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DPChallenge Forums >> Web Site Suggestions >> DPChallenge Windows Vista Gadget is here!
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04/04/2007 11:18:53 PM · #1
I've just completed work on a Windows Vista gadget for DPChallenge (as suggested by 21.gif W.R.Miller in another thread. You can find it at the bottom of my DPCmod page.

dpcgadget_screenshot.jpg

While it does work for me, I suspect there may be bugs or annoyances, so please leave me any feedback or suggestions you may have.

Please let me know if it works for you!

...

On a related note - how do I request a DQ for my shot in Anachronism this week? This site is apparently full of heartless trolls. =)
04/04/2007 11:23:19 PM · #2
I hope thats not a current challenge in that shot.

That would be a very bad thing!

ANyuways makes me want to reinstall Vista RC-1 doesnt expire until June

Message edited by author 2007-04-04 23:25:06.
04/04/2007 11:29:24 PM · #3
The screenshot is faked - I thought the 7+ score might have given that away. =) It's just a gallery image of mine.
04/04/2007 11:33:35 PM · #4
Oh, 1.gif Langdon - if you read this, I went ahead and used my site as a proxy to grab and format XML data for the gadget. If you implement a .php script to output the xml directly, we can quickly and easily remove that step.

Also, some random possible ideas for improvement:
- Maybe a +/- indication since the last update
- Variable size images (gadget is a bit big...)
- Custom stat layout
04/04/2007 11:37:43 PM · #5
I read it and it's totally fine for now. I've had a partially-typed PM addressed to you on my screen for the last 36 hours and it wasn't going anywhere. =/

I still owe you some authentication stuff for ppchallenge too. I'll get to it sooner or later!
04/05/2007 01:04:43 AM · #6
Google has the same gadget that works with Windows XP and internet explorer. Will this one work through Google desktop or only Vista?
04/05/2007 02:27:07 AM · #7
Wow, this looks really cool. However, I can't figure out how to actually add it to the gadgets sidebar in Vista, since there is no install file in the .zip. Help?
04/05/2007 02:38:16 AM · #8

Sweet! It looks promising. I'm on my Windows Mobile -powered smartphone at the moment, but tomorrow I'll try it out on one of my Vista PCs at home. ;-)

Thanks!


04/05/2007 06:40:26 AM · #9
Good job! :)
It kinda works for me, but not quite fully.
Basically, it displays *most* of my thumbnail, but the bottom and the bit displaying my score got cut off. I managed to fix it by clicking the mag glass on and off a few times :)
04/05/2007 10:55:51 AM · #10
Originally posted by Konador:

Good job! :)
It kinda works for me, but not quite fully.
Basically, it displays *most* of my thumbnail, but the bottom and the bit displaying my score got cut off. I managed to fix it by clicking the mag glass on and off a few times :)


Thanks for the report, Ben. I'm guessing the gadget resizes before the thumbnail is loaded. On my machine, the thumbnail was probably cached. I'll fix it in the next version.
04/05/2007 11:15:55 AM · #11
To install:

Download and rename file from dpcgadget.zip to dpcgadget.gadget

If you are unable to see the extension, open windows explorer, go to menu tools>folder option and deselect "Hide extension for known file types"

04/05/2007 11:20:46 AM · #12
Ok, I'm unable to login. Any ideas?
04/05/2007 02:18:43 PM · #13
I fixed the ".zip" file issue. I had changed the extension to .gadget, but IE is "too smart" and was downloading it as a zip. You should be able to just click the link and install it now from IE.

As for not being able to log in - PM me what special characters are in your password. I think that quotes (single or double) may not work. My password has an exclamation mark, which does work. I may need to work on how they are encoded...

Cheers,
-Jeff
04/06/2007 01:13:59 AM · #14
Works great! I was wondering how it would work when I currently have multiple entries in one week, but the little link to switch between the entries is nice. (click on screenshot below)

I do have one question. When it says "Next update: 9 min", does that do the same thing as me clicking on the "Update" link from the DPC home page? Or does the same score appear six time per hour until the scores are automatically updated?

One more piece of feedback. It would be nice if the gadget itself was a bit more "modern" looking like other gadgets--you know, semi-transparent, smooth graphics, 3D look, rounded corners, etc. ;-)

At any rate, thanks for doing this!

. . . 493455.jpg


04/06/2007 02:00:37 AM · #15
Funny thing is that I also did a DPC gadget (but a different one).
Mine is displaying random DPC pics. It's running on my desktop, but I sent a message to SC requiring approval before making it publically available.

