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myff admin

myfreefriends.org weeks progress

From an idea we have got to a rather swish looking design that can register accounts and can preview some pretty sexy windows functionality.

For a lot of places that would be fast progress and it is actually ahead of where I wanted to be

Round here on some levels it is slow progress as frankly a lot more thinking and talking about it is happening than the actual grafting. But that is also really right for this stage. It is a mistake to build into a corner at this point.

Next week should see some real functions added, but next week is also the dreaded end of quarter paperwork week Keeping officialdom happy will be the priority

I am all the same hoping by Friday some of Bravos great icons will be looking lively
myff admin

The dreaded paperwork can't be done quite yet

So today we have the system making friend requests, which not amazingly sparked off a lot of database changes and fixes to the javascript framework.

There are quite a lot of things that will end up being decided by trying and seeing at the coding level.

With AJAX you get away from the whole page refreshing each time you do something, but there may still be a lot of sense in not making the minimum changes possible. For example a friend request would want to prepend a new request to a list. This would be entirely possible within AJAX. But is it worth having two sets of code one to do the whole list and one to tweak the list?

More code means more complexity and more bugs, and is that really needed if you have already reduced the bandwidth of a whole page refresh to a fraction of that anyway?

My current thinking is that unless I can some up with elegant ways of doing the minimum changes, I will stick with refreshing whole chunks.
myff admin

Another issue solved neatly with xajax is forms submission. I was just contemplating how best to do this and I did a:



to find unsurprisingly that this was a totally solved issue.

Mind you whilst we can't expect to be ahead of the game on all counts, the javascript windows frame work, with its move, resize, minimize, maximize, restore functions are more than I have ever seen on web pages
myff admin

Well forms would have been solved if the tutorial was right, which it wasn't

They are solved now, but I'm still plodding painfully through the profile fields.

It does remind me a bit of people learning the use of html on the forums, new technology can be a learning curve. In this case xajax and javascript are technologies I have used but I am not fluent in, in fact even css and the Joomla API are not things I have been using everyday

I simply have to accept a learning curve will slow things down, and that the essence of real speed is the rabbit and the tortoise, in the case the Rabbit would throw it all together accepting weak foundations, whereas I will keep plodding but end up confident in the methods I am using and slowly speeding up
myff admin

Seems like all day was spent/wasted getting the image uploading done

But in one sense we must not grumble, I can now move on to friends management, and from there we start getting into the realms of isn't it about time this system did something useful?
myff admin

The one main bit missing now from friend management is the messy business of "ordering" friends much loved by teenagers




A lot of other little details keep on getting in the way of real functionality, but all the details need doing sooner or later, so that is no big deal.

I may aim to get simple message/comment posting done when ordering is out the way. That makes for some real functionality that could be made live, whilst really being very easy stuff.
myff admin

Ordering seems working, involved a complex 4 table database join in the code I must confess I tend to steer clear of multiple table left joins as whilst they are more efficient, in most the actual coding I have done peak efficiency has not mattered that much when it came to that sort of thing, and I have preferred to write more easily understood and hence maintainable calls.
Here we cannot make that sort of compromise.

Anyhow the upshot is we are on to basic messaging, which actually presents more of a user interface issue than anything else. It will be easy to do crudely, but I think it needs to be done slickly which requires some thought
myff admin

Still seem to be dancing up to the wire on this one.

I now have working friends profile windows which is where some of the interaction will go on, or at any rate such a window is needed to see stuff about your friends. But the next step is too crucial to mess up

One tip on productivity though is that there is always something that you can do, so I have been tidying up the main joomla part of the site to hide bits and applying a few tweaks to styles.......

Another productivity tip though is that you get no where if you try and ignore the big issues and hope they will come out in the wash, they never do....

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