Product Development

Speeding Up Your Web Applications and Websites

In the days of client/server applications the amount of data sent “over the wire” was not typically a huge concern unless the data was very big. This is because client/server applications typically run on local networks with 10, 100 or even 1000 Mbps connections; plenty of speed for most data applications. In the web world, however, more people access their application over remote networks, like from remote offices, home, or Starbucks. These are typically much slower connections, have to go thru many routers along the way (called “hops”), and often travel thru VPNs which encrypt/decrypt the data along the way.

Another Control for consistent HTML generation

Always a stickler for UI patterns and consistency, I’ve found another pattern that seems to be repeating a lot…

An object that has a title, a description and optionally a Thumbnail Image and (optionally again) a HighRes image.

Cross Browser More Info Control

So, I had quite a few senarios where I needed to display information that took up a whole lot of real estate, but was only needed for a short period of time. Sort of a "hover help" kinda thing. I googled it for a while, and really wanted a "pure css" solution, but after realizing how much "fussing" with it that was needed for it to actually work in IE6 (even IE7 requires a strict doctype to get the hover pseudo element to work properly on non anchor elements), I decided to just go with a JS solution.

The Information R/evolution

For those of you who enjoyed the web 2.0 - The Machine is using Us video posted on YouTube by Mike Wesch, a Kansas State Professor. He has added another video on information categorization - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-4CV05HyAbM. At the same time he posted another video called A Vision of Students Today - which is an interesting look into Gen Y - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dGCJ46vyR9o. E

iMIS15 themes

I am trying to create my own theme for the iMIS15 public view. All I did was copy the "C:\Program Files\ASI\iMIS15\iMIS_public\App_Themes\iMIS" folder and paste it into a new folder called "C:\Program Files\ASI\iMIS15\iMIS_public\App_Themes\CEDA". This way I could modify the style sheets as required, without affecting the iMIS theme.
I then went into the IIS iMISPublic virtual directory properties and went into the ASP.NET tab and clicked on "Edit Configuration". In the General tab, I modified the PublicSiteTheme to be "CEDA". In the Application tab I modified the "Page Theme Default" to also be "CEDA".

STC program: Exploring and Implementing Embedded Help

On October 2, Shannon and I attended the STC Austin presentation on Embedded Help by Paul Mueller, President of UserAid ("Delivering information when and where users need it").

Embedded Help systems seek this ideal: to answer users' questions without requiring them to ever ask for help, by making information available exactly when and where they need it. Users get the support they need without leaving the task they are working on. This presentation reviewed UI and technological strategies for embedding user assistance in both web and non-web user interfaces.

Setting up an iMIS 15 Home Page/Dashboard

Does anyone have a way to set up the home page/dashboard for iMIS 15?

I'm not sure how to get to it now that none of the Framework pages are available.

Social networking technologies: critical for product marketing

I attended the e-learning SIG program for ASTD Austin last night, hosted by National Instruments and led by 360training. Working through all of the new social networking technologies that affect training, we only tackled half the list, so we're continuing next month! The biggest surprise to me was the power these technologies could bring for product marketing, beyond their great usefulness for training. Here are my ideas, based on what I heard:

Interaction Design Pattern Library

This site has some great design patterns used by lots of the most popular websites.

http://www.welie.com/patterns/index.php

iMIS15 animated cursor

Here, by popular demand (well, one request, anyway), is an animated cursor based on the iMIS 15 icon. To install it, copy the iMIS15.ani.txt file to your windows\cursors folder. Take off the .txt extension. In Control Panel / Mouse / Pointers, Browse to this cursor for the "Busy" and "Working in Background" selections. Click Apply and you're done.