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Development Notes

1. Introduction



Over the years of developing Xu-Fu's Pet Guide, many ideas and suggestions accumulated. I have tried a few different tools like Trello or even Confluence to keep track of them together with my development notes, but these tools are way too clunky for this small project. And they all lack transparency.
This section aims to solve both problems: all my notes in one place, and making them visible to you, the hopefully curious reader!




2. Current Project: News 2.0 (15%)


The news section should support different topics and different users posting news. It should be sortable by topic / date. It should show a quick overview and should be searchable. There should be the option to go to a single article and view that in full screen + comments.

Steps so far:
Mock-Ups created and settled on a design
Beta version added and activated.
Design implemented and first bits of functionality done.

Next steps:
- Put in full design for new landing page
- new design element: Current news. A bar on top of all the other news with highlighted info => new patch now. Pet battle week right now. This pet is active right now etc.
- make design mobile friendly so the main comments are on top when shrinking window size
- create a user access right for the news admin section
- Create single-article view and hook comments into those
- implement the article editor into the news section
- create a guided news-creation-page including upload of a title image for news
- Make sure error messages via growl are working when dead links redirect to Home. Currently broken
- new widget for right menu: Recruiting - translators and so on
-

// TODO - check that title image is not too portrait and would kill the design. If so - cut bottom? also check if image is not too small in resolution perhaps
// TODO - add languages in database
// TODO - Fix bullet point issue
// TODO


Rollout:
- remove all home_ styles from styles.css


3. Backlog:



Currently working on:
- BUG PRIO 1: Translation tool for fight names currently overwrites work of others => Version history + warning if changes were made
- TASK PRIO 3: Detail Strat check stopped at ID 244
- TASK PRIO 2: Change comment feature to allow editing - next step: public poll
- TASK PRIO 1: Move PHP to Version 7
- TASK PRIO 3: Make comments of all languages visible in strategies

Open tasks:
- TASK PRIO 3: battle tag in user profiles needs EU / US switch
- TASK PRIO 3: translation for "swap to your Family x"
- TASK PRIO 3: Admin button to reset rating/favourites on a strategy - suggested by Remte
- TASK PRIO 3: For Family Battler (BfA) - Add the names of the trainers as tooltips to the menu
- TASK PRIO 3: review alternatives sorting, Tags are higher rated than Ratings - swap it around?
- TASK PRIO 3: message when comment reaches gold status working or not? and gold comment trigger will trigger email in the language of that person who made the deciding upvote. Not the person who made the comment. com_vote in ajax
- TASK PRIO 3: When a strategy is unpublished, will the favourites be cleared? What happens to the favs in that case or when users open up the page?
- TASK PRIO 3: article editor - Bullet points break formatting
- TASK PRIO 3: article editor - expandable text blocks
- TASK PRIO 3: Tags menu has icons with descriptions. It would be nice if these icons where clickable to toggle icons on and off

- BUG PRIO 3: Level slider in attempt recording doesn't work in some cases (tested with level pet)
- BUG PRIO 3: in profiles, btag and discord can be way too long. needs a way to display it properly
- BUG PRIO 3: article editor: when editing an article that is restricted to only ENglish and your own language is not english, it saves info into the localized part nevertheless and does not default to the EN version
- BUG PRIO 3: Reported by Jaguar: Alternatives tooltip sometimes shows a foreach error - for example on yula strategy
- BUG PRIO 3: Reported by Stan: Family Battler tooltips of family icons show sometimes the wrong achievement name

- SUGGESTION By Irayna: Add XP Values to link list on left (like EU/US appearances of Menagerie). To see which fights give more XP than usual (espcially for legion world quests)
- SUGGESTION By Flatluigi: 21.03.2018: minor sort of request: for the pets that don't have a level/can't battle, take them out of the calculations for number of pets at max level/at rare quality
- SUGGESTION By Remte: I'd like to have fresh comment responses notifications cleared out when I visit them independently.
- SUGGESTION By Panseit: message system, put an icon next to the user profile icon when new messages are there.
- SUGGESTION By Irayna: When viewing other peoples collection, add a column for your own pets to compare the collections.
- SUGGESTION By Remte: A notice on the landing page when Squirt day is up on EU or US with a quick link
- SUGGESTION y Prudentius: Setting for each user to have child comments sort ASC or DESC (depending on preference)
- SUGGESTION By Remte: When substitute finder is used, the description of the fight changes pets aswell.
- SUGGESTION By Remte: Allowing non-family substitutes in non-specific fights
- SUGGESTION By Darkgroob: Longest day achievement in an article with links to the individual fights
- SUGGESTION By Unknown: tool suggestion - compare pets of users and see what duplicates could be traded between them to optimize both collections
- SUGGESTION By Grainne: A tool similar to Rufa's tables http://web.archive.org/web/20150405233814/http://signature.neflin.net/wowpets/pets.php
- SUGGESTION By Ragath: Refactor the fight selection menu and include additional info, such as XP values or "Repeatable" fight




