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Thread: My first A5 instruction Videos

  1. #1
    Volunteer Moderator Steve Wood's Avatar
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    Default My first A5 instruction Videos

    I've been dabbling with the idea of creating video on various programming topics. Here are the first. I'd love some constructive critique (too fast, incomprehensible, voice like a frog, etc.).

    I have two videos to share, one is a tech-tip, the other is of a recent client application. Both are web related.

    See my website link below, go to For Developers. It's the first section on the page, titled Videos.
    Steve Wood
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    Default Re: My first A5 instruction Videos

    Steve,

    I thought the videos were very well done. Very good quality image, sound was clear, voice was good and not too fast, short, sweet and on topic.

    I did prefer to watch the video on the capturing of data from a web page just because I like seeing the coding behind the actions. However, the photo finishing video did help provide ideas on what can be done.

    Very well done in my mind. Take a bow.

    Doug

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    Default Re: My first A5 instruction Videos

    Steve,

    I agree...nicely done!

    I am looking forward to the time when I finally start utilizing the Web side. Between your website (with videos now!) and the amount of answers you have provided to many individuals here on the messageboard, I am fairly certain I will be able to accomplish quite a bit without being too big a burden to others with questions on how to do things.

    Thanks!!
    Mike
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    It's not what you look at that matters, it's what you see.
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  4. #4
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    Default Re: My first A5 instruction Videos

    Steve

    I agree. Very well done! Professional from all angles.

    Thank you for taking the time to provide them.

    Jeff

  5. #5
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    Default Re: My first A5 instruction Videos

    Hi Steve

    I had another thought. I would love to see more detail of exactly how you accomplished the Photo App.

    Not sure of what your long term intentions are with these videos - which are great. But, I would be willing to pay for access to videos that went into greater detail showing exactly how you accomplished what was in the video. Not sure, if it is practical to perhaps have "Intro" videos showing what can be accomplished with Alpha on the web side and then offer more in depth videos if someone is interested in that subject for a fee. The only reason I mention the fee based idea and I know how much time this must take. I have a need for utilizing some of the same functionality right now as you show in the Web Photo App and I would be willing to pay to "Get there faster". This is the same reason why I use Cal Locklin's utilities and Ira's CSDA Code Utility - they help me be more efficient.


    Regards,

    Jeff

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    Volunteer Moderator Steve Wood's Avatar
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    Default Re: My first A5 instruction Videos

    Thank you for all the encouragement.

    It would be difficult to be much more detailed in a video as they are hard to update when you find you left something out*. Plus I think I owe it to my client (who paid for the software) not to disseminate the development details, at least not as a whole. The individual tricks and ideas are open to discuss. So the video may open up that discussion when you see the software in action and say 'how the heck did he do that?'.

    But I'd like to make more as I get more comfortable with the media and hearing my own voice.

    *On the Posting form data video, I left out error checking on the script and that you may have to use urlencode() in various situations where you expect special characters in the string (as in CompanyName="Jim & Son's", the & will mess up the parsing).
    Steve Wood
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    Default Re: My first A5 instruction Videos

    Hi Steve

    Do you feel comfortable sharing the name of the java / javascript applet you used for the uploading of the images?

    The individual tricks and ideas are open to discuss. So the video may open up that discussion when you see the software in action and say 'how the heck did he do that?'.
    I can see where there would be a HUGE benefit to this. Is this the type of thing that could be discussed during your webinars?

    Regards,

    Jeff

  8. #8
    Volunteer Moderator Steve Wood's Avatar
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    Default Re: My first A5 instruction Videos

    Sure, it's at http://www.aurigma.com. There are other vendors, but I think this was the most complete and professional looking. The format I adopted is just one of the several to choose from. It's a bit complicated when it comes to setup though, lots of javascript parameters to adjust depending on what you are doing.
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    Default Re: My first A5 instruction Videos

    I just gave their site a quick look. Their products do look very nice.

    Thanks Steve.


    Jeff

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    VAR Dan Blank's Avatar
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    Default Re: My first A5 instruction Videos

    Hi Steve,

    Enjoyed your videos! Very well done! As usual you do Good Work!

