Author Topic: Signature Tool (not functional at the moment)  (Read 2324 times)

TimothyEllis

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Re: New Signature Tool - Alpha testing
« Reply #150 on: January 10, 2019, 09:01:04 PM »
It took me most of today to find where to insert a link to the signature tool so it would desplay in the forum's footer.

Footer? Needs to go on the main menu line at the top.

Al Stevens

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Re: New Signature Tool - Alpha testing
« Reply #151 on: January 11, 2019, 07:21:29 PM »
I used the footer because 1) that's where KBoards and Absolute Write do it and 2) because the link includes a graphic. I'll take a look at how to get it to the menu. The problem is that those things are side-effects of themes. You do not allow users to change the theme, but others do. All I can do is suggest where and how to put the link, and the admin has to look at all the themes the site permits and modify them all. Putting it in the header requires a link code mod to every theme's index.template.php file. Unless there's a utility procedure in the Admin process that makes it easier. I didn't find one. Adding to a menu depends on how they encode menu selections. Even so it will probably be theme-specific. I'll check it out. We can probably put yours wherever you want it, but the distributed package has to be easy enough that an admin can do it.  Grin
« Last Edit: January 11, 2019, 07:24:48 PM by Al Stevens »
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TimothyEllis

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Re: New Signature Tool - Alpha testing
« Reply #152 on: January 11, 2019, 09:20:36 PM »
KB has it on the author menu at the top.

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Re: New Signature Tool - Alpha testing
« Reply #153 on: January 11, 2019, 09:58:11 PM »
KB has it on the author menu at the top.
I'd never seen that. They also have it at the bottom when you are reading messages. I know how to get it on the top menu now, but I haven't figured out how to make it open in a separate window. Fortunately putting it on top seems to be independent of themes and only needs to be done in one place. But it's deep inside the menu code.

We don't have an author's menu. Right now, I can get it on top between Members and Logout.
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TimothyEllis

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Re: New Signature Tool - Alpha testing
« Reply #154 on: January 11, 2019, 10:01:41 PM »
But it's deep inside the menu code.
We don't have an author's menu. Right now, I can get it on top between Members and Logout.

Maybe just Add a Tools menu, in case anything else gets added in the future. Since most people here are authors, we dont really need an authors menu like KB did.

Al Stevens

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Re: New Signature Tool - Alpha testing
« Reply #155 on: January 11, 2019, 10:28:33 PM »
We could add it to the Profile menu. It's kind of where it fits.
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TimothyEllis

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Re: New Signature Tool - Alpha testing
« Reply #156 on: January 11, 2019, 10:49:05 PM »
We could add it to the Profile menu. It's kind of where it fits.

No-one would ever look for it there. People dont find half the stuff which is already there as it is.

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Re: New Signature Tool - Alpha testing
« Reply #157 on: January 12, 2019, 03:36:44 PM »
We could add it to the Profile menu. It's kind of where it fits.

No-one would ever look for it there. People dont find half the stuff which is already there as it is.
That's probably why they put the link in the footer too.
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Re: New Signature Tool - Alpha testing
« Reply #158 on: January 15, 2019, 04:47:06 PM »
New URL for Signature Mill:

https://www.alstevens.com/sigmill

Installation guide draft:

https://www.alstevens.com/sigmill/install.html

New keyboard shortcuts listed at the end of the user's guide:

https://www.alstevens.com/sigmill/docs/info.pdf
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Re: New Signature Tool - Alpha testing
« Reply #159 on: January 17, 2019, 10:47:40 AM »
I added a Preview feature to Signature Mill. Before saving, you get a look at about how it will look in the forum. I found it tedious to be constantly pasting into the forum only to have to undo it because its looks were wrong.

Of course, every time I add something, I have to update the user's guide with new screen shots. Talk about tedium...
Genres: mystery, music, programming, science fiction, historical fiction


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Re: New Signature Tool - Alpha testing
« Reply #160 on: January 18, 2019, 02:52:06 AM »
Timothy, do you want the signature tool installed into Writer Spectrum?
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TimothyEllis

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Re: New Signature Tool - Alpha testing
« Reply #161 on: January 18, 2019, 12:01:01 PM »
Timothy, do you want the signature tool installed into Writer Spectrum?

Define 'installed'.

I'm happy with the tool being on your site, and we add a menu link, or a text link somewhere.

