Talk:External Military Report Page

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Format and Meaning of Report Summaries

Report Summaries look like this:

z: (qualified number) i: (0 to 3 *'s )
p: (letter value A-F) Date

"z" is the number of reported zombies, usually given as a number with some qualifier. Report texts include a number value, rounded to the nearest ten for values below 100. Over 100, the reports round to the nearest fifty. Text such as "clear", "looking quiet" and "it's looking empty" is interpreted as approximately 0, and "minimal activity" is seen as less than ten zombies. The summary uses symbols to qualify this number. If the report suggests the number is approximate, such as; "counted about 50", "50 or so", "maybe 50 down there" then the tilde symbol (~) is added before the number, in this case ~50. For text suggesting more than this number, such as; "counted over", "I've got over". A plus sign (+) is appended to the number, e.g. 20+. Conversely for reports suggesting less than the number, such as "nearly" than a minus sign (-) is appended, e.g. 20-. Reports of "a dozen" zombies are ~1dzn, and reports of "a couple of dozen" zombies are ~2dzn. "Minimal activity" is taken to be 10-.

"i" is the level of infrastructure / intact buildings. This is graded on a 3 star system, with *** being no damage, and --- being the most damage possible. The phrases associated with these values are shown on the table below.

"p" is the level of power in a suburb. The most positive possible report levels ("lights are on all over", for example) are indicated by A and F indicates no lights. The phrases associated with these values are shown on the table below.

Infrastructure rating : report text

*** : can't see a single ruined building
*** : infrastructure looks intact
**- : only a few buildings damaged
**- : some minor structural damage
*-- : heavy structural damage
*-- : serious collateral damage
--- : most of the buildings are ruined
--- : the whole suburb's wrecked
--- : it's a wasteland down there
 

Power rating : report text

A : lights are on across the suburb
A : power's on across most of the area
A : suburb's lit up like a Christmas tree
B : a lot of lights on, looks the area's been reclaimed
B : a lot of buildings with lights on
B : a lot of lights on, though, there are still people down there
C : several buildings with power
C : a few buildings with lights on
D : only one building with lights on
D : the only building with any lights on
F : no lights on down there
F : can't see any signs of life

Lastly, the broadcast date for the report that these values was extracted from is given. Clicking the date link will take you to a page specific to that suburb, which shows (on its talk page) an archive of all logged report texts and also allows you to edit and update the logged reports and extracted figures if you have a new report to log. You can also post batches of reports at EMRP: Reports to Process. This date should refer to the broadcast date, and not the date the report was logged. For example: if you are entering a report at midday, but it is more than 12 hours old, you should use yesterdays date. The date uses the short month, followed by the digit of the month, e.g. "Jan 7"


Discussion / Messages

General tendancie

Just to have a big picture. What is the current state of the whole city? Can we say that Z activity (and human allied) is very important and it's look like that they win a lot of buildings? Do they have the advantage currently? Its a pessimistic view i agree! "CerVolant (talk) 13:00, 26 September 2015 (UTC)"

In all honesty, the current state of the city is probably "ghost town" — many suburbs now considered "safe" would qualify as "ghost town" under 2008 standards. Bob Moncrief EBDW! 17:37, 26 September 2015 (UTC)

Proposal

I propose we can substitute 12 for dozen, Vote anyone? --Imthatguy 21:10, 15 July 2009 (BST)

Proposal-New Map Varient

Currently, you either have to view the standard EMRP map, which is impossible to gather 'at a glance' info from, you have to specifically look up your area to actually learn anything. Or you look up the danger/EMRP hybrid, which helps but not all that much. The standalone danger map, conversely, uses bright colours so you can get basic information quickly. If you want the details, you can then check the suburb's page for a full update.

I propose an EMR map where a colour system is used. By taking the gathered notes on a suburb and chucking them into some sort of formula, we could pump out another number that reflects an overall EMR danger level. A colour could then be assigned; either numbers within a certain range become one colour or the number defines the colour (IE: A slightly high danger means the colour is a slightly deeper red) Obviously whatever formula used is going to be highly subjective, but anything that gives generally agreed upon results would do. Feasible idea? Worthwhile idea? -- User:The Rooster RoosterDragon User talk:The Rooster 14:58, 12 May 2008 (BST)

Feasible, but how much extra work would it be, and to what benefit? I mean, is it really information that the Suburb danger map or SIM doesn't already at least give a strong hint at? Also, 4+ weeks often pass without an EMR for a specific suburb; the EMRM makes that pretty obvious, and I suppose the new map could as well, but the point is, its not really info that lends itself to "at a glance" analysis, nor would the "colors" be relevant to actual fact in most cases. I dunno, maybe my thinking is limited because I mostly made the EMRM as a way to "fact check" the Suburb danger map, and as an archival tool. SIM Core Map.png Swiers 06:49, 16 May 2008 (BST)
The fact that EMRs are objective makes them excellant statistics. Compared to say the suburb danger map, where reports are reliant on user reports and which even when collected in the best of faith, are not always accurate. Prehaps the EMRP is indeed best as an archieve tool that can also be used to provide decent reports to the suburb danger map when they come in. It's already reasonably well used as a reason to change the status on that map. Maybe this would be a better idea if the danger map didn't already exsist, the effort would be to a greater benefit then. The exsistance of the other two would make this a limited effort if it were implemented. -- User:The Rooster RoosterDragon User talk:The Rooster 19:51, 16 May 2008 (BST)

