Archive for the 'AJAX' Category

Songbird

April 29, 2006

Ive just download Songbird and have been playing with it a little, havn't used it enough for a review or anything yet but first impressions are good 🙂 What interested me most though, was that it is programmed using XUL and the Mozilla engine. Songbird is a good example of this technology, the concept of using XML, ccs and javascript (many of the technologies that bring as AJAX) to define an interface. It is also cross platform which I like as well as open source, which I like even more!

Songbird can be found at Songbirdnest.com.

I'm thinking of doing either an image format or sound format comparison as well, for example comparing tiff, png, jpg in terms of compression, support(image programs, browsers) I think that will be quite interesting!

Password Strength Meter

April 28, 2006

I made a mock-up today:

I got started on my password verification, I worte it in delphi because that allowed me to sort out the GUI much easier as it is only in prototype stage (I’m just working out a useful algorithm). The finished application code will be ported to java (or any server side language) with an ajax interface for use on webforms. As you can see the meter updates on each keypress and (at the moment) simple validation is done. I hope to have functionality completed very soon so I can begin porting and move onto my next project… Starting that XML file reader/writer.

Browser based desktops

April 27, 2006

I'm sure this will become much more common, as mentioned in my post the online desktop I can see thin client computers which consist of a tiny Linux install consisting of basic features and basic window manager, just enough to run a graphical web browser really. Using Ajax and web-based technology all the operations that were previously done via the 'operating system' will now be done on a operating system within the browser.

I came across the post XIN – AJAX Rich Live Desktop over at Webby's World. His article on web-based operating systems and is a very good read. XIN is a Ajax based operating system and looks quite impressive!

I predict some great advances in this area, perhaps Google is working on something? It has been rumoured! 

My own template? And wordpress themes

April 26, 2006

Well I have been looking at templates and some look pretty good, however I feel if I designed my own it would give me full control, I'd learn lots, and its good experience. I have a good idea of what I want, 2 columns (the same as this blog, I like the black sidebar on the right) with the only main difference to this blog being the top and colour scheme (I like the dark scheme though). For the top I simply want a rectangular image like they have used at GeekLimit. Wish me luck! Will get started on that In a couple of weeks.

I found a possible theme/template for my project blog though, the minimalist barecity wordpress theme.

And I have been making use of the AjaxWhois service to find a www address, but all the ones I think of end up being taken! I have one in mind that's available… Ideally I want the new address and new name of the blog to be the same.

GUI toolkits for web apps?

March 15, 2006

Everything seems to be moving to the web and online servies, take for example Microsoft Live and all the new highly featured and interactive services; Gmail, Flickr, 30boxes, Box.net.

Building a GUI

A limitation, or area in need of improvement in web application development seems to be the development of the GUI. This is why Ajax based interfaces which update browser pages and communicate with the server without the need to refresh are becomming so popular. It is not a new idea or technique but has been coined Ajax. The technology has had alot of interest in the community and people are becoming aware of the XMLHttpRequest object (the object used via javascript to communicate Asynchronously with the server). This is fine, however it would be nice to have an extensive GUI framework available to work with for use in web applications. In the client side GUI the choices seem to narrow down to DHTML, Java and Flash based implementations.

Flash and Java?

Although GUIs can be created quite easily with technologies such as Flash and Java one of the limitations is that indexing services such as Google cannot index the metadata (or even obtain it) to the same extend as DHTML based solutions. Another is they require browser plugins. Many people disable flash and a higher amount do not even have the JRE (Java Runtime Environment) required to run java applications or have the desire to install it (and who could blame them with the way it is currently distributed/integrated, but that’s another story!)

XUL is a framework based on the mozilla engine using XML and javascript to create web-based thin client applications, I admit I do not know much about this so will have to have a look, however I do know it is limited only to firefox in terms of browsers. SongBird is an excellent example of how XUL can be utilised.

What does this leave us with? DHTML? Are there any toolkits,frameworks or builders for creating DHTML web apps?

Adobe Flex 2.0 Beta looks interesting…

Is there something that I am missing?

Links

March 13, 2006

I’ve been going through my bookmarks and adding the interesting ones to my del.icio.us account. Heres a few (they are all tech/geeky ones)

Call an apple an apple Very good read on ajax, a new name for an old technique.

Standards and specs: Not by UNIX alone An article at IBM developer works on API standards, good unix history run down.

Understanding the Recycle Bin – Basics What really happens when a file is sent to the recycle bin.

Lego USB JumpDrive 256 MB Very cool step-by-step guide to re-shelling a usb stick!

How to transfer/move all your Email from Hotmail (or Yahoo!) to Gmail Once upon a time I was using hotmail, I used this tutorial to my entire mailbox from hotmail over to my new gmail account, very useful and much better than forwarding every email as it keeps the original sender and does not add forwarding tags.

Thats all for now!

30boxes

March 8, 2006

I’ve been playing around with http://30boxes.com. It’s an online calendar that you can share with friends and has integration for services including flickr, live journal and myspace. I’ve added a couple of friends and connected my flickr account to it, the only thing it is missing is import/export options, It would be good to sync it with outlook. This has been described as the gmail of calendar applications so there are lots of features I haven’t mentioned. Worth a look.