Yet Another Laszlo Widget – III

Yet Another Laszlo Widget – III. Laszlo Booklist Application.

The animated book list at the bottom of my home page was written in Laszlo. It's 42 lines of code, and was written entirely in a text editor (emacs) — all the images are courtesy of Amazon.

I was inspired to write this by Mark and Sarah's blogroll widget and by Tucker's iTunes tool, and by a problem I had with my web site. A few weeks ago I added a list of books I was reading, and had recently finished. I initially created this list in HTML — it looked like this. I liked the visual appearance of this list, and in particular the fact that it displays the images of the book. But displaying all this author and image information took up far too much room.

The new list starts out with only titles, and you can scrub with the mouse to see the rest of the information. Clicking on a book takes you to Amazon, of course, where if you buy it I'll get some tiny amount of money. (The point of this is to see whether anyone finds the book list useful. I'm keeping the day job either way.)

I also experimented with a version that flipped through all the books in the same screen area, but I found it too distracting. One of the advantages of the Laszlo platform is that it's easy to try things like this out — there's only sixteen lines of difference between that application and this one.

The application gets its information from an XML file that contains the title, author, image url, and Amazon landing page url for each book. For example, one of the entries is the XML fragment below. The whole file is here.  [Oliver Steele]

Oliver Steele is one of the creators of Laszlo.  Here's another good example of how easy it is to create Laszlo apps.  [Marc's Voice]

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