Thursday, April 1, 2010

I won!

Apparently, I got so busy that I forgot to update this...

I won 2nd place in the competition and netted $2,500 in prize money! I'm obviously very happy with the results of my hard work, and hey, that's not a bad pay check for a few days of work, eh?

About The Application
The idea behind this application is to have a way to visualize your own personal goals in the form of interactive images. The idea came to me as a way to motivate myself to stay on track with my school work. It was originally just going to be something that I did on poster board, but as I thought about it, I knew that it was something that a lot of other people would enjoy using.

What you see on the screen shot below is the end result of what the user would create with the application. I've omitted including the editor for the sake of brevity and clarity. Technologies used were Silverlight, JavaScript, XML, HTML, and CSS.

The editor would look almost identical to the viewer, with the exception that it would contain an image search box on the page, and you would be able to drag-and-drop images onto your canvas and save it when you were satisfied. Every property and element that you see in the viewer would be configurable in the editor. That is to say, all of the colors, fonts, borders, opacity, etc...

My ultimate goal is to host this software on a website in which users can sign-up and create their goal murals and then share them with their friends and family. It is very much a work in progress, but with some more work I'm confident that I can offer a useful and enjoyable experience for a lot of people with this application.

Pictures From The Weekend

Monday, March 31, 2008

...and it's done

Hooray! I finished it! Mostly. I put in about 2 hours of work to create an "About" page that explains in more detail what the application is all about, what it aims to be, and what I will evolve it into. I used some CSS/HTML action to do this and I'm pleased with the results.

I don't really want to talk about this thing anymore. I worked on it for a while, and I'm very excited that it's over. As it commonly happens though, it's now on to another programming project that I've surely been holding on the back burner while I worked on this.

See ya. Oh, I'll link to some pictures and whatnot and update when I find out my prize.

Sunday, March 30, 2008

10 Hour Update

I tweaked the text box display a bit to make it look a bit nicer and easier to navigate. Other than that, I basically just put the application on my web server and made sure it ran properly. I spent a lot of time screwing with some dumb issue about sizing/spacing. Oh, I also changed the layout of the images on the page.

I need to add an info box on the left of the page to explain the concept of the application, and to explain away why it's not exactly what they were looking for. Although, I re-checked the rules, and it doesn't say explicitly what I thought it had.

I'd like to have the images get larger when you mouse over them, but it's not working. I had this working before, so I need to dig that code up. Come to think of it, it should be in my Gmail outbox... *goes and looks*

8 Hour Update

OK, I got rolling again and got a lot done.

I added support for hyperlinks so that when an image is clicked on, it pops up a window taking you to the url linked with that image. This involved adding the field to the XML, adding the parsing code to create the object, and setting up the mouse click event handler.

I played with the text formatting a bit, but for some reason the TextWrapping property isn't working, so I had to cheat and use short enough text. Lame.

I've got some of the webpage formatting working as well too, so it looks pretty. I still need to do some fanciness when mousing over the images, maybe. As well as add some text explaining the thing.

I don't think I'm going to go any farther and make this more of "what they want". I really am starting to not care if it's what they want or not, it's more of a proof of concept anyways, and my application wouldn't fit a contest atmosphere anyways, it's a personal thing.

Meh. We'll see. Back to work.

Friday, March 28, 2008


Well I ate. I watched TV. My brain wasn't very awake yet, so I didn't try to get too much done, it would have just aggravated me. I showered (ah!) which woke me up a bit. so I'm feeling decent.

I've got a good idea of the main things I want to accomplish, and then hopefully that will lead to some more things, as it naturally does. Not too much left to do really, last night accomplished some key things I had been concerned with.

I've got a meeting coming up for a game I'm designing with some people from school, so that will occupy me for a bit, but in a good way. Tonight I think I may see the late showing of "21" because, well, I like the story that it's based off of, and it will be interesting, and another nice break.

Sidenote: I fear I may need to buy more Coke (again, the liquid) prior to Sunday night... Scary.

OK. I woke up.

So, yesterday was a long day. I had class at 8am, and I didn't go to bed until about 4:30am. The first night is always the hardest since I couldn't start until late and I had already been up for so long, but despite that, I got a lot done. I just woke up at about noon, so I'm enjoying a Coke (liquid, not powder), and I'll make some toast, then I'll start outlining my day. I've got one or two other things to do today before I dive in and devote my entire attention to coding, but I've got some time yet, so I should be able to get 1 block of work in. Until then...

6 Hour Update

ha! I've got all of my main functionality working now, only took 6 hours! Next thing I need to do is make it look nice and clean, and then add my nifty effects. After that, I'll focus on getting the other elements in place (the ones that make it closer to what the contest is looking for).

I'm not too worried about it as I'm hearing that there are very few submissions coming in (like, only 1 other one thus far....) and plus I've already submitted one which is dead-on in terms of what they are looking for. This current application is an entirely different concept. I do however have a third application that's basically as far along as this one currently is (a lot of shared code). That application is a more extensive version of the first application I submitted. If all goes well with this current one, I foresee being about to finish that one as well.

Well, the caffeine has gotten to a level in which I'm now suffering it's side effects rather than it's benefits. Not to mention I've got raster burn. For the ill-informed, that's when your retinas begin to melt onto your face like butter in a camp fire after long exposures to computer monitors. So, given that, I'm deeming this a law of diminishing returns, playing some Quake 3, chilling on the couch, and then getting a bit of sleep before I get at it again tomorrow.

I'll update it before I start, and then each 2 hours of development time from there.

Oh, and don't worry, I've been taking pictures.