Posts Tagged javascript

More changes, same game

So my last post made it seem that I would be moving back into engineering. I have every intention of fulfilling my new job position and break out my code editor once again. However, after two month of ‘transitioning’ I started to wonder when the full monty was going to happen. Long story short, the transition to the new job was kaboshed, killed, denied… I am not sure if I would have found out had I not inquired, but regardless, I am back to working with clients again and architecting solutions. I am still gainfully employed, so you won’t hear me complain.

I am still working on my Javascript games. It is turning out to be more difficult than I anticipated thought. I am moved to use CraftyJS, which is a component based framework. My object oriented background is clashing severely with this new method and I have had to relearn many basic techniques with component based programming. Nothing new to show, I am hoping for a rush of free time when I am done with graduate school to be able to pick up a lot of my old programming projects. Oh, and if you are planning on doing any sort of Javascript or web programming with HTML, CSS, or PHP I highly recommend Aptana. It has really come a long way. It used to be a sucky customized Eclipse editor, but it has really started to come out on its own.  Of course if you program everything in VIM, then Aptana won’t interest you..

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Javascript gaming

I have a new hobby taking up what little free time I have these days. I tried for a couple of years to get into Java games, I created a couple of my own but I never really finished anything because I would run into issue that I wasn’t sure how to overcome. They eventually became show-stoppers for the game and I eventually lost interest. Most of the issues were around desktop performance and Java GUI programming, both subjects I have little exposure to in my 12 years of client/server based development. I suppose I could have buckled down and learned it but in all honesty I wasn’t very interested in learning Swing or AWT.

Then I stumbled on CraftyJS. It is a Javascript game library that streamlines creating games in the browser. I have only been using it for a week but I am already further than I was after a year of working in Java on the same game idea. It is really easy to create simply games very quickly, and the best of all the GUI programming is HTML/CSS its almost as easy as developing a web page.

I have big plans for my game idea, but I think first I am going to create some little one-off games to get my feet under me.

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Google CSE article

I just finished the Google CSE article I started a couple of weeks back. It was an interesting project, mostly due to the fact that I have never worked with the Google search API before and it was enjoyable to learn something new.

Hopefully you find it useful. When I was putting the code together, I found there to be a distinct lack of articles or documentation on the Custom Search Engines. Hopefully this helps someone. Then again, Google will probably EOL the JS CSE API in the next few months and I will have written the article for my own benefit. Ah well..

Check it out here

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Do you ever get the feeling?

I have been working to implement a Google custom search engine into a clients website. I have had to pour through the documentation to fully understand how it works and I am both impressed and revolted simultaneously. I keep getting the feeling that this stuff was originally developed by people that are obscenely smarter than I am. Its obviously brilliant, but like any brilliance, its usually offset by some other glaring omission.

First off, the search API from Google. Why is the primary search API deprecated and the recommended replacement not even out of labs yet? So let me get this straight, I can either use the API that will EOL’d at some unknown time by Google without warning, or I can use the unstable labs API that could and most likely will change in the future. Sounds like a call from the client complaining that their site is broken just waiting to happen.

Second, the API is written in a way that leaves massive holes of undocumented functionality. Usually when you document an API you include ALL the functionality so people can fully utilize all the features. So I am continually finding blogs and other bastions of literary excellence revealing ‘hidden’ features of the Google search API. I have implemented a fair amount of the code I have found on these sites and I am still flabbergasted as to why Google would just leave this stuff out of their documentation.

I am going to be writing up an article on implementing a Google custom search engine over the next few days, one, so I can remember if I have to do it again in the future, good documentation is sparse on this subject, and two so others can refer to it and hopefully avoid some of the frustration I have gone through to get this to work.

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