SITE REVIEW: Private chat with MK27!

  • mk27
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Seriously. I started writing this as an exercise about a month or so ago, but now someone I know says he will pay me to install it where he works, so I am looking to play test it as much as possible.

The idea is this (it may not be unique, if anyone knows of similar things let me know): I have a small server running alongside apache on a remote box, in a vps account. Apache deals with the web front, which is what you will see. Then (via mod_perl) it passes on data to the other server (written by me in perl). That server is connected to a "control client" on my computer at home. The control client is a stand-alone GUI app that alerts me when someone visits the page and asks to log in. I approve (or disapprove) and you click thru to a web based chat page. There is only one me, and only one chat page, so all calls get routed to that one chat page. If you are lucky, you can drop in on me and my mom :lol:

The idea is the same as using a service like ICQ or MS Messenger, except that you do not have to install any software or sign up for anything to call me. You just go to this address:

http://206.251.36.107/nchiad/

And choose a name. There are no cookies, your authentication is maintained on a per IP basis. Obviously enough, I am not there 24/7 (if it says "CLOSED"...) but I live and work alone at home in EST, meaning the chance is greater during the day but I never say never.

The site itself is fairly simple; the graphics were done by me and are a little sci-fi -- if there ever is a commercial version I will have to plain it down. The guy who's interested does the web work at a small/medium distributer; I think there are maybe half a dozen computers in the office, and a very good chance someone will be watching one of them all the time. So a page like this could be added into their site, and inquiring minds could live chat with a rep in the office. If I run the server, the only thing they have to install is the GUI. Right now that's C/gtk+ on linux, but a windows version would be easy enough I think.
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Post 3+ Months Ago

  • UPSGuy
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Looks pretty good as far as functionality goes. The Sci Fi theme is unique, but when you get ready to demo for marketing purposes, a good business theme would go a long way towards impressions.

Usability wise, the experience seems pretty straight-forward. Simple to use. Couple of suggestions:

Maybe wire up the enter button to submit your message and a shift-enter to carriage return. I think people are becoming accustomed to those behaviors and those are fairly simple to implement with javascript.

Maybe work on improving the scroll action, if you could auto-scroll to keep the new content on screen, it would make it a little easier to keep up. Again, probably something a little JS could fix up for you.

Looks good. Thanks for demo'ing it.
  • mk27
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Post 3+ Months Ago

UPSGuy wrote:
Maybe wire up the enter button to submit your message and a shift-enter to carriage return. I think people are becoming accustomed to those behaviors and those are fairly simple to implement with javascript.


Hmmm. Maybe.

Quote:
Maybe work on improving the scroll action, if you could auto-scroll to keep the new content on screen, it would make it a little easier to keep up. Again, probably something a little JS could fix up for you.


Technically, it should (line 6):
Code: [ Select ]
function refresh(name) {
    maindiv=document.getElementById('main');
    new Ajax.Updater(maindiv, 'text.comp?name='+name, {method: 'get',
        onSuccess: function (xhro) {
            if (xhro.responseText.search(/<!-- !!\*\*NCHIADCLOSED\*\*!! -->/)>0) { return }
            maindiv.scrollTop=maindiv.scrollHeight;
            setTimeout("refresh('"+name+"')",2500)
        }
    });
}
  1. function refresh(name) {
  2.     maindiv=document.getElementById('main');
  3.     new Ajax.Updater(maindiv, 'text.comp?name='+name, {method: 'get',
  4.         onSuccess: function (xhro) {
  5.             if (xhro.responseText.search(/<!-- !!\*\*NCHIADCLOSED\*\*!! -->/)>0) { return }
  6.             maindiv.scrollTop=maindiv.scrollHeight;
  7.             setTimeout("refresh('"+name+"')",2500)
  8.         }
  9.     });
  10. }


But maybe this is not such a universal method? I figure if it works on IE7 and FF, at least for me (oh and mom's Safari ;)) -- you are using 3.5.3 on NT I notice.

If anybody else notices that, please mention it!

Anyway thanks UPSGuy, your input is appreciated.
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Post 3+ Months Ago

I checked the scroll thing a few times just to make sure it wasn't just on my end, but I could easily recreate. If you need me to try it out again any time, just let me know. 3.5.3 is correct, OS is Vista Business 64-bit SP2 if you're interested in tracking specifics of the NT they decide to use for some reason.
  • mk27
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Post 3+ Months Ago

UPSGuy wrote:
I checked the scroll thing a few times just to make sure it wasn't just on my end, but I could easily recreate. If you need me to try it out again any time, just let me know. 3.5.3 is correct, OS is Vista Business 64-bit SP2 if you're interested in tracking specifics of the NT they decide to use for some reason.


No, I'm not tracking anything, I was just checking to see if you were using some odd browser.

After googling, I'm pretty sure my method is tried and true. BUT it may have something to do with the reload; it does jerk a bit anyway. So I put it on a slight delay:
Code: [ Select ]
setTimeout("maindiv.scrollTop=maindiv.scrollHeight",200)

which eliminates the jerk, so that may fix it. But I'm finishing up a few other corrections, etc, so will not bother to upload it quite yet. I'll let you know ;)

Thanks again!

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