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#1 robcat2075

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Posted 14 September 2012 - 02:21 AM

Might want to split this off into a new thread. The AMA can handle external links and video I believe. I know we can "edit" it in A:M but still have no idea how we get the edit published to everyone else. An ideal documentation situation would be a new TaoA:M that properly introduces the workflow of A:M and then AMA expanded to cover all parameters, all buttons, all plugins, all windows... basically everything you might look up in the index of a "complete" manual.

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#2 markw

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Posted 14 September 2012 - 05:14 AM

Wow this thread gained momentum quick since my last post!
So here are some of my thoughts...

Much as having a fully documented A:M contained within a printed TechRef would be a fine thing to own, and no doubt look imposing on the coffee table, it would always have one major drawback that could never be addressed, namely, that as soon as it went to print it would be out of date!
Personally I think putting time and effort into A:M Answers and the Wiki are the way forward.

...The AMA can handle external links and video I believe. I know we can "edit" it in A:M but still have no idea how we get the edit published to everyone else...

As fare as I can see all the AMA info is kept in one file named AMAindex.txt
If it is just this file then disseminating newer versions of it is as easy as just downloading an updated version of the file to replace the one you already have, so you wouldn't need to wait till the next version of A:M came out.
Possibly even so called "overnight builds" of AMAindex could be available.
There dose though need to be an organized and formal system for users to submit information to AMA for inclusion, maybe in a similar way as submitting bug reports work.
On a Mac? Not used Netrender before?
Then have a read of this...

#3 Rodney

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Posted 14 September 2012 - 09:24 AM

I'm not sure what program Steffen is using to merge the A:MA files but they can be merged with any of the numerous utilities that execute Merge/Diff operations. Maybe we can list some of the best in this topic. Steffen has come up with some pretty cool solution in A:M Answers but it's a tip of the iceberg kind of thing. If the feature itself is well utilized he's sure to have a continued incentive to continue. It's worthy of noting that this documentation as important to programmers as it is to users because the programmers can reference the information to assist in understanding what is coded. There were a lot of initial plans for A:M Answers and further improvements will be dictated by their usage. Every time a programmer (Steffen) documents changes to A:M's underlying code we see that useful information reflected in the interface via A:M Answers. The usage of A:M Answers is therefore of an incremental and iterative nature by design. It will continue to improve in quality and quantity with time. Perhaps not exponentially but we will see improvement! Added: This does serve to illustrate why users can't just automatically update the core data where the programmers descriptions reside. The risk of losing or corrupting that data is too high.
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#4 markw

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Posted 14 September 2012 - 10:51 AM

Ah, so this is where my last post went. Keeping us on our toes Rodney.
Thanks for clarifying how A:MA works.

...If the feature itself is well utilized he's sure to have a continued incentive to continue.

How though will he determine this? I for one love the potential for it but he can't know how often its accessed can he. Can he? Steffen is watching you! :o
On a Mac? Not used Netrender before?
Then have a read of this...

#5 robcat2075

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Posted 14 September 2012 - 11:00 AM

Here's the problem i see... -I edit AMA to add information to an entry. -now what? All I've done is edit my own local AMA file. It doesn't get sent back to any central repository for AMA. I'm not aware of any mechanism that collects the edits. There must be some plan to collect additions to AMA but i don't know what it is.

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#6 Rodney

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Posted 14 September 2012 - 11:08 AM

How though will he determine this? I for one love the potential for it but he can't know how often its accessed can he. Can he? Steffen is watching you!


There are many ways to determine how something works but even if no one except Steffen enters data into A:MA it is already working. Steffen is very good at documenting his work. If you have any question about that refer to his plugin documentation. This is especially impressive because english is not Steffen's primary language.

So what you see as potential is going to work regardless of whether anyone uses A:MA at their local level.
But what incentives do we have to add our information to it? Answer: Many. (Note: I will not explore them here in this post but will instead explore the process a little more)

<assumptions on>
A few potential Use Cases of the process:
Assume the first User operates purely from a selfish viewpoint (call it 'protecting trade secrets' if you prefer): The user enters their own information into A:MA and never shares it with anyone. Steffen won't know a thing about this.

