Showing posts with label UI. Show all posts
Showing posts with label UI. Show all posts

Saturday, 28 January 2012

Voice Command - Confirmed

Long ago, there was a promised voice interface functionality; now, it's confirmed to be incorporated into both versions 5 and 6. Early tests are rather promising, even in the most unforgiving noisy environments. It is however, advisable to have a decent microphone. There's still a few minor glitches that need ironing out, but aside from that, everything is now ahead of schedule.

The fun part is standing up from your office chair, and shouting "Red Alert".

Now, onto the more technical side of things. The voice recognition is powered by Game Commander 2. It's simply the best engine for this type of human interface. Microsoft's APIs don't offer the simplicity of programmability that Game Commander 2 does nor does it match its accuracy. Using Game Commander 2 also takes a huge weight off total development time allocated to LCARS 47, since time that would have been spent tinkering with API code can go into ensuring quality graphics and a canon-fitting LCARS GUI.

Game Commander 2 - Download (no longer used)

Update: September 15 2014
We no longer support Game Commander (or any other voice control software) as we now bundle our own in-house software with the latest version of LCARS 47.

Tuesday, 27 December 2011

Upgraded StartApp

The old StartApp simply doesn't handle the requirements of LCARS 47 anymore. To display all the relevant data and still reserve space for future expansion, more space was needed.

There's now better support for the custom name and registry fields under "Starship Configuration", with an option to load the config files into your favorite plain text editor.

An "Ambience Configuration" panel has also been added so you can select from a number of ambient sounds to play to make your experience all the more realistic.

Sunday, 25 December 2011

Custom Personnel Files

We decided that incorporating a database of customizable personnel files would be a great idea. It will provide about 12 places for you to import your own custom profile pictures and add text. The image (removed by request) is an outline of the possible layout.

I'll add a bit more formatting to the text to make it fit better with the user interface, but all in all, you guys are getting customizable crew files.

Saturday, 24 December 2011

LCARS 6 Custom Text Fields • Archived: Dec 6, 2011

Over the course of development, I got a few requests from users asking if I could add a customized ship name to the apps. For the small "module" apps, this was no problem, since it only took an open, edit, publish and and email. But the problem with LCARS 5 (and 6) was the compilation (including quality checks) took about half an hour, so I decided not to include any reference to ship names. Well, I figured I could just include a text file and solve all those problems. I thought the text file was a better idea then an user input field, since the text will be loaded each time the app starts.

So there it is, there will be a text file in the install directory, that you can edit. There is however, a character limit, although, quite generous.

LCARS 6 seems to be developing a more user oriented theme. It's getting rather souped up...


shipName=USS  Champagne

//       Experiment with spacing in between the "USS" and the name of
//       the starship. The above name has two spaces to better fill the
//       placeholder. If you were to use the name, "USS ENTERPRISE", you
//       would only need one.

//       Use the LCARS Champagne app to test the name. It will
//       automatically reload when you save this text file.

I figured I'd make "USS Champagne" the default name, as a homage to the good old naval tradition. I forgot to mention that there's a registry number option too. There is no (and no plans for) a ship class option, due to the variables involved in rendering MSDs in various modes.

LCARS VI Update • Archived: Nov 28, 2011

LCARS 6 is going pretty well, but there is one tiny problem... Unless you bought your computer from NASA, it's a bit laggy. This is because (and I'm heavily criticized for it) I always set the frame rate to 60 frames per second. There's just something about anything below 60FPS that I don't like - I can see the frames. 30 is just not good enough. I believe that Mike Okuda used 15 FPS in Voyager, but the focus was never really on any monitor; in LCARS 47, it is.

Let's hope computer standards increase tenfold, because this one is gonna be a hog of an app. At least 512MB of dedicated VRAM.

Anyways, I just thought I'd mention something about LCARS, and share some of the latest screenshots with you.

Album: [link] (removed broken link)

Peace, love and prosper,
Eleanor <3

LCARS Early Release • Archived: Nov 20, 2011

I spent all Sunday night finalizing a few things, now it's ready. I was wondering whether to release on Friday as planned, or now (since I've postponed 2 release dates already). You may have already guessed that I went for the latter. It's not the end of version 5, there will be a few updates to come, mainly the voice support and touch screen versions.

Have fun and enjoy.

DL: [link] (EXE - 9.31 MB)

And with that, work on version 6 (widescreen) can begin... Keep an eye out for info.

Just a quick note, if you have any difficulties, leave a comment here, or use the contact page on theBluPrint.