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A friend of mine wants to do a local version of "The Wheel of Fortune" on TV and since they don't want to spend a fortune to build the set <g>, they decided to do the puzzle squares by having them projected on the wall from a computer screen :-) So guess who was asked to come up with the actual program that would display the puzzle squares on the computer screen? Yes, moi :p I've been working on a prototype for the past couple of days and had something workable - nothing major, a full-screen app that simply draws a grid on the computer screen. You can customize the background, the fill color for the squares and the font that the letters are displayed in.I showed it to my friend and he agrees that it's on the correct track but he wants actual squares instead of a grid, he wants the squares with a correctly identified letter to blink and reveal a letter at a time instead of simply revealing the letters as they are typed and a host of other modifications. Not really sure that it's an interesting project at this point since there isn't too much of a challenge to it and I've done most of the basic work. I have a feeling that I'll have to change the way certain things are done, however. Currently, I keep track of each typed letter and if it is in the current word and is not a duplicate, I add it to an array which is used later in displaying the letters. Since I'll be drawing squares, I feel that it'll probably be easier to come up with a structure to keep the coordinates of each square rather than to calculate them on the go each time. If I create such a structure, I could also probably keep track of the letters displayed in each square and whether they are visible or not ...
posted at 06:32:05 AM link comment
I've actually made some headway in releasing Blog 6.1 :-) I was able to find and fix the bug with customized code snippets not staying for long on the toolbar but disappearing after a couple of restarts of Blog - of course, I just thought of another possible scenario! What if there was no icon defined for a custom snippet? Does the caption display or does it become a blank button? I guess I'd better test that today too!
Tyran pointed out a couple of bugs that needed to be fixed as well. Tyran mentioned that Blog gives an AV (Access Violation) each time he starts the latest version - a beta build of 6.1 - and I realized that to do an upgrade to 6.1, you'll need to delete your Blog.cfg file and lose all toolbar customizations! Sorry :-( In case, I forget to mention this in the docs, remember to delete the Blog.cfg file if you are upgrading :p Tyran also mentioned that you can now run multiple instances of Blog without any problems and I realized that I'd changed the component which makes sure that only one instance of Blog is running (actually, I'd made the changes to be used in Scope ...) and that I'd never integrated the changes into Blog. Now it works fine again - though not quite transparently since you can see the second instance start up and then disappear. Oh well, eh? :pIncidentally, I notice that Delphi 7.0 is going to be released soon. I'd realized that Delphi 7.0 should be around the corner since JBuilder 7.0 is already out (and I'm using it :p) but I couldn't find any reference to JBuilder 7.0 on Borland's site and so thought maybe it wouldn't be for a while yet. Today, I read on the Addict (the spell-checker component I use ...) newsgroup that they are expecting Delphi 7.0 soon. Wonder what the new changes are? I guess, I'll upgrade anyway - if I can get my hands on Delphi 7.0 that is :p - but I always like to know what's new. I hope that they've fixed the type library importing for the HTML library under IE 6.0 since I can't do any work on Scope till they do. It was supposedly fixed with Delphi 6.0 SP2 but it still doesn't work for me :-( Maybe it's because I'm running XP? I don't know ...
posted at 06:32:34 AM link comment
This seems to be my week to receive gifts :-) Aaron Freeman had told me a while back that he'd sent me "The Replacements" off my wish list, a few weeks back. Well, it arrived yesterday and since "The Replacements" was a movie I enjoyed very much on the first viewing, I'm looking forward to the second viewing with all the extras - thanks a lot Aaron! (And if you're reading this, I hope you were able to sort out the comments problem - I haven't received a reply to my last e-mail to you and while I keep on meaning to go over to your site and check out the comments again, I keep on forgetting :p) Incidentally, my apologies to Mark and Nigel for not updating the Hall of Fame with the gifts they sent till now - again, I've been meaning to but kept on forgetting ... It should be done now - unless of course, I forget to upload it :pSpeaking of gifts, thank you one and all for gifts of another kind - your wisdom and insight :-) I was feeling kind of low on Monday when I whinged about the current situation with my parents and stuff and forgotten (or had not thought of ...) quite a few of the things each and every one of you mentioned in your comments. I appreciate the concern and the moral support - I'm feeling much better now :-)
posted at 06:19:14 AM link comment
I received another gift from my wish list :-) This time it was a birthday gift from Mark but unfortunately, it doesn't say which Mark it is and there are several Marks I've communicated with about Blog over the last few months and so I'm not sure whom I should thank. But thank you Mark! The book on Delphi troubleshooting will prove to be invaluable - I know it :-) As I've said before, it's a really nice feeling to come home and find that there's a gift for you - it sort of lets me know that I have friends that I've never met, somewhere in the world :-)As for coding, I haven't really had much of a chance to work on any code related stuff. I really should release Blog 6.1 and get on with stuff so that I can move on to working on Blog 7.0, for which the feature list keeps on getting longer (and yes Nigel, the digest feature is in there :p). I don't like to bundle too many features in one release because then it becomes harder to spot the bugs and any inadvertent behaviour changes that I may have made but I'd like to also get in all the features that are currently planned. So I guess it's imperative that I get to work soon ...
