British Bingo / Blog: Recent posts

Release Notes

British Bingo version 1.44 released. A free game of 3 by 9 boards that runs on a browser, an iPad or tablet. sourceforge.net/p/britbingo

The game simulates the other players who can make mistakes and chat. You can choose to hear the caller and the players talking. You can have over 10,000 players

This release adds statistics and a progress bar. There are new sounds

This release:

  • says how many games have been played and how many numbers it took to get a house or a line. This is under the scoreboard. This is optional - see the 'Special Effects' section of the settings
  • says when not enough numbers have been read out to call 'line' or 'house'
  • runs out of balls less when you do not call 'house'
  • lets you change your name in the scoreboard by clicking on your name
  • shows the names of the players on the first page. Hover over or click these names to show how strong a player is. Hover over or click a board to see how strong a player is and how many lines or houses a player has
  • adds an optional progress bar showing the number of balls called out so far
  • makes a player unlikely to change her board if she has just got a line or house
  • adds an option to automatically keep on playing game after game, for a demo or to gather statistics. See the 'General' section of the settings
  • adds an option to hide the lists of numbers called out so far. See the 'Special Effects' section of the settings
  • adds longer descriptions of some of the settings
  • adds more reasons for players to leave the game. There are more sounds for these
  • adds more ways for players to say 'well done' when you have a line or house
  • adds another animation when a player has a 'line', which rotates a cube with the letters of the word 'line' on the faces of the cube
  • lets the animation that rotates the page now also do so in 3D
  • lets the animation that makes copies of the page now rotate the copies... read more
Posted by Bert Beckwith 2015-08-03

Release Notes

British Bingo version 1.43 released. A free game of 3 by 9 boards that runs on a browser, an iPad or tablet. sourceforge.net/p/britbingo

The game simulates the other players who can make mistakes and chat. You can choose to hear the caller and the players talking. You can have over 10,000 players

This release highlights more numbers and boards. There are new sounds

This release:

  • highlights more squares and numbers when players join, players chat, numbers are called and players shout 'line'
  • highlights more of the boards of players when the players chat
  • highlights the squares of the line when a player calls line but we are going for a house
  • the caller and players say to call out the numbers 'again' when players call 'line' or 'house' several times in one game
  • highlights the boards of players when they start speaking rather than when they finish speaking when going through their numbers after the players have called 'line' or 'house'
  • responds quicker when you call 'line' or 'house' whilst the caller is checking the numbers of another player who has called 'line' or 'house'
  • when checking a call of 'line' or 'house', and the caller asks for a number to be repeated, and you call 'line' or 'house' after the number is repeated, then the player now says the number again before the caller says 'yes' or 'no'
  • when checking a call of 'line' or 'house', and the caller asks for a number to be repeated, and you call 'line' or 'house' when the caller asks or the player replies, then now the player starts again by saying her number
  • when checking a call of 'line' or 'house', highlights the numbers for longer
  • if a player says that you forgot to mark a square then your board and the board of the player and the square are highlighted
  • have fewer players as less old folk play now and you can win more
  • players call line/house wrongly less often
  • extends the animations to rotate the word 'line' in 3 dimensions and rotate the letters of the word 'house' in 3 dimensions... read more
Posted by Bert Beckwith 2014-12-15

Release Notes

British Bingo version 1.42 released. A free game of 3 by 9 boards that runs on a browser, an iPad or tablet. sourceforge.net/p/britbingo

The game simulates the other players who can make mistakes and chat. You can choose to hear the caller and the players talking. You can have over 10,000 players

This release highlights the number last called in the list of numbers called

This release:

  • when a number is called out, highlights the number in the list of numbers called out so far
  • if a number is highlighted on the board of a player then if the number has been called then highlights the number in the list of numbers called out so far
  • the introduction says how many players there are
  • adds another animation when a player has a 'house', which rotates the letters of the word 'house'
  • makes the code more compact. For example:
    o shortening the names of more local variables and function parameters
    o removing more '=== true' in tests when not necessary... read more
Posted by Bert Beckwith 2014-08-07

Release Notes

Release Notes

British Bingo version 1.41 released. A free game of 3 by 9 boards that runs on a browser, an iPad or tablet. sourceforge.net/p/britbingo

The game simulates the other players who can make mistakes and chat. You can choose to hear the caller and the players talking. You can have over 10,000 players

This release shows all the numbers as they are called

This release:

a) shows all the numbers and colors them in when they are called
b) adds a 'Cancel' button below the boards when you choose a new board
c) adds another animation when a player has a 'line', which rotates the word 'line'... read more

