Idea: Non-Time-Based Video Format

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Idea: Non-Time-Based Video Format

Post by qqwref » Sun Feb 13, 2011 9:22 pm

I think it would be useful to develop a video format that is not based on solving time - it only records the moves taken in the game, and the locations of all clicks. I imagine that this would have applications in theory (such as understanding the effects of various solving algorithms), and be useful as well to anyone interested in looking at solving techniques of famous players. Hopefully it could be somewhat human-readable as well, at least for someone with a hex editor. Note that this format has no need for encryption: it doesn't record time, so there would be no way to cheat with it.

I propose the following format:

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4 bytes: height (1 byte), width (1 byte), number of mines (2 bytes) in the board.
2-byte blocks: row and column for each mine, arranged in "reading" (top-left most) order.
(Optional for easier reading) spacer: three FF bytes, since this wouldn't ever occur naturally.
3-byte blocks: move data. row and column of the square (1 byte each) and then for the move, something like this:
- x0 for button press, x1 for button release, x2 for button click
- 1x for left click, 2x for right click, 3x for left click chord (right button is held), 4x for right click chord (left button is held), 52 for a complete chord (both buttons pressed and released together)
So you can see that the format would be pretty simple. It should be quite easy to write programs to parse a format like this, and to write boards into it. A program that lets you view a minesweeper game by stepping through the clicks (forward and back) should be pretty simple too. And I think anyone with intimate knowledge of the video formats would be able to write a program to convert a video into this format, for easy viewing and distribution.
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Re: Idea: Non-Time-Based Video Format

Post by Tommy » Wed Mar 02, 2011 3:23 pm

Great idea, but I say implement it as a mode of ... ?f=26&t=86. Or do you need the performance?
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