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Spruce up your words! A Guide to BB-Coding

August 19, 2017 by xZeroStrike
Comments: 53    |    Views: 6411    |   




Spruce up your words! A Guide to BB-Coding

xZeroStrike
August 19, 2017


A BBeautiful introduction



Guide Introduction



Hello everyone! Welcome to a guide to teach you BB-coding!

My name is xZero_Strike (Zero for short), and I'm a guide writer here on SMITEfire. This guide was created to help newer and older members alike to become better at BB-coding. This guide will contain all necessary information to guide you to creating beautiful guides that everybody will enjoy reading!

Do note that simply reading this guide will not turn you into a BB-coding master. BB-coding is a very sensitive matter, as one mistake in your typing can potentially mess everything up. BB-coding will require practice and a lot of time to get right.

BB-coding is nice, but don't go overboard. The goal of a guide is still bringing information across, not handing over a coloring book, and BB-code is there to help you present this information in a way that makes reading it more enjoyable. Too much BB-coding, though, can turn against you and instead of making reading more enjoyable, will make it harder/more frustrating.

With that out of the way, let's get straight into the guide.

Click these -->
for easy navigation!

BB-Coding basics



The BB-Coding basics

Before you apply BB-coding, you should make sure a couple of concepts are set.
  • Audience & Style - The audience to which we'll be typing/coding is an important consideration. An example would be children versus scientists. Children are attracted to a colorful style with lots of images, while scientists appreciate a more professional and consistent look. Since SMITE is a free game, our audience could be anybody, so providing some color while also providing clear and concise information makes for a solid guide.
  • Proper application - You could argue that you can place images everywhere, and that'd be BB-coding, but that's useless, unnecessary BB-coding. If you have an idea of the style you would like, and how you want to apply it, it will help you plan how to implement the coding.
Credit: Branmuffin17 - Aesthetic ideas, feedback on presentation of information.


Alright, so you've typed everything you wanted to say, and are ready to publish. But wait, there's a problem! It's all just a wall of text! You don't know how to use BB-coding, and don't have the time to learn it all. You just want to splash a nice coat on your text and pack your bags. Basic BB-coding is here to help you!

With basic BB-coding, we're talking about the standard toolbar that every guide maker has immediate access to, and is simple to use, while still making your guide a lot more enjoyable to read!


The Toolbar

The toolbar is the little bar that appears above every chapter while you're typing your guide.

This toolbar already has a wide variety of tools available and easy to access. They can be separated in categories: text, referral, listing, "other".
  • Text - The first 5 icons on the toolbar all have to do with how your text will appear on screen. From changing the look of your text, to changing the size, to changing the color. It's all in there.
  • Referral - Using material from other sites/media, such as images, videos or linking to another website, is all considered as "referral" material. These are useful to present information you did not find/create yourself or that's already available somewhere else on the internet.
  • Listing - As it says on the tin, this allows you to place text in lists. This way, you can neatly show those different points you wanted to make instead of having to place it in a text-shape.
  • Other - Really, I couldn't find another name for this. It sort of falls under "referral", but not entirely. Here, you can quote other people, or show text and BB-coding in raw code, for others to copy.


Code, code, code...


In case you want to go the hard route, and instead of using the toolbar you want to type everything manually, you'll need to learn the codes. We'll go from left to right from the toolbar when showing everything.


Text

Style

Styles are the basic text appearances: Bold, Italic, Underlined or Strike through. Underlined and Strike through are hardly used, since they tend to make reading harder rather than easier. Bold and italics are very commonly used to highlight certain words/sentences with great value to distinguish them from other text.

Bold

Example: Hello!

Code: [b]Hello![/b]
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Italic

Example: Hello!

Code: [i]Hello![/i]
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Underlined

Example: Hello!

Code: [u]Hello![/u]
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Strike through

Example: Hello!

