checkers/draughts PDN parser or a different game format to test with

I've written a checkers game and I need to test it. The only checkers standard format that I've found is PDN which is at:  http://www.xs4all.nl/~mdgsoft/draughts/pdn.html

I'm going to try modifying my PGN parser to parse PDN, but it sure would be nice if there was an XML format out there for checkers games. That would make it a lot easier to work with. Of course, if one exists then I'd also need an archive of a bunch of games in that format. Or, a converter that converts from PDN to an xml format that I can parse.
HappyEngineerAsked:
Who is Participating?
 
callrsCommented:
Don't know if there is, but who would know but the three most enthusiastic checkers fans and/or programmers in the world?
Martin Fierz: http://www.fierz.ch/checkers.htm
Bob Newell:  http://www.bobnewell.net/nucleus/bnewell.php
Ed Gilbert:    http://pages.prodigy.net/eyg/Checkers/KingsRow.htm
Email these three authors (I've emailed Bob and Ed and got a response fast.). If they don't know, then you are likely out of luck & may need to create the format on your own if you really need it...

Is your checkers game available for download yet? :-D
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HappyEngineerAuthor Commented:
Actually, it's a web site, not a downloadable game. The point of the site is that you can play the games online or play them via email or start playing them online and then continue them via email later on.

The system is pretty much done, but I'm still working out some details regarding the email part of the system. I, of course, also still need to do additional testing of the checkers game, but it seems to work nicely while playing manually.

I'll probably deploy a version sometime in the next week. When I do, it'll be at:
    http://game.tryit4fun.com/
However, at this time that url redirects to another site, so there's nothing to see there right now. Try it in a week.

I've emailed the 1st guy on your list. If he doesn't respond them I'll ask the other 2 guys.

I'll leave the question open for now since you are apparently interested in hearing when I've got the site up and running. :) I'll post here again when I do.
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HappyEngineerAuthor Commented:
Ok, I've deployed it. It's at:
  http://game.tryit4fun.com

If you play it, make sure to email me any bugs you find! *smile*
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callrsCommented:
Thanks for the A

I just made a first move. Is the board trying to hypnotize me? Seems like it! LOL
As I type this, after only a few minutes at the game, I even see a red/black image of the checkerboard on this white screen!  O.o

Though the board itself can use a theme change, the game seems swell, well layed-out, inviting, and (except for the crammed-in feel of the text in the box to the left) very user-friendly.

Will check it out more later.



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HappyEngineerAuthor Commented:
Thanks for the feedback!

Do you mean the red is too bright or that it clashes with the green theme of the rest of the page? I suppose I could try changing the red squares and checkers to be green.

I've actually already set things up so that I can easily change the color of the theme of the page just by changing one line of code. So theoretically I could try a red theme on the page. The only thing it can't do is change the color of the buttons. I dearly wish that all browsers supported png alpha transparency. Then I wouldn't need to make different images for every single button for each color theme. As a result, I'm just leaving it green for now.

As for the crammed in text, do you mean the text that starts "You can play board games via email!"? I suppose I could put another paragraph break in there somewhere so it's not so long.
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callrsCommented:
It's kind of neat actually, the hypnotic effect....may even help to play better checkers. So on second thought, it looks nice. But how about this: let user instantly change themes, using toolbar, drop-down menu, context menu, or other method.

About the text on the left: Only in IE6 on my Win98 machine does the crammed-in effect appear: with a scroll bar that user must use in a fixed window to see all the text: More text exists than can apparently fit in a window that can't be expanded, and so the window breaks a major user-friendliness rule.

So now I tested the same page in Win98 on Opera & FireFox....no more scroll bar & the text fits fully & so doesn't break the rule & looks fine. Works OK in IE in WinXP also. The Win98 IE behaves funky anyway, so it may be just the computer, but my main point was: a window should be re-sizable if it holds more text than can fit in it, otherwise the view & navigation become a strain on the hands head  & eyes. (Maybe test your page in IE6 in Win98se)

Good job though!



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