I'm also happy to host the tool on your domain name if you dont want the final version on your site. (Could be a lot of bandwidth use if it is used a lot.) I've got plenty of available resources for it here if you need to host it elsewhere.

Does it need to be installed into the forum itself other than a menu or link addition?

Al Stevens

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Re: New Signature Tool - Alpha testing
« Reply #162 on: January 18, 2019, 10:20:12 PM »
Installation means:

1. Copying the source files to their own directory in SMF's Sources directory.
2. A few mods to the TSMSettings.php file for configuration.
3. Adding link(s) to the forum code.

The configuration uses the database settings from the SMF Settings.php file, so nothing need be done there.
It also needs the host's AWS credentials (two keys) granted by Amazon in order to run searches.

Details are here:

https://www.alstevens.com/sigmill/install.html

I prefer to have your site host the tool. My host cannot handle heavy traffic.

I can perform the installation if you wish including adding the link to the WriterSanctum forum. I'll need ftp access to your site's Sources directory. We can use my AWS credential keys until you get your own. I can't guarantee that mine won't expire. We'll leave my tag as the default until we change to your credentials. The search engine uses that along with the keys to identify who's sending queries.

I shoiuld also have phpMyAdmin access to your database so I can troubleshoot if any problems arise during installation. Just provide the link to where that is run from. Unless you have a different utility for managing the database, in which case I'll need access to that.

With all that I should be able to assist with other database tasks you come up with. I've gotten to know mySQL pretty well with this project.

The exchange of these keys, passwords, etc., should, of course, be done in PMs.

Genres: mystery, music, programming, science fiction, historical fiction


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Al Stevens

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Re: New Signature Tool - Alpha testing
« Reply #163 on: January 18, 2019, 10:24:27 PM »
Quote
Does it need to be installed into the forum itself other than a menu or link addition?
It can run elsewhere, but there has to be mySQL and a database on that site. The program adds a table to an existing database, which it has to know how to access. It cannot use the forum's database constants. The configuration file is set up to handle that. The database name, user, and password have to be encoded into the configuration file.

Just tell me how you want to do it and provide to me the data constants for host, user, password, and database name. And the link to a localhost phpMyAdmin if you have one.

« Last Edit: January 18, 2019, 11:10:35 PM by Al Stevens »
Genres: mystery, music, programming, science fiction, historical fiction


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Al Stevens

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Re: New Signature Tool - Alpha testing
« Reply #164 on: January 29, 2019, 02:24:53 AM »
It's been a while since I've posted. Signature Mill is still available for your use in its previous configuration:

https://www.alstevens.com/sigmill

I'm working on a number of changes. If I can get all this to work:

  • The program will run from within any SMF forum such as Writer Sanctum.
  • It will be oriented to all products, not just books. I found very few writer/book forums that use SMF and few others that use BBCode signatures.
  • It will automatically update your profile signature on command. No more Profile/Summary/paste required.
  • I will probably (emphasis on probably) host the Amazon AWS search part of the application from my site. I ran into blank stares when I mentioned the AWS public/private key requirement.
  • Installation will involve copying the sigmill folder to a forum's server and inserting one line of code in the SMF subs.php file. I might automate that in an install program.

I cannot install Signature Mill on Writer Sanctum. I do not have access permissions to the source code files and my request for such access was denied. You may continue to use the standalone version however.

I have looked into releasing it as an installable "mod," but the coding and formatting requirements are stringent, and the potential for collision with other mods is high even though I'm adding only one line of code to one file. I might wait until they release 2.0 before I get further into the mod mess.
« Last Edit: January 29, 2019, 02:29:35 AM by Al Stevens »
Genres: mystery, music, programming, science fiction, historical fiction


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Al Stevens

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Re: New Signature Tool - Alpha testing
« Reply #165 on: January 30, 2019, 02:10:20 AM »
In the list above, I left out an important feature in the newer Signature Mill]/\. You no longer log into and out of Signature Mill with a password. It uses your login info from the forum that launches it. If you run Signature Mill from outside an SMF forum, you are treated as a guest. You can search Amazon for products, build a signature, and paste the BBCode into wherever you wish. But none of the work gets saved in a database when you end the session. Next time you run the program, it's from scratch.
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TimothyEllis

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Re: Signature Tool
« Reply #166 on: February 19, 2019, 05:49:24 PM »
Moved to the Read Here First section, so people can find it with the other tools and suggestions.

lea_owens

Re: Signature Tool
« Reply #167 on: April 04, 2019, 04:45:11 PM »
I'd like to have my books in a signature at the bottom of posts, but I opened the three links above, and I'm tired - so I just read that first you register then this, that, this, this, that, that, ten pages and I shut the links. I know I've put signature links on other sites, and it was easy - but all those who know what they're doing with this have done a great job.
 

