Firefox or FireWow?

Get Firefox!By now you’re all surely using the latest version of Firefox, and “rediscovering the web”. While this is all very exciting, disappointment set in when I realized that my favorite extensions were unavailable, you’ve heard this before, but let me provide a little more detail.

First there’s Bookmarks Synchronizer, keeping neatly managed bookmarks exactly the same on a mac at the office, a mac at home, a PC laptop, and just about any computing platform connected to the web. This seemingly obvious functionality by the way, is the greatest revolution since the creation of the browser. After a painfully long week without it, an updated bookmark sync is made available, hacked by a user who also, could not bear going any longer without it.

Next is Bookmark Sync’s perfect companion – Add Bookmark Here, which turns the normally 4 step process of adding a bookmark into one painless step. See for yourself.

These are just a few of the items a brand new relationship with Firefox will bring to the table. Some others include it’s newly, out-of-box integration, of the here to takeover, RSS format. Use it with your Sage feed reader for maximum information intake.

Rediscovering the web? I’d say so.

RSS

I’ve been doing some research on RSS feeds, trying to determine which
formats to provide on a current project… I’m leaning towards RSS 2.0, but should we maintain RSS 1.0 and ATOM feeds
as well? Dropping 1.0 seems like a simple answer, and tons of current
newsreaders offer support
for both ATOM and RSS feeds So whats the point of supplying both? It’s hard to tell. Perhaps it
has something to do with which standard will be accepted by the W3C? Googles’ blogger has gone fully with the ATOM standard, which I imagine
will weigh heavily on anyones decision, especially when they implement their adsense program into an ATOM friendly format. And then, third party google ad conversion is possible too, although they have politely been asked to stop for
now…

“But with the lion’s share of existing feeds based on the RSS
format–and Atom still in its early stages
of development (the current version is 0.3)–there’s a lot of momentum
already behind RSS” says this article on eweek.

Apple recently embraced RSS as their chosen format and will have
built in Safari support w/ their next release of OS X.

This is exciting stuff, perhaps if someone will really be looking to gather available feeds we are planning to make available, we should
have the courtesy to offer them in both RSS & ATOM. I’m guessing that if they have the dsire to find theses feeds, they most likely have a
preference.

Upenn College of General Studies

http://www.sas.upenn.edu/CGSdev/

I’ve been working on this for the past few weeks or so, and it just got sent out to a bunch of beta testers w/in the company today…
The first feedback I get is: “Well, why does it look like this in netscape 4.7”?, “we have to do something about this”!… While I’m not too suprised, it fully throws a wrench in my gears.

The University of Pennsylvania has there very own department dedicated to web standards, it probably employs around 30 people. I think they want to support netscape 4.7; even though they gave me the go ahead with standards compliancy. I’m not sure they knew what web standards entail. I’m starting to remember why I don’t want to work for corporate America, even if it is an educational institution.

Granted, the sites nothing too challenging design wise, but it’s my first real use of PHP (pulls random images&displays navigation based on a section and subsection variable) and uses a header&footer to simplify content updates. It’s also my first site with no tables what-so-over (I think, except for where the data called for it)… and the whole w3c css&html 4.01 transitional compliancy thing

There was a TON of content, all from a super outdated site that hasn’t been touched in at least a year… This project was most definately more of an information design experience than anything else, if such a thing exists…

Creating A Simple , ASP Driven E-Card System

After searching for a simple e-card system on the web; I took a minute to actually stop and think about it as a concept instead of code. I don’t really know asp; I just use it. I’ve created mail to forms using asp; I have a $6.50 a month web host that supports asp, and i had the need for some new content on my site. I thought – hey, I can figure it out, it’s gotta be pretty simple.