Posted by Bert Beckwith 2014-07-08

Release Notes

Release Notes

British Bingo version 1.40 released. A free game of 3 by 9 boards that runs on a browser, an iPad or tablet. sourceforge.net/p/britbingo

The game simulates the other players who can make mistakes and chat. You can choose to hear the caller and the players talking. You can have over 10,000 players

With this release other boards at your table can face away from you

With this release:

  • the boards of players who are sitting across the table from you can now face away from you
  • there is another animation when a player has a 'house', which rotates the page
  • the code is a little more compact

This release fixes 5 bugs where:... read more

Posted by Bert Beckwith 2014-06-04

Release Notes

British Bingo version 1.39 released. A free game of 3 by 9 boards that runs on a browser, an iPad or tablet. sourceforge.net/p/britbingo

The game simulates the other players who can make mistakes and chat. You can choose to hear the caller and the players talking. You can have over 10,000 players

This release makes the numbers called so far look like balls (there are also new sounds)

With this release:... read more

Posted by Bert Beckwith 2014-04-05

Release Notes

British Bingo version 1.38 released. A free game of 3 by 9 boards that runs on a browser, an iPad or tablet. sourceforge.net/p/britbingo

The game simulates the other players who can make mistakes and chat. You can choose to hear the caller and the players talking. You can have over 10,000 players

This release adds color gradients

With this release:
- you can have color gradients on the messages, buttons and scoreboard
- if you are running Window 8 with Internet Explorer or Firefox, then you see the option to have a layout suitable for touch-screens
- the hints on the (call) 'line' and (call) 'house' buttons are now removed once you have pressed the buttons
- the hints on the 'list of numbers called out' are now removed if you restore the settings you last saved
- another animation is added when a player has a 'house', which looks like the credits of a film ... read more

Posted by Bert Beckwith 2014-02-21

Release Notes

Release Notes

British Bingo version 1.37 released. A free game of 3 by 9 boards that runs in your browser. Now runs on iPads. sourceforge.net/p/britbingo

The game simulates the other players who can make mistakes and chat. You can choose to hear the caller and the players talking. You can have over 10,000 players

This release adjusts the layout for an iPad.

With this release:
- you can now find out if you are playing for a 'line' or a 'house' by clicking on squares without numbers on your board as well as right-clicking on the squares
- you can now put '<' and '>' in your name in the settings
- on a touch-screen, the game no longer asks you to 'press for 1 or 2 seconds' for a right-click
- another animation is added which draws dots on the screen when a player has a 'house'... read more

Posted by Bert Beckwith 2014-01-10

Release Notes

Release Notes

British Bingo version 1.36 released. Improvements to a free game of 3 by 9 boards that runs in your browser: sourceforge.net/p/britbingo

The game simulates the other players who can make mistakes and chat. You can choose to hear the caller and the players talking. You can change the sizes to fit a small screen. You can have over 10,000 players

This release fixes a bug where the animations may not take into account any scrolling of the screen.... read more

Posted by Bert Beckwith 2013-11-16

Release Notes

British Bingo version 1.35 released. Improvements to a free game of 3 by 9 boards that runs in your browser: sourceforge.net/p/britbingo

The game simulates the other players who can make mistakes and chat. You can choose to hear the caller and the players talking. You can change the sizes to fit a small screen. You can have over 10,000 players

This release fixes 3 bugs and adds more shadows and round corners on newer browsers

Posted by Bert Beckwith 2013-09-14

Release Notes

British Bingo version 1.34 released. Improvements to a free game of 3 by 9 boards that runs in your browser: sourceforge.net/p/britbingo

The game simulates the other players who can make mistakes and chat. You can choose to hear the caller and the players talking. You can change the sizes to fit a small screen. You can have over 10,000 players

This release adds some more variety to how players chat (including new sounds) and fixes 2 bugs

Posted by Bert Beckwith 2013-08-13

Release Notes

British Bingo version 1.33 released. Improvements to a free game of 3 by 9 boards that runs in your browser: sourceforge.net/p/britbingo

The game simulates the other players who can make mistakes and chat. You can choose to hear the caller and the players talking. You can change the sizes to fit a small screen. You can have over 10,000 players

This release adds smaller versions of the settings screen and fixes 3 bugs

Posted by Bert Beckwith 2013-06-27

Release Notes

British Bingo version 1.32 released. Improvements to a free game of 3 by 9 boards that runs in your browser: sourceforge.net/p/britbingo

