CommonConsensus v2 Documentation
Getting up and running
There are two components to CommonConsensus: the game client, a Flash "swif" file,
CommonConsenus.swf, and the web server, a collection of Python files using the Google App Engine web application framework.
To run the server, you will need:
- Python 2.7
- Google App Engine SDK
- Git, optionally, if you want to push changes back to GitHub.
The project is built using Flash Bulder 4 (previous versions were called Flex Builder). You can obtain a trial version of this beta Eclipse-based IDE from here.
Obtaining the source
CommonConsensus\ is still in development stages, so I recommend that you obtain the latest code from the Git repository:
git clone email@example.com:commonsense/CommonConsensus.git
This will create a folder in your current directory with two subdirectories:
commonconsensus/ /server /client
From within the root of the repository, you can always obtain the latest version (called the "head") of the source code by typing:
Configuring and running the server
First, you'll need to configure your own Google App Engine account, and pick a
APP-NAME, that will be hosted on
Move into the
server directory (e.g.,
cd commonconsensus/server). Edit the
app.yaml file so it contains your
You should be able to launch the Python server by running
python dev_appserver.py .
If you are configured correctly, this will allow your files to be served on the local machine. Check it out by opening this page in your browser:
You can login to the game with the username and password
test, which are pre-populated in this development version of the client.
You can upload the files to Google App Engine to have them hosted on Google's infrastructure. You can do this by opening the App Engine GUI, adding "an existing project" to the list by selecting CommonConsensus'
server directory, and then clicking Deploy.
Editing the client
You should have Adobe Flash/Flex Builder installed or you can use the Flex compiler
mxmlc but this does not come with an integrated, graphical developement environment. Flex Builder is available both as a standalone program or as an Eclipse builder plugin. Students can get a free license for the Professional addition from here.
Once you have it installed, click File $\rightarrow$ Import $\rightarrow$ Flex Builder Project, and then select the
Alternatively, if you have the
mxmlc program installed (it will install with Flex Builder, but will not be in your default path), you can run the Makefile script to compile the Flash
swf by typing
Several promising directions came out of a discussion with folks at SLB.
- enlarge the answer panel
- enlarge font for answers
- sort answers by score/name
- focus on the text entry automatically
- different colors for changed answers (?)
- remember who added the answers (for credit, blame)
- better visualizations of results, or real time visualization of answer panels
- report on server load
- spell checking
- shorten the answer phase (?)
- clear lingering charts after game
Open Problems to consider
- What if the user wants to "pass" on the answer? Should this be an option, is there another game or question they can advance to -- perhaps by spawning a single player mode.
- How to encourage social interactions? Other ways for users to cultivate a digital identity and interact with other players.
- What is the ideal duration?
- How to handle questions with only one answer?