Saturday, 1 April 2017

Catznip R12: Three Days of Teasers - Day #2: Finding things in your inventory (Part 1)

Another very common problem I run into is knowing that I bought something that would work perfectly with the outfit I’m putting together but I can’t find it so I just hopelessly keep poking my inventory with various search terms hoping the elusive accessory will magically appear among the search results.
While your inventory is filtered you only see items that match the filter which is as you’d expect; however, this can lead to some frustration at times:
While those are the shoes I'd want to wear, not all the items in that folder are shown (they come with mesh stockings and a colour picker HUD that I need as well) and of course the filter prevents them from showing so I would have to clear the search, scroll down to the folder and then wear it all which always feels rather tedious and broken.
A similar example is when I remember the name of the store, and the event I got it at and those two things combined let me find it but all I end up with is a folder containing no items:
While this is the top I wanted to wear, again I can’t get at the actual items I want without clearing the search and some scrolling (and waiting since it does take a noticeable amount of time for my 100k+ inventory to get unfiltered).
But wait… we already have a solution for this in Catznip right? We can simply right-click on that folder and pick “Open In / New Tab”.
(The menus were cut short for these screenshots – “Open Folder in” is actually much farther down the list)
Which gives us:
And ta-da, problem solved! Right?
While I did add the “Open Folder in” feature for precisely this reason it still sometimes feels very clumsy or awkward to me so today’s highlight is the new “Show Contents in” feature:
If we click it, suddenly we see this in our filtered inventory tab:
We still have the exact same search we had a moment ago, in the exact same inventory tab, but now I can easily see all of the items right there and just wear them!
Tip: you can actually hold down Ctrl and double click the folder to toggle its inclusion in the current search so you don’t even have to move through the menu maze!
As you saw, the menu label reads “Current Search” which means that once you click little (x) to clear the current search the folder won’t keep showing up in all of your subsequent searches.
You can also tell from the other three (currently disabled) options that I’m thinking about expanding on this option, but that won’t currently be going out with the first release since I’d like to play with it a little bit first.
This wraps up our second day of inventory feature teasers and hopefully you have a good (starting) idea of what to look for; even if none of the above made sense I’ll bet that at one point or another you’ll be searching your inventory and just wish you could see everything that’s in that folder without clearing your search and that’s when it’s this feature’s time to shine.

Friday, 31 March 2017

Catznip R12: Three Days of Teasers - Day #1: Keeping your inventory clean and organized

I've decided to try something new with the upcoming release and do some write up of some of the upcoming features and how they can tie in to each other or enhance functionality we already have or maybe have you discover you didn't know you could do already or inspire you with a feature idea or suggestion.
R12 is currently far from done (I estimate about a month left to go) but it's good enough to likely start a first beta / preview look next weekend so here's me trying to get you all hyped up so you'll be eager to test when the time comes and play with the new shiny things on your favourite viewer (and of course show up friends on other viewers who aren't really innovating or creating original features anymore 😛).
Inventory – it’s the bane of my (and probably many others’) SL existence! I spend most of my time these days roaming the various events that pop up around the grid amassing both demos and entire wardrobes – that I’ll never have the time to wear :( – faster than I can ever bother sorting my inventory and the result isn’t pretty (no, I’m definitely not putting up a picture to show just how bad it is!)
The base idea is simple, whenever you buy or grab something you have to click that “Buy”/’Pay”/”Keep” button anyway so wouldn’t it be great if we could just do some pre-sorting right then and there?! It wouldn’t really interrupt the flow of going to an event and hovering up demos or buying things you’re sure you want since you don’t actually have to go to your inventory while you’re at the event and you’d be able to teleport home with an inventory no worse off then when you arrived.
So without further ado, I present the new Catznip inventory offer toast (it looks similar for the other inventory toasts, as well as the “Buy” floater):

(If you’re using a different viewer the “Show in Inventory” checkbox is likely new to you too but I won’t be discussing that here and its purpose should be fairly obvious)
I just bought a set of applier nails and clearly the “accept in” portion of the toast is what all the fuss is about; if I click it I’m presented with the following options:

