Bitworld

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BitWorld is a large database of scene demos for the Amiga that includes screenshots, credit information, and download links as well as a lot of other data. They offer a web interface at http://bitworld.bitfellas.org, and the file collection is downloadable from ftp://www.amigascne.org.

History

The information started as a detailed list of demos created and maintained by Zeg. In the late 1990's ExoticA was contacted, and hosted the information as a downloadable text file. Many years later Andreas G. Szabo converted the textfile into flat database table, and a web interface was built around it. The amount of information handled grew, and more people contributed to the project.

Despite being converted to a database, the information remains largely non-relational, and as such methods to navigate and browse the data are limited. We now provide an alternative search interface on ExoticA that is based on a reworked snapshot of the Bitworld data, that is updated daily. It what we consider the most important of the information, and we link to Bitworld for the rest.

Web Interface and Instructions for use

You can find the interface at the Special:DemoDB page.

Browsing

Use the A-Z links for demo title, group, author, party or browse by year. After choosing the starting letter, you can filter the results down further by adding additional letters.

Searching

By default the search boxes use a boolean search. To make a search enter one or more keywords with an optional prefix of +, - or |. + means the word must appear in the data. - means the word should not appear in the data. If no prefixes are used, the + prefix is assumed so the word must appear in the search results. To match an exact phrase enter the string in quotes. To make this clearer here are some examples

  • apples oranges would match data that contains both the words apples and oranges (in any order)
  • +apples +oranges is equivalent to above.
  • +apples -oranges would match data that contains the word apples but not oranges.
  • |apples |oranges would match data that contains either the word apples or the word oranges.
  • "apples and oranges" would match data that contains the phrase apples and oranges

You may also use the wildcard * for partial word matching. For example

  • lem* would match any words starting with lem such as lemons or lemmings.

Note that in boolean mode the wildcard only works appended to a word. You can not use it at the start of a word.

The boolean search can only search on words of 3 characters or more in length, unless searching for a phrase where it can match against phrases containing shorter words (so long as one word is more than 3 characters).

Some of the input fields also have a check box next to them. This enables exact mode. In this mode, the search doesn't recognise the entered text as separate keywords but one entire string (similar to that of the boolean phrase mode). This is useful to match against exact module names especially if they contain non alphanumeric characters which the boolean mode does not handle. The exact search also supports the wildcard * for partial matching. For example searching for format: *tracker* will return any formats with the word 'tracker' in the name, or a search for author Coma* would return any authors which start with 'Coma'. Note that the exact search with wildcards is *much* slower than the default boolean search (although a wildcard can be can be used at the start and end of a string so it can be useful in a few cases).

The quick search box works as the other search boxes, but matches against title, author, group, and party fields. You can also search by md5 checksum by pasting the 32 character hex representation. this is useful if you have a module which you want to identify, or check if it is already part of the modland collection.

External Links