How to use this tool, either from the command line or inside the Inform app.

§1. What Inblorb is. Inblorb is a command-line tool which forms one of the components of the Inform 7 design system for interactive fiction. Inblorb is the successor to cBlorb (2008), which was itself the successor to perlBlorb (2001). All installations of Inform 7 contain it, though few users are aware of that. They typically write sentences such as:

Release along with public source text, cover art, and a website.

Inform 7 uses the instructions in such sentences to contribute to the writing of a script called a "blurb". In effect, this is a detailed set of instructions for Inblorb to follow, and when the user clicks Release in the Inform application, the Inblorb tool is called. (This is a slightly simplified description — see below for the full details.)

Inblorb has two main jobs: to bind up the translated project, together with any pictures, sounds, or cover art, into a single file called a "blorb" which can be given to players on other machines to play; and to produce associated websites, solution files and so on as demanded by "Release..." instruction(s) in the source text.

"Blorb" is a general-purpose wrapper format designed as a way to gather together audiovisual media and bibliographic data for works of IF. The format was devised and formally specified by Andrew Plotkin around 2000, and its name is borrowed from that of a magic spell in Infocom's classic work, "Enchanter". ("The blorb spell (safely protect a small object as though in a strong box).")

§2. Inblorb at the command line. If you have compiled the standard distribution of the command-line tools for Inform then the Inblorb executable will be at inblorb/Tangled/inblorb/. Usage is very simple:

    $ inblorb/Tangled/inblorb [OPTIONS] BLURBFILE [BLORBFILE]

This follows the given blurb file. Not all blurbs instruct Inblorb to make a blorb, which is why BLORBFILE is optional.

The OPTIONS are very simple. Inblorb's predecessor cBlorb needed to be told what platform it was running on, by specifying -osx, -windows or -linux at the command line, but these have gone. What remains is:

-verbose causes Inblorb to print a running narrative of what it's doing;

-project X tells Inblorb to assume the usual settings for this project, which means that BLURBFILE is set to X/Release.blurb and BLORBFILE to X/Build/output.gblorb. X is usually something like Whatever.inform.

§3. Inblorb within the Inform user interface. This is the sequence of events when the user clicks Release in the user interface application (the "interface"):

    $ inblorb "Path/This.inform/Release.blurb" "Path/This.inform/Build/output.gblorb"
    Copy blorb to: [[...]]
    Copy blorb to: [[/Users/gnelson/Examples/Bronze Materials/Release/Bronze.gblorb]]