Code: [s]Hello![/s]

Headers + Colors

Headers are, as it says, the head of a text. You place them above a paragraph/chapter as a form of title. Headers come in multiple sizes, 1 being the largest and 5 the smallest.
Colors are commonly used to highlight certain sentences/words within text to distinguish them from other text. They are really nice and can easily make a text more enjoyable to read, but to much colors will just create a headache, so be aware!

Headers

Example (1):

Hello!


Example (2):
Hello!


Code (1): [h1]Hello![/h1]

Code (2): [h5]Hello![/h5]
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Colors
Example (1): Hello!

Example (2): Hello!

Example (3): Hello!

Code (1): [color=#00ffff]Hello![/color]

Code (2): [color=#00ff00]Hello![/color]

Code (3): [color=#CC9C00]Hello![/color]
Note: You can use premade colors from the toolbar. For other colors, you can check out Technotoad64's color guide: Color Compilation, or browse the internet.

Referral

Videos (YouTube), Links

You can place videos, links and images directly into your guide. You can do this through the toolbar or by manually typing the code. Images can also be resized, and you can create a "referral name" for links.

Videos

Example:


Code:
Code:
[youtube=60ItHLz5WEA]


Explaining the code
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Links

Example: SMITEfire homepage



Code:
Code:
[url=http://www.smitefire.com/]SMITEfire homepage[/url]

Explaining the code

Note: Videos can also be added using [embed=x]. If you use this method, though, you need to copy the full YouTube link. x is your link.

Images

Example:


Code:
[img]https://hydra-media.cursecdn.com/smite.gamepedia.com/thumb/4/48/Smite-game-info.jpg/1000px-Smite-game-info.jpg?version=1b1e353617eb559ba20116fe94d03702[/img]

explaining the code

Listing

Lists: Bulletined and numbered

Lists are a useful tool in writing. They allow you to easily present different points in a nice, clean looking manner. Through lists, you can create various amounts of things. An example would be a 'Table of Content', in which using the "list" function would be preferred over plain text.

Bulletined list

Example:
  • Hello!
  • Hey!
  • Hi!

Code:
Code:
[list][*][size=4]Hello![/size] [*][center]Hey![/center]]] [*][color=#46CF46]Hi![/color][/list]
explaining the code
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Numeric list

Example:
  1. Hello!
  2. Hey!
  3. Hi!

Code:
Code:
[list=1][*][size=4]Hello![/size] [*][center]Hey![/center] [*][color=#46CF46]Hi![/color][/list]
explaining the code

Other

Quoting and coding

Sometimes you want to take the words from somebody else. Here, you can use the quote function. This way, readers can immediately see that your text is quoted, and not actually yours.
The code function allows you to show BB-coding in raw code. Instead of having the [color] tag show up as color, it would then show up as "[color]...[/color]". This function will place it inside a box to let others know it's a code.

Quote

Example (1):

Quoted:
Hello! Hey! Hi!


Code (1):
Code:
[quote]Hello! Hey! Hi![/quote]

Example (2):

Branmuffin17 wrote:
Anyway, this is a ton of information you're handling...keep it up!


Code (2):
Code:
[quote=Branmuffin17]Anyway, this is a ton of information you're handling...keep it up![/quote]

Explaining the code
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Code

Example:
Code:
[center][color=#46cf46]Code[/color][/center]

Code: [code][center][color=#46cf46]Code[/color][/center][/code]

Text without code tag

Explaining the code



The hidden (basic) code...


Throughout this guide you may have seen me use some code/functions that you cannot find in your toolbar. I call these "hidden" coding, because most newer members don't know about them, since they aren't listed anywhere.

Re-sizing, realigning and database linking.

Database linking is probably the most important BB-coding you can use on (this) website. They allow you to pull data straight from the SMITEfire database. Aside from that, we can also re-size text, and also realign it.