Assume a User that prolifically tests every option and documents his journey in preparation for a production. Should he share this information with others it will eventually get to Steffen.

Assume several Users routinely upload their A:MA data file to the A:M Forum. Others can download and merge that data with their own or wait until Steffen, Fuchur or some other kinds sole integrates it with the core data file.

Assume Steffen is well ahead of the power curve and has something else (better) he is already moving toward.
<assumptions off>

During the Alpha testing phase of v17 many things were discussed. Not everything discussed is implemented.
Ideally a team of knowledgeable A:M Users will periodically review and approve information.
This to ensure that misinformation doesn't trump the good stuff.
The downside is that the core data is bottlenecked. The upside is that it should be highly accurate.

Thanks for clarifying how A:MA works.

Please note this is only my feeble attempt to understand it myself.
I do not fully understand A:MA because I haven't fully seen how it works.
I have tried my best not to spread misinformation in the course of explaining how I think it works.
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#7 Rodney

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Posted 14 September 2012 - 11:19 AM

The AMA can handle external links and video.


This is a true statement. So your belief is well founded.
I thought that we might have a few examples live by now but everyone involved has been busy rolling v17 and v17a out.
It's best if we let them do that! :)

Fuchur has done great things not only with v17 but in updating the Hash Inc website. If you haven't viewed it recently you should check it out: www.hash.com

There should be a few videos in A:MA now but I haven't explored deeply.
I don't want to ruin any 'official' rollout so if I'm headed that way (Fuchur?) please feel free to ask me to move on for now.

In the meantime, I'll see what I can ferret out.
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#8 Fuchur

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Posted 15 September 2012 - 08:33 AM

The AMA can handle external links and video.


This is a true statement. So your belief is well founded.
I thought that we might have a few examples live by now but everyone involved has been busy rolling v17 and v17a out.
It's best if we let them do that! :)

Fuchur has done great things not only with v17 but in updating the Hash Inc website. If you haven't viewed it recently you should check it out: www.hash.com

There should be a few videos in A:MA now but I haven't explored deeply.
I don't want to ruin any 'official' rollout so if I'm headed that way (Fuchur?) please feel free to ask me to move on for now.

In the meantime, I'll see what I can ferret out.


Currently I am not involved much in this topic. Anyway I am interested in going on with it... what I would suggest is, that we could open up a new sub-forum or at least a new thread about that.
People should be able to upload their updated A:M:A-files (It is just a file in the installation-folder of A:M) and I will consolidate them and make them available on hash.com and / or the forum.

I have made several videos for A:M:A (can be found on A:M films) which show the meaning with examples of some properties...
Jason Hampton was involved in that too, so we never got along the road totally... the last question we had was about using YouTube or not to host the files and if which user should upload them, etc.
I tend to upload them to A:M films (as you can see) so everything is on the hash-server (like that we have the control over it, not Google)... the drawbacks are smaller resolutions and that they are less noticeable,
so I have the concerns that people are comparing advertising-videos of other software with these strictly learning/informational videos from A:M:A, which could be bad advertisement too...

I already worked out a system to upload and consolidate the files automatically, but it never worked for everybody, so I dropped that in favour of other things to be done...
If I find the time, I'll see what I can do about a part of the hash.com-website to upload the A:M:A file and receive the current one available... I am not sure if that will happen in the next few days so.

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#9 Rodney

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Posted 15 September 2012 - 09:15 AM

we could open up a new sub-forum or at least a new thread about that.


Well, since we've had two A:M Answers forums since v17 Alpha/Beta timeframe we might as well use them.

I like it when work is this easy. :)

Note: After the newness of v17 has worn off A:M Answers will likely move to the Help Desk along with A:M Reports and Forum Assistance.
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