TimothyEllis

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Re: Signature Tool
« Reply #168 on: April 04, 2019, 04:54:22 PM »
I'd like to have my books in a signature at the bottom of posts, but I opened the three links above, and I'm tired - so I just read that first you register then this, that, this, this, that, that, ten pages and I shut the links. I know I've put signature links on other sites, and it was easy - but all those who know what they're doing with this have done a great job.

Click the link on the first post. There is no need to register now.

The main part is finding your books on Amazon.

lea_owens

Re: Signature Tool
« Reply #169 on: April 04, 2019, 07:56:59 PM »
I'd like to have my books in a signature at the bottom of posts, but I opened the three links above, and I'm tired - so I just read that first you register then this, that, this, this, that, that, ten pages and I shut the links. I know I've put signature links on other sites, and it was easy - but all those who know what they're doing with this have done a great job.

Click the link on the first post. There is no need to register now.

The main part is finding your books on Amazon.


Thanks. I've tried a few times, but it just gives me the message, "AWS Access Key ID: AKIAJQYKDMZ642KP6JFA. You are submitting requests too quickly. Please retry your request again"

It doesn't matter what fields I have filled in, whether or not I try to log in, that is always the response when I hit search or enter.  I've pm'd my  signature code to you - thanks if you can help, but no stress if you can't. Not having my books in my signature isn't an important issue.
 

Al Stevens

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Re: Signature Tool
« Reply #170 on: April 04, 2019, 10:49:24 PM »
I just tested it. It's been a while. It's doing what she said to me too. Amazon must have tightened their access times or something. I'll take a look later today.
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Al Stevens

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Re: Signature Tool
« Reply #171 on: April 05, 2019, 09:16:29 PM »
Amazon has changed something in its AWS protocols. No matter how big a choke I put on the queries, it returns the error that says I'm querying too fast. Amazon is unresponsive to my requests for information. It may be that they have disabled my AWS account and are sending the wrong error message. The only way to tell is for someone else to sign up and let the program use those public and private keys in the queries. Until that happens, I'm shut down. I've disabled the tool. I cannot change the link in the first message to this thread because it's no longer my thread.

It could be that we're using the wrong technique to query AMS. If the KBoards tool still works, that's a possibility, but I'd have to look into how they're doing it.

Programming the Signature by using the Selfie feature will still work where you provide links to book listings rather than using the search mechanism, but the program needs to get around the mechanism. I'll look into that, but (1) I didn't see much use of the program back when it was working and (2) I do not and have been told I will not have access to integrate the tool with the forum, so I doubt it's worth the effort.
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TimothyEllis

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Re: Signature Tool (not functional at the moment)
« Reply #172 on: April 05, 2019, 09:24:08 PM »
The KB tool was always link based. You entered the asin, and it looked it up. So 9 maximum requests.

This tool returns all books, and lets you choose one. Could be Amazon has decided to not allow this anymore.

As in requesting a specific book is ok, but asking for all books is not.

Al Stevens

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Re: Signature Tool (not functional at the moment)
« Reply #173 on: April 06, 2019, 12:17:24 AM »
The KB tool was always link based. You entered the asin, and it looked it up. So 9 maximum requests.
That might have been their old tool. The KB Link Maker lets you enter keywords. It returns a list of books that match the search. The difference is that with KB you choose one and manually paste it into the signature one at a time. We build a complete signature. The searches are the same with respect to what is searched for and what is returned except that my search supports author searches whereas they go for keywords only.

I just tested theirs and it still works. Ours used to work. Whatever Amazon changed disables our search but not theirs.

Genres: mystery, music, programming, science fiction, historical fiction


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Al Stevens is a retired author of computer programming books. For fifteen years he was a senior contributing editor and columnist for Dr. Dobb's Journal, a leading magazine for computer programmers. Al lives with his wife Judy and a menagerie of cats on Florida's Space Coast where he writes by day and plays piano, string bass, and saxophone by night.