Web Pages in Pathfinder Panels

What can you do with Pathfinder?

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Joined: Tue Oct 16, 2007 9:15 pm

Web Pages in Pathfinder Panels

Post by mattrock »

I have been playing with this in an effort to access information via HTML when the information is not part of PFServer. I have been experimenting with merging dynamic information with Pathfinder Panels, and I have come up with a technique that may be useful elsewhere.

I have created a status webpage which I open in a box in the panel. Weather information [from an instrument rig on the top of the Atmospheric Sciences building here at the UW] and stream graphs [created with Cacti <http://www.cacti.net/>] are the dynamic content. The weather information comes from a python script running as CGI [http://vu.wsum.wisc.edu/tools/uw_weather.py]. The script grabs weather information once a minute, caches it on local servers, and presents the info on request via JQuery, <http://jquery.com/> javascript, and AJAX and injects it into the status web-box.

Since someone had the foresight to make sure the webpage in panel is always layered below panel controls, the webpage becomes the new background "image" for the panel. I stretch the panel really big, and then stretch the webpage box bigger than what the final panel will be. This will hide any scroll bars that may appear. I also set the start coordinates for the web-box to 0,0. Once the controls are positioned where they need to be, I size the panel back to the final dimensions and Voila! I have dynamically updated content in the panel!

Note that when building the panel, the web-box needs to be shrunk down small to be able to work with other controls. Any control that is placed over the webpage looses it's border for grabbing (bug).

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