CSS Image Maps

I recently wanted to produce a hyper-linked image map to help navigate a software architecture. HTML provides an image map tag to do just that. Not that flexable, but does the job. Recently though I’ve been interested to learn CSS, and how it relates to HTML. It seems that most if not all sites are using CSS.

So a bit of Googling, found that a few people had worked out the magic incantation. I found one tutorial that is pretty good and I think from one of the original author. This worked very well and let me produce a pretty good image map. Here’s an alternative solution.

I coupled this with leightbox; when a link is clicked in effect a small dialog is produced allowing the user to select between a couple of different links.   This did raise an interesting thought about having multiple different locations to get to from a different a single hyperlink.

Eclipse 3.3 Milestone 5

Eclipse is one of the those software tools, that I now wonder how I ever managed without. OK it can be a bit slow, and cumbersome, ok I’m ending up with loads and loads of Eclipse installations on my machine. We’ve fallen for the same problem as with Java… no one producer wants to take risk of shipping with a version of the product they haven’t tested with…

any way…

Eclipse 3.3 Milestone 5 is now available, and I will be updating to that to see what is new and great. The ‘New and Noteworthy’ pages are good but simple innvoation to help you keep up to date with the project.

Some things I will be checking out

  • Drag and drop in text editors
  • Hyperlinking in text edtiros

The killer app?

Spreadsheets are credited as being the killer applications for PCs. My mobile phone does an incrediable amount, including would you believe it the ability to make phone calls. It also has a camera; being an amateur photographer the camera on my phone is not one I would really want to use for taking images.

However I think I might have found a use for it. Being a software engineer we often draw all sorts of things on whiteboards. These are very transient data, but with a camera phone I can finally give these whiteboard drawings some sort of persistence. So I have in mind an application for my phone that will help me persist whiteboards.

So far I don’t think there is a killer app for our powerful mobile phones – perhaps this will be it?

Well a bit of googling has found a couple of interesting things. There are 2 sites set to which you can email/MMS an image, and a PDF will be emailed to you. scanr and qipit. Both look useful services. A samples I’ve seen look pretty good. but I have one concern. Primarily that my employer would not like to me send copies of whiteboards to just anybody.

This leaves some form of local processing. A basic image manipulation program has enough featues; some of the work flow is described here

Now my next task is to encode this in a script, to make the images quick and easy to process.