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Assets [WIP] Unity Documentation Generator

Discussion in 'Works In Progress' started by Eric2241, Jul 19, 2019.

  1. Eric2241

    Eric2241

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    uDocumentGenerator - a modern, light, and organized documentation generator.

    Update: checkout the demo website/project docs here

    From managers, bosses, professors to coworkers, classmates, and exes, we've heard the importance of communication. Now while, poor communication may not have ended your last relationship, poor communication - in the form of documentation - with your code will end your project *insert end this man's whole career meme*.


    Creating accessible, organized, easy to use documentation, whether that be a website or PDF, is simply time consuming. Additionally, current offerings have many drawbacks not limited to poor/antiquated design and poor organization that makes finding what you're looking for a chore. I encountered that first hand when I tried generating documentation for my Open Source Pause Menu, where the documentation generator I used got the information correctly but resulted in a messy generated folder structure and a hard to use/ugly website.



    uDocumentGenerator was born out of the need to innovate on these drawbacks. One of the main goals of the asset is to be plug and play for most classes. Being version 1.0, there are some drawbacks such as not generating for more than one class per file, but those can be easily remedied as the code is encapsulated. It currently deals extremely well with a normally formatted and commented project, meaning that within minutes, you'll have a custom documentation website for your project. At the moment the only things you may want to change code wise are: the title tag in the React app, the social media links, and the logo.

    The other main goal is to generate a website that is easily navigable, modern, and light. The template website created in Reactjs embodies these requirements by acting as a data reading/displayer. It also reads markdowns for all descriptions: variable descriptions, function/method descriptions, and class descriptions. More importantly, the design aims to get extremely navigable by implementing a card based search as the landing page, and the website is mostly responsive. Customization wise, the color scheme is easily modifiable: the default color scheme is very consistent, making it easy to replace, and the syntax highlighting package comes with many themes.

    ALSO! Don't be scared by React. You don't really need to know it to use this. Just basic html/css. In fact, the React app portion of this asset will be open source. That means you could clone the React app, create the generation yourself and use it that way.

    Pricing:
    5-7.5 dollars. 7.5 because ideally I want to get 5 dollars to myself per purchase, although you guys are the market, so ultimately you decide the pricing.

    Pictures:
    Class view:
    This is the class view, where a tree of the project is shown on the left and the selected class is on the right. Variables and functions are searchable through their respective search bars and names.

    Searching in the tree view by class name is also fully supported

    The getting started panel is a set through markdown.


    The landing page with its card based search. Class descriptions are fully mark down enabled.

    The search filters by class name.

    The editor window is also well integrated into unity and easy to use.

    Feedback I need from you guys before I release the asset.
    1. Pricing! I think the lowest I'll go is 5 dollars (need this to kind of fund my university expenses )
    2. Should I keep the social media links in by default?
    3. Is the spacing of elements good on the class view?
    4. Any other comments?
     
    Last edited: Aug 1, 2019
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  2. ZhavShaw

    ZhavShaw

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    Don't go as low as $5 dollars. You'll be underselling yourself.

    EDIT: I just had to write more. Please don't undersell yourself with $5. This is an amazing idea and I would love to see it developed more. I just can't see that happening for only $5. Definitely push for the $30-$50 margins, and do the occasional sales.

    My company was just in the position where we were discussing documenting our code, and I pointed out that it's just too time-consuming to put focus on. So as you've already found, there definitely is a need for this... just not among the extremely small devs. Bigger devs are willing to pay bigger bucks and need this more.
     
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2019
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  3. sballew7

    sballew7

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    Why would somebody pay for and use this over doxygen?
     
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  4. Eric2241

    Eric2241

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    Oh great to hear! Do you know of any sites or software where I can test out price setting?
     
  5. Eric2241

    Eric2241

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    The documentation software I used to generate docs for my pause menu was doxygen. It left a ton of files in the root, which is suboptimal if you’re trying to have it as offline documentation, and it leaves a lot of be desired in the design/looks department. Also, the install/generation process wasn’t the smoothest if I remember correctly.
     
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2019
  6. ZhavShaw

    ZhavShaw

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    What do you mean?
     
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  7. Eric2241

    Eric2241

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    Are there any tools that can calculate an optimal price? Or do I just ballpark it?
     
  8. Eric2241

    Eric2241

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    Anyone else with pricing suggestions? Also what are some good promotional tips? I'm currently on twitter and reddit.
     
  9. Antypodish

    Antypodish

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    To be honest, I like doxygen.
    It is nice and clean, with optional skins, if anyone wants it.
    Whats more important, is lightweight and ready to drop onto web page.

    Price yourself, as you value yourself. However, consider existing competitive products.

