Thursday, 3 June 2010

That thing you use? I made that.

Monday night (technically Tuesday morning, but who’s counting? Other than Blogger, that is) I mentioned that being able to say to somebody, “you know that thing that you use? I made that” is a great feeling. I just ran into a former colleague from my previous contract, who let me know just on what scale my stuff is operating.

One of the projects I worked on—made, really; the requirements were small enough—was a carbon and cost savings calculator for Sears Canada’s website, so that people looking to replace one of their appliances could see about how much money they’d save by switching. Fairly simple to do; the worst of it was extracting the formulas from the Big Ugly Interactive Spreadsheet that Sears provided. I worked hard to provide the best little jQuery applet I could, complete with pretty transitions and everything. Fully translated into French, too, and I made sure it’d work acceptably well in IE6. It was kind of a focus of their recent/current Green promotion, but how many people, really, were going to wind up using it?

As it turns out, a lot. In the linked article, you can see that last Friday, they opened a six-kiosk booth in the Vancouver Robson store that runs that “little jQuery applet” in a touchscreen interface! I’m… speechless. To the best of my knowledge, nothing I’ve ever made has seen such a wide userbase. They’re adding more booths to more stores, too. I kind of hope that one will show up in Toronto so I can play with it and show people.

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