2010-02-03
Although I had thought about updating the look of my music page for a while, other things took precedent. Well, as life sometimes is, I was introduced to a feature in one of the finer browsers that one can use.

The Feature
Picture if you will.......
friend: you should fix your music page cuz it's crap
me: what?
friend: I went there and didn't know what to do
me: did you click the arrow pointing to the right that typically signifies "play"?
friend: what arrow?
me: whoa! what browser are you using?
friend: firefox
me:(pretending to be Morpheus) Show Me!

On my music page, I had a bunch of <audio> tags so that visitors to my site could hear me butcher various tunes that I have recorded. Unfortunately, the Firefox theme that my friend was using made Firefox's default audio player completely unusable.

Fine, I didn't like the look of the default player anyway!

What I Should Have Done
In hindsight, I should has just written some hardcoded javascript and CSS to make a nifty HTML5 audio player thing because I have decided that I really don't like working with JavaScript. Using a framework like GWT or Pyjamas that outputs JavaScript is fine, but hacking on JavaScript just isn't my thing. I suppose that it might have been easier if I had used a large JavaScript library like JQuery, but where is the hell is the fun in that? Oh well, maybe next time.

What I Did Do
Since my music page is created dynamically from information pulled from a database, I wanted a way to dynamically generate an HTML5 audio player based upon formatted text on a page; and well... that's what I did, and I named the project PagePlayer (boring, I know). By building it myself, I know exactly how the controls will look in various browsers, regardless of which theme the browser is using.

It may not be the best looking JavaScript generated music player thingy on the web, but it is my JavaScript generated music player thingy.

So fire up your HTML5 compatible browser and head over to my "music" page to check it out. Anyone interested in the code should visit the PagePlayer project page, where the HTML,JavaScript,CSS, images, and audio can be downloaded.

Now stop reading, and check your code for graceful degredation and IE6 compatibility.
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