Why should I use the target finder?
One of the main challenges for an attacker in Utopia is finding suitable
targets. Ideally you want to find a province you can break easily and get a
lot of acres at the same time. This generally means they should be close to
you in size, but have a weak defense. These are usually landfat provinces (who
have recently gained a lot of acres) or inactives.
Finding provinces like
this can be extremely time consuming and tedious. After a while I got sick of
manually looking through kingdom pages, so I created the target finder to help
me find good targets easily. I found that it not only saved me a huge amount
of time but I also found much better provinces before running out of mana for
CBs. You'll probably have a similar experience.
Where does the target finder get its data?
There are two sources of data: kingdom pages and the world charts.
Whenever you copy a kingdom pages while the target finder is running
it will detect it and send it back to the server (after 5 minutes).
Kingdom pages are the most important source of data because they give the most information.
The second data source is the world charts. These are located
on public pages that you don't need to log into Utopia to access
(ie. island 1 kingdom networth chart).
These charts are updated 4 times a day. When the server detects
that the charts have updated it sends a message to the next target finder client
it gets a request from. If you're using the target finder when this happens, you'll get a message asking you
to launch the world chart updater. This will go through all the necessary pages automatically
and send back the data to the server. You'll also get credits for doing this.
What data is sent back to the server?
Only Utopia information is ever sent back to the server.
Data is parsed on the client-side and stripped down as much as possible before being sent back to the server.
The target finder was designed specifically to reduce server load and bandwidth as much as possible.
So it can (theoretically) support a huge numbers of clients.
If you don't trust me I highly recommend you download
a packet sniffer which shows you exactly what network traffic is being sent from
your computer. Ethereal is a
great open source one I use, and it supports all operating systems.
You can also use the packet sniffer to see what other applications are sending (ie. Utopia Angel)
if you're curious.
Why do I need credits to search?
The reason I implemented a credit system was to force users to keep the target
finder database updated. Without credits I doubt many people would actually
copy fresh kingdom pages for the target finder to detect.
So although it's a little annoying it does makes sense when you think about it.
Do credits decay?
Yes. Credits decay daily based on the number of you have.
This is to stop people for accumulating a massive amount of credits and then
not submitting intel for long periods of time.
Credits up to 100 are reduced by 20%. Credits above 100 are reduced by 50%.
For instance if today you have 110 credits, tomorrow you will have 85 (100*0.2+10*0.5).
Is province data saved from CBs?
No. There are no current plans to add this feature. I think the database
would get way too big. Plus it would get outdated really fast without a massive
number of people submitting CBs all the time.
Can you fix bug X, or add feature X?
If you find a bug it would be extremely helpful if you let me know.
As for feature requests I might not have time right away to work on it
but if it's really good I'll do it eventually. Add all your requests
to my bug tracker (you may have to sign up).
That way I can keep track of everything easily.