Re: [OPTIMIZATION] RAM (previously: Random Thought)

From: Fizal (
Date: 10/12/00

At 12:24 PM -0700 11/10/2000, George Greer wrote:
>Yeah, that's the one.  It's not the model of beauty or speed but it does
>what it was intended very well, reduce memory.

Yup, but my changes/additions to your original are also not things of
beauty. Even after several years of coding, I still consider myself a
beginner in C/C++. So, if anyone can suggest a better way, I'm all ears! :)

I use 4 files to swap the followings into them:
- WORLD.BIN: rooms' name, desc and extra desc.
- MOBILES.BIN: mobs' long desc and extra desc.
- OBJECTS.BIN: objs' desc, action desc and extra desc.
- DOCUMENTS.BIN: help files and posts.

Instead of removing all the string ptrs, I actually left some of them there
for OLC, editting and obj instances. As you mentioned in the patch file, it
wasn't OLC-friendly.... So, I placed a variable for each string that I
swapped out to keep track of its location in the file for quick retrieval.
I got the idea from your discussion with Erwin Andreasen that you posted to
the list long time ago. And yes, I'm keeping the files open until shutdown
is called.

When the game needs to access one of the swapped strings, it does:

   if (string ptr empty)
      get the appropriate bin file
      go to the location specified by the variable
      read in the length of string to read
      read in the string itself
      return the string
   else return the string in string ptr

When doing a change, especially for OLC, I'll be using the string ptr to
hold the new string temporarily. Once update is confirmed, I swap it into
the file and reset the location variable to the position of the new string
in the file. I left the old string in there since it's troublesome to take
it out and I figured it doesn't really matter anyway.

The world I'm using is still stock based. I'm not planning to remake it yet
until I'm finished with a few things first. As to when exactly will that
be... only God knows. I prefer to be on familiar grounds (literally) when
testing stuff. Another thing is that I don't really remember why I didn't
include mobs' and objs' short desc. I remember trying it tho, but then
decided to take them out again. Hmm.... *scratch head*

As for extra CPU use, nothing noticeable. Except when doing a where on
objs/mobs since it tends to do repetitive string retrieval, especially for
objs. Even then it wasn't as bad as Erwin predicted based on your "quick
hack". Hey, maybe that's why I decided not to include their short desc at
the end.... *shrug*

So, any comments, anyone?


Afizal Mustapa
Petaling Jaya, Selangor, Malaysia.

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