Goodies to Go (tm)
March 3, 2003-- Newsletter #222

By Vince Barnes


Desktop-as-a-Service Designed for Any Cloud ? Nutanix Frame

Goodies to Go (tm)
March 3, 2003--Newsletter #222

This newsletter is part of the internet.com network.

Featured this week:

* Goodies Thoughts - Excuse me, Java Moment?
* Q & A Goodies
* News Goodies
* Feedback Goodies  
* And Remember This...



Goodies Announcement

Just in case you missed it before, the new Beyond HTML Goodies book is now available!


Go beyond the basics and learn how the pros add and use dynamic HTML features and advanced JavaScript techniques. Beyond HTML Goodies demonstrates dozens of new and different features readers can add to their existing Web pages using HTML and JavaScript. The book starts with simple text and image tips, such as adding a clock to a Web page or causing text to appear when the mouse moves over an image. It gradually builds to more complex tricks, including manipulating forms or working with cookies behind the scenes. Throughout the book, readers enjoy Joe's snappy style and "to the point" discussion of each "goody" in the book.





Goodies Thoughts - Excuse me, Java Moment?

You've seen those fancy navigation bars that animate themselves as they sit there waiting for you to do something and then colorfully respond to the presence of your mouse as it slides over the navbar, highlighting your options. You seen them, and you've asked me "how can I do that?" Here I am to answer! You can do this and many other bright, engaging tricks, simply, quickly and cheaply. You just need to know where to look and what to look for!

Of course, you could buy a copy of Macromedia Flash, study a while and then sit and build a Flash solution, but that's like cracking nuts with a battering ram. For this relatively simple application, a much easier way is to incorporate a little Java into your page, using an applet that somebody else wrote and made available to you! How so, you say? Read on!

First you'll have to find the Java Applet. Where do you look? In the Java Boutique, of course! That'd be http://www.JavaBoutique.com -- look at that home page; on the left; half way down; do you see Applet Downloads? In the selection list you can search by category, by name, by date or you can visit the Hall of Fame. For this piece I entered "Mouse Trails" into the search area above the downloads list and came up with Glitzer (which is very cool - you should take a look) in first place and Magic Button in second place. That didn't take too long! Go in there and take a look -- there's a demo of one of it's options right there on the page.

Download Magic Button and you have a Zip file. Unzip it and you get five more Zip files. Unzip each of these and you have five different navigation bars with really nice animations. Most of my readers know that I'm no fan of web pages that jump around at you, but this is a little different. The animations in these navigation tools respond to your actions with the mouse. That's feedback, and is useful as well as engaging. The one demonstrated on the Java Boutique page (zip file #3) periodically animates itself just to let you know it's there. It is a far cry from a frog jumping up and down with a sign in its hand (do frogs have hands?) I'll use this one for illustration here also. Unzip magic3.zip and you get file files: license_free.txt, menu.txt, mgcfree.class, readme.txt and start.htm

A Java applet itself is stored in a file called a class file. This one is called mgcfree.class and you'll want to copy it into your site along with the page that will use it. License_free.txt is the license you are agreeing to by using the applet, and readme.txt tells you a little about the authors and their business. Menu.txt contains the text of the menu items, the page name for each item's link, the name of the target frame (if you are using frames, which in this case may be a good idea -- see our Frames tutorials at http://www.htmlgoodies.com/tutors/fram.html) and the text of a message to be displayed in the Status Bar (at the bottom of your Browser window) when the mouse moves over the menu item. You will edit the menu.txt file and put it along side the applet class file in your site (the authors provide comprehensive instructions, if you need them, on their web site (see the readme.txt). The last file, start.htm, is a complete demonstration of how to use the applet. Take a look at it and you will see a page that contains the following code (see the note under Q&A Goodies below about sample code in this newsletter and the use of "<"):

<applet code=mgcfree.class height=400 width=140>
<param name=copyright value="Image Intelligence Ltd. 1999 (www.imint.com)">
<!--param name=escapepage value="escape.htm"-->
<param name=bgcolour value="ffffff">
<param name=columns value=1>
<!--param name=transition-frames value=20>
<param name=textcolour1 value="4C0040">
<param name=textcolour2 value="EBAD36">
<param name=textfont value="Helvetica">
<param name=textstyle value=1>
<param name=textsize value=11-->
<!--param name=images value="magicbar.jpg"-->

This code goes where the applet is to appear on the page. Note that the copyright parameter is required and must be exactly as shown. You can tell from the spelling that this was not written in the US! Use the spelling the author uses - the author is correct, because they are the author! Note also that parameters between "<!--" and "-->" are comments, and therefore are not specified, meaning that the applet will use its default value for these parameters.

That's it! That's all there is to using these applets! And you thought it was going to be some difficult, complex thing you had to master!

Java Boutique is crammed with applets that do all sorts of things. Explore a little a see what you can find. If you want to use these applets without the author's credits showing, you can buy them from the vendors. You'll be amazed how inexpensive many of the applets are, and, of course, you'll pass the cost on to your delighted customers!

