HTML in WordPress

I have been writing HTML, by hand – as that was the only way you could write when it first came out, ever since it was invented. Before that I had been using the DEC format program and IBM GML for some time, so the concept of a markup language was familiar.
As my previous web site was hosted on Demon’s homepage service, it was written in vanilla HTML. Since I read HTML  manuals and used it to experiment, there were features I missed – many of which have been around since the early days of the web – which are not directly available in the excellent WordPress visual editor.

Tooltips (<span> with <title>)

By using a construct like

<span title="Eating, and thinking !">Easter Quiz and Baked Potato Meal £1.50</span></p>

you can make a “tooltip” like “Eating, and thinking !” pop up when someone hovers the mouse over the “Easter Quiz…” text. This was used in several places on the old site, and may be retrofitted, but see for an example (18-Mar-2005)

Internal Anchor tags for footnotes in a page

Use something like

Sonnet<sup><a href="#sonnet">1</a></sup> to a Nonagenarian

for the source, and

<li><a id="sonnet"></a>Technically ...</li>

for the target.

Image Maps

  1. Publish the post  or page with the picture which has the image which should have the map.
  2. Download the image from the page to some temporary place.
  3. Fire up GIMP and select Filters/Web/ImageMap
  4. If needed refer to for more detailed instructions
  5. Save the generated Image Map file
  6. Go back to WordPress and edit your page in text mode.
  7. Find the image you downloaded and update its “img” tag with the “usemap=#map” tag, but if you have multiple images on the page change to something like usemap=”#map-g-ggf”
  8. Copy and paste the generated “map” section below the “img” section you updated, but change the name to match the previous page
  9. Update the WordPress post or page and test.

There is an example on the George Edward Lines – Pictures post.

Wishing USB-C a successful future

I  have a crate full of USB cables, and it has been a very successful standard, but I was excited to read a Scientific American article about USB-C – a new Universal Serial Bus cable standard. Over the last few years the ‘B’ end of a USB cable – the small end which plugs into a phone, or a tablet, sometimes to exchange data, but often just to charge it has developed several variations. Most devices now use micro-B, and that has been adopted as the standard for new mobile phones.
In the near future an expansion of provision of USB-A sockets would be of enormous assistant the the modern traveller. I took a long distance bus to London recently and every pair of seats was provided with a 13Amp mains socket, and into each of these was plugged an adaptor, which was providing power to charge a mobile device. Providing one socket per pair of seats does potentially leave half the passengers powerless. Each of those sockets is wired to an inverter, which is converts the 12V DC of the bus wiring to 240V AC, so that the adaptors can convrt it back to 5V DC. Any foreign visitors would need to purchase and carry an mains adaptor to convert physical format of the plug they use to fit an British socket, even though what they really wanted was, in almost every case, to plug in to a USB-A socket. I do sometimes travel with a laptop, and my wife’s phone predates the USB-microB standard, so some people will need the mains socket.
The service life of a domestic car should be at least 10 years, and a bus could be double that  – so vehicle manufacturers should be fitting vehicles being built now with USB-A sockets, and planning to provide at least one USB-C socket per passenger in the vehicles being designed now, with several USB-C sockets available in places around the driver and wired back to the vehicles computer system.  For the passengers this could power, and potentially supply data to their entertainment or mobile office and communications system, for the driver increasingly sophisticated Satnav and driver assistance gadgets could be retro-fitted.