Ultimately – you’ll need just 3 files and a directory with images (your e-cards).
Create a brand new directory on your site called “cards”, with a sub-directory named “images”, or whatever suits your fancy. Name your first file “index.htm”. In this file include image source tags to display all of your ecards. To keep things easy, I suggest naming your cards in consecutive number order. 1.jpg, 2.jpg. 3.jpg , so on and so forth. Make each of your cards a link to your not yet created, second file – card.asp. and add a question mark (?) the word “id”, the equals sign (=) and the number of your image. Your html will look like this:

<a href=”card.asp?id=1″><img src=”images/1.jpg”></a>
This link will send the filename of your ecard in the URL to card.asp

Now you’re ready to create your first ASP file. Name it “card.asp”. Most importantly, This file will collect the file name of the card the user selected.
You’ll get the file name from the URL and place it in a temporary variable called “stID” (the “st” stands for the word “string”, and “ID” is the cards file name. Start your file off with some basic ASP, it will look like this:

<%
stID = Request.QueryString(“ID”)
%>

The rest of the file consists of a form that displays your card, and provides the user with 3 fields, the first being their email address, the second being the card recipients email address, and the last being a comments field where your users can enter in their personal, witty captions. name the form “cards” with an action of “send.asp”, and a method of “post”. Your html will look like this: <form name=”cards” action=”send.asp” method=”post”>

Follow your form tag with an image tag displaying the image they selected. The previously defined variable “stID” comes into play. your image source tag should look like this: <img src=”images/<%= stID %>.jpg>” This will display the image they selected from index.htm. Next, create 2 text fields & 1 textarea, name them fremail (from email), toemail (to email), and message accordingly. Your html will look like this:

<input type=”text” name=”fremail”>
<input type=”text” name=”toemail”>
<textarea name=”message”></textarea>

You’ll need to pass along the image name to your final file, to do this create an input tag with a name of “cardID”, the type equal to “hidden” and value equal to “stID”… your code should look like this:

<input type=”hidden” name=”cardID” value=”<%= stID %>”>

close your form tag and you’re SO close.

The file that actually sends your eCard will be called “send.asp” My web server uses an email component called JMail. Consult your web hosts dopcumentation to send emails from your site. First off, you’ll need to write some asp that grabs all the info from the form on card.asp. Your code will look like this:

<%
fremail = Request.Form(“fremail”)
toemail = Request.Form(“toemail”)
toemail = Request.Form(“toemail”)
formatMessage = Trim(Request.Form(“message”)
cardID = Request.Form(“cardID”)
%>

that third line formats the users message and drops it into a newly created variable titled “formatMessage”… Stripping it of quotations and apostrophes, shit that can fuck up your html output.

This tutorial is getting too long and the remainder should be self explanatory – so heres the rest of the code:

SET JMail = Server.CreateObject(“JMail.smtpmail”)
JMail.ServerAddress = “mail.yourhost.com:25”
JMail.Sender = fremail
JMail.Subject = “A card from ghettocooler.com”
JMail.AddRecipient toemail
JMail.AddRecipientBCC “bill@ghettocooler.com”
‘My host requires that a mailt-to form contain 1 email address w/your host name, so I blind carbon copy myself on everything…
JMail.ContentType = “text/html”

htmlBody = “<font face=””verdana”” style=””font-size:10px””>”
htmlBody = htmlBody & “<img src=””http://www.yourhost.com/images/”
htmlBody = htmlBody & cardid
htmlBody = htmlBody & “.jpg””>”
htmlBody = htmlBody & “<br><br>”
htmlBody = htmlBody & stunFormattedmessage
htmlBody = htmlBody & “<br><br>”
htmlBody = htmlBody & “:::::::<br>”
htmlBody = htmlBody & “Send your own card @ <a href=””http://www.yourhost.com””>ghettocooler.com</a>”
htmlBody = htmlBody & “</font>”

JMail.Body = htmlBody
JMail.Execute
SET JMail = Nothing
%>
<BODY>

Your card has been sent.

</BODY>
</HTML>

It may be nice to add some kind of error detection on this too; The way card.asp is currently setup – Your users will receive the “your card has been sent” message, regardless if it worked or not. Remember – I don’t KNOW ASP, I just use it.

All of the code is available in one tidy downloadable folder called cardsOpen.sit

If you find any mistakes, have ideas, or would like to contribute please contact me.