Frustration and Relief

Oh joy! No sarcasm. I really am overjoyed that after much frustration over silly technical glitches caused by a cross between my own learning curve and some gremlins, I can finally announce the re-launch I am at least a week behind my self-imposed schedule, but better late than never. And I never would have made it this far if not for the technical expertise of the world’s best neighbor, Robert.

A few weeks ago in a two-part posting (here and here) I explained my exodus from ArtistShare and told you that the new SnapSizzleBop will be reborn with a new tag line: Shop, Look & Listen. The Look & Listen pages feature free access to news, pictures, audio and video clips relating to my current projects — “At the Feet of a Jazz Master,” “Seeking Harmony: The Life and Music of Luther Henderson,” and a series of short pieces titled Neighborhood Narratives. Those who sign up for the email announcement list will be automatically notified when new files are posted. The “shop” part will be an online store where you can buy our books and other items.

One thing that took up some time was adapting the shopping cart module, but it was the multimedia components that took me awhile to work out. I purchased a very affordable suite of flash media players from a company called Lucid Flash. They have created an easy to use group of flash players for audio, video, and images. All you have to do is copy the code they give you into your web page, then fill-in the variables that provide instructions to the player (things like the name of the file(s) to play, and how many files, etc), upload everything to the online server and you’re good to go.

So why did I have problems? Not because of Lucid Flash; in fact they held my hand through repeated attempts to troubleshoot the problems even though the problems were not theirs. My first problem was that I forgot that the online world of code pays attention of upper and lowercase characters, so if XYZ.doc is the filename and you tell it xyz.doc it will not find it. My second problem was that some programs view certain characters as special. I knew that the ampersand character was not to be used in a filename, but I did not know that the programs I was using did not want to see a plus sign as part of the filename either. I took me awhile to stumble onto that little fact. I won’t bore you with the rest of the stumbling blocks, except to say that sometimes when you move files around online they don’t end up intact and the last problem I had seemed to be that the video files somehow got corrupted. Don’t know how—that’s the part I blame on gremlins.

So, is now officially launched and I hope that you’ll visit to hear some music, listen to some interviews, watch some video clips, and flip through our photo albums.

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