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Thursday, July 28, 2011

because shit happens

When you spend half week of holidays recovering because of a dislocated shoulder, when you come back and spend 1 month recovering after a shoulder surgery, or for any other smaller or bigger shitty situation life could offer us, there is now a customisable way to express our anger: !

100% Embedded HTML5 Application

One project that always fascinated me is py2exe, an utility able to convert whole python applications into a single executable file.
This concept is similar in OS X Applications, where everything is transparently contained in a single file.
I have tried to reproduce a similar concept with this stand alone web page application where the manifest is hilariously the only external dependency, totally superfluous but necessary for mobile devices.
In any case, is a portable, "copy and paste source ready to go", cross platform tiny app, where rather than #! /bin/sh at first line, the user should simply double click it and run within a (modern) browser.
All images, sounds, and obviously CSS, HTML, and JavaScript are included. This surely avoid advantage of self updated web apps but nobody could stop me to implement a simple JSONP call to the website to compare versions:

// current version
var current = "0.0.1";

// update notification example
JSONP("" + current + "&fn", function(latest) {
if (latest != current) {
if (confirm(
"New version " + latest + " available.\nWant to update?"
)) {
location.herf = "";

Mobile Oriented Navigation

While the app works in both Desktop and Mobile browsers, latter are surely more friendly with the implemented navigation / interaction.
The whole app can be managed with touches and gestures:
  • touch the body to see the anger in action (one up to three seconds)

  • tap one of the top buttons to access internal sections

  • swipe sections to change them or tap other sections for faster tab scrolling

  • scroll sections if these do not fit on the device screen

  • interact with fields by selecting them, no need to explicitly apply changes

  • tap again the current opened section to close it and eventually see changes applied
All of this is surely experimental but it was fun to create such mobile friendly interface that is usable through mouse and trackpad as well .... you know, specially on Mac we are getting used to act via gestures and I am pretty sure this website won't be the first one that interact more like an iPad app on bigger screens.

Current and future HTML5 capabilities tiny app is based on many HTML5 concepts such File API, Audio, more related to the audio element, CSS3, and soon coming Web Storage to make changes persistent. I did not bother myself to make a fully cross browser app since one of these days all major browsers should support these features, including the input with capture microphone, right now usable to customise the audio providing a valid source.

JSONP Based Setup

The whole logic is based in a single fucknes function call, passing an object such:

color: "#F00",
background: "#333",
text: "OMG",
audio: [
image: {
"00": "base64encodedImage00",
"10": "base64encodedImage10",
"11": "base64encodedImage11",
"30": "base64encodedImage30",
"31": "base64encodedImage31",
"60": "base64encodedImage60",
"61": "base64encodedImage61"
The same concept is used to restore a previous or custom state file via record section and soon I will put an extra input able to JSONP online a custom configuration. Of course this app makes sense if people will start customise and distribute angers all over the net :)

Inline Download

As soon as W3C committed the link download property I have thought: how cool is that, I can create a base64 version of a text or whatever it is and set the filename into the download property ... and this is what I have done. There are no browsers yet compatible with the download property so right now if we create a snapshot of the current configuration we need to "right click" and save as, the result will be a text/plain file directly decoded for us by our browser.
This is the first time I see such technique to avoid big post or redirect to the server in order to download something for the client and as solution it seems pretty damn cool, isn't it?

No Server Code Involved At All

The last cool part is that the whole app can be used within the html file itself, there is no need of the server side and once these apps will be able to run in a trusted mode, same as native apps do, through the FileReader API, the Web SQL Storage or similar, and all next generation JS features, we can truly, and eventually, think of creating native like applications using exactly what we know already: no 3rd parts frameworks or application involved ( phonegap, Qt, appcelerator, etc )

As Summary

This little website has been one of the most stupid and futuristic personal projects I have ever made. It was simply fun from the beginning till the end, the silly represent your anger idea and the everything in one place with no server needed implementation.
It took a little while during my spare time and even this post has been prepared in different moments but eventually I have been able to activate my german PayPal account and the host finally worked as expected after DNS changes ( my fault here, I did it wrong ).
I hope you can at least appreciate the idea and why, have a little laugh or contribute with some customisation.
What's next? It could be face recognition to put anger through our camera snapshots or who knows what else ... stay tuned, and have fun ;)


Anonymous said...

Nice work, but:
Using tables and td to layout forms ?
UFF ;-(((

Andrea Giammarchi said...

as a grid of settings i preferred that rather than unpredictable floating problems over HW Accelerated layers. I will switch to layout table soon via CSS but I've never been that convinced about the difference ...