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  • Picture Handling

    Pictures are a very important part of communicating on the NAWCC Message Board. This new version of the Message Board provides several new ways to include pictures and even video clips in your posts.

    There are several ways to manage pictures depending on what the picture is for, who owns it and where it is currently located.

    IMG Code

    In the simplest instance, you have permission to use a picture that someone else has already posted on the Internet and the picture is an appropriate size to use in what you are posting. In this case, you can use the [IMG][/IMG] pair of codes around the address of the particular picture. i.e. [IMG]http://www.awco.org/AWCo/walthamlightSM.jpg[/IMG] will place this picture in line with the text.

    As you can see that picture does not work particularly well because the placement breaks the line awkwardly. It would work better, if the picture were at the beginning of the line and/or on a line by itself. You may also use the image tool from the editor toolbox to insert an on-line image file.

    On this message board the button in the editor toolbox opens an uploading tool similar to that in the Asset Manager that we will discuss next. If the image is uploaded, it is still treated as an external reference. For data integrity reasons it is preferred that users upload images rather than making pure external references. The reason is that the external references will be broken eventually as the external site ownership or names change. The image above of the young man is an external reference. The Waltham sign images are also external, but they were uploaded for protection. If the external reference returns an error those images will be marked as no longer referenced, but the image will still be available here.

    Attachment/Asset Manager

    For most general work with pictures, the Message Board provides the Attachment/Asset Manager, which is a tool for managing a library of pictures and providing a convenient way to include them in your posts. The Asset manager provides tools for uploading and gathering images from the Internet, a convenient interface for inserting images and an Click for a larger view.extensible file system for managing large numbers of images.

    The Asset Manager opens in a window of its own when you click on the Manage Attachments button below the editing window or on the paperclip icon in the editor toolbox.

    The top line of the Asset Manager has a button at the right that lets you select material either from your computer or from the Internet to upload. When you click on this button, the upload dialog is the essentially the same as the dialog for the IMG tool in the editor toolbox. When you have selected a file or URL you click on upload files to move the files into the Asset Manager. The files will be placed on the insert line at the bottom of the window and also in the thumbnail (or other display format you have chosen) array in the Asset Manager.

    You may check the check box in each thumbnail on the insertion line to actually insert the picture. When you then click on the button labeled Insert Selected, the thumbnails will be inserted in the file at the current cursor position. After the pictures have been inserted, if the editor is in the WYSIWYG mode you can double click on the thumbnail and a thumbnail settings box will open up.

    After you have chosen the settings, you can drag the picture to a position that works best for you. You can select from four different sizes and three positions for the picture. When readers are viewing the article, they can double click on the image to view it in its full size.

    If none of the position settings are selected, the thumbnail image can be dragged to any position in the article. However, the text will not wrap properly unless the position has been selected. The center position selection does not wrap text to the sides. It just centers the image on the page.

    The Asset Manager supports a filing system that can be used to divide up your image assets into convenient groups or to hold material that is different from the regular pictures normally used. In particular the image folder holds a different kind of picture in terms of how it can be manipulated.

    Encyclopedia Images

    Images used in Encyclopedia Articles are often more formal than simple snapshots. They are stored in the Image Namespace that you can see by selecting Image from the
    Encyclopedia top page. Images are inserted in articles using the [IMAGE][/IMAGE] codes. For example as done by hand and the same image from the Asset Manager. The IMAGE code allows you to place additional parameters in between the code tags along with the name of the image. The pieces of information are separated by the vertical bar "|" character. The word thumb or thumbnail says to make the image a thumbnail that may be clicked to enlarge. If you enter a number followed by the letters "px" the image will be sized to that number of pixels. If you enter any other text between the codes, the text will be used as the caption for the picture. Here is another example showing both size and caption use.
    Portrait of A. L. Dennison ca. 1890Portrait of A. L. Dennison ca. 1890

    Encyclopedia Images have copyright restrictions that may not allow you to use them as you would like. You should read the Encyclopedia article in the Image area for the particular image if you want to use it in your article. In general the license for images is for non-commercial use with attribution to the owner of the copyright. In the case of the images shown here, I own the copyright on the chronometer images and the portrait of Dennison was supplied to the Encyclopedia by Richard Watkins and is in the public domain.

    The Encyclopedia Images are good material for articles and the IMAGE code is pretty flexible. One drawback is that these images are not visible in the article until you finish editing it. That can make laying out the article and choosing sizes more difficult.

    Video Content

    Video content is not currently hosted on the Message Board but you may embed videos from other hosts in your articles here. The video tool in the editor tool box looks like a filmstrip. As you can see in the picture of the video insertion dialog, you can use Hulu, YouTube (long or short), Vimeo, Dailymotion, Metacafe, Google or facebook videos.

    The video chosen to display here is from YouTube and shows Roger W. Smith demonstrating N o. 2 Co-Axial Escapement watch. Roger is a leading low production watchmaker working on the Isle of Man. He worked for a while with the late George Daniels and was responsible for the production of the Daniels Co-Axial escapement watches that were finished and signed in Daniels' shop, also on the Isle of Man.

    File based videos such as wmv or mpg files are not supported, only the video clip references. You can, of course, upload those files to one of the named video hosts.

    Alt image code

    The Alternate Text Image code, [ALT=picture location]Text for alternate display[/ALT] functions just the same as the standard IMG code but the IMG code does not support the alternate text or tool tip use. This text is displayed by non-visual browsers by reading the text. It is also widely used as the common "Tool Tip" to show a comment about the image when the mouse cursor passes over the image.

    This code is useful when documenting a user interface that uses the small tool button icons like the ones used in the editor that we are using to create this article.