The game simulates the other players who can mistakes and chat. You can choose to hear the caller and the players talking. You can have over 10,000 players

This release lets you play without the players chatting or leaving or joining

Posted by Bert Beckwith 2013-06-03

JavaScript Tips

Here are some more things I have learnt whilst writing a free game:

1) the 'cloneNode' function does not copy event listeners such as 'onclick'

2) you can use 'getElementsByTagName' on any HTML element whereas 'getElementById' only works on the 'document' node

  • you can pass parameters to functions that do not take parameters. For example:

func() { }
func(1, 'a', 7);

You can get at the parameters with the 'arguments' object. You can also pass more paramters to a function than it needs... read more

Posted by Bert Beckwith 2013-05-28

JavaScript Tips

Here are some more things I have learnt whilst writing a free game:

1) Some programmers say that it is better to use the expression:

typeof objectProperty === 'undefined'

rather than:

objectProperty === undefined

because:

  • you can confusingly create a variable called 'undefined' or give a value to Javascript's 'undefined' variable

  • you can use the first version with simple Javascript variables that are not set... read more

Posted by Bert Beckwith 2013-05-28

Release Notes

British Bingo version 1.31 released. Improvements to a free game of 3 by 9 boards that runs in your browser: sourceforge.net/p/britbingo

The game simulates the other players who make mistakes and chat. You can have over 10,000 players. You can hear the caller and the players talking.

This release fixes 2 bugs with skipping the checking of line and house calls. Now the caller says 'back to you' after you call line or house while a player is chatting

Posted by Bert Beckwith 2013-05-14

Release Notes

British Bingo version 1.30 released. Improvements to a free game of 3 by 9 boards that runs in your browser: sourceforge.net/p/britbingo

The game simulates the other players who make mistakes and chat. You can have over 10,000 players. You can hear the caller and the players talking. You can reduce the size to fit on a small screen.

You can now skip past the caller reading out the numbers called so far when a player joins during a game

Posted by Bert Beckwith 2013-04-22

Release Notes

British Bingo version 1.29 released. Improvements to a free game of 3 by 9 boards that runs in your browser: sourceforge.net/p/britbingo

The game simulates the other players who make mistakes and chat. You can have over 10,000 players. You can hear the caller and the players talking. You can reduce the size to fit on a small screen.

You can now skip past the caller checking the numbers of a player who has called 'line' or 'house'. You can now play online

Posted by Bert Beckwith 2013-04-10

Release Notes

British Bingo version 1.28 released. Improvements to a free game of 3 by 9 boards that runs in your browser: sourceforge.net/p/britbingo

The game simulates the other players who make mistakes and chat. You can have over 10,000 players. You can hear the caller and the players talking. You can reduce the size to fit on a small screen.

This release fixes bugs where you press 'end game' and the scores are wrong and boards are left highlighted. You can now end the game early when you call house. Now you say 'house' when you are watching a game and you have a 'house'. Adds another animation when a player has a 'house'

Posted by Bert Beckwith 2013-03-19

My HTML and CSS Mistakes

Here are some problems I had when writing a board game:

