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Automated Sleuth Helper complete!
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Pidgeot
Pidgeot

Jan-30-2007 12:13

Hello, fellow Sleuths!

Over the last two months, I've been working on a brand new Sleuth helper. You might not think that sounds all that special - after all, great helpers are already available - but what makes this one different is that it's automated!

What it does is monitor your progress in the game, and extract relevant information from the pages. The information is stored and analyzed, in order to help you determine who did it, and who didn't.

It's heavily inspired by Evita's JavaScript-based Sleuth Helper, so a special "thank you" goes out there.

The application is made with Delphi 2005, and should run on any machine with Windows NT/98/ME/2K/XP/Vista and Internet Explorer 4 or later. Additionally, source code is included (ZLib license) in case someone wants to port it to another platform and/or language (such as Java).

The program can be downloaded from http://download.birdiesoft.dk/SleuthHelper.exe (330 KB), and a screenshot of the program can be seen at http://download.birdiesoft.dk/sleuth_helper.png.

Please take a look at the help file before using the program (it's very short), so you are familiar with how the program works.

(Disclaimer: The application depends heavily on the current structure of the game pages, and changes to this may break the program. Although the application is designed in such a way that it should fail entirely if something goes wrong, this cannot be guaranteed. Use of this program is entirely at your own risk, and any cases lost because of errors in the program should not be blamed on the program or the author.)

Replies

Dave Von Wave
Dave Von Wave
Well-Connected

Oct-8-2007 02:54

Had more or less the same thing happen to a case I opened from someone else.

I opened the case and whent straight to the case tab to click on each person so the helper would know their information. Thing is, when the whole page loaded I didn't need to click on anyone because it somehow got all their information anyway.

At first I was psyched, thinking this must have been because of some update. I thought It simply opened up all of their seperate pages without letting me know. But it hasn't happened since and... I find myself being disapointed. It was a neat thing that happened, even if it didn't make sense.

Pidgeot
Pidgeot

Oct-8-2007 15:14

Laura: Unless you actively get an error message, it's working. If you get an error, you can't contact any of the mirrors, for some reason.

Dredd, Dave: I can swear I don't do any auto-checking - it's just become a bit quick to jump to conclusions starting with v1.14.

I've been very busy, so I'm very late as far as updates are concerned - but I can see I need to get v1.15 out ASAP, since v1.14 is causing problems. Therefore, I'll go through the code one last time sometime during this week (hopefully tomorrow), and then release it as quick as I can. I might have to remove parts of what v1.14 added, because so far, I've been unable to spot the bug. (Don't worry, it'll still keep the checkerboard effect ^_~)

I suppose you deserve a sneak peek at what's to come, though, since there are things beyond bug fixes - and in that regard, I'd like to congratulate Dave, since he correctly guessed one of the new features. You will indeed be able to reorder suspects now (although it's a manual process).

Dave Von Wave
Dave Von Wave
Well-Connected

Oct-9-2007 03:36

Yay for updates!

And don't worry Pigeot, I've looked very thuroughly at the code in 1.14 I know it doesn't do that. (I looked at the to see if I could make it do that though. Mind that I've never changed anything.)

You are doing a woundrous job just sharing this helper as it is. We appreciate it very much.

Dave Von Wave
Dave Von Wave
Well-Connected

Oct-9-2007 04:10

Bug-wise, something you might want to look at (not necessarily this update) is the fact that when one column decides that a specific person matches, other columns don't update (aside from that persons "could match" becoming "no match").

This is an issue in very few cases and never a problem.
Here's an example: A and B both are the only matches for a thread and a note A is green and B is yellow. I check B for the note and the banker says it isn't him. A suddenly matches and dissapears from the thread.

B is now the only remaining one to match for the thread but he is only a "could match" not a definite match.

So I go on and check some other notes that end up matching greens since I don't want to leave the banker until I've done everything I can there.

Later on, when I leave, I see that I want to go to the tailor. I see that B is the only match and I smack myself about the head for not paying attention.

Some (but not all) of those smack can be quite painful. Please don't make me smack myself anymore.

Lady Zeugirdor
Lady Zeugirdor
Vigilante

Oct-9-2007 08:38

Dave,
You aren't the only one smacking yourself in that situation. I did had to smack myself last night, when in the same situation.

Sleuth Sindy
Sleuth Sindy
Bounty Hunter

Oct-10-2007 04:56

I would just like to say that I have been using The Sleuth Helper since it first launched and have never, yes that's right, never, had a problem with it, and it saves so much time in regard to having to write everything down. Thank you so much for this wonderful tool Pidgeot.

FYI - Sleuth helper will automatically eliminate people if you come to a point where you have a piece of physical evidence and the only suspects left that could match it have False Alibis, which means that the guilty person is obviously one of those.

Dave Von Wave
Dave Von Wave
Well-Connected

Oct-10-2007 09:17

I know that it eliminates them.
That's what happened to A. What I'm saying is that B didn't get this treatment and why it didn't happen.

Just something that I have been noticing is all.

Sleuth Sindy
Sleuth Sindy
Bounty Hunter

Oct-10-2007 20:01

Sorry Dave Von Wave. I didn't mean to be contrary. I'm afraid I can be a little too "abrupt" at times, or so I've been told. :) Pidgeot posted:

" . . . but I can see I need to get v1.15 out ASAP, since v1.14 is causing problems. "

And I just wanted him to know that not EVERYBODY was having problems and that his efforts really are appreciated. My post wasn't really meant to be directed at you. Sorry if I ruffled your feathers.

ctown28
ctown28
Tireless Tiger

Oct-10-2007 20:26

I agree with you Sleuth Sindy, Pidgeot made a great program for this game.

I occasionally have some probs, but can't complain about them. Pidgeot did this on his own time and asks for nothing in return.

It's still up to us to do our own notetaking or trust the program. I elect to trust the program to a degree and if there is something I don't agree with, ask a few more questions to get it nailed down.

Lady Zeugirdor
Lady Zeugirdor
Vigilante

Oct-11-2007 00:07

Hee hee, I guess my post may have been misunderstood too. I wasn't saying it was a problem with the helper. I was saying I smack myself for being in the same situation of not paying attention. Hence, why I directed it at Mr. Von Wave. Oh, well. I do love the helper. It makes cases finish quicker and I don't get writer's cramp with all my note taking!

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