Integrated help system for Torque

There´s been a lot of discussion around the documentation for Torque lately. We have a lot of (disparate) collections so if anyone wants to find specific information you spend half your time searching. There are a few efforts underway to unify this. Personally I still think the efforts are not completely team based so I´m looking to help get that moving towards a single goal.

In any case I see 3 different areas for documentation of Torque:

C++ API

The team has mentioned going through and doxygen´ing the source to provide all the right types and parameters and documentation to the C++ source code. I think this is a great thing but we need to go one step further. We need to tie this into the API. I´m going to look at taking the doxygen and turning it into HTML Help (doxygen does this already, but need to look at setting up the keywords) and then making this an extra help file that plugs into Visual Studio (both versions 6 and 7.NET) so that you can have context sensitive help in the C++ IDE. I´ve done it with other libraries so it´s not hard, you just have to get everything lined up.

Script IDE

I´m not sure if the Tribes IDE is the ´official´ IDE for scripting but if not, it´s about the best we have. It does everything including debugging so I would recommend this. There needs to be more documentation on how to use it with Torque. I found a few threads on setting things up but there needs to be more hand-holding in this area. This is because the primary users of this would be the Torque wanna-bes who are interested in trying it out. Give them a demo app and the IDE so they can do their own tweaks to see how powerful and flexible the engine really is. Also there are a few script references out there which are quite good. We need to get these into a form that the Tribal IDE works with (I´m not sure what that is). Luckily the Tribal IDE is open source (at least I got the source from somewhere, not sure if it´s GPL or not) so we can make changes if needed to support the help system. Tribal is written in Delphi so a port to Kylix for *nix users isn´t out of the question (not sure if this is underway or not either). The Mac users are kind of out of luck here as Borland doesn´t have a Mac version here. Not sure what to do about that. I know of some free Pascal complilers for Mac but nothing that will support the Delphi objects. The main thing though is to bring context sensitive and intellisense help to Torque scripting.

Sample documentation

Again we have plenty of this. Examples, snippets, tips, etc. as they relate to Torque. They just need to be brought together. Maybe a “How do I…” document broken down by category or something. Like How do I make a hover car or How do I add health triggers. It´s all here in the forums and resources I just want to see and bring it to a single source where for people can easily search and find the information they want quickly.