    Thanks for sharing those. Hope there are more to come!
    Dan

    Dan Blank builds Databases
    Skype: danblank

  11. #11
    Volunteer Moderator Steve Wood's Avatar
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    Default Re: My first A5 instruction Videos

    I've added a third video, dated 3/20. This one is more of the HTTP POST stuff, but more involved. It may be harder to follow unless you are familiar with that whole area.
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  12. #12
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    Default Re: My first A5 instruction Videos

    Another great video Steve. Your programming creativity is really eye opening. Thanks again for taking the time to make this info available!

    Regards,

    Jeff

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    Default Re: My first A5 instruction Videos

    Steve,

    These 3 video's are eye openers for what can be done using Alpha5 !
    I like the speed of explaining, concentrating on the essentials you want to get across.
    Great work, keep them coming.

    Ron

  14. #14
    Volunteer Moderator Steve Wood's Avatar
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    Default Re: My first A5 instruction Videos

    Two new training videos at my website under Developer Resources. Videos 5 & 6 are new since I last posted here. Comments always appreciated.

    5 - how to track hits to your website using the Application Server.
    6 - how to create an "autoexec" method for the Application Server.

    Video 5 is a very large file, be patient.
    Steve Wood
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    Volunteer Moderator Peter.Greulich's Avatar
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    Default Re: My first A5 instruction Videos

    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Wood View Post
    Two new training videos at my website under Developer Resources.
    See images. The 3rd one results from typing in your URL directly.

  16. #16
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    Default Re: My first A5 instruction Videos

    Peter,

    Try again as I have no problem, even just typing in "alphato go.com" or any/all variations with http, www, etc..
    Mike
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  17. #17
    Volunteer Moderator Steve Wood's Avatar
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    Default Re: My first A5 instruction Videos

    Yes, I've been watching the dozens of incoming messages from this process. It does not seem to be 'perfect'. When it fails, on my side the email is missing the expected information; and I can witness the two or three subsequent "tries" by obviously the same person. About one in twenty or so has this type of problem.

    Everything is an expirement you know....otherwise I would be embarassed.

    Again on my side, I get a string such as below indicating the URL of the thread the user came from. If I go to the link below and click on my own post's web link, it works most of the time, and then fails some percent of the time. But I never get the more serious problem you show, where the GoTo button does not lead to my website.

    http://msgboard.alphasoftware.com/al...ad.php?t=72284

    So maybe someone can find the flaw in my code; why does it fail some percent of the time? Obviously I need to determine this if I intend to sport a fancy video saying how nice it works!!
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  18. #18
    Volunteer Moderator Steve Wood's Avatar
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    Default Re: My first A5 instruction Videos

    Following up on some error reported, I modified the code (fired when you click my url below) to include some error checking.

    IF eval_valid("request.referer") ' because for some clients, that variable will not get created.

    IF ref<>"" ' in case request.referer exists, but returns blank

    IF session.topic <> "" ' because who knows, it just might be blank


    Code:
    IF eval_valid("request.referer")
    	
    	ref = request.referer
    	
    	IF ref<>""
    	
    		dim dat as p
    		dat = a5_split_URL(ref)
    		url = dat.protocol + "://" + dat.server + dat.path + dat.page
    		
    		result = http_post(url,dat.query_string)
    		topic = result.body
    		topic = extract_string(topic,"<title>","</title>")
    		
    		'EXAMPLE TITLE
    		'<title>Conditional display of components? - Alpha Software Message Board</title>
    		
    		topic = stritran(topic," - Alpha Software Message Board")
    		
    		IF topic = "Alpha Software Message Board"
    			topic = "Private Message"
    		END IF
    		
    		session.topic = topic
    		session.ref = ref
    		
    		IF session.topic <> ""
    			?"Message Board Topic: <strong>" + session.topic + "</strong>"
    		END IF
    	END IF
    END IF
    Steve Wood
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  19. #19
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    Default Re: My first A5 instruction Videos

    Hi Steve,

    Now what did you do?? :)

    I now get
    <H1>Service Unavailable

    The server is temporarily unable to service your request due to maintenance downtime or capacity problems. Please try again later.
    Additionally, a 400 Bad Request error was encountered while trying to use an ErrorDocument to handle the request.
    occaisionally when going from you a5w page to your website....seems to be about 1 out of 3 tries.
    Mike
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  20. #20
    Volunteer Moderator Steve Wood's Avatar
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    Default Re: My first A5 instruction Videos

    Ah the joys of having a complex world and live system with live users - I was testing IE and FF with/without cookies, and then switched from V8 to V9. That's the page anyone would get if the server was down. But all that was happening is "toggling" from v8 to V9 took 120 seconds and you came in during that timeframe.