4. Upcoming Project: New Ready-Check Tool (0%)


The Legion Ready Checker was one of the most popular tools on Xu-Fu. The addition of user strategies and breeds made this tool non-functional. To bring this back, a new tool showing the list of ALL pets could be created, showing how often the pet appears in each fight, broken down by breed. This could automatically cross-check with the saved collection. In a second step, a selector or sliders could be used to apply the table only on specific battling sections.




5. Upcoming Project: New Pet Tables in Articles (0%)


Every category article (like "Legion world quests") has a table on it that shows the required pets. This table is not using the new alternatives system and is therefore outdated.
This project is to create a new table that picks the best strategy for each fight in the category, based on the same criteria as the alternatives tooltip (favourite, ratings, tags..) and lists those pets. This should also include required or missing breeds. The table will most likely have a longer loading time and should therefore be hidden behind a "Load Pet Table" button that dynamically loads the table only on request.
Suggestion by Remte: tooltip showing which battles the pet appears in, make this interactable and the list of fights clickable to the respective strategy page





6. Upcoming Project: Rematch Mass Export (0%)


One of the most requested features is to mass export strategies to Rematch. Rematch can already import multiple strategies at once, but XuFu currently has no such export feature. That is mostly due to the existance of alternatives. Until user strategies and favourites, the page had no way of knowing which strategy is the best for you. This new tool will make use of those features and give you options from which section you cant to export strategies from, and if only your favourites or also the top pick for you should be exported.




7. Upcoming Project: New Dungeon Tool (0%)


Due to Teroclaw-Hatchling changes, the hardmode guides for Wailing Critters and Deadmines have been removed. Also, because of the addition of user strategies, the Celestial Tournament Planner is not working anymore. A new tool should be created that can be applied to any of the dungeons and to find the optimal strategies based on user collection for non-healing dungeons.




8. Upcoming Project: Pet Cards (0%)


Xu-Fu already has a database of all available pets with their skills, stats and additional info. This could be used to replace wowhead tooltips with built-in Xu-Fu pet tooltips that show more details about each pet, reduce loading times and give additional value to the tooltips.
Additional idea with it: Capture source of pets more clearly. Where are pets coming from? Add more tags as well that go along with it: Premium (for pets like baby winston - not in the shop but was a bought pet technically). Seasonal => Only available during specific seasonal events.






9. Possible Future Projects


- hyperlink preview texts and images
- comment-section: show more info about the threads in tooltip? maybe the top comment + 2 or 3 additional ones with [..] and a "X more messages" ?
- comment-section: for "Votes", maybe add together all votes from the thread from your comments? Otherwise a +50 subcomment might be hidden because it's not the first one
- Email notifications
- Tools: Top X pets of all strategies
- "Your profile has been viewed X times."
- Add friend (what effects?)
- user setting how many comments to display per page (currently set site wide)
- better brute force protection (pw reset)
- rework all tooltips to use tooltipster
- comment moderation features directly on page, including display of reports
- allow bnet connected accounts to unlink from bnet
- comment statistics (how many, how often per month, average upvotes etc.)
- article about fun stuff with pets, what they can do:
der stinker und eine schwarze katze spielen warner bros. nach
katzen können sich auf deinen schoß setzen
bäume trinken wasser, wenn sie nahe dran sind
der schreckliche oozling gibt dir einen kosmetischen debuff...





10. Finished Projects



10.1 Project: Article Editor (finished April 16, 2018)


The page hosts many different articles and supports localization into 9 languages. This editor makes it easy for other users to add, edit or translate articles.
It is fully integrated into the user system, UAC, and allows on-page editing.


10.2 Project: Battletable 2.0 (finished June 02, 2018)


The battle tables were the first thing created on Xu-Fu. They are mostly static and not up to the standards of the current page.
This project was to fully re-create them, to integrate the user system, user collections and to add many more features such as breeds, coordinates, new Rematch formatting, an automated substitute finder and the option to record your attempts to make the strategy more accurate through crowd intelligence.


The substitute finder uses this logic:
no requirements => all substitutes are fine, based on skills and family
only a breed => creator pet, only show the selected breed(s). For substitutes, ignore breeds
only a stat => use the stat to determine which creator pet breed is OK. and use the stat for substitutes and their breeds
breed and stats => for the creators pet, only show the breed he activated. for substitutes, use the stat to show them or not.

