New Version of HotSheet Coming (Slowly)

I just looked at CVS for HotSheet and I haven’t checked anything in since July of last year. Which sounds about right because I made some mistakes in writing it initially and then I got it to a state where it kind of limped along well enough for me to use it every day so there wasn’t a huge drive to do all the improvements it needs.

But I’m finding myself annoyed by the problems it has and I’m wanting it to start realizing more of its potential so you can expect a new version soon. It will have at least the following changes:

  • The item history is currently staying around even if you delete the item history file. This odd quirk is a side effect of my using serialization to save off my internal structures and a minor bug in my code playing off of each other. [100% done]
  • The default browser that launches for Unix/Linux users is now Mozilla. Since most users run the software through Java Web Start, this won’t change things an iota for you. Only if you were doing development with the code and running it from the command line or from the Ant buildfile. [100% done]
  • Many channels were including HTML tags right in their RSS entries. This made the results almost impossible to read when you saw them rendered in HotSheet. New code in the RSS library allows for getting either the raw descriptions or the description with all tags removed and HotSheet now uses the latter. [100% done]
  • Prevayler will be used for a new version of the item store, channel store, and item history. This will make a huge difference in HotSheet’s ability to deal with crashes or other problems. Fortunately, due to how the first version of the RSS library was written, this isn’t going to be too big a deal. [0% done]
  • I went on a mission to cut as much as possible from the download so it would be a quicker download and I wouldn’t expend as much bandwidth for new people trying it out. I dropped quite a bit by removing all the XML libraries that are now part of the Java Runtime and even more by dropping the scripting support that isn’t even properly incorporated anyway. As a result it should be a lot trimmer and faster to install than before. If I was willing to cut my usage of Log4J and instead substitute the J2SE 1.4 logging I would have cut it from 4.2MB to .2MB. But I’m not willing to do that so you’ll have to settle for a .4MB download instead. [100% done]
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