I found an interesting article on Newsforge that talks about getting data from a MySQL database to OpenOffice applications. I think I still have an older version of OO.o installed because I don't remember seeing the "Base" application that the technique relies on.
I want to make another simple example of XSLT and SVG today. So I'm going to do another XML document and transformation. The mechanism is similar to my last example, but I'm not using any of the same SVG. Today, instead, I'm going to show an example with a textPath for making some wavy prose.
It also happens that the Mozilla team just landed support for textPath last night for Firefox trunk builds. I developed today's example in Internet Explorer with Adobe SVG Viewer 6 preview, but I'll be testing later with Firefox. If you want to use the latest trunk build of Firefox for testing, get it here.
I was thinking over the SVG lighting examples that I presented over the weekend and I wanted a clean way to produce something more complex that utilizes the lighting effect that I came up with. Examples are easiest to learn from when the information can be presented in small chunks. I think that logic carries through to code analysis. If there's no good reason to make big long functions then I stick to what fits on my screen. That's very developer-centric of me, but I am a developer.
So the way that I know to keep things small when it comes to XML is XSLT. That might sound backwards since XSLT and XML can be very verbose, but what I mean is that units can be independently analyzed. Large and complicated functionality can be elegantly composed from many small blocks. Chunks of code that I've produced with XSLT tend to be quite digestable - so far.
Here's a link to the complete letter from Tim Berners-Lee and Daniel J. Weitzner.
The key idea, in my opinion, is captured here:
At the outset, we would like to stress that nothing in this letter should be construed as a criticism of Microsoft's Internet Explorer, which is one of the leading browsers in the field. We would write the same letter if the choice was to offer support solely for Mozilla Firefox, Safari, or any other product. The failing of the proposed implementation of the preregistration system is its lack of support for standards, not its choice of software.
As a background to the Copyright Office's decision to attempt to offer services over the Web without the use of standards, it is important to keep in mind the Web was born and achieved widespread use only because of a commitment to open, vendor-neutral standards.
Your computer is gone.
How are you going to publish your game? Your article? Your website? What's your email password? Where's your address book? The raw photos you used to make that great picture that got so many views on flickr? What's your password for flickr?
I'm going to continue from the last example I posted with the shading under the sphere. To see how I got this far, read yesterday's post: Fake Lighting Without Filters in SVG. Dark is the opposite of light, so as a first approximation, I'll try just applying a gradient that's conceptually opposite to the one I made for the light effect. The size of the shading gradient will be the same as the light, but it will be black instead of white. The focal point will also be moved; to the exact opposite side. So the (fx,fy) of (70%,15%) maps to (30%,85%).
I've been doing some playing around with SVG effects that can be achieved without filters. I started playing because the build of Firefox (Deer Park Alpha 2) that I'm using doesn't have them built-in. There's work under way and a patch is available if you build from source.
There are better reasons for faking lighting though. Filters are resource intensive and sometimes you don't care about realistic lighting so much as just a way to make something shiny (or shadowed). The comparable filter to what I'm talking about today is fePointLight.
My simple example is lighting a circle to make it look more like a sphere. I have a few goals:
Looks like there's a whole lot more info at the SVG Open site. I was just looking over the schedule, lamenting that it's too far away from me this year, and I see there are links for some of the content that's being presented. I'll be looking over the SVG/XAML comparison presentation. The Cartoon Oriented User Interfaces presentation sounds interesting, I hope they'll post some info later.
Kurt Cagle has posted a summary of his keynote speech from SVG Open 2005. He covers a lot of ground on XML and the next generation of GUI. Pretty inspiring stuff as an SVG enthusiast. The amazing part is that even though we've all been hearing about subscribing to software since the 90's, this time I can see it coming. Not soon like next month, but soon like in a couple years.