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Ask () and Wait
ask [] and wait
Category Sensing
Type Stack
Introduced in 1.4
The Scratch Cat asking a question
The stage asking a question
The stage asking a question in Scratch 2.0

The Ask () and Wait block is a Sensing block and a Stack block. The block will make the sprite using the block say the question and show an imput box at the bottom of the screen. If the question is being asked by the stage, the question will appear above the input instead. Scratchers can input text into it and submit it, and the input is stored then in the Answer block. The Answer block automatically updates to most recent input.

This block and the answer block were added in Scratch 1.4.

Appearance

If this block is used in a sprite that is showing, the question asked will show similar to the Say () (block). When the sprite is hidden, the question pops up above the input box.

Example Uses

As this block allows users to input any text they want, it is widely used when a user must communicate with the project.

Some common uses for the Ask () and Wait block:

  • Chatbots — receiving information from the user
ask [What's your name?] and wait
say (join [Hello, ] (join (answer) [.]))
  • Setting preferences — coordinates, color, and so on
ask [Color?] and wait
set [color v] effect to (answer)
  • Receiving input — asking the user to give a command
ask [Move how many steps?] and wait
move (answer) steps

Workarounds

Main article: List of Block Workarounds


Sensing Method

This block can be somewhat replicated with the following code:

say (question)
delete (all v) of [answer v]
set [count v] to [0]
repeat until <<touching [mouse-pointer v]?> and <mouse down?>>
if <key [a v] pressed?> then
change [count v] by (1)
insert [A] at (count) of [answer v]
end
if <key [b v] pressed?> then
change [count v] by (1)
insert [B] at (count) of [answer v]
end
if <key [c v] pressed?> then
change [count v] by (1)
insert [C] at (count) of [answer v]
end
if <key [d v] pressed?> then
change [count v] by (1)
insert [D] at (count) of [answer v]
end
if <key [e v] pressed?> then
change [count v] by (1)
insert [E] at (count) of [answer v]
end
if <key [f v] pressed?> then
change [count v] by (1)
insert [F] at (count) of [answer v]
end
if <key [g v] pressed?> then
change [count v] by (1)
insert [G] at (count) of [answer v]
end
if <key [h v] pressed?> then
change [count v] by (1)
insert [H] at (count) of [answer v]
end
if <key [i v] pressed?> then
change [count v] by (1)
insert [I] at (count) of [answer v]
end
if <key [j v] pressed?> then
change [count v] by (1)
insert [j] at (count) of [answer v]
end
if <key [k v] pressed?> then
change [count v] by (1)
insert [K] at (count) of [answer v]
end
if <key [l v] pressed?> then
change [count v] by (1)
insert [L] at (count) of [answer v]
end
if <key [m v] pressed?> then
change [count v] by (1)
insert [M] at (count) of [answer v]
end
if <key [n v] pressed?> then
change [count v] by (1)
insert [N] at (count) of [answer v]
end
if <key [o v] pressed?> then
change [count v] by (1)
insert [O] at (count) of [answer v]
end
if <key [p v] pressed?> then
change [count v] by (1)
insert [P] at (count) of [answer v]
end
if <key [q v] pressed?> then
change [count v] by (1)
insert [Q] at (count) of [answer v]
end
if <key [r v] pressed?> then
change [count v] by (1)
insert [R] at (count) of [answer v]
end
if <key [s v] pressed?> then
change [count v] by (1)
insert [S] at (count) of [answer v]
end
if <key [t v] pressed?> then
change [count v] by (1)
insert [T] at (count) of [answer v]
end
if <key [u v] pressed?> then
change [count v] by (1)
insert [U] at (count) of [answer v]
end
if <key [v v] pressed?> then
change [count v] by (1)
insert [V] at (count) of [answer v]
end
if <key [w v] pressed?> then
change [count v] by (1)
insert [W] at (count) of [answer v]
end
if <key [x v] pressed?> then
change [count v] by (1)
insert [X] at (count) of [answer v]
end
if <key [y v] pressed?> then
change [count v] by (1)
insert [Y] at (count) of [answer v]
end
if <key [z v] pressed?> then
change [count v] by (1)
insert [Z] at (count) of [answer v]
end
if <key [0 v] pressed?> then
change [count v] by (1)
insert [0] at (count) of [answer v]
end
if <key [1 v] pressed?> then
change [count v] by (1)
insert [1] at (count) of [answer v]
end
if <key [2 v] pressed?> then
change [count v] by (1)
insert [2] at (count) of [answer v]
end
if <key [3 v] pressed?> then
change [count v] by (1)
insert [3] at (count) of [answer v]
end
if <key [4 v] pressed?> then
change [count v] by (1)
insert [4] at (count) of [answer v]
end
if <key [5 v] pressed?> then
change [count v] by (1)
insert [5] at (count) of [answer v]
end
if <key [6 v] pressed?> then
change [count v] by (1)
insert [6] at (count) of [answer v]
end
if <key [7 v] pressed?> then
change [count v] by (1)
insert [7] at (count) of [answer v]
end
if <key [8 v] pressed?> then
change [count v] by (1)
insert [8] at (count) of [answer v]
end
if <key [9 v] pressed?> then
change [count v] by (1)
insert [9] at (count) of [answer v]
end
if <<key [right arrow v] pressed?> and <(count) < ((length of [answer v]) + (1))>> then
change [count v] by (1)
end
if <<key [left arrow v] pressed?> and <(count) > [1]>> then
change [count v] by (-1)
end
if <key [space v] pressed?> then
change [count v] by (1)
insert [] at (count) of [answer v]
end
if <<key (backspace) pressed?> and <(count) > [1]>> then // hacked block
change [count v] by (-1)
delete (count) of [answer v]
end
wait until <not <key [any v] pressed?>>
end
say []
Note Note: This does not work perfectly. See this project for more information.

