AboutDevop working on simulations in Unity
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Another case of "couldn't you've told me BEFORE I started working on this?"
I'm making a training in Unity3D for a client, and they want it to integrate with their learning management system (LMS).
I made a simple SCORM package that gets the userID and then uses a custom URL scheme to launch the app with the user data from the LMS.
Tested on multiple platforms, all works perfectly fine.
Than, during a meeting, some says they "can't download it". I ask "which browser are you using?" and he says "I'm using the LMS app."
... the LMS has an APP?
So I start figuring out ways to launch the system default browser from within a app's embedded browser, and nothing so far has worked.
Probably to protect students from malicious software that could be injected in courses, but now I'm stuck trying to find a workaround for this too.
But what sucks the most is that this happened DAYS BEFORE THE DEADLINE!
Well, at least the deadline won't be my problem anymore soon.
God, these people...
Little backstory. I'm making an training application and we have a MySQL database set up where some elements of the training are configured. This is so learning experts can easily change some aspects of the training without programmer's help.
Meanwhile, I'm also in the middle of a server migration, because our current server is running a lot of deprecated software and is in dire need of replacement.
This is going pretty slowly, though, because of other, high-priority, work that keeps being shoved my way.
Now, someone accidentally deletes a bunch of data from one of the schemas. No big deal in my book, the training is still in development and we have nightly backups of the database.
So I shoot a support ticket to the hosting provider and ask them to restore a specific schema, telling them to restore the image to some other machine and dump the tables in an MySQL file so I can restore it that way.
I also told them to get the backup of the OLD server, not the NEW one we're still migrating to.
About an hour later, I get a message that they dumped the schema's files in a Temp folder on the D drive. So I RDP to the server to check and... The files aren't there. Just before writing a response asking where the file is, I remembered the server I was migrating to and checked that server, and there were the files.
I had already migrated part of our databases and was testing compatibility before I moved to something else.
The hosting provider just dumped the files of the wrong server, despite me telling them exactly which server to use.
This is not the first time this hosting provider has let me down...
I'm really considering jumping to another if they keep doing this...
Right, I've been here before.
Our app requires an internet connection, and one of our clients wants to roll it out on a strictly managed network.
We told them which addresses our app communicates with and their network team opened them up for traffic. Should work, right?
Nope, doesn't work.
So I request them to use Fiddler to do some debugging of the network traffic, and lo and behold, it does work when Fiddler is active.
One important detail is that Fiddler uses it's own SSL certificate to debug HTTPS communications. I've had moments where expired certificates were the cause of things not working and running Fiddler "fixes" this because of their own certificate.
So I point this out in numerous mails to their network team, every time I get a response saying "nah, that can't be it".
I keep insisting "I have had this before, please check if any installed Root CA Certificates is expired"
At this point I'm certain they have updates turned off on these machines, and their certificates must not have been updated for a long time.
At one point they come back to me. "Hey, when Fiddler is off, WireShark shows the app communicating with ICMP calls, but when it's on it shows HTTP calls instead".
...YOU'RE THE SUPPOSED NETWORK EXPERTS?! You think data can be send via ICMP? Do you even know what ICMP is? Of course you'll see ICMP calls when the network is rejecting the packages instead of HTTP calls when everything's fine.
(ICMP is used to communicate errors)
I'm trying to keep my patience with these guys until they find exactly what's wrong because even I am somewhat grasping at straws right now. But things like this makes me doubt their expertise...8
How often does this happen to you?
Just updated our continuous integration and for some reason the BuildAgents, who update independently, just kept failing to update.
Tried every trick in the book, debugged everything.
Kept complaining about being unable to delete files, frigging Windows file system being an idiot as always...
Was about to give up and migrate everything to a fresh system until I realized...
Ah, it works now!
... Why does it always take me so long to realize that's an option!?3
I really hate working with learning management systems (LMS).
I make training simulations for retail companies and some of these have the worst, backwards LMS's out there.
The providers who install and manage these LMSs for the companies always insist we make our training run inside their own environment, but we can't since it's a 3D training made in Unity that doesn't run well in a browser.
Luckily some of these are fine to figure out. Just a few API calls here and there for authorization and reporting progress, but some are an absolute nightmare.
Just now one of the providers provided me with a 2000 page documentation of all the functions of the LMS's API that our customer is using. All I need are like 5 pages that explain what URL to call with what data and the responses, but now I'm stuck spending days trying to find the 0.5% of this documentation that I need to communicate with their API.
And of course, the documentation is vague as all hell. minimal descriptions of what each endpoint does. Subjects names are super vague, as in do I look for course progress or lesson completion state. What the heck is a Learning Event, is it relevant to me?
And the errors in this document, too.
Bullet-point lists with duplicate items.
language errors everywhere.
Property lists where they copy-pasted the description of properties.
An entire EMPTY chapter, literally a page with only the chapter's title.
I just can't stand how these providers barely seem to know anything about the API of the LMS's they provide to customers.
(for clarity, the LMS is produced by some big tech company, it's installed and maintained by some 3rd party which is our main line of communication when rolling out trainings to these).
It always goes like: "Hey, we want to use your training." "Oh, that's great, we have our own, simple LMS where you can view your employee's progress." "Nah, we want to use our backwards LMS. Here's a giant manual about it's API, go figure it out!"
And then I'm left here tearing my hair out trying to figure out which 3 calls I need to send their API from the tons of extra stuff it can do which is completely unnecessary and being unable to rely on the provider because they lack the knowledge and have such thick skulls about the implementation of the LMS itself that they also seems completely unwilling to help to begin with!
Just another day at the office.