[Activities] using the browser to display help/docs

pgf at laptop.org pgf at laptop.org
Sun Feb 22 13:16:45 EST 2009

i promised simon on irc that i'd raise this on the sugar devel
list, so thanks for replying and reminding me.

(to recap:  my "legacy" activity would like to be able to present
help and documentation info to the user via the local browser.)

s page wrote:
 > pgf at laptop.org wrote:
 > > can someone remind me if there's any reasonable way for an
 > > activity to display html help or documentation using Browse?
 > > 
 > > normally i'd simply have the app run "firefox file:///path-to-file",
 > > but that won't work. 
 > In candidate-800, Browse can view
 > file:///home/olpc/Activities/Maze.activity/activity/activity-maze.svg , 
 > so you would think you could tell it to launch and show your HTML help.
 > I dunno if Rainbow restricts one activity from launching another. 

i believe it does, which has always been the problem for doing what
i would like to do.

i think what might be useful (if rainbow is to be accomodated) is
a minimal-functionality html viewer.  i'd be okay, in my
activity, if the viewer didn't allow any off-page clicks or
scripts -- just html rendering.  doesn't seem like that would
cause a security issue, would it?


 > Ignoring that, you would think you could run one activity from another 
 > using a) Python code, b) exec(), or c) DBus.
 > a) I couldn't figure out Journal's Start/Resume code, it seems to reach 
 > into datastore and activityfactory, which ends up invoking DBus.
 > b) From Terminal Activity you would think that
 >    sugar-activity -u 'file:///{PATH_TO_YOUR_ACTIVITY}/myhtml/help.html'
 > would work, but I can't even get the sugar-activity exec line in 
 > Activities/Browse.activity/activity/activity.info to work.  The 
 > connection between its BUNDLE_ID, ACTIVITY_ID, OBJECT_ID and an 
 > activity's metadata like service_name is a mystery to me.
 > >  are there any workarounds (like tricking the
 > > file to be in the journal so that browse can see it, or something like
 > > that?
 > You could write code to display the HTML within your own activity...
 > >   how does the new pdf-in-browse trick work?
 >  From 
 > http://sayamindu.randomink.org/ramblings/2008/10/14/14th-october-2008/ ,
 > "Wrote a small PDF viewer tool with support for the Journal which is 
 > then used by mozplugger to show PDF files within Browse. (You can put 
 > the file in your journal if you like it)"
 > I.e. he's taking code that displays PDFs and running it inside the 
 > browser as a plug-in.  That seems unrelated to what you're trying to do.
 > Disclaimer: I have written four lines of Python code and zero activities ;-)
 > --
 > =S Page

 paul fox, pgf at laptop.org

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