Archive for April 2008

Firefox Download Gotcha

April 22, 2008

Learned about this one the hard way. I was testing to make sure that the latest release of CaptionIt! had been uploaded correctly to the website by clicking on the download link. I went ahead and ran the install and was very surprised to discover I had just installed an out of date version of the software. I immediately thought I had messed something up and had uploaded the wrong version to my server and that everyone else was downloading this old version as well.

I fired up my test VM and performed a download and install and it was actually the correct version. Puzzled I performed another install on my dev machine and it was the wrong version. I finally realized that Firefox was caching the download URL and giving me a local copy of the install program from a few days ago instead of the latest on the server. I would have expected that Firefox would always force a download of something you click on but it isn’t the case.

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CaptionIt! 2.0 Released

April 18, 2008

After working hard through the long, cold winter nights, CaptionIt! 2.0 has been released. This new version incorporates a lot of the ideas and feedback I got from the first release, with the biggest improvement being that you can now interact with captions using the mouse, much like how PowerPoint lets you drag text boxes around and resize them. Now you are no longer limited to placing a caption in one of 9 predefined locations, giving you tremendous flexibility over the layout of captions.

I also introduced several new styles including speech balloons, text boxes, and thought bubbles. The bubbles were the most interesting to implement, in terms of programming a pleasing cloud-like bubble. You can now select the border, fill, and position the tail of the caption to point to a particular location.

The next big change was an overhaul of the interface. I switched from the Office 2003 light blue color scheme to a more neutral dark gray scheme. This was modeled after Adobe’s Lightroom and Apple’s Aperture professional photo imaging applications. These programs are designed by user interface experts and are worthy of emulation. For example, the dark gray palette helps you focus better and the color composition of the photo and is less distracting than the light blue color scheme was. I also got rid of the directory browser panel since it occupied too much space, reducing the canvas or workspace you have.

This release is a milestone in my microISV’s journey and next I will turn my efforts to marketing and improving the visibility of the product.