Appearance

Why is the text and the background both nearly black for the table entitled "External Miliatry Reports, alphabetically by suburb"? I can't read the text without having to highlight it. --The Masked Lurker 07:26, 8 December 2007 (UTC)

Huh? The background is a light gray.--Karekmaps?! 09:37, 8 December 2007 (UTC)
As Karek says. It could be the "shorthand" color code I used (color=#eee) is not compatible with your browser; I've reset it to be more in line with official HTML. SIM Core Map.png Swiers 19:10, 8 December 2007 (UTC)

infrastructure

"i" is the level of infrastructure / intact buildings. This is graded A-F, with A being no damage, and D being the most damage possible. The conversion here is somewhat subjective, but as a guide, "a few" or "several" damaged buildings seems to merit a D. B should be reserved for cases where only one ruin is reported. So far, no reports meriting an F have been confirmed- it is possible that beyond a certain level, the reports just indicate "extensive damage"

What the... is this description? It would be hard to write it more clouded than this...

EXMILs have standard messages. All that needs to be done is these messages to be assigned a level, nothing subjective.

  1. can't see a single ruined building
  2. infrastructure looks intact
  3. only a few buildings damaged
  4. some minor structural damage
  5. heavy structural damage
  6. serious collateral damage
  7. most of the buildings are ruined
  8. the whole suburb's wrecked

Also: A-F system?!! it's awfull. Maybe it's common for you from school, but it's not used at all in many countries. Levels should be either numbers or colours (common system from blue to red)

--~~~~ [talk] 12:43, 24 November 2007 (UTC)

I didn't know for sure what the relative rankings were- I thought maybe #1 and #2 meant the same thing. Colors require more complicated coding and hence are harder to edit. Switching away from the letter gradding system at this point would take some work, but is surely do-able, and with the above info, I can cook up something much better. How about a 3 star system, with 1-2 above being ***, 3-4 being **-, 5-6 being *--, an 7-8 being --- (no stars)?
I'd similarly be happy to re-work the power grading system, if you have a full ordered list of the possible reports for those. SIM Core Map.png Swiers 19:19, 24 November 2007 (UTC)
Star system looks promising and you're right that they can be paired - descriptions look synonimic. I'll post the list for the power later, but i think we've already covered all messages on the Talk:External Military. i'm also thinking about parsing all exmil archives in a database --~~~~ [talk] 22:19, 24 November 2007 (UTC)
Done on the infrastructure side (including editing the burb pages to bring them in line). I think I'll stick with the letter system for power for now- A-F is very familiar to American users (not only for school grades, but some consumer products). (What would be ideal is if we knew the actual % of buildings with power...). It looks like maybe there are only 3 meaningful power levels, with 3 alternate descriptions of each level. A color indication would be nice here (maybe black, gray, and bright yellow) but I really don't want the extra coding hit that would impose, as it could result in template overloading or editor confusion. Any ideas? See the front page for the table of all the power values (that I know of) and feel free to edit as needed. SIM Core Map.png Swiers 03:47, 25 November 2007 (UTC)

Why not make it graphical? For Infra and Power, have a very simple little Icon for each level... I am thinking for Infra a building in several different states of (dis)repair, probably colour-coded, too. And for power, a light bulb or some such thing... Like the Building Status report icons, very simple and straightforward. --WanYao 16:10, 25 November 2007 (UTC)

I wanted to keep the editing as simple as possible, and be sure the summaries would fit on the map. But I suppose its not to any harder to tell folks what graphic to use than it is telling them what letters or other values to use. Both sound like good ideas. An intact green building, slightly damaged yellow one, very damaged orange one, and red ruins would work great. And hell, you could bet red if the "i:" in that case, as it is so self explanitory. For power, how about a simple VU meter type thing, with a little lightning bolt, also changing color to indicate level? Same for zombies- have an image of a green dead zombie (zero), yellow lone zombie, orange pair of zombies, or red trio (or more) of zombies - in this case, followed by the numerical summary still. I think I can work up the images and a simple way to put them on the pages. SIM Core Map.png Swiers 16:31, 25 November 2007 (UTC)

(this is a draft, with background not removed and scaled down from orignal higher resolution images) [1] [2] [3] --~~~~ [talk] 21:07, 26 November 2007 (UTC)


new status for light: suburb's lit up like a Christmas tree - looks to be A --~~~~ [talk] 15:53, 21 December 2007 (UTC)