Database linking

Example (1):
Example (2):
Code (1):
Code:
[icon=Xing Tian size=50]
Code (2):
Code:
[[Xing Tian]]

explaining the code
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Realigning

Example (1):
Hello!
Example (2):
Hello!
Example (3):
Hello!
Code (1):
Code:
[left]Hello![/left]
Code (2):
Code:
[center]Hello![/center]
Code (3):
Code:
[right]Hello![/right]
explaining the code
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Resizing

Example (1):
Hello!
Example (2):
Hello!
Code (1):
Code:
[size=2]Hello![/size]
Code (2):
Code:
[size=5]Hello![/size]

explaining the code



The end... but not really the end..


This would be all the basic code that any (new) member should need to know before typing a guide. If you don't know anything about this, your guide is guaranteed going to look like a dull, boring wall of text, and a lot of people will just skip past it since they don't want to read it. Now that you know the basics of BB-coding, you can start writing guides and make them look really nice already.

Advanced BB-coding



Advanced BB-coding



You've read about the basic BB-coding, learned it, and now know how to use it pretty well. Neat, can't wait to see what amazing guides you create with it. However, sometimes you may feel like something's missing. That... "perfect" BB-coding. The more advanced stuff! And thus I, xZero_Strike - guide writer on SMITEfire, hereby present you: the advanced BB-coding section of the guide!

Note: This coding is the real deal. They're somewhat confusing to understand for newer members, and some of these are very sensitive (e.g.: Tables). Only proceed if you've mastered the basics, or be prepared to, sadly, waste a lot of time trying to figure out what you did wrong when that one table comes out all messed up.


Advanced code, code, code...

The advanced code concludes many things. The most common example would be columns. Tables also come to mind, and much more. Since these codes are usually a bit more elaborate, each code will get its own spot, for your ease.


Columns


Columns is a tool that allows you to place text in a designated spot across the horizontal line of the writing board. It's a bit similar to how [left], [center] and [right] would work, except here you have much more control over where the text will actually be placed, and you can place them anywhere across the horizontal line of the writing board, not just centered or outlined.

Example:

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This column
is 340
pixels wide.
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This one is 220 pixels wide. |
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This one is 100 pixels wide.
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The code: (Without outlining (|'s))
Code:
[columns] [nextcol width=340][left]This column[/left] [center]is 340[/center] [right]pixels wide.[/right] [nextcol width=220]This one is 220 pixels wide. [nextcol width=100][center]This one is 100 pixels wide.[/center] [/columns]

Explaining the code


Code with outlining (|'s)



Spoiler


You can argue that spoilers aren't "advanced", but oh boy if you forget to close one of these! Spoilers are often used to hide away big chunks of information, mainly to conserve space. They're also used to hide away more unnecessary information, such as a God's lore, so that those who aren't interested in it, don't need to read it.

Example:

Spoiler: Click to view


I HAVE A NAME!

The code:

Unnamed
[spoiler]
This is an unnamed spoiler. Did you know that all codes work within spoilers? You can place images in here, add columns, tables, and much, much more.[/spoiler]
Named
[spoiler=I HAVE A NAME!]
This is a named spoiler. It functions identical to an unnamed spoiler, but a spoiler with a name can instantly tell the reader what they can find inside a spoiler![/spoiler]

explaining the code



Rulers



Throughout the guide, you may have noticed those lines placed here and there and everywhere. Those are rules / dividers. They're useful to divide information that cover different topics from each other.

Example:


This is one way to create a rule.


This is another.

Code:
Code:
[rule]

This is one way to create a rule.
Code:
-----

This is another.


Explaining the code



You can also use tables to make colored rules. Using tables, you can also adjust the thickness of the rule and the width of the rule.
Example (1):


Example (2):


Code (1):
Code:
[table][tr][td padding=1 bgcolor=#00ff00 width=340][/td][/tr][/table]

Code (2):
Code:
[table][tr][td padding=5 bgcolor=#ff0000 width=680][/td][/tr][/table]


Explaining the table ruler code



Indents



Indents are another form of spacing. The thing that makes indents stand out from other forms of spacing is that indents will always have the same width, and thus make the spacing consistent, making for a nice, clean look. Indents can be stacked, creating even more spacing. Do note that indents need to be closed.

