Tip of the Day: Creating Image Maps with GIMP


There are actually a lot of cool online tools to aid with creating image maps but for those users of GIMP you have a pretty easy to use and configurable image map tool right at your finger tips!

In this video I show how easy it is to use GIMP to create image maps for web sites.

Make sure you check out the Image Map Plugin Page to learn more about this cool feature.


Related articles:

Made Easy with CoreMedia: Shoppable Images & Localization


Top 5 reasons why NodeJS rocks!

nodejs_0NodeJS has been around for almost five years and until recently it has been a focus point for geeks, pioneers, and chat programs. Recently it has been getting some amazing press from things like BlueMix and JazzHub and of course the social sites. I started playing around with NodeJS about a month ago and I have compiled my top five reasons why NodeJS rocks:

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How to add swipe support to your web application

logoAre you creating a web application that you want to be able to be used on a tablet? Then you might want to check out the Dojo toolkit. Dojo provides a very simple way to handle swipe events in your web application. In this post I used the dojox.gesture package. Why would you want to use Dojo?  Here are a few good reasons from the documentation:

dojox/gesture has been designed with the following rationale:

  • Device neutral – The target is to be compatible with most popular devices(single touch gestures should also work well on desktops).
  • Compatibility and reusability – Applicable and can be used with dijit widgets, dojo core(dnd), dojox/mobile or dojox/charting etc.
  • Scalability – A modularized event processing mechanism makes it very easy to extend with more customized gestures.

As of version 1.7, here is the list of devices and browsers:

dojox/gesture is working well with:

1. Desktops – IE8+, FF 3.6+, Chrome v10+, Safari 5+
2. Touch devices – Android 2.2/2.3 – iOS 3/4

In the code below I put a listener on the entire body of the HTML where I tagged the <body> element with the id “body”.

function registerSwipeListener(){
	require([ "dojo", "dojox/gesture/swipe" ], 
		function(dojo, swipe, tap){

                        //connect the listener to the "body" element
			dojo.connect(dojo.byId("body"), swipe.end, function(e){

			if (current_view != "edit"){
                                //Check and which which difference is bigger since
                                //we only support up, down, left, right
				if (Math.abs(e.dx) > Math.abs(e.dy)){
					if (e.dx > 0){
					if (e.dy > 0){


What are your thoughts on Worklight?

worklightI have been playing with Worklight over the past several weeks and its definitely a very cool platform to do your development on for web and devices. I am really interested to hear some real world experiences around creating applications based on Worklight. If you care to share them here I would appreciate your feedback. Or if you have a review on your own blog or know of one please share!

Properly cleaning up a JQuery Dialog box to prevent memory leaks

One of the cool things about JQuery is you can declare an invisible DIV with a “display:none” style and then use that DIV as the content for a popup dialog box in your application. I have been working on a pretty dynamic web application that is pretty much all JavaScript and buttons come and go based on the users actions. This can present a problem with regard to memory consumption. Each time you call $(“#dialog”).dialog() jQuery creates a set of DIV’s in the base of the HTML.

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Oreo takes advantage of the power outage with social media

In case you missed this, which you probably haven’t since it is all over the news now, but Oreo and their ad agency (360i) took advantage of the power outage at the Super Dome last night and tweeted “Power Out? No problem” with the picture on the right. Brilliant! The picture was re-tweeted over 13,000 times.

Ruby on Rails 3.1 standardizes on JQuery…

Rails 3.1 sounds very promising indeed. From the article on InfoWorld it looks like they made some major enhancements to performance and most interesting is the default JavaScript library is now JQuery. JQuery is clearly all over the place these days. Being the default library in Rails, WordPress, and Drupal make it almost ubiquitous in the world of open source web development.

Another change: The default JavaScript library for Ruby on Rails has been switched to jQuery. Users can easily change from the previous default library, Prototype, through a single command. Developers shouldn’t notice any difference, and going forward, Ruby on Rails will be able to harness the work being done on this popular library.

Is Facebook falling apart?

Over the past several days when using Facebook I have seen all kinds of strange errors. I would switch browsers, refresh cache, and even attempt to log out and back in. All produced a myriad of errors. Here is the latest error I received while attempting to “Like” something:

What's a database???

The really bad thing is Facebook is mostly used by very non technical people, “What is a database?”. With Google+ gaining ground, it is not the time for FB to be unstable.

Developers: 4Shared offers $5000 a month in contest!

4Shared, a Virtual drive and file storage company, is offering an integrated file management solution that allows users to access and save their content from their desktops and mobile devices.

4Shared users receive 15 GB of available space for free on their virtual drive, an amount considerably greater than any competitor. The space capacity allows personal and business users the flexibility to choose 4Shared as their secure backup drive for the storage of important data, photo, or video files. 4Shared Desktop is a browser-based user interface features a clean design that is customizable to fit user preferences. It features time-saving functions such as simple and fast drag-and-drop storage of hundreds of files at once.

4Shared is now offering a $5000 a month award to the most innovative application that uses their API’s. This sounds like a great way to get some extra money and create something cool for the web or a mobile device. The company is boasting its API’s (link here) to be used by developers to create applications for the masses. The API’s look very straightforward and their wiki has a lot of nice samples to get even the most novice developer up and running very quickly. On the main wiki page they have basic developer setup instructions for all of the major platforms (iOS, Android, Symbian, etc). My choice would be Android since you can pretty much start for free and Android is becoming more and more popular. They recommend using Eclipse and the Android SDK.

“Offering our API for use by developers allows us to give an even broader range of customers access to our secure and fast storage solution,” said Mr. Lunkov

File storage and retrieval are becoming very popular for mobile phones. While there are a lot of similar services out there today, I really think starting with the developer is a great idea – that is where innovation begins and what better way than to have a $5000 a month contest!

I love this series of posts…

One thing I really like is when a blogger does a series of posts. Even better when the posts are tagged together with a unique tag so its easily found and all of the posts related to the series are in a single list. The 12 Things You Shouldn’t Do on a Portal Project is such a series. This series was tagged with “12things”.

The series has been hitting PlanetLotus for about a month now and it has been a very informative series. Since it’s tagged, it is easily referenced for future use. Great job guys!