Archive for the 'Work' Category

04
Feb
11

Generating Table HTML


Yesterday I had a session with the marketing department regarding the web content management system they use. They had been having a few problems with it and wanted a bit of an explanation regarding what they can and can’t do. One of the main problems they were encountering related to adding additional rows to a table. Now for anyone with a basic HTML understanding this is a very simple task, however they don’t touch the SOURCE view at all and will only work with the WYSIWYG. Normally this isn’t a major issue, but in this content management system the edit functionality for a table doesn’t work.

I tried to demonstrate how to add a new row in the SOURCE view:

<tr><td></td><td></td><td></td></tr>

very simple at which point they could switch to the WYSIWYG view and deal with adding content etc. This wasn’t doable. Ok, fine, no problem, code (as they refer to it) _does_ confuse some people. My alternative option was to find a table generator online that they could use and then copy paste the html it generated in, replacing the existing markup. This was a well accepted option so I went to it looking for a user friendly table generator that would create simple elegant html. We didn’t want a generator that would supply any style data (except where specifically requested for a single cell etc), the website has it’s own external style sheet that needs to be used. This was the first problem, most generators that would allow the remotest higher level control (such as adding background colours, merging cells etc) would supply very detailed CSS for every cell. The website already has an external CSS, we don’t want that over ridden (it’s quite specific regarding tables), and then others wouldn’t allow you to even specify if it was a header or footer of the table. One that I found wasn’t even free.HTML TableFactory is charging $45.00 per license! All it does is tables o.0 – I downloaded the trial to see what made it worth such an investment, and whilst it provides the ability to manipulate the table quite effectively (especially in regards to merging cells) it couldn’t even create a link properly. The html it produced was self-sufficient so your own style sheet wouldn’t get a say in the matter. There wasn’t even an option to override that. *frustration*.

Continue reading ‘Generating Table HTML’

20
Jan
11

Early Onset Midlife Crisis


It appears to be that time of the year again when everything is on fast forward, there don’t appear to be enough hours in the day to get work completed; there are chores to do at home and people to see! I’m at the point of losing track of plans (about time I invested in a diary for this year). Does anyone have any tricks they use to ensure they have a proper work/home/social balance? Currently I appear to be focusing on work and social – I’ve moved from only seeing friends on weekends to seeing them mid-week as well. This redistribution of time is taking its toll on my ‘home’ time which normally includes a little bit of downtime, cleaning, cooking and all the usual house hold dramas.

My usual ‘always tired’ is getting worse, but I’m also trying to include an hour of exercise into my daily routine as I need to drop between 20 and 30 KG in the next 12 months or so, a big task but I’m determined to stop looking like a whale before my wedding. My reading has skidded to a grinding halt – previously I would finish a novel in less then a week but now I’ve found myself working on the same book coming up to 2 months now! With a stack of new books I haven’t even cracked the covers of yet sitting on my bedside table BLASPHEMY! Some of these books are by my favorite authors, these are normally devoured at an alarming pace through a sleepless night of reading on the day of release.

Continue reading ‘Early Onset Midlife Crisis’

20
Dec
10

One day, my boss said to me, “Hey Joe, are you busy?”


So this morning I get into work, and I’m setting up everything, feeling a bit better after being ill for a few days, and my manager comes over. I was informed that last Friday there was a decision that might result in some of the people on the project moving to new projects. This news causes me to freak out – the people that will be moved are my escalation points. As a support person there will be times I will encounter an issue I’ve never seen before, my escalation points are the developers who built the system.

Apparently I will have two weeks to gain equal knowledge of two systems to the developers. What do you think my chances are?

Signing Off – MCL

02
Dec
10

Colour Contrast


At work we are currently working on implementing a site redesign that was conducted by a 3rd party usability house. I’m working on testing the functionality changes to the site however I noticed that the text on the home page was difficult to read. The text colour had been changed to a light blue colour on a white background. I was concerned about the contrast level so I checked the brightness and colour difference to detect the level of contrast (see link below), it failed on all four tests. What are these people  being paid for if they, as usability ‘experts’, don’t understand a simple concept such as colour contrast *facepalm*.

Colour Contrast

09
Nov
10

Prizes


Today I organized to work from the main office. Getting a day off client site isn’t an easy thing to accomplish, the client LIKES to see me sitting at a desk for my 8+ hrs a day, they like to know that I’m working on things for them. (and not say, posting something on my blog *blush*)

Today I had two reasons to work off-site:

  • my manager wanted to see me to let me know I got a payrise ($303 extra per month before tax)
  • i had some sponsorship items to pick up for the ACS Trivia Night.

I have been a part of the Australian Computer Society (ACS) for a number of years now. This year marks the 4th annual trivia night. I have taken a pretty big role in organising this years event and I hope it goes as well as past years. There are a number of big names sponsoring the event including Microsoft  and IBM. If you live on the Gold Coast and you’re free Thursday night from 6pm then head over to Bond University!

Signing Off – MCL




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