Saturday, 22 March 2008

TIP - Tools Of The Trade

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I have touched on the subject of the tools you should try to use in a previous post, but I wanted to introduce another 'clever' little script and decided that it was worth resurrecting the advice so that I could '... kill two birds ...', in a manner of speaking!


A screenshot of EditPad Pro in use
A screenshot of EditPad Pro in use.
The thumbnail on the right is a screenshot of my favourite text editor. If you mouseover the image you will see the effect I am introducing you to in this post. Like 'Thickbox' and 'Lightbox', this is JavaSript, and it provides one way of displaying your graphics without costing you much in the way of overhead. The actual image is a large(ish) 912px by 710px display, and I have set the parameters for this display to show the image at its full scale, because I have textual matter in the image that I want my visitor to read. In practise, especially if you only want a photograph to be displayed at a larger size than the thumbnail, the larger image can be set to any reasonable size that can be accommodated within an average viewers browser window; probably 800px by 600px would be sufficient to showcase any image you post. The script also has a hidden function that allows the viewer to go to the full-sized raw image when clicked. This is good for Blogger, where clicking on an image usually takes the viewer to the raw image in another window.


EditPad Pro displaying 'syntax coloring' for an HTML document.
EditPad Pro displaying 'syntax coloring'
for an HTML document.
Similar screenshot, but this time with the HTML document tab selected. Here you can clearly see the colour coding or 'syntax coloring' of the HTML document (stop squinting at the back - mouseover the image!) which makes it a breeze to check all the different lines of code. It also helps if you activate the line numbering feature. Most of these features are available in the 'Lite' version which is FREE for personal use. You really should visit the EditPad Lite homepage (it will open in a new window!) to check out the many features.

I was an avid user of EditPad Lite for years, then one day I realised I used it so frequently that perhaps the Pro version was something I ought to be investigating. Not one to part with my money easily, I checked (and double-checked) the features page and realised that there were some Pro features that would make my life a whole lot easier. So, out came the credit card. And being an impulsive sort of guy, I also bought AceText at the same time. I will introduce you to the author, Jan Goyvaerts, in my next post. Suffice it to say that he writes small utilities that do exactly what they say they will do, and you get lifetime updates and support. What's not to like about that?

BTW, I composed this whole post in EditPad, copied it and pasted it into the 'Edit HTML' window, NOT the 'Compose' (or WYSIWYG) window of the post. I previewed it, tweaked anything that didn't appear to display as it should, and then hit 'PUBLISH POST'. Done!

So much for the 'clever' thingy I promised to introduce you to. Now you have an idea how it works. The 'mouseover' effect enlarges a thumbnail without the visitor having to leave the page. And, if they really want to see the raw image, all they have to do is click the enlarged image to be taken to it.

Cool, huh? But you'll have to wait for the next post to read the full 'skinny' on the 'how to' ...

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CrazyCath said...

I am on a serious learning curve here! I think I've started climbing mountains again, just a different kind...
Thanks for that.

Fletch said...

You're welcome, Cath.

We'll have you confounding the teenage IT specialist - yet!

CrazyCath said...

Hi -
I've downloaded the EditPad Lite and played a bit. It looks really good. What I'm not sure of is that you say you copy and paste into the html part of blogger's post. Yet in the text editor, it is not in html code. Does it just transfer? Or is there a tab I can't find in the Lite version that converts to html? Or worse, do I have to write in html code? Yikes!
Also, how do I get it to be my default instead of Notepad, but be able to use MS Word to open word documents as default as I do now. Is that possible?
My head gonna explode now. :-/

Fletch said...


The text editor can be set up to display differently for each 'type' of file you open with it. You set that up in 'Options'.

However, the default settings are already in place and you shouldn't need to change anything. But you need to give the specific file an extension (.html for HTML files), as the editor doesn't know what it is you are displaying and defaults to TEXT mode. TEXT mode is okay for HTML when it comes to copy/pasting.

At installation you should have been asked if you wished EditPad to be the default text editor instead of Notepad. If you missed that step, have a look in 'Options' so that you can set it now. This does NOT interfere with Word documents as Word is a "M$ Office" application and not part of the OS.

CrazyCath said...

Thanks Terry.
I can play now. ;0)

Shrinky said...

Just had to pop over to say thanks (once again) for all the help you've given.I'm a great believer in Karma, I'm certain you have much good heading your way.

Sorry to hear about the grief you've been given from the "testicle tweakers" - I'm sure karma will also reach them in the end. (wink)

CrazyCath said...

Testicle tweakers? I am intrigued now. Oh Terry you have to blog THAT one!

Go on, I dare ya! :0)

CrazyCath said...

Terry - it looks great on the blue background!

Ta for your comment - which looks like it came from me! lol You're tired aren't you? ;0)

Fletch said...

Sorry about that comment supposedly coming from you, Cath. I was heavily into the 'Label Cloud' thingy and completely forgot about who I was logged in as ... !!

whodatdare said...

I downloaded Edit Pad Lite on the recommendation from your blog, but I don't use it often, as I don't know much about coding or what not. But, that mouse over is wicked sick for pictures! I really need to learn this stuff....or just start fooling around with it. So glad I stop by here.

Fletch said...


EditPad, for me, is foremost a Notepad replacement text editor because, even the 'Lite' version behaves as if it is "Notepad-on-steroids". If you do any plain-text editing you'll find it invaluable. It isn't only for nerdy coders.

The "Thumbscreen" effect is something I fell in love with the first time I saw it. Unfortunately it is a 'paid-for' script which I shall explain about in the next post.

Shrinky said...

Tag - you're it! (Running away as fast as my feet will carry me..)

Shrinky said...

Tag - you're it! (Running off as fast as I can..)

Indrani said...

Just dropped in to say HI!
I keep learning your tools of the trade.
I must try this one out. Will let you know once I do it. Thanks.
Best regards from Bangalore.

Fletch said...

Hi Indrani.

From one ex-Bangalorean (Baldwin Boys High School - 57-61) to a current one, "Glad you dropped by!"

There's a lot of stuff for you to select from, but take them one at a time and enjoy them for what they can do for you. And if there are any peculiarities associated with a Blogger template, I shall mention it here.