    Which brings me to a good point - there is nothing like working in the real world as a learning experience.
    Steve Wood
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  21. #21
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    Default Re: My first A5 instruction Videos

    You're back in business!

  22. #22
    Volunteer Moderator Steve Wood's Avatar
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    Default Re: My first A5 instruction Videos

    Taking requests....

    I will be able to cut a few move videos in a few weeks as I wrap up some projects. Up to now I have been playing with the medium, getting my bearings, seeing what works. Some have responded that the videos are nice, but beyond what they can do technically, or not really what they want to accomplish. I figure they are mostly about learning technique rather than trying to duplicate the exact purpose.

    But I'd like to know what other's think is important, and see if I can accomodate.

    Once you get in to it (making videos), it's rather fun. But it also can get expensive if you go all out on equipment, and can be time conusming on the editing side. Too much editing and it comes off choppy; move one inch back or forth from the mic, and your vioce output completely changes. This will make you laugh; I purchased a very high quality mic, and on the first couple videos I could hear a ticking sound throughout - it was my wall clock from five feet away. I now have to turn everything off, cover my computer with a blanket and use a "spider shock mount" for the microphone to reduce vibration. I look like Letterman sitting at my desk.

    If this works out, I'd be up to making videos of works by other developers (for a small fee) in order to get them in to the Alpha showcase.
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  23. #23
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    Default Re: My first A5 instruction Videos

    Steve

    Trust me you look nothing like Letterman :D

  24. #24
    Volunteer Moderator Steve Wood's Avatar
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    Default A5 Instruction Videos

    New video #7 dated 6/23/08: Showcase - Web-based Traffic Citation program [for use by police].

    See website link below, Developer Resources. If you don't like the application, at least you'll like the background music.
    Steve Wood
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  25. #25
    Alpha Software Employee Richard Rabins's Avatar
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    Default Re: My first A5 instruction Videos

    Steve

    did you mean to include this link

    http://alphatogo.com/video/ecit_demo.htm
    Richard Rabins
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  26. #26
    Volunteer Moderator Steve Wood's Avatar
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    Default Re: My first A5 instruction Videos

    Doesn't hurt, but all of the videos are on my website, so I direct traffic there in case anyone wants to see the other ones.
    Steve Wood
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    Default Re: My first A5 instruction Videos

    Well Steve,
    Very impressive! If I had half the knowledge and skills you have in these areas...

    I like how you improved your #5 video from when I reviewed it some time ago.

    All the videos I viewed today (4-7) were clear, informative, at the right speed pace and visually appealing.

    The only suggestion I may have is...more please!
    Eric

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    longlivepuppies.com
    socialservicenetwork.com
    -------------------------------------------------
    socialservicenetwork.org

  28. #28
    Volunteer Moderator Steve Wood's Avatar
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    Default Re: My first A5 instruction Videos

    New Video #8. This one is on Login and recovering from a failure, prohibiting access on failure, alerting the Admin.

    It's more of a showcase than technical, not much on the actual code.

    See website below, Developer Resources menu item.
    Steve Wood
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  29. #29
    Volunteer Moderator Steve Wood's Avatar
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    Default Re: My first A5 instruction Videos

    Another quick one, video #9.

    This one is on sitemap, robots.txt and META Tags. Three very important things most of us leave out of our application. It really is not a discussion about them, more about how I implemented them in my template.

    I kicked off this little two hour project after discovering Google was indexing my test application websites. Not cool, but kinda fastinating. So I put a robots.txt on each of them to stop indexing, and sitemap.xml on the sites I do want indexed, to tell search engines what to index.

    Not an expert in this area, but I discovered you can use sitemap file to tell search engines to follow your dynamic content. For instance if you have a shopping cart with a thousand items, but only 10 items appear at a time. In this case, the URL to the first page might look like this:

    HTML Code:
    http://www.mydomain.com/mypage.a5w?
    But the second page will look like this:

    HTML Code:
    http://www.mydomain.com/mypage.a5w?mycomponent_Page=2
    You can include all of the pages in sitemap.xml and search engines will follow your URL and index those pages.

    THAT is a lot more detail than just indexing your static website.

    I have not done it yet, but I plan to add routines that automatically generate all possible URL's for a dynamic site so they can be included in the sitemap and indexed.
    Steve Wood
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