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What Sundial Taught Me

September 19, 2006, 9:19 am · Filed under: New Mexico, Widgets

In case you missed our announcement, we recently released a Mac OS X Dashboard widget that allows you to track time in Basecamp. It’s called Sundial, and, despite having built several widgets before, I learned a ton from working on it.

I want to share my newfound knowledge with y’all, but there is a small problem. I have other work to do! So, I thought I’d ask you, dear reader, to comment below and let me know which of the following topics you would most like to hear more about. I’ll write up my thoughts, code snippets, etc. prioritizing them according to your feedback.

Sundial taught me…

  1. How to read values from a widget’s Info.plist file in just one line of JavaScript.
  2. How to add option groups to a select list via JavaScript.
  3. How easy it is to localize widgets in Mac OS X.
  4. How to base 64 encode a string in JavaScript.
  5. How handy it is to have on-hand a JavaScript method that emulates PHP’s sprintf function.
  6. How to emulate Internet Explorer’s removeNode JavaScript method in Safari.
  7. More than I ever wanted to know about the XMLHttpRequest object.
  8. That, though extremely useful in a lot of cases, sometimes you can’t rely on AppleClasses to do exactly what you need.
  9. That, despite its overwhelming grooviness, prototype.js can’t do everything.
  10. That, despite not being able to do everything, prototype.js is pretty darn groovy and makes working with AJAX calls nearly painless.
  11. That, when it comes to Dashboard widget development, it’s good to be part of a community.
  12. That JSON is the cat’s meow, in so many ways.

So, let’s hear it! Where shall I start…

Update: I have posted the first in the series. Click on the link below!

This entry was first published on The Loop, the blog of my former employer, Clearwired Web Services.