What about having the different tasks be variables that you can drag around and group in a tree structure. Have the root be your entire resource amount, and then be able to group your different tasks however you want in multiple levels to manage their ratios.
So say you have the 6 options, A: Military, BCE... as 'everything else'. (I have no idea what your tasks are)
R is your root pool, from R the player chooses to split between two nodes: A and BCDEF. The sliders adjust the split of the entire node above, leaving nothing more.
The player then chooses to split three ways, BE, CF, and D. each node gets a slider, and in this case BE and CF split again and get their final slider adjustments.
Dragging any value around in the tree should auto adjust the tree such that the amounts each.
So if I were to split 50:50 between A and BCDEF, A gets 50, BCDEF gets 50.
Then I split 15:20:15, BE gets 15, CF gets 20, D gets 15.
Later I change my mind and want to group D with A, so I drag D over to A's node. D joins A's node out of Root, and they split off into their respective leaf nodes. But since no values actually change on a simple move the split out of Root turns to 65:35, and AD splits to 50:15. I can then go back and adjust the Root split back to 50:50, which then auto adjusts the values in the sub trees based on their previous ratios.
*Brain needs image to understand*
I think I'm a visual type of person. Didn't quite get the tree structure from your idea (which also means I didn't understand the idea).
Is it possible to make the variables dependent on each other?
You could perhaps group them into pairs, then one slider would be manipulating the proportion between two variables instead of one.
They are really standalone items and are not related to one another. It's basically like saying, my city has 1000 population, 100 of which I want to work in healthcare, 200 of which I want to work in retail, 200 of which I want to work in schools, etc. They are all strictly different and shouldn't represent a binary choice (a or b) but a complex decision (a or b or c or d or e or f)
Is it integers or real values you are manipulating? Sliders work well for real values but for integers you could use some "add/remove" buttons.
I'm using integers (actual population count) but could represent them as proportions in %. That really doesn't matter so long as its user-friendly.
I've indeed toyed with the concept of various side-by-side boxes with their own +/- buttons. So far, this is the best looking system but its still very complex.
All values are stuffed into the same slider. The black box indicates how much stuff you have unused. When you slide any arrow, the value of that variable changedand the segment is getting changed proportionally. In the lower image the light blue arrow has been manipulated to the right. As a result, the purple arrow is pushed to the right and the black box is reduced.
It's clear that they all use the same resource pool.
You see the proportions of the values.
Problem is that if some of the values are supposed to be small and some large, it might lead the user into thinking that they should all be large. Example: if soldiers/priests/worker proportion is perhaps 40/2/5000, it will be poorly represented in this system.
You can attach nice icons on the arrows.
I had such a slider in mind as well. It is incredibly hard to be precise though, and its much harder for the user to determine what will happen (how can I make the blac box grow? as they'd be expecting that dragging section A will transfer to the section besides it (B)).
Still interesting though.
This. I have seen the "other bars adjust as you click one" in the old games and I did not like it. The only one that is fine with me is the proportional/percentage system (you move one to the right and then you have to move all other to the left - this way you have 100% in the first one and 0% in others).
How exactly does it work? Do you have any example I could check?