Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Everything Just Got Bigger And Better

I mentioned a couple posts ago that I'd finally started on a View Full Size button on my portfolio site. I've wanted to do this for a number of months and assumed that once I actually got started on it, the update would take at least a couple of weeks. My site updates tend to take an order of magnitude more time than I originally plan and I've finally accepted that. But it turns out that this update took an order of magnitude LESS time than I thought it would, which is really kind of throwing me off a bit. I mustn't let myself get used to this sort of thing because there's no way it'll happen on any regular basis.

The update to the site took three coding sessions total, with a good start early in the week, about a half hour of work yesterday evening, and tonight's late-night coffee-fueled stretch. The framework is now in place to edit a simple boolean (true/false) tag into the image database's XML that will let the site know that a full-size image exists for a particular item in the gallery. The site then spawns a "View Full Size" button and links it to the appropriate external full-size image in the database, which opens in a new tab.

The code for the button was based heavily on the code I'd written for the "Link to Site" button on the items in the web section of the design gallery, but with some pretty heavy alterations (like the library location of click listeners, the passing-along of file paths, etc). I actually started this project by having the site look for an entire URL in the XML for each image, but realized in a facepalm moment that I already knew the exact place I was looking in my database structure, so all I had to do was drop a "fullsize" folder into each section with the normal portfolio images and thumbnails folder and just have the code look for the correspondingly-numbered image each time. So if it knows image 03.jpeg has a full-sized image available, it simply looks for 03.jpeg in the /fullsize folder and links to it. Therefore, all I need in the XML is a true or a false to indicate that the code should look for the fullsize image, versus grabbing an entire unique URL for each image. Wewt.

So I'm going to pat myself on the back by letting myself go to bed and read until I burn off the rest of this caffeine. If you want to check out tonight's handywork, it's all uploaded and working smoothly in the first two subsections of the Design section of my site at http://chase.brokenjpeg.com (the Compositions squares). Look for the button on the bottom of some of the enlarged images that reads, "View Full Size." I plan to fill out the full-sized images for the rest of the site (when available and necessary) over the remainder of the week. Luckily I happened to code it so that a completely missing <fullSizeExists> tag just causes the code to assume there's no full image (rather than completely crashing). Thanks, XML and the Actionscript 3 libraries that read you!

In other quick NYC-related news, I finally videoed my apartment today and took some pretty nice photos in order to document its End State. It was sad times because I've got hella memories in this place, but as they say, every ending is a new beginning. So we'll see what fresh adventures this brings. After the documentation, I began the official teardown of the place, starting with the removal of the plastic I'd taped all over my upstairs tub to prevent screenprinting inks and emulsion from staining the tub. A little of said materials had gotten through, but they cleaned up perfectly and the tub looks like it just came out of the Tub Worm's fiberglass spinnerets (I assume this is where tubs come from). I sorted through some of my studio stuff too (art supplies, etc.) in preparation for giving some of it the hell away and throwing the rest in the garbage. Oh, and I threw some old clothes away and put the remaining undesired clothes in a bag to take to Goodwill. So progress is being made and you should see some postings on Facebook soon about the supplies I'll be offering up to anyone interested. I'll throw some of the details on here too, including the Beers Cost plan for each item (it's not what you'd expect).

So I'm going to burn that caffeine off now with some reading.

"Choose the quickest way between two points,
Don't waste your energy on bullshit interaction,
Don't be scared of anything except letting yourself down,
Outdo yourself, work harder than anyone else,
Now make very clear distinctions between parasites and creators,
Be a creator instead of a second-hand artificial flavor,
Do not concern yourself with anyone's opinions on your methods, save your own,
Be three steps ahead of everyone and I promise you'll make it home"
-MaxNormal.TV, Love Is...

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