HiRez Fox

HiRez Fox

Postby Mako on Fri Oct 25, 2002 3:16 am

Well the MacroFox HiRez Archive is online with alacrity for better or worse :) You can get to it from the 21CF home page or click this:

http://www.caspeed.com/macrofox/

It has all the sophistication of a marginally rusted ball peen hammer right now, but hey, it works.

Lots 'n lots of work for me and Scott to do to spiff the archive up to something less neolithic in nature, but for now, what we got is what we got.

Only new strips are currently being added to the archive, once the automated posting tools are coded, we'll start batch tossing in the older strips as well.

Enjoy!
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Re: HiRez Fox

Postby ZOMBIE USER 6611 on Fri Oct 25, 2002 8:30 am

Mako wrote:Well the MacroFox HiRez Archive is online with alacrity for better or worse :)
Good stuff!

Thanks, friend Mako! Your generous efforts have brought a new dimension to the comic. And thanks to Scott Kellogg as well for allowing this -- and creating the original work!

Alt-tags will be interesting to automate, won't they? It will depend on your source material, if you even attempt to address that.
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Re: HiRez Fox

Postby Matt Trepal on Fri Oct 25, 2002 8:40 am

Mako wrote:Only new strips are currently being added to the archive, once the automated posting tools are coded, we'll start batch tossing in the older strips as well.

Are you writing your own autoupdater? Because you can use Autokeen Lite, a no-frills version of the Keen autoupdate software that Gav passes out for free to anyone who wants to use it.

Just a potential labor-saving thought, is all.
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Re: HiRez Fox

Postby Mako on Fri Oct 25, 2002 9:14 am

Matt Trepal wrote:
Mako wrote:Only new strips are currently being added to the archive, once the automated posting tools are coded, we'll start batch tossing in the older strips as well.

Are you writing your own autoupdater? Because you can use Autokeen Lite, a no-frills version of the Keen autoupdate software that Gav passes out for free to anyone who wants to use it.

Just a potential labor-saving thought, is all.


And were I running *nix, I'd be sooo there. It's a NT 4 box though, so that means QuickBASIC :)

Tnx!
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Postby AirbornFox on Fri Oct 25, 2002 9:50 am

:o looks wonderful!!! makes alot of te details (goggles, sky, etc) stand out alot more, am very pleased with how it worked out! looking forward to seeing other comics done like this! all I gotsta sez is WOW. :wink:
Watching over you always,
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Postby Mako on Fri Oct 25, 2002 11:38 am

AirbornFox wrote::o looks wonderful!!! makes alot of the details (goggles, sky, etc) stand out a lot more, am very pleased with how it worked out! looking forward to seeing other comics done like this! all I gotsta sez is WOW. :wink:


Heya ABF!

Scott's artwork is soooo much better looking at 1024 isn't it? I"m just hoping my cable connection doesn't melt down ;-P

CYa!
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Postby Kellogg on Fri Oct 25, 2002 12:23 pm

Thanks for all your hlep, Mako! :D

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Postby Mako on Fri Oct 25, 2002 12:48 pm

Kellogg wrote:Thanks for all your help, Mako! :D

Scott


NP, this stuff is fun! :) I haven't done any QB coding in like forever, it's like driving an ancient old muscle car, it's good to be back behind the wheel.

CYa!
Mako

PS: Can you stitch together the two October 22 files into one phat image please? I don't have an easy way to do that here... Tnx!
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Postby Kellogg on Fri Oct 25, 2002 1:07 pm

Well, I'm glad you enjoy coding then! :D

Actually, I was thinking that the two can stand independantly as independant strips. I re-aligned the archives so that they're on
separate (bandwidth saving) pages.

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Re: HiRez Fox

Postby Matt Trepal on Fri Oct 25, 2002 1:12 pm

Mako wrote:And were I running *nix, I'd be sooo there. It's a NT 4 box though, so that means QuickBASIC :)

Ah, gotcha! How much trouble is it to write the updater yourself?
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Postby Mako on Fri Oct 25, 2002 1:15 pm

Kellogg wrote:Well, I'm glad you enjoy coding then! :D

Actually, I was thinking that the two can stand independantly as independant strips. I re-aligned the archives so that they're on
separate (bandwidth saving) pages.

Scott


Ahah! Ok, I"m going to arbitrarily make the part 1 image filename 10/21 then. That solves it neatly :)

Tnx!
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Re: HiRez Fox

Postby Mako on Fri Oct 25, 2002 1:47 pm

Matt Trepal wrote:
Mako wrote:And were I running *nix, I'd be sooo there. It's a NT 4 box though, so that means QuickBASIC :)

Ah, gotcha! How much trouble is it to write the updater yourself?


Not very difficult conceptually. I've got a roughed out program flow in my head, it should be a pretty flexible setup from Scott's perspective:

- It will grab the incoming image and alt text file from the ftp server.
- Toss the image file into the correct image directory and clean up /incoming to conserve disk space
- Create an html page with the alt tag and extra text in the proper places
- Update the archive index.

I will also eventually create some some "tags" similar to the phpbb or live journal to allow Scott to get tricksy with the text if he wants. That's a pretty well understood control/markup method, might as well stick with the standards.

It's all straight forward enough work using a mix of schedualing, .bat and compiled QB to accomplish. Building the parsers with reasonable sanity checking and logging capabilities is the most labor intensive part.

I'll be dinking around on it for a week or two, in the mean time I"ll maintain the page manually.

CYa!
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Postby Icefox on Fri Oct 25, 2002 1:48 pm

If you could use another volunteer for coding or design, I have some <a href="http://freefall.purrsia.com/color2/">experience</a> in such things...

