Brand new homepage - in Web2.0!
Sundays are always pretty productive days. Apart from cleaning the house I manage to get some things done on the net. Today, for example, I finally reworked my homepage. It is not finished yet, but I managed to integrate the most important features. The lasted entry of this blog and a surfing interest indicator. both features are dynamically loaded in the client's web-browser, so the visitors of my home page will see a different pages if the content of this blog or my activity on del.icio.us changes.
The first feature is simply takes the latest entry of this blog and embeds it on my homepage. The technique is simple, I fetch the XML of the latest entry through the feed api of this blog tool via XMLHTTP. As soon the XML is available, it is rendered using an XSLT stylesheet. This stylesheet is basically the same as the entry-level stylesheet here. The only difference is that only the heading and the first paragraph are displayed. I didn't want to put the entire article on the frontpage, because then nobody comes here for reading ;-)
The second feature is a del.icio.us interest indicator. The visual concept is simple. It displays my del.icio.us tag cloud. The font-size for each tag according to the number of times I have used this tag, and the font-color is set according to the frequency the tag has been used lately. This indicator shows the visitors in real time what I am currently interested in - or at least what draws my attention.
The widget is a real simple mash-up that utilizes the JSON API of del.icio.us and because JSON is used no server side caching is required - everything can be done in the visitors browser. In a first step I fetch the tag cloud. The second step fetches the most recent links I bookmarked. I tried a bit and found that analysing the last 20 entries results in a nice picture. In a final step, a HTML fragment is created from the incoming data, in which the stylesheets for the tag encoding are set, too.