posted at 06:33:47 AM link comment
Had a fairly quiet and subdued weekend - partly due to the fact that I simply wanted to finish "The Sigma Protocol" and then began "The Matarese Countdown" (again by Ludlum) which I can't seem to put down either :p Actually, I think I like "The Matarese Countdown" even more than "The Sigma Protocol" in certain ways. For one thing, it's funnier :-) I've always enjoyed Ludlum's humorous thrillers - specifically the one's involving General MacKenzie Hawkins a.k.a. The Hawk - and "The Matarese Countdown" has a touch of that humour surfacing now and again but this time mostly from the mouth of Brandon Scofield, the agent from "The Matarese Circle" ... I guess I shouldn't go on like this since only a Ludlum fan would recognize most of the references but I guess the basic fact is that I'm enjoying the book :p
The other reason for the quiet weekend is a bit more personal - my mother is/was giving me the quiet treatment :p Unfortunately, either I've never learned how to handle my parents or they've never realized that I'm not the child I used to be ... especially my mother. She thought she could badger me into cutting my hair and I decided to give her a dose of straight-talk - neither worked and the end result was that she ended up not talking to me. Again, I know most people will be mystified by this - such as why I need to cut my hair, why my parents still tell me what to do and why my Mom would stop talking to me - at least I'd think so since some of this seems pretty strange to even me now after living in the US for four years though it probably would not have seemed so strange to me a few years ago.
The hair? Well, that's because of the fact that in Sri Lanka people, Muslims more so than others, hate people to be different from what they consider to be "normal". I am different since I have long hair and that irritates people for some reason and they keep on telling my parents how their son having long hair is bad for their (my parents') image as parents since people will think it's their fault. Incidentally, this is how a lot of things work in Sri Lanka - everybody worries about what "others" think and this again is something I've never understood. The problem has gotten worse in recent months since my parents are trying to get me married but most prospective brides (or rather their families ...) take one look at me (or rather my hair ...) and say "No" since I'm different and couldn't possibly be a good Muslim :p This again seems to irritate my parents since it seems (maybe I'm judging them too harshly ...) that we shouldn't be refused since that somehow lowers our "status" - we are the one's who should be doing the refusing :p
Of course, all this has led to my Mom deciding to somehow get me to cut my hair. I might have done it under normal circumstances if it had been a simple request because *she* didn't like it (maybe ... you never know with me :p) but since I know the cause of the request is basically because she wants me to "conform", I will never do it! I hate the fact that people give in to pressure from this invisible "society" and do whatever is asked of them, right or wrong. The fact that people don't stop to think about what they do. I believe that this is the kind of thing (in a larger scale ...) that led to World War II Germany - because people just went along with society instead of voting their conscience!Unfortunately, this has led to stress at home and I'm beginning to wonder whether I was right in coming back to Sri Lanka. I came back because of my parents - because I wanted to be with them and take care of them. But me being here seems to cause them more pain and concern than me being abroad since I believe that people talk more about me when I'm here than when I'm away since you tend to talk more about what's in your face than out of sight :p I'm seriously considering leaving again but then again, wouldn't that be running away from the problem? That makes me pause but sometimes I think running away to save my parents some mental anguish might be worth it ... I just don't know ...
posted at 06:34:41 AM link comment
Copyright (c) 2001 Fahim A. Farook