10.3 Project: Dynamic Alternatives (finished July 01, 2018)


There should not be a limit to the amount of alternatives saved for any given fight. They should not have a fixed order either. The order should be dynamic and follow a logic that could include user settings, if the pets are in your collection, strategy upvotes, favourites, amount of pageviews, records of successful attempts or other factors.
The interface should use AJAX to reduce loading times and give a clear preview of the pets used.


The order in which strategies are shown is determined by 4 factors. Each factor supercedes the next. From top to bottom:

1. Favourited by user
If you set a strategy as favourite, it will be shown on top always

2. Pets missing from collection
The sorting will prioritize based on how many pets from the strategy you do not have in your saved collection:
No pets missing > one pet missing > two pets missing > three pets missing

3. Tags - optional
In the user settings, you can set the order of importance for all tags. Preferred tags move the strategy up, unfavored tags move it down in priority.

4. Rating and Favourites
Ratings and Favourites are calculated together into one single score. The calculation is:
- One favourite counts exactly the same as one 5* rating
- The stars are transformed into the numerical sequence -2, -1, 0, 1, 2
- The average is calculated and multiplied by a factor that is determined on the amount of votes+ratings:
1-10 ratings: Factor = 0.5
11-20 ratings: Factor = 0.8
20+ ratings: Factor = 1
This calculation makes sure that a single 5* vote on a strategy is not counted more important than an average of 4.8* from a large amount of voters, for example.
Likewise, a strategy that received many below average votes will be considered worse than one that received only a single 1* rating.

The first three factors only apply to registered users. If you are visiting without a user account, only factor 4 decides the sorting.

10.4 Project: User Strategies (finished August 01, 2018)


Users should be able to add and edit their own strategies. The editing options should be integrated into the Battletables without adding more pages. Most if not all options should be dynamic using AJAX to minimize page reloading.





11 Comments (EN)

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ragath

wrote on 05/20/2019

I would suggest GitHub or GitLab for maintaining and developing this project. These 2 tools are no overkil for this "small project" as you called it in the beginning. Both offer free code versioning for private repositories, Issue Tracking and more. Personally I prefer GitLab as it has more features.
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Aranesh

wrote on 05/21/2019

Hey ragath!
I know about both and what they do, but have never used them to work on a software product. I'm very much a novice in this field and in the creation of this page I made many mistakes that make it very hard to move it to a repository, mostly security details (hardcoded passwords yay!). The effort to make everything ready for such a move is probably quite high, and a big unknown to me. So it's part not wanting to invest the time and part not wanting people to see the code behind this page that keeps me from doing it ^^'
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ragath

wrote on 05/22/2019

I'm a professional software developer and I work with GitHub everyday. So in case you are interested in learnig how to get to a "new Level" I could give you some tips. With private repositories your code is not public and not visible to others. In case of hard-coded passwords and stuff there are simple methods how to handle it, e.g. using .env files or simple array files. But I also understand that it's a bit of work to migrate this project to GitLab etc
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shybobcat

wrote on 03/20/2019

I’d like to report a bug, hope this is the right place. A linked group of similar crabs, starting with Kelp Scuttler, does not have their abilities aligned. For example, if the Kelp Scuttler is listed with the skills 1 1 2, when you scroll through the rest of the group, they are all listed as skills 2 2 2, while they should be the same as the first one. You can see it in this strategy:

https://www.wow-petguide.com/index.php?Strategy=1352

Would also like to add that this site is amazing! I’m very impressed with both how it looks and especially how well done the coding behind it! Thank you!
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Remte

wrote on 03/20/2019

Thank you for your kind words :)
I reuploaded the pet and told our master tinkerer, and it seems it's okay now. Hopefully it was not a signal of something more severe ^^
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shybobcat

wrote on 03/21/2019

Thank you for a quick fix! It works fine now :)
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Ekire

wrote on 12/28/2018

Wondering - now that they changed the way pet battles work, would it be doable to add the pet trainer names in brackets beside the quest name? Not everyone knows the WQ name if it isnt up, but the trainer name is easy to reference.
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Ekire

wrote on 12/30/2018

Meaning stuff like Family Battler - IE: Zuldazar quest for "Small Beginnings" - Show it as either "Zujai - Small Beginnings", or "Small Beginnings (Zujai)"
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Remte

