5 Steps to Spring Cleaning your Files

Last week I found a post on Crunch Gear, with a video guide on “Spring cleaning your PC“. He came to the realisation that his PC hadn’t been cleaned in a while, and sets about it with a can of compressed air for ten minutes.

Might have been useful taking this approach myself.

As good as it is to clean out all that collective dust (and I highly recommend that you do), that’s not what this article is for.

After the jump, I’ll show you how to clean up the files in your PC, using some very useful programs and tweaks to get rid of the junk that slows it down. Continue reading 5 Steps to Spring Cleaning your Files


Handling Game State Management in C++

One thing that is initially overlooked in game design is handling menus and levels within the user interface. However, we know that it’s always going to be, and is, a crucial part to any successful game, as it helps provide the user with an extra level of control and eases general flow. It’s just a case then of finding the code to do it.

This tutorial will cover a simple technique for handling state management with enums or “enumerated types“. If you have used state management or even just enums in C# before, then this will all feel very familiar to you. There are however some very subtle differences between the markup of the two languages. Continue reading Handling Game State Management in C++


How to Display a User’s Visited Web Pages

Allowing a developer to access a visitor’s browsing history is a huge security risk, that’s why it’s not possible. If you own a website that runs PHP with MySQL and handles sessions then this could be done by tracking IP addresses, user agents and so on to associate a browsing pattern with a particular person. This however can be pretty inaccurate, plus it’s only limited to your own website.

So what are we going to use? Well when you think about it, a user’s browsing history is stored on their computer, client-side. And what else runs client-side that us web developers can make? JavaScript and CSS. These are what we’re going to use. Continue reading How to Display a User’s Visited Web Pages


How to Send a URL Fragment Anchor to PHP

The URL fragment anchor (or accelerator, ID link or jump point) can be used to relocate the visitor to a specific part of a page. This is done by giving an element an ID then linking to it with a hash symbol (# or number/pound sign) like so:

http://example.com/page.php#content

The “content” part of this URL however never gets passed to PHP since it is only used client-side. However, with a little bit of help from JavaScript we can do exactly that. Continue reading How to Send a URL Fragment Anchor to PHP


Create Social Bookmarks with the AddThis API

One service that I had used a while back was AddThis social bookmarks. I really liked its ease of use, support for a huge range of social networks and bookmarking sites, and most importantly it had great tools for analytics.

The social bar itself however left more to be desired. It was an eyesore, appearing after every post on my site, and made me cringe at the fact that it relied on JavaScript to function. Luckily, I found an alternative in the form of their API docs. Continue reading Create Social Bookmarks with the AddThis API


Parsing the Kongregate Badge Feed with PHP

Back in September of last year, Jim Greer of Kongregate.com posted an article in the forums about a new badge data service served in JSON. This was great news for developers, we could finally grab data from our user accounts without having to do a web scrape on our user page.

However, this forum post seems to be the only official documentation on what is a very interesting data feed, so it is with this reason that I decided to create this beginner’s tutorial on how to use it. Continue reading Parsing the Kongregate Badge Feed with PHP


How to Fetch Page Content Using PHP

The web has so many useful services now, many offering their own API that you can draw data from and create your own mashups with. Websites like Twitter, Facebook, Flickr, and Kongregate are just a few.

Their data output is most commonly formatted in RSS (for feed readers), and JSON (a lighter form than XML used a lot for AJAX). In this post I’ll show you how to use the cURL library to collect data from any public web page. Continue reading How to Fetch Page Content Using PHP


Beginner’s Guide to Google AJAX Feed API

For those that don’t know, the Google AJAX Feed API is a JavaScript tool that you can use to handle your AJAX requests, and is particularly useful for reading in feed data from external websites. After searching for all kinds of plug-ins and tools, I landed on Google’s answer, and found exactly what I needed – a JavaScript-only feed parsing script.

This tutorial will provide you with a very basic script to start using this great tool and covers what you need to get started.

Continue reading Beginner’s Guide to Google AJAX Feed API


Using jQuery To Create Parallax Scrolling Backgrounds

Just a quick demonstration today on using JavaScript and CSS techniques to create scrolling backgrounds. Here we layer backgrounds on top of each other and change their horizontal position to move them past the viewing area. It also uses different multipliers to move the closer objects quicker, and create a parallax effect.

Continue reading Using jQuery To Create Parallax Scrolling Backgrounds