Coming in as a new user, I have to agree with some of the above comments that the punctuation symbols for infrastructure, and letter grading for power are quite unintuitive; the Infrastructure being the more difficult to understand of the two. A percentage rating (even if very approximate), or a simple "Good" "Moderate" "Poor" verbal description would be an improvement I think. I realize this is a lot of work and people are probably used to it as-is, but there are newcomers to consider. Icons aren't a bad idea either, but may make editing more tedious. --Zhani 03:22, 28 August 2008 (BST)
A few more comments: "Infrastructure", or especially "i" is non-obvious. Most of the military reports appear to refer to "buildings", while only one states "infrastructure". The existing rating system reduces to 4 distinct status levels; but that seems arbitrary. Do we know the game doesn't consider them distinct and so is reporting different levels of damage? Either way, it looks like a number out of 4 or 5 would apply here. Likewise, Power can be reduced to a number out of 5. To me, this seems the obvious choice: use 1, 2, 3, 4, or 5 to rate them, from worst to best. Additionally, change "i" to "B" for buildings. So a report would instead look like:
Z: 30 B: 3 P: 2 (Time)
--Zhani 22:27, 29 August 2008 (BST)

Raw Dumps

http://iwrecords.urbandead.info/03-26-08_1800hrs_PUBLIC/OUT_15-36_EMR_c85-53a-c27.html SIM Core Map.png Swiers 17:04, 26 March 2008 (UTC)

Minimal Activity

What should we use to report the zombies number when the radio says "minimal activity"? For example:

25.96 MHz: "... minimal activity in Rolt Heights ... power's on across most of the area ... infrastructure looks intact too ..."

I'm using ~0 for the moment, but that sounds unrealistic. Should we use something like 10- instead? -- Kittithaj 15:29, 10 January 2009 (UTC)

Also, what about these?

25.96 MHz: "... looking quiet in Raines Hills ... lights are on across the suburb ... infrastructure looks intact too ... some survivor activity in the Jack Building ..."
25.96 MHz: "... flying over Raines Hills, it's looking empty ... a lot of lights on, looks the area's been reclaimed ... infrastructure looks intact too ... power's back on at the Halay Building ..."

Looking quiet and looking empty. Do they mean there is no zombie? I don't think they mean the suburb itself is empty (i.e. a ghost town), since there're survivor activities and powered buildings. -- Kittithaj 21:50, 20 January 2009 (UTC)

I have the bot process 'clear' and 'looking quiet' as ~0. 'Minimal activity' is processed as 10-. This seemed the best idea to me. The military only count zombies, so 'clear' and 'looking quiet' are probably good indications of a strong survivor presence keeping them at bay, as usually shown by the well repaired and powered buildings the report gives after these sort of comments. -- User:The Rooster RoosterDragon User talk:The Rooster 14:21, 24 January 2009 (UTC)

Short Dates

I would like to suggest we stick to short dates. (EG: Feb 3 instead of February 3). It prevents the boxes from stretching, and in cases where EMRP's are contained in limited room within other tables, prevents the cells from getting squashed and text breaking into multiple lines and generally looking nasty. Any objections? -- User:The Rooster RoosterDragon User talk:The Rooster 19:10, 24 January 2009 (UTC)

I have no objections, but I see no difference really. I'm using Firefox browser with Unicode encoding and normal font size. And both style look the same to me - two lines. With Internet Explorer, same encoding and font size, both styles turn into one line. So in the end, it's up to each user's settings. The Suburb column width is already small, so I think it won't help much. It won't hurt trying, though. -- Kittithaj 15:34, 26 January 2009 (UTC)
Yeah, it won't affect this page much, but on pages where an EMR is used and its available width is limited, sometimes the cells break onto multiple lines. (They were recently include in the suburb template, check out any suburb page to see it) While not that big an issue, it would be nice to have it all line up as intended. I'm just being finicky. -- User:The Rooster RoosterDragon User talk:The Rooster 17:17, 26 January 2009 (UTC)
I actually meant the EMR on the suburb page in my last post. And yes, I understand what you like to change. The change of month length won't make much difference if the font is big. But I see no reason to object (besides, it seems only two of us care about the format and the resulting visual effect.) You can start using short dates with your EMR Bot and see what happens. If it works well then you make it a Wiki guideline.
P.S. I think enlarging the cell width (currently set to 110px) could help too. You should try experimenting with it. And the whole row should be align centrally. -- Kittithaj 15:16, 27 January 2009 (UTC)
Yeah, the bot has always used short dates, it just seems everybody switched to long ones during my absence. Anyway, if you could manage to get the row to align in the center, and the cells to good sizes, go right ahead, my wiki-markup is still rusty and I wasn't able to do that. You could squeeze another 10px onto the EMR, but after that there's no more room (the whole template has a set width in place), I was wary about stomping on the mast width, because building's with long names might break to a newline and those are harder to predict the length of. The 110px for the EMR seemed enough for the few short date EMRs I could check it against. Really, go right ahead and fix it as you see fit, I'm still having problems with getting tables and various parts thereof to be the width I type in sometimes, they're bastardly things. -- User:The Rooster RoosterDragon User talk:The Rooster 18:52, 27 January 2009 (UTC)
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