wrote on 12/06/2018

Not too soon: To avoid duplicates, any achievement-specific (Plushie, Family and as it was suggested The Longest Day) strategy could be automatically linked in the "global" encounter list (still redirecting to family section after clicking). To prevent clutter, they could be displayed only via user input to show more.
If this is not worth it, just expand the duplicate warning to all sections of the page… though it could be problem when someone decides to apply a strat the other way i.e. from globals to specific ones :P
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Seira

wrote on 10/16/2018

I love the "Incl. Steps" toggle. if somehow "Incl. TD Script" would be possible, my life would be almost complete :)
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gsanta

wrote on 10/20/2018

I was flipping this back and forth to see what changed and didn't notice anything. What does the Incl. Steps toggle do?
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Seira

wrote on 10/21/2018

On the website, you can see the steps it takes to defeat the tamer. If you flip this before importing the Team into the game, you will see these steps in pet battle (in a note)
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Amber1019

wrote on 10/13/2018

Implementing a mention feature like I've seen you talk about sounds fantastic.
Another thing I've thought would be great would be adding a "date posted" and/or "date updated" to strategy pages. That way if/when Blizzard nerfs and makes changes to battle pets again, we'll be able to see when the strategy was posted, and whether or not it's been updated since the changes Blizzard made, so we know to alert others in the comments about it or to just look into finding a more recent strategy.
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NIteowl1970

wrote on 09/26/2018

Just found this page of upcoming projects. A lot of great stuff there. Just a couple requests.Under #10, you asked "Add a friend (what effects)" I would love to be able to add a friend and compare our pets, to see which ones they have that I still need. Also I would love a category on the pet lists that tells me how rare my pets are compared to the rest of the wow population, something like "Pet name = Ikky: Owned by 25% of other players"
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Nebs

wrote on 09/22/2018

Hey! Long time user here, love love love your work :)
Have seen few suggestions similar to mine, relating high XP battles leveling pet fights.
I was thinking of a list of fights for Pet battle week (bonus event) when you get that lovely +200% XP, focusing to those battles that give high XP.
So my idea was to have a list categorized by areas, where you can find those battles that give high XP, so most beneficial to do on the bonus week. It could be a pet leveling strat at the same time even on the weeks where the bonus XP isn't on.
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Pike wrote on 08/25/2018

I love the site and have used it religiously for several years, thanks for all your hard work.

If I could give one little bit of feedback. I copy the turn instructions and paste them into the Rematch notes for each saved team. Previously the copied notes would paste with each turn on one line (with the turn number and description separated by whitespace). However, sometime between mid-Legion and today the page structure has changed so that copy and paste now loses the formatting and each cell is on its own line (so the turn number is on its own line then the description on the next line and so on).

I'd love to see the old table structure return (maybe just for the popout?) although tbh its not a major problem to manually fix the notes after pasting.

Thanks again for the site.
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Aranesh

wrote on 09/10/2018

Hey Pike! I'm aware of this and one of the next things I'll work on is to include the strategy steps into rematch notes directly, so you won't have to do 2 copy pastes anymore, and this formatting issue will be gone at the same time :-)
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Pike wrote on 09/22/2018

Just saw the steps copy feature, amazing work, thanks Aranesh!
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Cole#13497

wrote on 07/27/2018

Not sure where to put suggestions but here's mine.

Allow users to link pets when typing comments so you could use your links you want for wowhead on your own site as well. Also the links would allow you to say prevent people from link beast pets on the Aquatic Assault page etc. Additionally, it could eventually even help you import strategies from comments.
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Aranesh

wrote on 07/28/2018

Hey :) Thanks a lot for the suggestion. That is planned as part of the "Pet Cards" project. At the same time I will most likely add a "mention" feature, like on many other platforms, where you put an @ and start typing a username and can then select a name to be mentioned and they get a ping about it.
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Cole#13497

wrote on 07/30/2018

Sounds perfect!
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gsanta

wrote on 05/11/2018

Aranesh,

Just wondering how Battletable 2.0 is coming along. Looking forward to the new features and hadn't seen any noticeable updates on this Development Notes page lately. Thanks for all the team's great work on the site. I love it.
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Aranesh

wrote on 05/15/2018

Hey :)
There are smaller changes here and there. I did put it to 70% completed recently because the main parts are done, and I think that's a fair estimate :D There's only some minor additions missing like a system for tags, or the coordinates of tamers. I'm getting there! Outside of weekends I barely find the time to work on it nowadays, unfortunately. But I think at least this part will be ready well before BfA comes out.
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gsanta

wrote on 05/15/2018

Great to hear. Thanks for the update. Shortly after I posted this you posted a new blog entry with the updates, but thanks for the reply.