The list "answer" will replace the answer block.

Hat Block Method

Text input can be retrieved in correct order and speed by using this method.

when [a v] key pressed
add [a] to [queue v]

when [b v] key pressed
add [b] to [queue v]

when [c v] key pressed
add [c] to [queue v]

//and so forth for each key

when [left arrow v] key pressed
delete (last v) of [queue v] // backspace function

when gf clicked
delete (all v) of [queue v]
wait until <key [right arrow v] pressed?> // this will confirm the user is done inputting
set [clump v] to [] // blank
set [n v] to [1]
repeat (length of [queue v]) // compile list into a single string
set [clump v] to (join (clump) (item (n) of [queue v])
change [n v] by (1)
end

(clump) // will be the answer

Cancellation

To cancel the text box that appears once this block is activated, one must stop the script which ran this block. An example of when one might want to cancel the text box is if an answer is not received in a certain amount of time, or if a cancel button is pressed.

A few methods of cancellation are:

// broadcast method
(message)::grey hat
(cancel?)::grey cap
define ask-calcellable [message] and wait
set [message v] to (message)
set [cancel v] to [0]
broadcast [ask v] and wait//an alternative version of the custom block could not wait here
define cancel ask
set [cancel v] to [1]
broadcast [ask v] and wait//wait for cancel to finish. optional
when I receive [ask v]
if < (cancel?) = [0] > :: control
  ask (message) and wait
else
  say [] // in some scratches, the bubble would otherwise stay up
end

// clone method
((message)::grey)
define ask-calcellable [message] and wait
set [message v] to (message)
create clone of [myself v] // this means that no other clones can be used
broadcast [ask v] and wait // the wait part is the important part
when I receive [ask v]
ask (message) and wait
define cancel ask
broadcast [cancel v] and wait
when I receive [cancel v]
delete this clone

// stop method
// Stage
((message)::grey)

// Sprite1
define ask-calcellable [message] and wait
set [message v] to (message)
broadcast [ask v] and wait
define cancel ask
broadcast [cancel v] and wait

// Sprite2
when I receive [ask v]
ask (message) and wait
when I receive [cancel v]
stop [other scripts in sprite v]

An example of this can be found here.

See Also