on what is actually out of sync. ex: Export has Gold Recipe X in Instance A so you go run that and find out after many attempts it was removed but not listed in the exported file because of all the reasons they did away with the export in the first place.

    It might be better to mine the data your self from the system and the lotro-wiki. At least there you can make sure your imports are cleaner than depending on a known bad dataset.
    Whoever says “I” creates the “you.” Such is the trap of every conscience. The “I” signifies both solitude and rejection of solitude. Words name things and then replace them. Whoever says tomorrow, denies it. Tomorrow exists only for him who does not seek it. And yesterday? Yesterday is Kolvillàg: a name to forget, a word already forgotten.

    The Oath: A Novel by Elie Wiesel

  7. #7
    One big problem is that there is information in the game data that Turbine does not want us to have. Before the Lore Book this situation was never a problem because the live client that runs on our PC can't access that data. It can only be accessed by folks that have the correct Turbine internal client and or the necessary super user tokens on their accounts like Game Masters.

    Turbine had to manually delete this data prior to exporting to the Lore Book because they were not willing to flag the data in a way that the export tool could detect. Turbine probably using an internal tool that is part of the testing suite and process that dumps all the data in the build.

    At this point with 10s of thousands of data elements, it probably too costly to redesign the internals of the Lotro software. Change the processes. Mandate that every element must have a export flag that defaults to "Do not Export" inside the build.

    One company I worked at we ran into the situation where we had to encrypt some of the code and data in our application. Only humans with the necesssary key could see the data or the code. If you tried to pull up the code and data listing, these elements and their connection into the rest code base would not be readable assuming you have a full set. Most people got a reduced code base that was missing the restricted elements. Even if you had a key you could not access it.
    Unless stated otherwise, all content in this post is My Personal Opinion.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Posts
    7,583
    Quote Originally Posted by Yula_the_Mighty View Post
    One big problem is that there is information in the game data that Turbine does not want us to have. Before the Lore Book this situation was never a problem because the live client that runs on our PC can't access that data.
    There is also a strong possibility there is data in the live client they probably do not want us to have, but that has not changed how they implemented LUA. With LUA information can be viewed from the live-client's data in the course of normal operation. People use Tulkas to compare items in game with what they're wearing or something else. Tulkas has to pull up these items to compare. This has not changed Turbines tenancy to shift assets into the live client build long before it is time to use that data. It seems to be standard practice to start pre-loading as much information as you can as early as you can. I wonder just how separated their various build trees are.

    If you look at things like the strings in guild-wars 2 you will see work that is upcoming. Not available yet. Exposed by the live client. For example: What looks like a group finder implementation.
    Crell-L85-Champion - Riddermark ; Swego-L85-Burglar ; Kotvi-L95-Runekeeper
    Delego-L85 Hunter ; Stodden-L51-Captain ; Edhul-L61-Loremaster
    Deglorion - SoA XP Disabler

 

 

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