Example (1):

This text has no indent!
This text has one indent!
This text has two indents! We'll have to see a dentist to get this checked out!
Just one, again.
I have my own indent, but the one from the previous text carried over! Such a meany!
You need an equal amount of indent closes as you have indents! Don't forget!

Example (2):

This is
indents combined
with columns.
= Equal spacing!
Indents in columns don't need to be closed, since they already have an "end", due to the columns.

Code (1):
Code:
This text has no indent! [indent]This text has one indent![/indent] [indent][indent]This text has two indents! We'll have to see a dentist to get this checked out![/indent][/indent] [indent]Just one, again. [indent]I have my own indent, but the one from the previous text carried over! Such a meany![/indent][/indent] You need an equal amount of indent closes as you have indents! Don't forget!

Code (2):
Code:
[columns][nextcol][indent]This is [nextcol][indent]indents combined [nextcol][indent]with columns. [nextcol][indent]= Equal spacing![/columns] Indents in columns don't need to be closed, since they already have an "end", due to the columns.


Explaining the code



Anchor / Goto [ Tags ]



At the bottom of every chapter, you may have noticed those clickable words. These are "tags". Not many know about this, as it's not explained by many sources. Tags aren't made with a single command/code, however. To make tags, we'll need to learn and use 2 different codes.

#1 - Anchor | Example:

# <- There's an anchor here.

#1 - Anchor | Code:
Code:
[anchor=Name] <- There's an anchor here.
#2 - Goto | Example:

Click here to go to the Anchor left of me!

#2 - Goto | Code:
Code:
[goto=Name]Click here to go to the Anchor left of me![/goto]

Explaining the code


Notes




Tables



Tables are by far my personal favorite way to present text. They're very customizable, give a clean and nice look, and can hold all previously mentioned BB-codes within them. The only downside is that they're fairly "unstable", as a single miss in your code will mess the table up and it'll come out completely messed up.

Example basic table:

In the 'Wavebar' apartment block, 21st of December 2016 - 11:00 PM. The 2 owners of the apartments on the upper level woke up and decided to have a noisy chat.


Hello!!!
.
Sup!!!
.
.
Quiet up there, I'm trying to sleep!
.
Hey, you 2 should kiss!
.
.
If you don't quiet down right now, I'm gonna call the cops!
.
Oh shut up, or I'm coming over there and I'll teach you to!
.

Code basic table:
Code:
[table bgcolor=#46cf46] [tr bgcolor=#000000][td][center]Hello!!![/center][/td][td][center][color=Transparent].[/color] Sup!!![/center] [color=Transparent].[/color] [color=Transparent].[/color][/td][/tr] [tr bgcolor=#000000][td][center]Quiet up there, I'm trying to sleep![/center][/td][td][color=Transparent].[/color] [center]Hey, you 2 should kiss![/center] [color=Transparent].[/color] [color=Transparent].[/color][/td][/tr] [tr bgcolor=#000000][td][center]If you don't quiet down right now, I'm gonna call the cops![/center][/td][td][center][color=Transparent].[/color] Oh shut up, or I'm coming over there and I'll teach you to![/center] [color=Transparent].[/color][/td][/tr][/table]


Explaining the code - Basic table



Example advanced (customized) table (1):

"I am super pretty, am I not? I bought this dress in that new shop "tabledressers", and I totally luuuuuv it! Hey fam, you should totally check it out right now, like Oh my Gooood, it's so fabulouuuus!"

Example advanced (customized) table (2):

Heeeeelloooooo cray peeps!
Yolo Swagginson here!
I got chu nooow!
WHAT? NOOO! Guys, he has me, this is... *Cough* the end of our advanced BB-coding... Send help, plox!


exact code (Really exact, to be honest, it's just ctrl+c/v, really)



Explaining the variables



Table comparison



Extra: 'colspan=x'


Colspan=x is a variable that can be added to the [td] tag of tables. It allows one cell to span over the same width of multiple cells from another row.

