Daniel Lepage on Mon, 9 Jan 2006 12:37:42 -0600 (CST)

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Re: [s-d] Re: [s-b] [auto] Triller submits p332

On Jan 9, 2006, at 12:46 PM, Mark Walsh wrote:

On: 1/9/06 6:03:45 AM Antonio sent:
Subject: [s-d] Re: [s-b] [auto] Triller submits p332

If not already numbered, the Specified List will
be numbered sequentially from 1 to X, where X
is the number of Objects in the List.

Since you're not saying explicitly that the sequential ordering has to happen before the dices are rolled, and furthermore no basic guideline
is given as to how this initial numbering should be ordered
(sequentially yes, but what sequence ?) this basically says that you can arrange the objects such as to end where you want them to AFTER rolling
the dice. (supposing they're not already numbered of course)

What sequence?
The sequence is from 1 to X.

But in what order do you assign those numbers to the objects? This prop doesn't specify the initial ordering method, and doesn't even clearly indicate that the initial order should be decided before the random numbers are rolled. So while "Shuffling" a pack of cards, I could roll the dice to see how things are swapped, and then construct the initial state such that the state I want will result from the swaps I rolled.

I don't really like the dice roller because I think it takes too many messages to do anything. Part of this stems from my time as Minister of the Arena, when a given action frequently required four or five die rolls that all depended on the earlier rolls (if a roll of 3d5 is less than eight, then the shot hits and does 4d9 damage, but otherwise it hits a random neighboring cube with equal probability between all neighbors and does 4ds damage to each player in that cube, where s is that player's strength, etc.). This either required a large number of messages, or a set of really weird rolls (we roll 18d147; if the first one is less than 87 then the shot hits, in which case the second and third die rolls are both divided by 17 and summed to get the damage dealt, otherwise the second mod 3 determines which other square is hit and the third and fourth determine damage when divided by 18 if the shot hits Peter or by 12 if it hits Wonko, and...)

If I as a Minister were called upon to shuffle something, I would much rather use a simple tool (like one of Python's randomizing functions) than have to roll a bunch of dice and perform all the swaps. This isn't so bad for Super Powers, but I can remember being Minister of Cards, where I occasionally had to shuffle a hundred objects at once; this method would be completely infeasible.

What I'd really like is a dice roller that edits the text of a message and passes it on. I'd like to be able to email the dice server and say "Wonko gains {3d6}A" and have it post to s-b saying "Wonko gains 15A". I'd also like it to handle shuffling and choices: "{Wonko, Peter, Triller, bd, Antonio, comex} gets a {Beer, Bomb, Grain, Salad, Pizza, Yoyo, Fettucini} Gnome" -> "Wonko gets a Beer Gnome. Peter gets a Grain Gnome. Triller gets a Yoyo Gnome. etc..."
Wonko {x==1 gains} {x==2 loses} 12 HP." -> "Wonko loses 12 HP"

Perhaps best of all would be one that executes strings of some programming language within a restricted environment. Python, for example, would be ideal for me since most random rolls would only take a few lines of code, maybe only one or two, and the language is easy to read and to teach new Ministers.

But with the tools we have right now, I'd rather just trust the various ministers to roll dice properly.


Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former.
      -Albert Einstein

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