Reading and Writing with Files

Step 8. Reading Random Lines

There is another example script named "ReadRandomLine", go ahead and run that script. It will read a random line from your "myfile" text file.

One use I could see for this would be to use it to read a text file and pick a quote, greeting or joke at random. Lets create a random joke teller to see how we can us this:

  1. Create a new text file in your c:\temp folder named "jokes"

  2. Lets add some jokes, but they have to fit on one line. Here are a few I found online:

A recent study has found that women who carry a little extra weight live longer than the men who mention it.

I find it ironic that the colors red, white, and blue stand for freedom until they are flashing behind you.

Today a man knocked on my door and asked for a small donation towards the local swimming pool. I gave him a glass of water.

Add those to your joke text file and save it. You should end up with 3 lines of jokes with no spaces between the lines.

  1. Now add a new Script control and name it "RandomJokes" and enter the following code and save the script:

# Reads random line from the specified file

$filename = "c:\temp\jokes.txt"

if (FileExists($filename) = false)
  print("File does not exist")
$cnt = 1

$txt = FileReadLineRandom($filename)

print("Random Line: " + $txt)

This will print the joke in the output of the script debug window as well as speak it from the computer speakers.


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can the read text be a script?


Josh, I'm not sure I understand your question.  You would want to read the text contained within an EZ-Script?


well I was thinking of a script in the notepad file , so for example if you had questions and answers worked out but you also wanted a movement to accompany a response. Like eye brows raise when answering.   Maybe im not explaining it clearly , but I was imagining using word files as large memory for responses instead of placed inline with all the other scripts and code so ARC doesnt have to pass through them every cycle making it slower the larger amount of scripting there.

#4   — Edited

I think I see where you are going.

Let me add this to the "reading" of the files and data, while I can have a txt file with data in and have an EZ-Script read it does not mean my robot has "understanding" of it.  To create the connections and understanding to understand that a word like "Justin" or "Josh" relates to a person and who that person is requires more scripting, which I think is what your point is.

Your idea is instead of adding that extra scripting in an EZ-Script is add it to your text file or note pad file.

That is a pretty cool idea and I would say you can do it, to a certain level of difficulty.  I don't think you would want to try to build out an advanced AI full of scripts in text files because I think that approach would become unmanageable.

But like you said, if you want certain actions or scripts to active when lines are read in a text a file, you could make a comma separated file and insert your scripted commands among text separated by commas, but be mindful of any commas in your command control or action script call names so you tell ReadFile to split the read back at the spots.


So I did a quick experiment and here are some issues, you can add scripted data in your text file or comma separated file for an EZ-Script to take action on, but as you read in the lines you will assign them out to variables - which you then need to translate to an action or ez-script.  I don't see a way for ARC to understand its own scripting language from a file or to directly re-translate it.

This is why in the past I have used my own short hand commands in text files for the robot to read such as:

Justin Ratliff,Smile Josh,Wave DJ,Faint

That data might be in text file for people my robot knows and my scripts then use IF-THEN logic to carry out other scripts and actions based on those indicators in the text file like "Smile, Wave, Faint, etc." as examples.


You can make an ARC skill plugin control that loads txt files and executes them. It'll be pretty easy to do - but i'm not sure why you'd want to do that yet. Can you give me a use-case? Is it to avoid having lots of script windows? Or to avoid having a script manager with lots of items in it?


yes basically not have a ton of script windows open


it seems like it could be cleaner if you could congregate them in a memo txt doc


What about the script manager? Wouldn't that be the same thing?