To explain it differently:

If you create a row with only 1 cell in it, that single cell will take the same width as the table. However, if you place a row with 2 or more cells above or beneath it, the cell from the single row will only span over the width of 1 cell, which will cause a "gap" in your table.

Note: The colspan=x tag has to be added to the cell ([td]) that needs to increase in length. In simple: the single cell in the row that has to become as wide as the 2(+) cells above or beneath it. If that makes sense.

Note: replace the 'x' in colspan=x with the amount of cells that one cell has to span over.


Example


Templates



Templates



Still don't feel confident with BB-coding? Or you simply don't have enough time to piece something together? Don't worry, I've got you covered!

Here, I have prepared several templates you can use. These templates range from headers to placeholders for content. Simply copy them and paste them in your guide, make some small edits here and there, and you're good to go. Credit would be appreciated, but isn't necessary, it's a free source after all. Anyway, here are all my personal templates, enjoy!


'Header' template(s)

These are several templates for headers. Place these at the top of any of your chapters, edit the title, and you're done.


Header Template #1


Header Template #2


Header Template #3



'Table of contents' template(s)

These templates will give you a ready-to-copy 'table of contents' table. A 'table of contents' isn't necessary, but with these you can show readers what you'll talk about while giving some additional information about that topic in one place.


TOC template #1



Stats template(s)


These are templates that you can use to present the stats of a god. This information isn't necessary, but should you prefer to list it anyway, here's some templates for it if you wish to use any.


Stats template #1



Pro's & Cons template(s)


These are templates that you can use for your "Pro's & Cons" chapter, should you have one. There's a generic template available, one which you see often, as well as a template I made myself.


P&C Template #1 (Generic)



P&C template #2 (custom)



Item & ability template(s)


These are templates you can use to present items in your guide. Items are a vital component in this game, and thereby having them stand out is a must.


Item & ability template #1



Item & ability template #2



Gameplay template(s)


These are templates that you can use to present your 'Gameplay' chapter in a clean way. These templates are meant to be used with a "bulletin" type of representation, but can be edited to do otherwise.


Gameplay template #1



Gameplay template #2



Match-up templates


These are templates to be used for your 'match-ups'. Match-ups is a way to tell how the god(ess) you're writing about competes against (or works well with) another god(ess).


Match-Ups template #1



Match-ups template #2


Troubleshoot



Troubleshoot



So you now know what types of BB-code there is, and how to apply them. Eager to show off your amazing new skills, you rush over to that big, blue 'Create a Guide!' button and start writing, using BB-code to make that guide so much more amazing. You save your guide, and click on that 'view' button. You're super excited to see your amazing work and then... Wait, what? How did this happen? It's all messed up! Where o' where did you go wrong? This troubleshoot will attempt to help you find and clean up the (most common) mistakes.


Issues can occur by 3 different reasons:
  • "Typo" - The most common, and also the most annoying to track down by far. If you forget a single square bracket ( [ / ] ), your code won't work. If you type a wrong letter (e.g. "cade" instead of "code"), your code won't work. Now you have to find that small, tiny mistake in your huge text, good luck!
  • Incompatible code - If you mix codes together that don't really go together, they'll clash, and one will take the upper hand and the other will look all weird. The most common example would be the [code] function inside another [code].
  • Forgotten tag - If you open a columns, for example, and forget to place a [/columns] at the end of it, the text following up on your columns will all be placed inside a column, making it look all weird.




Solving the issue

I made this mind map with a step-by-step method on how to track down issues and solve them.


Track the location of the issue
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Found it!
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Didn't find it
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Fix it!
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Create a "test" guide
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Copy the problem

Fix it!

Re-type the code
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Paste the "corrected" code in the original guide.




Preventing the issue

As they say, better to prevent it than having to fix it. The above mind-map only applies to fixing already existing issues. Unfortunately, it's impossible to represent every possible tiny mistake you could make with BB-coding.

However, I'll show some common "fail" examples down below.


Incompatible code

example


Failed to close the code

You forget to close your table, this happens.You forget to close your table, this happens.
example
You forget to close your table, this happens.
You forget to close your table, this happens.


