October 15, 2002
Thanksgiving Wrap up
Well a week ago I took my daughter to the space centre. Thought it would be interesting to apply some of the knowledge we learned at the Planetarium and decided to pack up and spend the Canadian Thanksgiving weekend in the abyss of nature away from light pollution so we could gaze at the stars. Decided to go up as a group, and took a bunch of families up to enjoy the splendors of the wilderness for the weekend camping. The evenings were amazingly clear, and we spent some time gazing at the constillations on the beach at Hicks Lake, just outside of Harrision.
The days were filled hiking around the lake and just enjoying the palette of autumn colors changing the trees in the forest. One of the hikes was a two hour journey right around the lake. Very nice walk as the cedar lined ground was quite soft and easy to walk on. Roots were not to bad, and except for one muddy place which was alittle steep a trail you could consider "Easy". Even so, it was a great way to excercise while having fun.
Before leaving for the mountains, I left work with the merging of all my SNMP code into stable. You can now fully utilize SNMP event traps with executed commands through the SNMP Action Manager. I even worked around an annoying problem we have with the HTML rendering component. Windows has a bug in the code to deal with the changing of state for cursors through Java, so even though you SAY to show the wait cursor, it won't unless you move the mouse a certain way. Quite annoying if a long task is at hand, and you think you clicked on something and nothing happens. I got around this by doing something Sun said couldn't be done. I created a titleless, borderless and transparent window showing an animated time piece during a long wait state. (Ok.. I ripped the idea from enlightenment... but YOU try doing it in Java). Anyways... with the way I did it, longer tasks now appear to make sense to the customer. Guess "time" will tell if customers like it. (/me groans at my own bad pun)
Scarey thing is, with this new hack I wrote, I COULD make a "clippy" for our application. Not that I would actually do something that evil... but the fact Sun says it can't be done makes me happy... since I am doing it now! :) The trick is to build invisible "glass pane" windows on top of your application and selectively control the keystroke, mouse movement and painting. All tools that exist in Java, and work to the parent of the Operating System. Windows can't stop ya.
Proof is in the fact I wrote a Java application to inivisibly catch all keystrokes of a user. When active, all keystrokes are logged at the top upper most window in the windows stack, and then passed down to the native applications. Kinda useless since the target would have to RUN the application first, but could be hacked in a way to install itself into the registry and work on next login. Of course, it was only a proof of concept (more a way for me to test HOW to build the invisible window and pass events to the main app), and isn't really all that usable as a security tool or some way to tick of the privacy advocates.
Today I have spent most of the day making the default state of our application to be more "useful" during initial setup by setting up default parameters and settings (ie: Making some default events for the Event Trap Manager) so the customer can get right to work. Everything is now in Beta and being tested by the team as we speak. Which now gives me enough time to update my journal, and then get back to writing a "Value Proposition" report for the Sales and Marketing team. Which... I need to go do. TTYL.Posted by SilverStr at October 15, 2002 04:52 PM