ASCIImations in Web Programming

Niche: Web Programming course
Assumes:JavaScript and PHP familiarity.
Covers:Uploading files, creating a dynamic page with PHP.

An ASCIImation is a movie made up of individual frames, where each frame is a series of text lines containing ASCII-characters. For example, the following sequence of lines represents an ASCIImation with two frames, separated by the divider "=====".

_/ \_
When playing an ASCIImation, the individual frames are displayed in sequence, with a short delay in between, to achieve the appearance of motion. When the end is reached, the animation begins again with the first frame. For example, playing the above ASCIImation produces the effect of a stick figure doing jumping jacks.

An interactive Web page for entering and playing ASCIIanimations has been provided for you (ascii.html). Currently, this page requires the user to enter the animation frames in one text area, and then displays the animation in another text area. For this assignment, you will integrate server-side programming (using PHP) to extend the functionality of this page. The user should be able to select a text file containing the animation frames, and upload that file (along with a title and author information) to the server at the click of a button. In that same page or possibly another page, the user should be able to select an animation from all of the uploaded files, download the file contents into the page, and display the animation.

The following screen shots show how this might be accomplished using two different pages, one for entering and uploading animations, the other for downloading and playing animations.

Animation upload page Animation download page

As part of this assignment, you must submit an ASCIImation of your own design and construction. A prize will be awarded to the student with the most creative movie.