Oops, Typo!

[/tooble]
example
You forget to close your table, this happens.




Those are the 3 most common mistakes. They're very easy to prevent, but sometimes they just slip through. Need help finding your issue? Or need some extra tips to solve them? Follow these steps:

  • Search the general area - I think this would be self explanatory. If your BB-coding issue appears in your "The End" chapter, there's no point in you looking into your "introduction" chapter for the mistake.
  • Focus on the type that could've caused the issue - If your table is all messed up (e.g as in the example above), look only for the code that has to do with tables. If a table is the issue, you shouldn't be checking if you typed all of your [indent]s right.
  • Use a separate guide/txt document to search & solve the problem - Sometimes, it's better to use a separate guide or document to find and fix the issue. Testing is what you need to do, and if you accidentally mess something up inside your "test" document, it isn't as bad as when you were working in your original guide and saved that to check.
  • Test, test, test! - Testing is the key. Before you publish something, save & view it first, to see if there are no issues. If you don't know how to use a code, scroll back up through this guide and learn it first, then try to fix it.
  • Know your code - Don't try to use code you don't know. If you do want to try and use that code, test it first. Before you actually go and writing a nice table, learn the code first, that'll save you a lot of trouble, trust me.
  • Seek (professional) help - Sometimes, you're just not experienced enough to track & solve your issue, even with this troubleshooting chapter. In that case, ask somebody who is experienced enough. Don't be shy, we're here to help eachother, and we'll be happy to help you as well.

    Note: This doesn't mean you have to ask somebody else *every* time something goes wrong. Try to experiment a bit, if you can solve the issue yourself, if you solve it yourself, you learn a lot more than if somebody does it for you!

Credits + Changelog



Credits + Changelog



Credits

Contributed through:
  • Ideas for aesthetic improvements.
  • Ideas for presentation of general information.
  • Ideas for addable content.



Contributed through:
  • Inspiring me to create this guide. You wouldn't be reading this if it weren't for this person.



Contributed through:
  • Inspiring me to create this guide. You wouldn't be reading this if it weren't for this person.



Contributed through:
  • Ideas for addable content.



Changelog

June 28, 2017 [Update 8 - V1.3(4) ]
  • Fixed an issue that caused the image under the 'Image - Basic coding' chapter to have a wrong outlining (shifted to the right).
June 27, 2017 [Update 7 - V1.3(3) ]
  • Fixed an issue that caused the custom Pros/Cons template to have issues with placement / outlining.
June 27, 2017 [Update 6 - V1.3(2) ]
  • Made some QOL updates to the guide
    • Changed outdated / source removed image.
    • Added color to some additional tags in "explanation" spoilers, making them easier to distinguish from other text.
January 12, 2017 [ Update 5 - V1.3(1) ]
  • Added additional information to pre-existing chapters.
    • Added additional templates.
    • Added 'colspan' table-cell variable to that "tables" section (Advanced)
January 11, 2017 [ Update 4 - V1.3(0) ]
  • Added Templates chapter.
    • Header template - available.
    • ToC template - available.
    • Pro & Cons template - available.
    • Item & ability template - available.
December 23, 2016 [ Update 3 - V1.2(0) ]
  • Added troubleshoot chapter.
  • Re-added Credits + Changelog chapter.
  • Various amounts of additional information added to pre-existing chapters.
    • Added table rules.
    • Added table variable comparison.
    • Added [embed] command and named quotes.
    • Various visual improvements to improve the overall look of the guide.
December 22, 2016 [ Update 2 - V1.1(0) ]
  • Advanced BB-coding chapter added.
  • Credits + Changelog chapter added. -> Issue on my end. Credits + Changelog chapter deleted. Re-added in update 3.
  • Visual improvements to improve the overall look of the guide.
  • Removed [W.I.P] tag from title(s).
December 8, 2016 [ Update 1 - V1.0(0) ]
  • Initial release of the guide.

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