Australis-Styled Widgets Presentation

4 December, 2013 § 3 Comments

I’ve been pretty quiet this semester about the work that a team of students have been focused on. However, don’t let my quietness be a representation of how hard they have worked.

We’re now reaching the end of the semester and the students have put together a video of their work throughout the semester. The students were tasked with creating three add-ons for the upcoming Australis version of Firefox.

The goal of the project was to get feedback on the new Australis add-on APIs before it became too late to make significant changes. Through the process some bugs were filed, but none that caused us to have to go back and rethink our initial direction.

The three add-ons that the students were asked to create were a weather add-on, music add-on, and Bugzilla add-on. Please watch the video below to get an overview of their capabilities.

Video

You can view the source code for the Weather widget and the Bugzilla widget online.

Student project: Australis-styled widgets

11 September, 2013 § 2 Comments

A couple weeks back, Gijs Kruitbosch and I began mentoring a group of students on a new student project focused on building some new Australis-styled widgets.

Team MSUThe team is comprised of students from Michigan State University’s Computer Science program. Pictured from left to right are Dan Poggi, Eric Proper, Eric Slenk, and Dave Thorpe.

The goal of the project will be to create four independent widgets using the Add-on SDK and new Australis widget API:

  1. A weather widget that can show the weather for a selected location as well as up to 5-7 additional locations. This will need to use a public and free weather API.
  2. A music playing widget that will play music located on the user’s local machine. The user can select a folder on their machine and the widget will play any media files that it can find within that folder or in that folder’s children. We may need to limit the recursive depth to 2 folders.
  3. A Bugzilla widget that will show the assigned bugs, review requests, etc. This will be based on Heather Arthur‘s excellent Bugzilla Todos dashboard.
  4. A Spartan Scoreboard widget that will show the date, opponent, and location of the next MSU sporting event, as well as the score of the previous game. It should also include a link to get more information.

Eric Proper, Eric Slenk, and David Thorpe have begun blogging about their progress. You can follow along and get more details on their respective blogs. Eric Proper has an amazing amount of detail already on his blog. I’m looking forward to seeing the blogs from Dan Poggi and Dave Thorpe.

We will be meeting weekly at 9:00am Eastern time on Thursdays throughout the Fall semester.

Interview with Ray Heldt about contributing to Firefox (Part 3/3)

15 March, 2013 § Leave a comment

I sat down a couple days ago with Ray Heldt. Ray is one of the MSU students working on multitouch gestures for Firefox. I asked Ray about his experience and what he thought about contributing to open-source software.

Check out the video below for the interview (1m 38s):

I also got a chance to interview the other two students working on the project, Bill de Araujo and Brandon Waterloo. I posted Bill’s interview a couple days ago and Brandon’s interview yesterday.

Interview with Brandon Waterloo about contributing to Firefox (Part 2/3)

14 March, 2013 § 1 Comment

I sat down yesterday with Brandon Waterloo. Brandon is one of the MSU students working on multitouch gestures for Firefox. I asked Brandon about his experience and what he thought about contributing to open-source software.

Check out the video below for the interview (3m 13s):

I also got a chance to interview the other two students working on the project, Bill de Araujo and Ray Heldt. I posted Bill’s interview previously and will be posting Ray’s interview shortly.

Interview with Bill de Araujo about contributing to Firefox (Part 1/3)

12 March, 2013 § 2 Comments

I sat down today with Bill de Araujo. Bill is one of the MSU students working on multitouch gestures for Firefox. I asked Bill about his experience and what he thought about contributing to open-source software.

Check out the video below for the interview (1m 31s):

I also got a chance to interview the other two students working on the project, Brandon Waterloo and Ray Heldt. I’ll be posting their interviews in the coming days.

By golly, we’re getting somewhere… (cross-post)

6 February, 2013 § Leave a comment

Raymond HeldtRaymond Heldt wrote up a great, and funny, blog post covering the current progress of the MSU Capstone project to implement Safari-style pinch-to-zoom for desktop Firefox. While working on the project, the students learned that there are similar plans to implement this feature for Firefox on Windows Metro.

The Windows Metro implementation is planning to use off-main-thread compositing and B2G’s AsyncPanZoomController implementation. The students are pushing ahead on their <canvas> based approach, since OMTC and AsyncZoomPanController are not fully ported to desktop builds.

Below is a snippet of Raymond’s post.

Well, the day started out with another abandon-my-attempt-at-implementing-something-because-it-already-got-it-taken-care-of-without-me moment, but beyond that, I was happy with my contributions today.

A scaling screenshot on pinch-to-zoom has been implemented (no thanks to myself), but for some absolutely insane reason, sometimes that screenshot gets drawn over the webpage’s content, sometimes not (although you can see animation through the “holes” of a webpage where they put advertisement boxes). Michigan State’s website scales fine, mxr.mozilla.org scales fine, Yahoo! sometimes scales fine DEPENDING ON WHICH CURRENT EVENT STORY IS CURRENTLY BEING DISPLAYED!!!, and then there’s websites that don’t hide the content and cover up the animation, like Amazon and Google and our CSE498 page on Michigan State’s website. Weird, I know.

But anyway, back to what I did. Figuring out some algorithms for x- and y- offset, I was able to get zooming relative to the center of the screen (adjusting for scrolling) instead of from the top-left corner. …

Head over to Raymond’s blog to read the full post.

Presentations and Documents and Research, Oh My! (cross-post)

18 January, 2013 § Leave a comment

One of the MSU Capstone team members, Brandon Waterloo, wrote up a nice blog post giving an update on the progress of their work implementing some multitouch gestures for desktop Firefox.

The latter half of the past week, as well as most of this week, consisted (will consist) primarily of working on our project plan document and our presentations. On the 23rd, we’ll be giving team status reports, talking about the status of our machines, our project plan document, etc. These will be short, only about five minutes.

Beginning on the 28th, the various capstone teams will begin presenting their project plans. This is mostly just a brief version of the project plan document. This will be about a fifteen minute presentation. I’m slightly concerned that we can’t stretch our material out to fifteen minutes, because our project is pretty simple to explain–touch gestures for Firefox on Mac OS X. There’s not a whole lot more to say, except to explain the specifics of what we’ll be doing.

Read the rest of the blog post at Brandon’s post, “Presentations and Documents and Research, Oh My!”

Left-to-right: Raymond Heldt (HeldtNotHelt), Brandon Waterloo (we11ington), Bill de Araujo (spartanfire)

Left-to-right: Raymond Heldt (HeldtNotHelt), Brandon Waterloo (we11ington), Bill de Araujo (spartanfire)

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