Jeff Epler's blog

2 May 2006, 23:08 UTC


Having recently tried to write some documentation, I'm a bit struck by how much all the alternatives I'm aware of suck. All I want is to get a nice HTML and PDF output of a document with a few tables. Some signs pointed towards this thing called "openjade", which is a "document style semantics and specification language" (I guess).

Imagine how unimpressed was when I got a look at the documentation they had produced—If anybody is going to have good-looking documentation it should be the people making the "document style" software! At first I thought of blaming myself because I had a wide screen, but it's even bad on a maximized window on a 1024x768 monitor, with its black text over a terrible dithered dark blue background.

I guess I'll go back to writing HTML by hand and using "File > Print" to produce PDF. Or maybe I'll write LaTeX again and berate people who don't seem to know how to use xpdf.


11 September 2005, 18:15 UTC in software

glif: generate client-side gif files from javascript

It probably won't be the biggest thing since AJAX, but I hit upon the idea of generating images client-side. The current ways to do this seem to involve using tables or absolute-positioning of very small DIVs. (See, for example, My technique, which I call glif (for GIF and glyph), generates a gif-format image on the client side.

One application for this that comes immediately to mind is client-side generation of sparklines-type images, possibly from an AJAX source.

glif.html is a small demo which draws a sine wave in an image (Known not to work in IE) Update: SparGlif demo

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14 July 2005, 13:57 UTC in software

Timestamp-based caching for filesystem-based dynamic websites

aether is nice, but it's a bit slow, especially when many local files must be parsed to produce a single page. cache.cgi is a simple program that, in cooperation with any filesytem-based dynamic website, can serve from a cached copy of the page when it is appropriate to do so.

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3 July 2005, 18:36 UTC in software

Aethertool 0.6 Released

A new version of aethertool, 0.6, has been released. Compared to 0.5, it features mostly cleanups.

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17 June 2005, 19:13 UTC in software

New version of aethertool (formerly called commandline tools for Æther)

This version features image rotation and optimization, "put" and "blog entry suffix" commandline switches, and more

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16 June 2005, 0:20 UTC in software

Wikipedia-like floating thumbnails for Æther

Adds a family of markup functions for floating images with thumbnails. It also replaces [image] to include the image's size. This module requires PIL, which is used to find the size of images.

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5 June 2005, 1:44 UTC in software

Comments for Æther

This module adds comments to Æther blogs and other pages.

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4 June 2005, 21:26 UTC in software

Swishing revisited

The updated version of the swish-based full text search function for aether

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20 May 2005, 16:39 UTC

Aether commandline tools v2

16 May 2005, 13:36 UTC

Commandline tools for Æther

16 May 2005, 3:00 UTC

Æther with a real editor

8 April 2005, 1:35 UTC

speaking of busts...

18 March 2005, 17:05 UTC

Searching Aether with swish-e

25 October 2004, 18:24 UTC

First Thoughts about Aether

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