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Old June 4th, 2006, 02:32 PM   #1
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Web template for Quicktime? Other ideas?

Here's a problem that seem ssimpe to resolve but for the life of me I can't figure it out:

I shoot videos for a local news web page. I keep the videos on my server and they link to each video within the news article.

What I have ben doing so far is to create a new html file for each video, copying an older file and just changing the URL to the new video inside the code. That way all the other text--copyright, and other links, stay the same.

Problem is that when I want to update the pages--fix problems introduced by new web browsers, add new links, etc, I have to go back and fix each of the files one by one. Major pain.

What I need I some sort of template where I only have a single file to update. I thought about doing something in Javascript of php (I'd have to learn) but am worried that I'd just get into the quicksand of constantly fighting browser incompatibilities as time went on. I want to shoot video, not code web pages.

Maybe there is something I can buy? Use a "content management system" like WordPress?

I'm open to any and all ideas--I just want it simple and I want it to work.

Thanks,

--Darin
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Old June 4th, 2006, 04:42 PM   #2
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If your Web server supports PHP you could do a simple PHP include. All you would have to do is create your HTML page with the information you want included on every page with your videos. Then, on each video page you would insert the following line where you want that information to appear:

Code:
<?php include("myinfo.html") ?>
From then on whenever a video page is accessed the server will write the page with your info into the video pages just as if it was on each page. (For this reason you can omit the HTML head and body tags on the included page as they are redundant.) Whenever you want to update your information all you have to do is change the one included page.
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Old June 4th, 2006, 11:40 PM   #3
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i'm in the same boat... but the advantage we have is that static html pages have the potential to rank much higher than anything else in the search engines, just be careful of a duplicate content penalty, or getting pushed into the supplemental pages ranking.

what i'm looking for right now is a freebie text editor that will allow an exchange of text without opening the file itself... just tell it what to remove, and what to replace it with, then turn it loose on a directory of html files... you could update the links on each page in very short order.
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Old June 5th, 2006, 06:32 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dan Euritt
what i'm looking for right now is a freebie text editor that will allow an exchange of text without opening the file itself... just tell it what to remove, and what to replace it with, then turn it loose on a directory of html files... you could update the links on each page in very short order.
If the pages are on a *nix system, and you have commandline access, you could use "sed".

But you'd have to find someone who knows what the heck they're doing.... (I don't qualify).
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Old June 5th, 2006, 01:42 PM   #5
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I use "Advanced Find and Replace" from http://www.abacre.com/

It started as a demo and I ended up buying it. It really helps when I change a URL for something in the menu that is on every page in the site.

Not free, but cheap enough.

And it does the entire directory in one go!
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Old June 5th, 2006, 02:07 PM   #6
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thanks steven, for the link! i'm gonna check that out.

daniel, what you can do is use the find & replace on the html files in your local computer directory, then upload 'em all to the server at once... log in using the ftp command, and it'll be a simple drag 'n drop replacement from one folder to another.

i think that steven's software will do it to the html files on the server itself(?), which is an interesting option... i like to do it locally first, so that there is a backup copy, but if you already have that, his tool could be a better choice... especially if it's automated, so that you end up with a backup copy as well.

for instance, lets say that you need to swap out ad blocks on a bunch of pages... you already have the files backed up locally, so all you need to do is to make the changes online.

at some point, tho, the volume of work involved will probably require a php-type of solution like christopher outlined.
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Old June 5th, 2006, 02:18 PM   #7
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I never considered trying to modify the ones on the server. I keep a complete copy of each site on a local drive so I can just make all of the changes locally. I use a free FTP tool that lets me sort by date, so I put all of the files I've changed at the top. grab them all, and send them up to the server.

I get over 30,000 visits per month, so I feel a responsibility to keep it all reasoably neat and up-to-date.
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Old June 5th, 2006, 02:21 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Darin Boville
What I need I some sort of template where I only have a single file to update. I thought about doing something in Javascript of php (I'd have to learn) but am worried that I'd just get into the quicksand of constantly fighting browser incompatibilities as time went on.
You could use a single template, although that would probably work best for the new videos you add. You probably wouldn't want to retroactively use the single template approach for the old videos you already have on your site, as the nature of using one template means the format of the URLs would have to change, as you will see.

Browser incompatibilities aren't something you would have to worry about, at least with PHP. PHP is a server side code, because it is executed by the server before the page ever reaches the browser (the "client"). Javascript, on the other hand, is client side scripting because the browser (client) is relied upon to execute the code. Normally this isn't a problem as nearly 100% of Internet users have Javascript enabled, but it would still be more reliable to use PHP.

If you want to move to a single template for your video files, then I would recommend PHP. Below is a simple example of what the template could look like.

Code:
<!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.01 
Transitional//EN">

<html>

	<head>
		<meta http-equiv="content-type" 
		content="text/html;charset=iso-8859-1">
		<title>My Video</title>
	</head>
	
		<?php
//Grabs video title variable from URL
$title = ($_GET["title"]);
?>

	<body bgcolor="#ffffff">
		<p><object classid="clsid:02BF25D5-8C17-4B23-BC80-D3488ABDDC6B"
		 codebase="http://www.apple.com/qtactivex/qtplugin.cab" 
		 height="256" width="320">
			<param name="src" 
			  value="movies/<?php echo "$title"; ?>.mov">
			<param name="autoplay" value="true">
			<param name="controller" value="true">
			<embed height="256" pluginspage="http://www.apple.com/quicktime/download/" 
			  src="movies/<?php echo "$title"; ?>.mov" type="video/quicktime" width="320" 
			  controller="false" autoplay="true"> 
			</object><br>
			<br>
			All videos copyright Darin Boville. All rights reserved.</p>
		<p><a href="http://www.mysite.com" 
		target="_blank">www.mysite.com</a></p>
	</body>

</html>
You would save the above code in a file with the PHP extension, which lets the server know it needs to parse the file for PHP code. To use this single template for multiple videos the URLs would be formatted thus:

mysite.com/myvideotemplate.php?title=videotitle

where videotitle is the name used for the QuickTime movie, minus the .mov extension. When the server receives the URL and parses the PHP template, it will grab the video title from the URL (that's what the $title = ($_GET["title"]) line is for). Then, when it comes to the embedded QuickTime object it will insert the title in the src tags. Thus, for example, the:

src="movies/<?php echo "$title"; ?>.mov"

tag would then read:

src="movies/videotitle.mov"

Hopefully this is fairly clear, but if you have any questions feel free to ask.
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Last edited by Christopher Lefchik; June 5th, 2006 at 03:31 PM.
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Old June 5th, 2006, 02:31 PM   #9
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Christopher,

Simply outstanding. I did a simple "include" php file after yourfirst post and have been testing it (and also testing WordPress) but your most recent post looks like just the thing.

I can't thank you enough!

--Darin
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Old June 5th, 2006, 02:49 PM   #10
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I "stole" the relevant code from your sample and modified my file---works great--thanks again,

http://www.video.photodemocracy.org/...ltrans_at_Work

Am I correct that this poses no security risk since we are only passing a partial file name via the URL?

--Darin
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Old June 5th, 2006, 03:24 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Darin Boville
Am I correct that this poses no security risk since we are only passing a partial file name via the URL?
There's no security risk that I know of. This is a relatively simple PHP operation.

WordPress relies heavily on PHP, in addition to a database such as MySQL. There are undoubtedly more security risks involved in using WordPress than the simple PHP template I posted above.
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