August 2003 - Posts
Im almost finished with the installer now. It will all be availble for download within a week. Full source included.
So I tried out the JCLC out on the AliceBot.org source code and made a decent attempt to get the C# project working. I failed. I dont know if I ran out of time or patience.
Maybe someone else with more time will give it a shot. Share if you do!
The .NET Screen Saver just came down into SharpReader via the GotDotNet Samples Feed so I decided to check it out. Played around with it, adding a few Perf Counters on it (CPU, Active ASP.NET Sessions, Random Quote, etc..) and installed it.
Everything worked fine, excpet for my App.config.
With screen savers all you need to do is rename the .exe file to a .scr file and then copy it into the WINNT folder. Well by renaming it from ScreenSaver.exe to ScreenSaver.scr you would think all I would need to do is rename the ScreenSaver.exe.config to ScreenSaver.scr.config and all would be fine.
It doesnt pick up these settings. Does this automatic App Settings import only happen on .exe files? Is there some way I can add this ability to the Screen Saver (Win Form) so that it knows about the .scr.config file? I would hate to have to do the XML Parsing/DeSerialization my self. (Shouldnt it “Just work“?)
Dare Obasanjo pointed me over to Bloglines. I can see it being useful, if only they could solve a few issues:
1. When importing my OPML you better make sure you keep the category structure intact. Right now it imports all flat and ugly. I do not want to manage the structure on the site.
2. Allow me to mark items Private. That is, dont list all my subscriptions publically for anyone else to see.
3. The notifier page is useful with one exception, the META REFRESH. Allow us to link to a single url which emits the proper image (and url) for the status. I want to be able to include some simple HTML (or in an IFRAME on my intranet) to point to your notifier page. The Meta Refresh just messes this right up.
The tool is useless, for me, without these few *minor* upgrades.
Created my first two non-public RSS feeds for internal information last week and they are working great. Now that we have some tools (sharpreader, etc..) for reading these documents its just easier to publish out RSS and take advantage of them as opposed to some fixed sql query window over RDP or whatever.
From my very limited view point of RSS, I personally think the only thing that is missing is the ability to date stamp each item in the collection; including tool support for this. Lets say I did a synchronization of my RSS document at exactly 12:00 PM; and then at 12:15 PM I want to resynch. Well the RSS reader has to remember each item that has already been read and only display those new items. (Sharpreader has a 45MB footprint right now..ACK!)
Why cant the RSS document automatically timestamp each item so that these readers simply exclude by date? Wouldnt that make it easier for sharing subscriptions with different machines/tools? Or even better, have the tool request the document based on a timestamp restriction when originally requesting the document?
“Only give me the new items after 12:00 PM“
The next step, of course, would be the ability for OPML to become time aware. That is, I export my subscriptions to my OPML file, and the tool automatically timestamps each outline with the last time I synched up. So then when I take the OPML file home, and plug it into a different reader that reader will know what to ask for and not show me everything on all the feeds.
One last thing. Anyone got some URL's for web-based readers? Why on earth, in this online age, are we all simply downloading RSS documents into offline readers? Why is this not a free service on some public web site? We wouldnt have to worry about the installation of the reader, upgrades, tracking the subscriptions between different machines/readers, tracking each item that has been read, etc.. (of course i want my own custom stylesheet, ability to import and save my OPML directly, etc..)