There's more about applets on the HTML Goodies site at http://www.htmlgoodies.com/beyond/applet.html

Thanks for Reading!
- Vince Barnes



Q & A Goodies

Questions are taken from submissions to our Community Mentors. You can ask a Mentor a question by going to http://www.htmlgoodies.com/mentors.

Q. Hello, how can I use a jpeg picture of my own as
<BODY BGCOLOR="C:\WINDOWS\Desktop\HTML\orange.jpg"> ?

A. The first problem is your code instructs the browser where to find the file on your PC, so it will work only on your PC. You need to use a relative URL, so you can upload your site to your server and it will still work. Typically images are in a directory called "images" which is a subdirectory of the directory which holds your HTML files, so you should create such a directory and code the background like so:
<body background="images/orange.jpg">.
Also note the the attribute for a background image is "background." "bgcolor" is for a background color.

I've made a script with a image flip using a function. I've tried to figure the error out but I can't get it to work. If I ask for the source it just highlights <HTML>
<TITLE>a le ciel</TITLE>
<meta http-equiv="content-type" content="text/html; charset=shift_jis">
<meta http-equiv="content-style-type" content="text/css">
<link href="../alc-style.css" type="text/css" rel="stylesheet">
<script type="text/javscript">
function on()
function out()
<body bgcolor="#ffffff" text="#003366">
<a href="c15.html" onMouseOver="on()" onMouseOut="out()">
<img src="../img/red.gif" border="0" width="100" height="36" name="schoobydo"></a>

A. The problem is a syntax error in this line:
<script type="text/javscript">
You spelled javascript as "javscript". Correct that and the image flip should work. Those syntax errors will get you every time.

I am having trouble lacing an apostrophe on my web site. How do I make the apostrophe?

You can use the ASCII code equivilent which is &#39; and it will make the apostrophe display. Code it like so:
for just a plain apostrophe or
To get a name with an apostrophe before the letter s.


Q. I want to give me users the oportunity to have a small calculator available in a pop-up, but would like to ensure it always appears in the same palce. Is it do-able?

A. If you use the JavaScript method of window.open you can specify the position of the window with the top and left properties. You can also specify whether you want the window to have toolbars, scrollbars, etc. In the afollowing example I have set the position of the window to be 30 pixels from the top and left edge of the screen. I have also set all the other properties to "no" so that they do not display. Here is the example:
NewWin=window.open ("somepage.html","newwin",config="width=200,height=250,location=no,status=no,dir

Q. I have link that is targeted to open in a new browser window. I want to force the behaviour of the new window but cannot find out how to do so. The behaviour I want to force is as follows:
The browser window has no nav bar, address bar etc.; the size of the browser window is dictated by me.
The site I am developing will be running on an intranet using an MSIE browser and WinNT server.

A. This script opens a new window:
<SCRIPT LANGUAGE="javascript">
window.open ('titlepage.html', 'newwindow', config='height=100,
width=400, toolbar=no, menubar=no, scrollbars=no, resizable=no,
location=no, directories=no, status=no')
The first parameter is the file that opens in the new window, the second is the name of the window, the third is the configuration of the window like size, toolbars and such. "No" keeps them off, and "yes" includes them.

Q. I have a question regarding placing banners on link trading websites. When I submit to these sites they ask for my banner URL. I created a page with Frontpage Express with my banner on it and submitted that page URL. This does not work. I tried using the HTML coding on the HTML Goodies website a few different ways but with no success. Can you tell me what I am doing wrong?

A. I think they are looking for the actual address of the image itself. For instance if your banner was on your site in the images folder the address would look like this:
Substitute your information for the address and image name. Give that a try!

Q. I'd like to put up a short quicktime vid (30sec-1min) on my website. Can I do this using HTML?

A. You will need to embed your video or use something like Macromedia Flash to display the movie.
To use html to embed a file like a .mpeg you can code it like so:
<embed type="application/x-mplayer2"
pluginspage = "http://www.microsoft.com/Windows/MediaPlayer/"
The html "object" tag can also be used to embed videos, so there are several ways it can be accomplished.

Q. How is SHTML related to HTML?

A. The .shtml extension means that server side includes (SSI) code is being used with the html code. Here is a link describing it:






News Goodies

Intel Kicks Off Big Wi-Fi Ad Push
[March 3, 2003] The chipmaker plans to spend up to $300 million for the launch of its Centrino wireless Internet technology.

Click here to read the article


Microsoft Re-Christens SharePoint
[March 3, 2003] In an effort to tie its SharePoint Team Services collaboration technology in more closely with Windows Server 2003 and Office 11, Microsoft gives the technology a new name.

Click here to read the article


Pentagon Spy Program Approves Proposals
[March 3, 2003] Court forces Department of Defense to release documents showing scope of research planned for controversial data mining program.

Click here to read the article




Knowledge Base Upgrades Customer Self-Help Portal
[March 3, 2003] KnowledgeBase.net 3.0 is designed to offer improved levels of customization, personalization and integration as well as APIs, local language support and enhanced searching.

