calendaring options

So here's a mundane formating question hiding a larger philosophical issue.  I find it frustrating to have the lovely events calendar rendered in .png format (that is, as an image) because  the website links cannot be clicked on nor can the user copy the links into their browser.  In this age of web integration, forcing people to copy down urls and retype seems antedeluvian.

A simple fix would be to render the calendar in either html or pdf, including hyperlinks for the websites.  I have access to adobe professional and could convert the calendar to pdf (including live links) fairly easily, especially if Sally sent me her files and I didn't have to retype.  PDF files and the free adobe reader software to display them is pretty ubiquitous on the web, but it is a commercially-produced and licensed product and so far everything else in the weavolution resources is pure and doesn't depend on leveraging outside software.  For example, if we post the calendar in pdf, we have to post a link to the adobe reader download site too.  How do you feel about this, even as a stopgap?

I could instead try to render the calendar in html, but there is a high probability that it would not play well with the weavolution site. The list of advertisers is straight html but it has a very simple structure: each name is an anchor tag in a separate paragraph all plunked down into a "content" div with no interior formating. All the other items under resources, like the guilds, teachers, etc. depend on custom-defined classes for formating.   I could recode the calendar into a basic four-column table, but it would probably still require some tinkering by the site developers to display correctly.

I know Claudia would like to see a nice user-editable "interactive" calendar function, as funding permits. In the meantime, I suspect the developers could build us a servicable calendar page template quickly and cheaply.  I or another volunteer could code the calendar data using this template and send the updated pages to be posted in the same way (I imagine) the advertisers list gets updated now. As an interim step, is this worth pursuing?  

 

Comments

Posted on Tue, 09/07/2010 - 06:15

Mary Martha,

I actually submit the calendar as a pdf with active links, so hopefully Claudia can weigh in here on the translation to png.

Also, we are collecting updates until Sept 10th, so I will have an updated pdf file available after that time — we'd love to have more volunteer help! (Thanks for giving this some thought.)

Sally

Posted on Tue, 09/07/2010 - 11:17

Mary,

We are unable to use pdf on Weavolution for several reasons including the ones you have stated.  I do not have any development dollars left so even a "simple fix" along with all the other requests I have received is not possible.  

Using plain html is the best answer and I will work with Sally to see how to best put the calendar together.  I am not at all familiar with converting from pdf to html but that would be the perfect answer for now.

Claudia

Posted on Tue, 09/21/2010 - 13:09

Claudia and I did a conference call this weekend and made a little progress.

On the main site, we managed to post Sally's original pdf as an attachment and link to it, although we couldn't display it directly.  So we left the .png images in place. As Sally said, the website listings in the pdf are all active links.  However, they don't show up underlined or even in I'm-a-link blue, so the fact that they can be clicked on may not be obvious. Using a different color for links might be worth considering.

On the sandbox site, we tried to convert the calendar into an html table and ran into unexpected problems with how drupal interprets codes and line breaks, etc.  We are learning, but I don't expect to have something as nice as the pdf for a while.  Meanwhile, Claudia reports that progress on other projects may help bring down the eventual pricetag for an interactive calendar.

 

Posted on Mon, 10/11/2010 - 17:14

Ok, I made some progress here.

Its a little clunky, and I can't necessarily do everything we may want (like close up spaces) but it is better than the png images. Next I need to update my list to conform  to Sally's latest version, then we can post the whole thing to weavolution.

Anyone have some time to proofread?