Future of Dark Room

Much has changed in the years since Dark Room was originally written, and there are many options available at this time. Thus, the question to be asked is, does continued development of DR make sense? I spent a significant amount of time rewriting the application from scratch to run as an adobe air application. I did this because I was no longer using windows at the time, so dedicating some much time on a .net application did not make a lot of sense, thus a cross platform solution seemed more desirable. Unfortunately, Adobe dropped linux support shortly before the first beta release of the new program. So, I essentially stopped development on it.

I still want to have a cross platform application. I began trying to find new viable options, and I was just about to start a write up in python when I discovered FocusWriter. It is a cross platform distraction free environment, and it uses QT. It’s written in C++, which I don’t really like, but I could deal with it. I would almost say it is enough to use FocusWriter, but it is missing some key functionality from Dark Room I couldn’t live without. Therefore, at this point I am seriously considering forking FocusWriter in order to add in the additional Dark Room functionality.


Absolute Pricing in Magento

For some reason, Magento will only allow you to show the difference an option will have on the price of a configurable product. For example, if you are selling a shirt for $15, but the extra larges cost $17, the extra large option would show (+$2). And, while this makes sense to me, it does not make sense to everyone. So, some clients prefer to have absolutely pricing in the options. In this case, the example above would show $17 for the extra large option.

People have been working on solutions for this on the boards for a while. However, they all involved editing core files, and a lot of them. I try never to edit core files, just because of the nightmares it creates in upgrading. And, I did not want to put the time investment into writing a whole module for it. So, I just whipped up a script to change the presentation to absolute.

You can view my solution, as well as many others on the relevant thread over on the magneto forums:


Shadowbox is Undefined

If you are experiencing this error in Internet Explorer, I think it is related to bug in the base Shadowbox adapter. So, I like to solve this by using the jquery adapter. If you are using version 3.0b, this can be done simply by loading jquery before loading shadowbox. I like to pull jquery from google’s CDN, which can be accomplished with the following line:

<script src="http://ajax.googleapis.com/ajax/libs/jquery/1.3.2/jquery.min.js" type="text/javascript"></script>

PHP UUID generator function

Via: http://www.ajaxray.com/blog/2008/02/06/php-uuid-generator-function/

  * Generates an UUID
  * @author     Anis uddin Ahmad 
  * @param      string  an optional prefix
  * @return     string  the formatted uuid
  function uuid($prefix = ”)
    $chars = md5(uniqid(rand()));
    $uuid  = substr($chars,0,8) . '-';
    $uuid .= substr($chars,8,4) . '-';
    $uuid .= substr($chars,12,4) . '-';
    $uuid .= substr($chars,16,4) . '-';
    $uuid .= substr($chars,20,12);

    return $prefix . $uuid;