*shrugs* I have to admit I don't know much about NT4 or Quickbasic, but I'm a quick learner. ;) Just gimme a yell if you need a hand bludgeoning the site into shape...
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Postby Mako on Fri Oct 25, 2002 2:10 pm

Icefox wrote:If you could use another volunteer for coding or design, I have some <a href="http://freefall.purrsia.com/color2/">experience</a> in such things...

*shrugs* I have to admit though, don't know much about NT4 or Quickbasic. But I'm a quick learner. ;) Just gimme a yell if you need a hand.


Icefox,

Oooh, now you've gone and done it! Consider yourself On The Hook :D

I'm clueless with DHTML and CSS stuff, I have the code for the page generation and all that in my Can Do colum, but the actual html for the site, particularly for a resonable index, I dunno very well.

I used Front Page for the current hack just to get something up there quick 'n dirty, but all the index and comics frames source will be created by the code I'm writing.

I'd like to do a calendar like display a'la KS et. al. but dunno how to do that (yet). V1.0 is going to be all static links (no java or dhtml at all) for a light weight easy to toss together page.

Geting fancier with dhtml of the index was on my plate for v2.0, and I'll way be needing help for that, a list of static links doesn't scale very well.

QB is about as drop dead simple as it gets. Lots of power in it actually and it's surprisingly fast code (only straight C or .asm is faster).

I make an extra effort to write very well commented self documenting code, so almost anyone could read it and figure it out with a minimum of neurons or caffine required.

It would be trivial to port the code to C or perl or even python. Heck. you could do it in csh or bash script in fact. It's fortunately not that difficult a problem to "solve", as there is 0 user interaction and no output to the screen.

Pure batch processing is linear as it gets, that's why I find it fun to code, I know I'll be sucessful before I even start (ie: it's a grape :)

Tnx!
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Postby Icefox on Fri Oct 25, 2002 2:23 pm

Rock on! :D

...though in the interest of honesty, I had a lot of help setting up the Freefall site. :-? *shrugs* I'm pretty good at hacking up HTML and such, as long as there's someone else around to tell me what it should look like. I'd prefer to do anything dynamic in Python or PHP, but I can mess with Javascript or just about anything else if you give me some time.

So <a href="mailto:siheath@angelfire.com">drop me a line sometime</a> and we can talk about nitty-gritty technical details.
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Postby Mako on Mon Oct 28, 2002 9:46 pm

Icefox wrote:Rock on! :D

...though in the interest of honesty, I had a lot of help setting up the Freefall site. :-? *shrugs* I'm pretty good at hacking up HTML and such, as long as there's someone else around to tell me what it should look like. I'd prefer to do anything dynamic in Python or PHP, but I can mess with Javascript or just about anything else if you give me some time.

So <a href="mailto:siheath@angelfire.com">drop me a line sometime</a> and we can talk about nitty-gritty technical details.


Icefox, I dropped you a line at the addy above, did it land in your in box or crash into a bit bucket?

CYa!
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Updater

Postby Mako on Tue Oct 29, 2002 4:51 am

I completed the .ini file parser tonight, which was my first milestone.

All the various directory and file names are specified in an .ini file to make the program portable for re-use by myself or anyone else foolish enough to want to run their own web comic hosting on an NT box. So this was a critical module to complete before launching into the meat of the program.

I also sussed out the logging function as well. This program will have a very robust logging capability with an on/off switch for each of the major modules to control how chatty the program will be. That'll make setting up new installations and maintianing the code a lot easier in the future.

I will begin working on the next phase of the mini project, which is the file tosser module to grab and stuff the files from the ftp directory into the correct directories. That'll be short and easy.

The next big chunk will be to write a parser/munger module that will create a html file for each day's comic. The html file will contain not only the comic, but also any alt tags and additional text the artist wants to appear with the art work.

A clever perl or php script tied to a database would do this on the fly all sophisticated like, but sometimes a simple hammer is all you really need.

The munger fuctionality will take the artist's text file, parse it and then munge the alt tags and any text into the right places in the html code, all on auto-pilot.

The next module will generate the comic index .html page, which is a bit tricksier deal to do correctly and utilize the limited frame space efficiently.

I'll have a much better handle how to crack that nut once I have completed the main comic munger code. Code re-use is a wonderful thing...

The only hitch so far is NT 4.0 shipped with QB v1.0, it's an interpreter only, and is missing a lot of the goodness v4.5 has. My only copy of v4.5 is buried deeeep somewhere, so I'm stuck with developing in 1.0 and digging up 4.5 when it comes tiime to compile the code later.

CYa!
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Postby Kellogg on Tue Oct 29, 2002 5:52 am

Hey Guys,

I'm not much of a coder. I get no little voice in my head when I ask the
ritual: WWCD? (What Would Cecil Do?) but a friend just pointed a site
to me that might help out:

http://downloads.atp.cx/

Apparently there's a program "ATP Autosite" that may help out.

Hope that helps cut down the workload! :oops:

Scott
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Postby ZOMBIE USER 10915 on Tue Oct 29, 2002 10:24 pm

Looks great Mako 8)

Could you move the links on the side so more of the strip can be seen at once?
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Postby Mako on Tue Oct 29, 2002 10:40 pm

Sheepdog wrote:Looks great Mako 8)

Could you move the links on the side so more of the strip can be seen at once?


I'll try to narrow that frame a bit more, but if your using large screen font's, I can't tighten it up much more.

Can you tell me what screen resolution your running at?

This is a temporay setup for a couple of weeks more. I'm working on something hopefully clever to eliminate that side frame...

CYa!
Mako

PS: I reduced the index frame by 30 pixels, I'm afraid that's as narrow as it's going to go w/o truncating the text or going to a micro sized font for now.
Last edited by Mako on Tue Oct 29, 2002 10:59 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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