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Thread: Help Please

  1. #1
    Junior Member mulr1966's Avatar
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    Hello everyone, I would like to start by saying I have enjoyed browsing this forumn and it certainly has provided me with some useful tips. Thank you for that.
    Now for the Problem:
    Please pardon me if I do not get the terms correct I am new web design.
    I would like to create a web page that has 2
    Boxes, the first box would contain a list of names and dates approx 200 of them so the box would need to scroll. the second box would empty until you clicked on a name in the first box. Example:
    Box 1:
    myname.last 01/01/1985
    yourname.last 05/05/1999
    etc

    Box 2 would be empty until name above was clickd

    when the name myname.last is clicked I would like to populate box2 with information about that individual
    such as
    NAME
    Birthdate
    Titel
    Location


    Question 1: what style should I use to create the Boxes. ie CSS , Frames , Iframes etc and why?

    Question 2: how should I store the additional data for Box number 2?
    sort of like completing a form once box 1 is activated .

    Thank you for any assistance you can provide.

  2.  

  3. #2
    Junior Member mulr1966's Avatar
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    It has been a few days and I have no ideas as to what route to take on this subject, any ideas would be appreciated
    Thank you

    Originally posted by mulr1966
    Hello everyone, I would like to start by saying I have enjoyed browsing this forumn and it certainly has provided me with some useful tips. Thank you for that.
    Now for the Problem:
    Please pardon me if I do not get the terms correct I am new web design.
    I would like to create a web page that has 2
    Boxes, the first box would contain a list of names and dates approx 200 of them so the box would need to scroll. the second box would empty until you clicked on a name in the first box. Example:
    Box 1:
    myname.last 01/01/1985
    yourname.last 05/05/1999
    etc

    Box 2 would be empty until name above was clickd

    when the name myname.last is clicked I would like to populate box2 with information about that individual
    such as
    NAME
    Birthdate
    Titel
    Location


    Question 1: what style should I use to create the Boxes. ie CSS , Frames , Iframes etc and why?

    Question 2: how should I store the additional data for Box number 2?
    sort of like completing a form once box 1 is activated .

    Thank you for any assistance you can provide.

  4. #3
    WDF Staff smoseley's Avatar
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    Sorry... missed this post the last time around. There are a few ways of accomplishing this:
    1. iframes - make select box #2 in an iframe and have the frame reload onchange of the first select, executing a server-side script that retrieves the data and populates the second box (and refreshing that part of the page).
    2. frames - make an invisible "control" frame (rows="0, *") and onchange of the first select box, change its location to a page that executes a server side script and outputs a javascript that tells the visible frame to populate the second select box with the data retrieved. This is cleaner and more backwards compatible
    3. (this one is my favorite) - modal dialog - onchange of the first select box, use window.showModalDialog() to pop up a new modal window, which will execute the server-side script and return the values to the parent page as a variable (that's what they're made for) - preferably as an array. Then the javascript that popped up the modal dialog populates the second select box with the returned results. This way of doing it is nice because the modal dialog can be set to display a "loading" message while it's retrieving the data, thus creating a more informative (and therefore more usable) interface.

    Of course, they get more usable as you go down the list, but they also get more difficult to create. If you really like #3, I can find an example of something I've done using this technique and show you the source.

  5. #4
    Junior Member mulr1966's Avatar
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    Steve, Thank you for the information, it at least gives me some ideas as to what to look for and how to go about doing this. I have been looking at probably a few hundred web sites just looking for an example or anything similar to what I was trying to accomplish.
    Just between you and me ....LOL I am really a novice at coding web pages, designing them etc. What I have been doing over the past 2-3 weeks has been teaching myself some HTML, CSS, some basic Java Scripting, so I do sort of understnad what you are saying with the above Options. I think Option 3 would probably serve as a more usuable interface giving that I could control clicks from that point as well..... I Think anyway...ok now a little more information on this that might help. I have a few hundred names and address's , Titles held of people that belonged to this organization, I have created an Iframe with anchors to other html pages trying to target another frame. this is not working yet and may never.One of my concerns doing this is that I have to pretty much create a page for each individual with there own data. I would prefer not to have to do this and have for example a FLAT File that is Delimeted with (say some unique delimeter) and when the name is clicked on Box 1 it would extract the information from the delmeted file/page and populate only that persons information. Maybe using an Index.. I relaly do not know.
    If you have an Example of Option 3 I could look at I would really appreciate it.
    Thank you again
    Robert

  6. #5
    WDF Staff smoseley's Avatar
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    Ok, well if you're not using a database on the server, then you should probably just use a javascript file with your contents in an array. That would eliminate the need for iframes, frames, or modalDialogs. I'll post an example in a minute.

  7. #6
    Junior Member mulr1966's Avatar
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    Thank You Steve

  8. #7
    WDF Staff smoseley's Avatar
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    Here's a semi-functional version of what I think you're asking for. Check out the source and let me know if that's cool for you.

  9. #8
    Junior Member mulr1966's Avatar
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    Steve,
    Thank you, I am looking over the file now and will let you the results of what I can do with it. Thank you again for helping me out.
    Robert

  10. #9
    WDF Staff smoseley's Avatar
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    PS - you may also want to look into using "XML Data Islands" for this specific example. I think it would be the IDEAL application of using XML data embedded into your HTML.

    Unfortunately, the technology is right now IE specific, but please check it out here:

    http://www.w3schools.com/xml/xml_data_island.asp

    I think once you learn this, you'll see the advantages for your project.

  11. #10
    Junior Member mulr1966's Avatar
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    Steve, That is exactly the functionality I was looking for, many thanks , I will incorperate that into the page I am building and post the link here when complete for reviews, You helped me out in a big way. Thanks again.
    Robert


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