1999-07-29 The Farm: projects (from the archives)

Part of a series of posts from my old website archives. Enjoy!

“idle hands are the tools of the devil.”

Friends, I regret to announce that the [Gutterhaunt] project is no more.

That’s right. One of the best and most forward-thinking bands Texarkana has ever seen has called it quits. Gutterhaunt is gone. I am equally sad to announce that the project has also come to an abrupt halt, and I will be doing no further work on it.

I will, however, leave it posted for a while in case you want to see the half-built vision that is now an empty shell.

For those of you who have watched the Gutterhaunt web project grow from nothing to what it is today, I want to thank you for keeping watch, offering suggestions, and helping me make it better by sending me your bug reports. Without people like you, I couldn’t have come as far as I have.

During the project, I learned a lot about designing sites for other people, about learning new web techniques and technology, and I learned a good deal about site structure, design, page flow, and “the user interface.” There were some nifty techniques I had looked into, things I had wanted to do but never had a need to do, this like pop-up windows, automated “write once” on-the-fly html creation, CSS layering, and other stuff of that nature. I’ve found ways to enhance the user’s site experience and have thus extended my “artist’s toolbox.”

For me, with web design, I find it fun to figure out how to put all these pieces together in such a way to where they all fit well and make for a very good site. I’ve come a long way, but I know better than to rest on my laurels. I still have a long way to go. I suppose all those times of doing the mind-puzzles in the back of Omni magazine are paying off.

I’m also working on my own future site and doing basic graphics for it. I want a good site with a strong, iconic theme spread throughout the whole site. It will be a personal site, obviously, one of self-promotion and externalized thoughts, but I also want it to be my “programmer’s playground” much akin to [www.superbad.com]. I like the idea of using my space to play around with oddball programming concepts.

This week, I’ve been playing around hard-and-heavy with dynamic HTML and designing code that is cross-browser compatible and degrades gracefully for older browsers. I’ve found a lot of resources related to Cascading Style Sheets, DHTML, advanced HTML, and using JavaScript to control all of those features.

As an example of what I’ve learned this week, I wrote some code that puts a “rubber ball” image in the browser window and sets it in motion so that it bounces around the window. I probably pulled out most of my hair with getting it to work in both Netscape4 and IE4+, but now, I believe, it’s working. As an aid in writing DHTML for cross-browser compatibility, I am currently using DHTMLLib, an external javascript library written by the people at [www.insideDHTML.com]. DHTMLLib allows the programmer to write Dynamic HTML for Internet Explorer 4.0 and above’s Document Object Model and effortlessly translate that code so it is compatible with Netscape Navigator 4.0 and above’s Document Object Model. For general stuff, it works pretty well and saves me time and code by automatically doing browser detection within the library so I don’t have to do it. When the page is browsed using Navigator, DHTMLLib will simulate IE’s DOM and interface the programmer’s code into the Navigator DOM. This saves a lot of effort. If you are interested, see their site for more details.

If your browser supports the features necessary to do so, you’ll find the link close to the bottom of this page that will start the ball. Click it and play around. Have some fun with it.

I know I have.

Keep your eyes opened: I’m coming up with some new ideas to try out, and I may just start tricking-out here on this site. Cheers!

Published by Shawn

He's just this guy, you know?