    What you present is ok. But is far from, what alternative can offer already. So you should focus, to make it stand out somehow.
     
  10. Eric2241

    Eric2241

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    That’s fair. You expect to put up with some cleanup with free systems (which is what I did).

    I built this with react and have made keeping it lightweight and looking good both priorities.

    Right now, it is ready to drop onto a webpage. I’ll be uploading the documentation website for this asset to github pages this week. It shouldn’t be more than just a push. Although, I’d always love to hear what other features to add for it to be more turn key.

    What features do you think would be make it stand out more?
     
  11. Antypodish

    Antypodish

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    Other than UI, for example DOTS support.
    It is early for DOTS still, but that may be good time, to jump on the boat.
     
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  12. Eric2241

    Eric2241

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    Sorry what’s DOTS?
     
  13. Antypodish

    Antypodish

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    Data Oriented Technology Stack

    But if you are not familiar with, potentially may be too heavy stone to carry.
    I may be wrong tho, as most of things should be compatible.
    However, something to thing about. :)
     
  14. Eric2241

    Eric2241

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    It looks cool! What do you think the biggest application to this could be though?
     
  15. Antypodish

    Antypodish

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    Providing I understood correctly, Jobs of Systems should be part of documentation process.
    Each system can have multiple jobs in OnUpdate.
    Hence would be nice, to have references to them. For example doxygen doesn't recognize them. It only sees override methods in system.

    Wonder also, if this can be applicable to Project Tiny, since scope is similar as in DOTS / ECS.
     
  16. Eric2241

    Eric2241

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    Oh I see. That's a feature I'd be willing to consider adding. Do you know if reflection detects them? I'd assume it doesn't.
     
  17. Antypodish

    Antypodish

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    I don't know to be honest. But I am a bit skeptical. Something to try on.
     
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  18. TonyLi

    TonyLi

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    I agree about price. Hobbyists who would only spend $5 might not even care about generating documentation. Try an introductory price of $10-15. If it struggles due to competition from open source generators, leave it there. (Don't drop the price; this penalizes your early adopters.) If it gets a good reception, increase the price.

    It sounds like one still needs to set the title, logo, and social media links in code. It's more important to get your asset out there and start getting feedback, rather than endlessly tinkering with features, but the ability to set title, logo, and social links should be a high priority addition after release. Also, the ability to change templates from a dropdown menu would be nice.
     
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  19. Eric2241

    Eric2241

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    Alright that sounds good. Yeah there's still some set up to do to customise it, although it only takes a few minutes and the process is well documented. There's also the option of just leaving it as is, which means that you could have a custom doc website very quickly. The only drawbacks would be the HTML title being DOCUMENTATION TITLE and different social links.
     
  20. TonyLi

    TonyLi

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    Could these be fields in the custom editor window? Then the user could just type them in there.
     
  21. Eric2241

    Eric2241

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    They could, but there'd also be a drawbacks there too. React lets you build an optimized version of your app when it comes time to deploy. So then which html file would be modified? I've thought of having replacing DOCUMENTATION TITLE in the dev version of the app, but I expect that some users just want it up and running ASAP or don't have npm. Since the process is truly very simple, I've decided not not bloat the editor with controls to change for dev/build.

    Edit: with that said, if I do think of a good solution, I'll put it in with the next version.
     
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2019
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  22. pjccccc

    pjccccc

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    I can't suggest you an exact price, but 2.5 dollars is really small thing in the Asset Store. Because people usually buying assets with company's credit card.
     
  23. Eric2241

    Eric2241

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    Oh I'm definitely not selling this for 2.5 dollars.
     
  24. pjccccc

    pjccccc

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    My bad, I mean you're now considering between 5 and 7.5. So 2.5 was actually price gap.
     
  25. Eric2241

    Eric2241

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    Ah gotcha. Yeah, I want to make at least 5 on each sale. I think I'll probably start it around 10 since I don't anticipate all that much of a user base. With that said, if you're a small dev and really can't afford it, I'll be happy to give out vouchers.
     
  26. Eric2241

    Eric2241

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    The demo website (also the docs for this asset) is now live! Go and check it out. Give me some feedback here or on twitter. Star the repo if you like it (it really helps).
     
  27. Eric2241

    Eric2241

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    Update: I’ve submitted the asset for review, and it should be live in the next few days. Please continue check out the demo website at https://ezhu.build/uDocumentGenerator and let me know what you think. I love the feedback so far.
     
  28. Eric2241

    Eric2241

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    I've uploaded the asset to itch.io. You can go here to buy it, and email me your proof of purchase for a voucher on the asset store when it goes live there.
     
  29. Eric2241

    Eric2241

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