A quick run-down:
  • [Default] – when I press “Keep” the item will appear in the default location (which is either the “Objects” folder for objects or your inventory’s root for folders)
  • Received Items – the item will appear under the “Received Items” (where you SL marketplace purchases go)
  • Demos / Shopping – this is where things get really interesting since these 2 options aren’t there by default but are rather things I configured to suit my own OCD inventory sorting needs.
The “Browse” button just provides me with an easy way to quick-pick a folder if I want this to go somewhere very specific (or if I just want to quick-configure a folder since whichever folder you pick will be reusable in future toasts):
You can filter your folders from the textbox and there’s a convenience button to “Close All Folders” should you need but this floater should be fairly self-explanatory.
The little wrench icon is there to allow you to do far more advanced / in-depth configuring to tweak everything to how you personally manage your inventory.
My simple demo floater looks like this:
Before I made this feature, I did actually have a safety net for the vast number of unsorted items flooding my inventory: a “Shopping Bag” folder, further divided into year and month of when I bought/acquired the item.
So building on that I configured something very similar:
  • Demos – I hated that my demos and purchases ended up in the same place so now I have a “Demos” folder under my main “Shopping” folder where I route all my demos; then when I get home later on I have all demos in a convenient place and it makes it very easy to clean them all up in one swoop
  • Shopping – A folder “Bag” under my main “Shopping” folder where I’ll put all my purchases
  • Temporary – A folder (under the default “Objects” folder) where I’ll keep all things that I’ll never need later on (for instance if props I get from something I’m sat on); or something a friend wants to show me that I won’t have a need for later on)
But wait; there’s more still! What’s the subfolder column about?!
Dumping everything into a “Demos” and “Shopping” folder already feels like a big improvement over what we currently have but still I’d prefer if all items auto-routed to a folder named after the month I got them and just because I want to go hover up demos from several events in a row I’d really like to be able to identify which event I got the demo from I’d like to further split them up into region name as well.
So this is where the “Subfolder” textbox comes into play: it allows you to specify dynamic subfolders (which I know sounds really complicated to anyone but me, sorry ).
Look at my shopping folder, the folder path is “Shopping/Bag” and the subfolder portion is “%yyyy-%mmm/%region” so if we break that down into its parts
  • Whenever I accept something into the “Shopping” option from the drop-down, it’ll be router to the “Shopping” folder under my main inventory, and then into a folder called “Bag”
  • Next we see %yyyy which simply means the current year as 4 digits (look at the cheat sheet) – e.g. 2017
  • Next is a little dash just because I want to make it more visually appealing
  • Next is %mmm which is the name of the current month in letters – e.g. April
  • Next is a ‘/’ which means whatever follows will be in another folder level
  • Finally there’s a %region which means we’ll put everything in a folder named after the region I was in when I accepted that folder (the parcel name would be easier but those tend to be very, very long so not suited for inventory folder names)
So if we put it all together again (I bought this in April at Cosmopolitan in the No Comment region):
My purchase should end up in the folder “Shopping / Bag / 2017-April / No Comment”, and as we can see that’s exactly where it went:
Note that this is only the very first iteration of the feature, and that I’ve not even done any shopping with it beyond what I needed to write this initial post up so expect things to still change and improve. If you have any questions or comments, then please, do poke me.
Finally, I hope that this feature was a good one to kick start the new release and upcoming campaign and inspire you to at least consider supporting this TPV dev kitty. This feature (and many others) will be coming to a Catznip viewer near you very soon (likely next weekend).

Thursday, 2 July 2015

Catznip dead ? Far from it !

Small update. We're making quiet progress on a Catznip R10 release that will bring Catznip on Windows and Linux bang up-to date.

Invite only alpha testing will start soon.

Wednesday, 15 October 2014

Kitty Barnett Home from Hospital

I've traveled out to look after Kitty Barnett for a month now she is home from hospital, she's had some pretty major sugary and will make a full (abit slow) recovery, She's up and about in short bursts and happy when not in too much pain. She lost a lot of blood during the surgery so we do have take it easy. She's extremely grateful to everyone who has sent messages of support especially while she was struck in hospital for a week. Hope you can join me in wishing her the very best for a stress free recovery!

As you would expect she isn't really up to sitting a desk and writing code. Work on Catznip and updating RLVa is on pause and will be ready when it's ready, when she wants to get back into it.  I really shouldn't have to say this ; The more you pester the longer it will take, seriously that includes you mr inpatient with the alts. Don't be a jerk.

Tuesday, 23 September 2014

Compiling the Viewer (Linux)

I've updated the self build instructions for Linux to include Gentoo (in addition to Ubuntu and Mint). This isn't a huge change but handy for anyone feeling adventurous and wanting to build the viewer themselves.

Thursday, 29 May 2014

Streaming Music Controls & Track Information

Getting information about what media is playing on the current parcel has been on the todo list for a long time (and some of the first steps were done over the weekend), but getting the information is only half of the solution. the real task is what to do with it.
This development floater does not represent final UI and will not be in the viewer as seen.

Where would you find it useful to see the name of the audio stream for the current parcel, where for the name of the current tack, should it be displayed all the time music is playing? Echoed to chat as tracks change?

Something else ?

What options would you like to see? Are you a Listener or a DJ ?

What would you find useful, and (more importantly) why ?

Wednesday, 21 May 2014

Beta R9.0.13 OS X Released

While I was passed out the other night with a killer head cold, Kitty was busy and managed to resolve the issue that had been blocking our OS X builds!

So with that out the way we have released R9.0.13 as a beta for OSX to our beta testers. This is identical to the R9.0.13 that was released as the main Catznip viewer for Windows and Linux with the addition of some apple specific fixes.

We are flying blind past this point. Our in house Apple computer is from 2004 and can barely launch the viewer let alone allow us to test in any meaningful way.

Please report everything on the JIRA

With a little work this might be the first OS X build we can get into the release channel !