I am still waiting for the approval...
04/06/2007 03:33:16 AM · #16
Here is the other DPC sidebar gadget.
This one is a "featured pic" one, not a "refresh score addict" one. As we now have 2 DPC gadgets, I think that I will rename mine into something like "DPChallenge pics" or something similar in order to avoid confusion.
04/06/2007 05:50:14 AM · #17
Originally posted by lesgainous:

I do have one question. When it says "Next update: 9 min", does that do the same thing as me clicking on the "Update" link from the DPC home page?


Yes. It's just as if you clicked "update". If you go to the home page, you should see "last updated" time displayed less than 10 minutes ago.

Originally posted by lesgainous:

One more piece of feedback. It would be nice if the gadget itself was a bit more "modern" looking like other gadgets--you know, semi-transparent, smooth graphics, 3D look, rounded corners, etc. ;-)


Yeah, I might add a skinning capability to the settings and anybody will be able to help in that area. However, that might necessitate a fixed size gadget as you have to use a background image - I'll look into it.

Originally posted by lesgainous:

At any rate, thanks for doing this!


=)

Originally posted by Gabriel:

Here is the other DPC sidebar gadget.


Looks great! I'll have to check it out more closely as I'm curious what is the algorithm it uses to choose images. Some suggestions:

- I might like it to center the images (horizontally and vertically) in a 130x130 div
- Author might be nice to see
- Maybe some level of speed control
- These could be controlled in a settings box

Still, looks and works great for a first pass! Very nice!
04/06/2007 06:19:03 AM · #18
I uploaded version 0.2 which fixes the bug Ben pointed out - clipping your entry until you open and close the settings menu.

Originally posted by Gabriel:

Here is the other DPC sidebar gadget.


Hmm - I think your gadget locked (got in an infinite loop), because it just stopped responding and floored my CPU... Maybe in the regex processing? It had been running for about 15 minutes...

Also, since you're buffering up one image, the first image displayed is "broken". This is a negative first impression - is it working?? =)

21.gif lesgainous - how do you take a screenshot of the desktop with the sidebar? The sidebar is eluding my screenshots. =)

Message edited by author 2007-04-06 06:21:42.
04/06/2007 08:20:55 AM · #19
Originally posted by smurfguy:


- Maybe some level of speed control
- These could be controlled in a settings box

Yes, I think that the next step is to learn how to do a settings box. (and also put some safety belts here and there)
04/06/2007 10:49:12 AM · #20
Originally posted by Gabriel:

Yes, I think that the next step is to learn how to do a settings box.

How to write gadgets. Number 8 details how to add a settings dialog.
04/06/2007 12:02:19 PM · #21
I just templated from an already written gadget.
04/06/2007 12:10:16 PM · #22
Originally posted by smurfguy:

21.gif lesgainous - how do you take a screenshot of the desktop with the sidebar? The sidebar is eluding my screenshots. =)

I use SnagIt. It's a very powerful tool. Not only does it do "torn edge" -style captures, but drop shadows, fades, etc. You can even easily draw arrows, hightlight, and circle on portions of the capture to draw attention. The capture can include the whole screen, a specific windows, or any free-hand portion of the screen.

The screenshots in my DPC Tutorial was created this way.

By the way, in the screenshot I posted, I actually replaced the image shown with another from my portfolio. I didn't want to reveal my current entries (which would probably be grounds for a DQ).



Message edited by author 2007-04-06 12:19:58.
04/07/2007 02:16:18 AM · #23
Okay, I've got the gadget installed in my sidebar, but am getting a message saying "No scores found for user 'zymara'". I *do* have a Contre-jour entry, and my password is nothing exotic (i.e. no special characters, it's a standard english word)...?
04/07/2007 03:32:53 AM · #24
Originally posted by lesgainous:

Originally posted by smurfguy:

21.gif lesgainous - how do you take a screenshot of the desktop with the sidebar? The sidebar is eluding my screenshots. =)

I use SnagIt. It's a very powerful tool. Not only does it do "torn edge" -style captures, but drop shadows, fades, etc. You can even easily draw arrows, hightlight, and circle on portions of the capture to draw attention. The capture can include the whole screen, a specific windows, or any free-hand portion of the screen.

The screenshots in my DPC Tutorial was created this way.

By the way, in the screenshot I posted, I actually replaced the image shown with another from my portfolio. I didn't want to reveal my current entries (which would probably be grounds for a DQ).


Try the snipping tool in Vista it is pretty cool...

Type Snip in the Search bar and you will see it in the list of programs.

Tons of cool stuff in Vista...It's like an easter egg hunt...like using a Thumb drive as extra memory (memory boost) if you have a fast enough Thumb Drive or CF...right click on it and you will see a Memory Boost tab.
04/07/2007 08:50:06 AM · #25
What, memory as in RAM? :o

Wow, snip is pretty cool!

Message edited by author 2007-04-07 08:50:43.
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