Jappler Recommends: Smooth Gallery

I have needed a good solution for a “cool” image gallery/slideshow for a few clients and have been very happy with Smooth Gallery. Why do I like this over something else from YUI or jQuery? I think this is by far the most easy to use and customize gallery/slide show. The documentation is clear and easy to read, and adding or changing parameters is extremely easy and clear. The other libraries have similar gallery/slideshow code, but if you are not a javascript fan – this is the one for you.

Quality Quote of the Day…

My friend Demitrious passed me a link today to someone’s blog post – and after a long day…I needed a good laugh. I have had similar thoughts, but was never able to articulate it like this:

– Hey Google? I have a bug to report… I checked my calendar, and it SAYS this is 2007… Are you SURE? Cause I really, really feel like I’m in 1999 right now…

*For those non-developer readers out there, this is something you would say when you are talking to someone who is stuck in the past with development styles and terminology.

validate, validate, validate!

I have been working on a project for a few months that has been touched by many developers at various points in time. It is my job to optimize the code, ensure it works in multiple browsers, and then test new functionality. This is a huge project with tens of thousands lines of code. I recently got stuck on one issue that I could not figure out at all…so I finally decided to run everything through the W3C validators, and as soon as I did, I realized I should have done this as soon as I started on the project, then every x weeks.
I know I have said it before, but I will say it again. If you are working on a project and ever get stuck on something, validate your code.

Great CSS Buttons

I am working on a project that started small and got really big. Good for the company, bad news for the code. I am in the process of going through the code and to fix and optimize it for multiple browsers. One word of advice for developers: when starting a new project, expect exceptions. One issue I have run into: not all buttons will be 90px wide like once thought by the original designer. By using flexible code, your big and small sites can benefit from changes in the future. If you are going to create buttons for your site, check out the “sliding doors” buttons. I also recommend the “sliding doors” tabs – I use those on almost every site I do.

a new wordpress user.

My cousin asked me last week about what it would take for him to get a web site that could be easily updated and flexible for growth and of course I pointed him towards WordPress.com. I figure he could learn the ropes there and then when he was ready for something a little more, I would create a custom WordPress site for him. Best of luck Robert!

WordPress Jobs

I was approached a few months ago with a project that sounded like a great opportunity: to design the UI and logo for the new WordPress Jobs web site (which my company does about 90% overall business on WordPress development). If you missed the announcement for the site, check it out. If you need WordPress consulting, you could go to the site, or you could go to the company who helped build the site ;).

css containers: one image, fixed width, rounded corners.

I use reuse a number of CSS/XHTML layouts everyday and feel it is time to share. This is the third of three articles in a series on how to create various CSS rounded corner or “fancier than a simple box” container with CSS and XHTML that work in IE 6, IE 7, Firefox 1.5, Firefox 2.0, and Safari 2.0. I have used this code on several large and small sites and have enjoyed the flexibility of both changing the height and the width. (Also see css containers: simple, fixed width, rounded corners, and css containers: fancier, fixed width, rounded corners..)

There are some sites where you need to have some flexibility with both height and width of the containers. This technique is known as the “ThrashBox” and I will not go into detail about it because it is well documented: ThrashBox. If you want to use something like this, there is a great web site that offers to create the graphic needed based on your input of color, height, weight, and corner radius. Check it out:Spiffy Box.