This is a web page I put together to better match the way I've been using all the great Higher Ground web pages. I think its reached a point of stability that I'd like to share it with the HG community.
Many thanks to Yomi for the insight on his xml and webcgi interfaces to all this data. Much better than HTML scraping.
I welcome any suggestions for additional features or improvements.
Features - Consolidated view of server/player list, run/chat/newbie/bazaar messages. - Friends list, with custom colors. - Guilds list, with custom colors. - Message lists - player offline/online indicator. - Message lists - mouse-over player names for current location. - Links to other HG pages. - Minimal load on higher ground servers (polls static XML file whenever possible).
Notes - Friend and Guild lists are cookie based. Your browser must be configured to accept cookies for this to work. This also means that your friends and guild lists are unique to each PC and Browser you access HG Webdash from. - Quest Status is a simple "copy in" of Yomi's Quest Status page at hgweb.acaos.webfactional.com/info/quests.html. Formatting/spacing may be messy, depending on your screen resolution and browser/layout. - Player names longer than 28 characters are truncated to prevent some table formatting ugliness.
It looks real nice, one question though. Do you plan on releasing the code? I've my own web server in house and would love to set this up "in house" so as not to hit the remote site all the time for the info as needed.
This is awesome thx. 1 very minor point, could the time be displayed as local time, rather than EST? Was also wondering if thier would be anyway to assign a colour to a name based on the guild tag, similar to the friends function? This would be helpful and save a lot of name typing.
As for making the source available for local hosting, if Yomi doesn't have any issues with additional locations hitting his server for the webcgi and xdata.xml calls, I can make the source available, sure.
I'll do the Guild coloring update at the very least, when I get back from sunny FLA in a couple of weeks.
You could use the same timeutils.js script I wrote for the web data. It's probably not ideal but it seems to work.
<td name="ztname">UTC time</td>
<td name="ztago" utcdate="2010-03-02 19:36:53"> </td> anywhere on the page.
Dude this is awesome. So much better than having a bunch of windows open at once. I've already bookmarked it.
The only thing I would suggest (and this is by no means a deal-breaker) would be increase quest status width to 100% (or close). It's just a little awkward because it doesn't fit in the window neatly. You could still drop player info and chat dialogues in left-right columns below it.
It's an easy fix in CSS, not sure about PHP. As I said, though, that is one very minor detail that doesn't detract one iota from this great tool you've built. Good skillz.
One thing: Would it be possible to have the page auto-refresh every few minutes (say, 2 minutes, same as the player/market listings)? Not a deal-breaker by any stretch of the imagination, but it would certainly be a welcome change. :-)
As of today, HG Webdash has stopped working. I tried to refresh about 2-3 hours ago and noticed the page is getting 404 errors from hgweb. Now it's even been reported as an Attack Site, meaning that either someone has hacked into it and installed something nasty, or some security freak (one that probably doesn't play HG) has decided that your grabbing of the hgweb CGI scripts is such a hack. Either way, you need to check it out.
EDIT: It's partially working now (I can see the shout/chat/newbie logs and the player list), but the formatting is still messed up - scratch that. That was just firefox being stupid and blocking each and every connection individually to x10hosting (i.e. I would have to somehow approve every single image to be downloaded, etc).
EDIT2: It seems that x10hosting.com has itself been declared an attack site, probably because there are about 10 or so active attack sites within the domain. I'm afraid there isn't much you'll be able to do about this until x10hosting shuts down the reported attack sites and probably fixes some loophole some idiot is using to make them. Note: When they fix the loophole, it may well break the dashboard, since one thing attackers use, a lot, is the ability to load stuff from other sites.
I have updated HG Webdash to include a Guilds color-tag feature. This is identical to the Friends function, except it colors Player Name and Guild Name both, based on the entries you put in Guilds. If a player is in a guild, AND in your Friends list, the friends color will override the guild color. I do see I'm going to need to offer more color options (user-defined even).
Arek, as for the problems with x10hosting, I really can't comment. I haven't had any issues yet in all the times I've worked on x10hosting, uploading files, editing online, and constant loading of the HG Webdash. I do occasionally get the sluggish performance and sometimes even the 404 errors, but for the most part, I have no issues.
Thanks all, for the other suggestions (timezone, refresh interval, etc) - I will work on those as well in the near future. I had the time tonight to do the Guild colors, so I thought I'd get it up there.
The problem that existed with x10hosting is now gone (most likely, I turned off the safe browsing "feature" of firefox since I'm generally safe about where I go to begin with), but just know that it might happen again if many attack sites crop up within the domain again. I, too, after looking at other free alternatives, am likely to wind up hosting some stuff on x10. The only thing I don't really care for about them is that you have to log into their forums to be considered active - keeping your site updated isn't enough.
This app is extremely handy and I use it all the time, the only little thing I've found that could be improved upon is I like to know how many total people are on HG when I look at the online player listing. I think it's a nice way to gauge whether a / another run is possible or not.