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Intelligent web development folders for dynamically managing image sprite maps

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000238922D
Publication Date: 2014-Sep-25
Document File: 4 page(s) / 103K

Publishing Venue

The IP.com Prior Art Database

Abstract

Disclosed is a method to provide software that can automatically make and maintain sprite maps when a user places image files in a folder. The unique idea for sprite creation is to create the sprites in the context of a web development tool.

This text was extracted from a PDF file.
This is the abbreviated version, containing approximately 52% of the total text.

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Intelligent web development folders for dynamically managing image sprite maps

Image sprite maps are used on websites to combine multiple images into a single image accelerate page loading . A set of cascading style sheets (CSS) can be generated alongside the images to detail the coordinates of each part of the image map . Managing these maps is a time consuming and error prone exercise, but necessary for making faster websites. If images are not combined, then each image requires an individual Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP) request to load it. Especially low bandwidth or long geographical distance can make page loading seem obviously slow to a user.

Figure 1: Three images

Web-based tools exist to ease the exercise of creating these maps. Zipped folders of sprites can be uploaded to a website, and a single image is produced along with a block of CSS text to find the individual sprites. Other tools allow visual placement of individual images within a map, while still others condense/minimize the size of a resulting image file, stripping out the excess information (e.g., generic information for file creation).

Figure 2: Current process flow for creating a set of images for a faster loading web page

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Although these tools are helpful, the problem is that creating images is an iterative process, and images need to be tweaked and changed. If a new icon needs to be added for example, or one needs to be changed or removed, then the developer needs to newly combine and upload the images and probably change a CSS file to update coordinates of the sprites . It is a time consuming, sensitive, and stressful process.

The novel contribution is a method to provide software that can automatically make and maintain sprite maps when a user places image files in a folder.

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The unique idea for sprite creation is to create the sprites in the context of a web development tool (e.g., Eclipse Orion*). In the

web development tool, all the files necessary to render a page are managed (Hypertext Markup Language (HTML), JavaScript* (JS).,CSS, IMAGES, etc.). The folder in which the images are stored is conditioned to react w...