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kvillave 12-18-2008 08:18 PM

Alice source code overview
Does anybody know if there is a readme file or overview of the Alice source
code that is freely available from download? I would like to study this code.

x2495iiii 12-19-2008 08:36 AM

Source code is in the same place as the downloads, at the bottom of the page, available for PC and Mac.



kvillave 12-19-2008 03:26 PM

Written document explaning Alice source code
I already downloaded Alice source code. What I am asking is if anybody
knows if there is a written document explaining the code. I am trying to study the code and I find it very difficult to understand.

x2495iiii 12-22-2008 10:55 AM

Ah. Well that's because its in hex form. You should try a hex editor it makes it slightly easier and organizes the code into neat columns for you. However, you still won't be able to understand it unless you know hex code.

hgs 12-22-2008 05:07 PM

[QUOTE=x2495iiii;8053]Ah. Well that's because its in hex form. [/QUOTE]

The code is available for Alice2.0 in Java. Nobody distributes software as hex dumps these days. Unfortunately, unless it has changed in some unannounced way, the sources are all you get. No Makefile, no Ant file, no README. If I remember correctly, anyway, it's a while since I tried this.

I got so far building it, and then got completely stuck when I could not find a depenency. This is a shame for a project that is open source, but there are clearly staffing constraints on the project at the moment, and I suspect they will not be eased for some time. Then all the effort will be on Alice 3.

x2495iiii 12-22-2008 10:00 PM

I actually sifted through the source code recently for one of my projects and I'm very sure that it was in hex form, as I myself used the aforementioned hex editor to make it easier on myself.

There is a different way to get more readable code out of Alice, however. Simply Extract the files from any Alice world using either a File extracting program (like my good ol 7-zip), or by changing the extension from .a2c to .zip and using Windows. Then, look inside the folder it creates to find a bunch of other folders, each representing a component of the Alice world. Inside each is an XML document with simple, easy-to-read Java-ish code on it. Of course, it's read-only however. If you want to change stuff, you'll have to deal with the hex stuff.

kvillave 12-26-2008 03:21 PM

Has anybody compiled the alice source code for alice 2.0?
I am trying to understand/compile/change the free alice source code for
alice 2.0 but I am having lots of difficulties.

I contacted the alice programmers and they will not provide help.

Has anybody compiled/changed the alice source code for alice 2.0?

Any help is appreciated.


x2495iiii 12-27-2008 06:07 PM

Define "changed". If you mean you want to deal with a world that Alice won't let you access due to errors and need to change it outside of Alice, that I can help with.

If you mean you want to add something to the general Alice program, that I can't help with and I wouldn't recommend doing it, either. Mess that up and your version of Alice will be shot.

jeffery 01-14-2009 04:09 AM

Alice is not open source
After examining the "source code distribution" I have concluded that Alice
is not actually open source. It was developed with public funds and donations, so they have to give lip service and pretend to be open source,
but it is clear that the Alice developers wish to prevent anyone other than themselves from being able to build from the ostensible sources. If NSF or
Sun or any of the other potential future sponsors cared at all, they would
require at least a little minimal honesty from these "open source developers"
in order to obtain further funding, or demand that they remove the phrase
open source from the FAQ and other project documentation. Only part of
the Alice source has been released. Files are missing and the code has
probably been stripped. Prove to me otherwise by demonstrating how to
build the system.

I had a conversation with someone prominent in the Alice community about
implementing a multi-user extension for Alice, but I am explicitly prevented
from doing this by a project that carefully removes all build information from
their claimed source code distribution. It is like any other area of science:
until other scientists can reproduce working binaries from source, it isn't open
source, it is just another irreproducible result.

Have a nice day! :)

[QUOTE=kvillave;8134]I am trying to understand/compile/change the free alice source code for alice 2.0 but I am having lots of difficulties.

I contacted the alice programmers and they will not provide help.

Has anybody compiled/changed the alice source code for alice 2.0?

Any help is appreciated.


Dennis Cosgrove 01-14-2009 01:50 PM

Alice Open Source Flashback
The fabricated flashback takes place back in the 90s deep within the depths of Wean Hall

Evil Alice Developer #1: We just aren't doing enough evil in world. Sure, developing educational software and giving it away for free is a nice start, but I feel like we need to do more. Any ideas?

EAD#2: We could make Alice open source.

EAD#1: Excellent! But we'd need to carefully remove all build information.

EAD#3: But Alice is implemented in Java. There really isn't any build information. You bring the code into your favorite IDE and...

EAD#1: I don't care if there isn't any build information. Just make sure to remove it, okay? I don't want to let any of the Makefiles out!

EAD#3: There aren't any Makefiles. It's Java.

EAD#1: Just strip them out!!! We have to prevent anyone other than ourselves from being able to build from the ostensible sources.

EAD#3: Wouldn't it be easier to do that by not giving out the source?

EAD#1: Well, truth be told we don't have to prevent everyone from building from the source. Just Jeffery.

EAD#2: Who's Jeffery?

EAD#1: Oh, you'll see. You'll see. Mwa ha ha haaaaaaa!

Fade to black.

In all seriousness, I'm sure Alice2 is a pain to get running from the source. People have done it. People have translated Alice into other languages... even Hebrew which required re-laying everything out Alice right to left!

I haven't looked at Alice2 in years but armed with the main distribution (which contains some python configuration files amongst other things), the Java source, and an your favorite Java IDE you should be able to get 99% of the way there. It's that last 1% that's the problem. Like I said, its been a long time, but the “Required/IfAliceFailsTryThis.config” file might provide some insight into what command line options Java needs.

We are devoting all of our efforts to Alice3 which will be available shortly (on the order of months).

Alice3 will also be open source. Perhaps more importantly, its code will be cleaner and its configuration will be more straightforward.

Have a nice day. :)

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