Click here to read the article



Will Yahoo Platinum Be a (Real) Nightmare?
[February 28, 2003] Yahoo's entry into the premium video-subscription space has set tongues wagging. Will Microsoft enter the market? Is there room for them all?

Click here to read the article



Tackling Software Piracy an Uphill Battle
[February 28, 2003] Authorities seize $10 million worth of counterfeited software in a New York City bust, but the fight to squash piracy appears a losing cause.

Click here to read the article



Gates Lets China Peek Through Windows
[February 28, 2003] Microsoft's charm offensive for stake in lucrative Chinese market.

Click here to read the article



Protecting Google Brand "Tricky Business"
[February 27, 2003] Even as the company's marketers celebrate its growing clout, its lawyers wage a quiet campaign to ensure Google's name doesn't become a generic synonym for Internet search -- a designation with serious competitive repercussions.

Click here to read the article



A Sweet Victory for Kids' Privacy
[February 27, 2003] Mrs. Fields Cookies and Hershey Foods agree to settle FTC charges that their Web sites violated children's privacy laws.

Click here to read the article



IM Needs to Build a Community
[February 25, 2003] Despite their enormous clout, the Big 3 of IM (Microsoft, AOL and Yahoo!) can't make the technology a success among enterprise customers on their own.

Click here to read the article






Feedback Goodies

Did you ever wish your newsletter was an easy two way communications medium? Ploof! It now is!
If you would like to comment on the newsletter or expand/improve on something you have seen in here, you can now send your input to:


We already receive a lot of email every day. This address will help us sort out those relating specifically to this newsletter from all the rest. When you send email to this address it may wind up being included in this section of the newsletter, to be shared with your fellow readers. Please don't send your questions to this address. They should be sent to our mentors: see http://www.htmlgoodies.com/mentors/

Thanks for all the responses to last week's piece on the value of web development. These responses included one from MC Bennett who makes the point that I did not allow for the time involved in sales and marketing and training. He feels that a developer in the business will spend at most half their time on the actual development, the rest being dedicated to these other activities. I am not so sure that an enterprising developer can actually afford to spend that much time on sales and marketing without pushing their prices up beyond a reasonable rate. However, to allow more time for this in my calculations you should add the value of this time (at your hourly rate) to the overhead. If you don't have last week's newsletter handy, you can find it in the archive (http://www.htmlgoodies.com/letters)

Bobby Olsen disputed whether somebody could keep up the pace of fifty hours per week! The figures in my examples were just that, Bobby -- examples. I used numbers that would make it easy to follow the arithmetic; I have now way of knowing how much of your time you wish to dedicate to the business. Use the formulas, but substitute your actual numbers.

Richard Johnson feels that he should charge based on what the product is worth to his customer rather than on his cost. Since he might reuse something he had developed, the former may be higher than the latter. You can of course do that, Richard, that is a business decision. Bear in mind, however, that another developer selling on my basis is likely to develop a strong competitive edge over time.

I was quite surprised by the number of readers who wrote to say that they had held back from starting their enterprises because of not knowing how to base their charges. Thank you all for your kind words. I do hope that you start now, as you have said, and I wish you every success!




And Remember This . . .

On this day in...

1991 Police Brutality Caught on Video
AT 12:45 am a California Highway Patrol officer attempted to stop a speeding driver, who also appeared to be intoxicated. The driver's refusal to stop let to an eight mile chase which was joined by cruisers and a helicopter from LAPD. The vehicle, a white Hyundai, was eventually stopped beside Hansen Dam Park. Officers led by Sergeant Stacey Koon ordered the driver and two passengers out of the car and onto the ground. The passengers quickly complied, but the driver, Mr. Rodney King, an African American, was slower to respond. The officers shot him twice with 5,000 volt Taser darts. As King started to recover from the shocks and to rise, Mr. George Holliday turned on his video camera in an apartment complex across the street. The eighty nine second video he shot showed the officers repeatedly beating King with batons and kicking him in the neck. The arresting officers and all but one of the two dozen other officers at the scene were white. The video, which was aired locally on KTLA TV and nationally on CNN caused such an uproar in LA and the nation that King was released without being charged and a Grand Jury indicted Koon along with officers Powell, Wind, and Briseno. The trial was moved to Simi Valley where a twelve person (10 white, no African American) returned not guilty verdicts on all charges except one against Powell, which had resulted in a hung jury. The verdict triggered three days of riots in LA in which fifty people were killed, two thousand were injured and more than a billion dollars of property was destroyed, making it the worst civil disturbance in the US in the 20th century. President Bush (Sr.) sent in the military and riot-trained federal officers to end the rioting. The officers were charged under federal law with violating King's civil rights, and while Wind and Briseno were again acquitted, Koon and Powell were convicted and on August 4, 1993 were sentenced to two and a half years in prison.

Born today in 1847 was Alexander Graham Bell, teacher of the deaf, inventor of the telephone and founder of the Bell Telephone Company. Another inventor born today in 1831 was George Pullman, inventor of the railroad sleeper car.


Thanks for reading Goodies to Go!


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