  • I have three 'div' HTML elements (say 'a', 'b', 'c') one after the other and all three are styled as 'float: left'. If 'b' is also styled 'clear: left', then on my old Konqueror 4.3 browser they appear as:
    a
    b c
    whilst on Internet Explorer (IE), they appear as:
    a c
    b
    I can get IE to look like my browser by putting 'b' and 'c' in a new 'div' which is styled 'float: left' and by moving the 'clear: left' onto it.
  • When showing the boards of players 'floated' together in a message box, any 'padding' at the bottom of the message box is ignored. To fix this I need to style the message box itself 'float: left'. This makes it visually contain the boards.
  • The board of the player on the far right of the line of boards is sometimes shown squashed up horizontally on Internet Explorer. This is because the boards are put next to each with the style setting 'float: left', and 'floated' HTML elements can be squashed up. I added a 'min-width' setting to stop this.
  • I want to colour each letter of a word separately, so I put each letter in a separate 'span' tag. But the browser then seems to add spaces between each letter unless I put the tags right next to each other on one line with no spacing.
  • I use light colours as background colours. But on some computers they appear to be white. The darkness of the colours varies a lot.
  • I use a script to generate some CSS for a rainbow of colours but it put decimal places in the colour attribute and so the rules were ignored. I had something like: 'rgb(200.3, 0, 0)'.
  • I tried to use the mathematical symbol of a cross in a circle as a graphic in an error message box. But the symbol does not appear on a friend's Internet Explorer browser. The copyright symbol works fine though.
  • I decided to set 'accessKey' values on some links and input buttons so that a user can press keys rather than use the mouse. It is an accessibility feature. (On Internet Explorer your press the 'alt' key together with the access key to click a button. For a link this gives it the focus and you can press the 'return' key to follow the link. On my Konqueror browser you press the 'ctrl' key followed by an access key.) On my browser when you press the 'ctrl' key it shows all available access keys. But on Internet Explorer I think you need to show the access key combinations in labels, list them all, or somehow underline their letters in the labels. Unfortunately, if you use letters for access keys then they will override the keyboard shortcuts used by Internet Explorer. For example, 'alt + f' will no longer select the 'file' menu. On my browser this is less of a problem as you have to click and focus on the page in the browser before you can use an access key. Worse still, the access key combinations can conflict with shortcuts used by screen readers. I understand that because of these problems access keys are less popular now. However, there is an informal standard for common access keys and these are all numbers. Another problem was that I had to change some elements to be links so I could give them access keys, and this means an outline can appear on these element.
  • I spent some time on the 'keywords' and 'description' meta tags. But Google seems to ignore them. I have read that search engines give these tags little weight.
  • I sometimes put '//' comments in the CSS stylesheet when I am mainly writing Javascript. My browser does not give an error but may ignore part of the CSS that follows.
  • The 'minimising' scripts I wrote shorten names and start some with an underscore in order to avoid clashes with existing names. But Internet Explorer seems to ignore CSS rules that reference an HTML element with an 'id' attribute that starts with an underscore. In fact, the W3C Technical Recommendation does not allow them.
  • I left it until I was almost finished before checking my HTML and CSS with the W3C validators and so I got a lot of errors.

... read more

Posted by Bert Beckwith 2013-03-13

My Javascript Mistakes

When I started using Javascript I had read a few tutorials, but I discovered there were many things they had not covered. There is a lot of information on the web but it helps if you search for a particular feature. Here are some of the problems I had.

  • I wanted to call a function after a pause using the function 'setTimeout(command, pauseTime)' and pass an object as a parameter. It seemed as if I would have to convert the object's properties to strings and pass a big command string to setTimeout(). Then I remembered an old Netscape Javascript guide saying you could put parameters at the end of the setTimeout() call. This worked on my Konqueror browser but not with Internet Explorer. So I gave up and put the object parameter in a global. I later learnt that one solution is to make setTimeout() call an inner function which calls the target function. The inner function acts as a 'closure' and holds onto the variables in the enclosing function.
  • ... [read more](/p/britbingo/blog/2013/03/my-javascript-mistakes/)
Posted by Bert Beckwith 2013-03-11

Release Notes

British Bingo version 1.27 released. Improvements to a free game of 3 by 9 boards that runs in your browser: sourceforge.net/p/britbingo

The game simulates the other players who make mistakes and chat. You can have over 10,000 players. You can hear the caller and the players talking. You can reduce the size to fit on a small screen.

This release adds another animation when a player has a 'line'. Players now ask just once whether to call out their numbers when they have a 'house'. The sound pauses when the caller looks to see which numbers have been called. With the sound, whole phrases replace some individual words

Posted by Bert Beckwith 2013-03-01

Javascript Sound

I use the the 'audio' tag if it has a 'play' function defined otherwise I use a 'bgsound' tag which works for old versions of Internet Explorer. With the second method you can only play one sound at a time. There are great plans for sound in HTML but they don't work in all browsers

I store how long each sound takes within my program, but these details take up a lot of space

Playing sounds can slow down your browser: for example, my animation using Javascript pauses a little ... read more

Posted by Bert Beckwith 2013-02-25

Marketing a free game

I believe I got most site visitors from:

  • first. by trying to write a good game
  • second, through web sites that list software highlighting my game
  • third, by writing a few technical articles and posting to a technical discussion forum
  • fourth, by sending a large number of emails to magazines and games websites. But only the most specific got any interest

My best marketing idea was to say a release 'set a new world record of 15000 people playing bingo', (the game simulates the players).... read more

Posted by Bert Beckwith 2013-02-25

Release Notes

British Bingo version 1.26 released. Improvements to a free game of 3 by 9 boards that runs in your browser: sourceforge.net/p/britbingo

The game simulates the other players who make mistakes and chat. You can have over 10,000 players. You can hear the caller and the players talking. You can reduce the size to fit on a small screen.

This release adds another animation when a player has a 'line'. With the sound, whole phrases replace some individual words. Some sounds have been recorded again

Posted by Bert Beckwith 2013-02-14