We at eggheadcafe.com are always experimenting with new ways to present information with value, and to encourage the member community and visitors with ways to help make contributions of content - whether it be forum posts, articles, new Hotlinks, or submissions to our "Tips & Tricks" section.
Some time ago we featured a C# Notification Area ("tray") application called "UrlKicker" which was featured by .Net guru Scott Hanselman on his ".NET Power User Tools List". Now we've "souped it up" with a Code Snippet Submission feature that lets you automatically paste a useful code sample automatically from the Windows Clipboard into a submission form, add a Title, and a Summary, select a category, and submit your sample to our Tips & Tricks section at NullSkull.com.
We agreed that the best way to encourage code sample submissions was to embed the submission utility into an application (UrlKicker) that already provided user benefits, and this would make it easier for members to contribute material to the site.
For those who aren't familiar with UrlKicker, here's what it does:
UrlKicker is a little executable that will sit in the Notification Area. If you mouse over it, it will only show the Date and time. However if you right - click it to get the Context Menu, if offers some really useful choices (That little green arrow in the Notification Area is the UrlKicker icon):
If you have an HTTP or FTP URL you have copied to the Clipboard, even if it is a "wrapped" URL that has line breaks in it, you can choose any of the above options and UrlKicker will open IE in a new process and take you there. However, if you have copied text to the clipboard (a search phrase) that does not contain "http://" or "ftp://", you can choose Dictionary, Google, Google Groups, Google News, MSN Search, or VS.NET 2005 and UrlKicker will take you to your choice with an appropriately constructed search query. Neat! You can also clear the clipboard by choosing "Clear Clipboard" and of course, you can ask UrlKicker to go away by choosing "Exit".
Finally of course, you can choose "Submit Code Snippet" after copying your code sample to the Windows clipboard. The first time you do this, the app will prompt you for your Eggheadcafe.com email address (username) and password with a Settings Form:
If you don't have a user profile yet, you can click the "No UserName? Sign Up Here!" link and fill out our online form. Otherwise, just enter the email address and password you use as an eggheadcafe.com member in the first two fields. If you are behind a corporate firewall, you can either check the "Use Default (IE) Setting to use your preconfigured default proxy settings from Internet Explorer, or your can fill in a proxy IP address, username and password. Click the Save button and you are done. The app will automatically reload and remember your new settings. You can also choose the "Settings" context menu item at any time to bring up this form.
Now when you choose "Submit Code Snippet" you'll see the Submission Form:
If you have a code sample in the Clipboard, it will automatically appear in the large lower window. Simply complete the Title, Topic and Summary items and press "Submit". You'll see a MessageBox showing the submission went through, and the form will close. You may also click the "Manage Snippets Online" button to automatically log in to your personalized submissions list where you can edit or add new items online.
The UrlKicker / Code Snippet Submission app automatically checks for newer versions of itself every Wednesday and Sunday, and if we've updated the app, it will pop up a notification offering a download of the newest MSI installer.
We hope you'll try the Eggheadcafe.com Code Snippet / UrlKicker Tray Application and use it to submit your very best "how to" code samples to eggheadcafe.com!