|Help, Troubleshooting and FAQ
Designing a Vectorial Elevation
Follow the "Participate" link and press the "Design now" button to load the Java applet. This can take several minutes depending on your Internet connection speed.
You may select and deselect individual searchlights by clicking on their checkbox or directly on them in the virtual world. You may also select all the searchlights on a building by using the drop down menu. Finally, you may select all, none or invert your current selection by clicking the appropriate buttons.
Click and drag your mouse pointer over the red square target to change the direction of the selected light beams. Using the height bar you may also change the target's height. The order and disorder buttons change incrementally the current direction of all searchlights. There are a few predetermined patterns pyramid, grid, zig zag, columns, etc. that may be applied to selected searchlights.
Navigating the 3D world
You view the virtual O'Connell Street as if you had a camera. You can click and drag in the 3D world to look and go in any direction. Alternatively, you can press the arrows to point the camera in the arrow's direction. The "+" and "-" buttons will change the field of view of the camera. If you select the "go" radio button and press the arrows you will actually move in the world in the arrow's direction. The + and - buttons will move you forward and backward.
You may select one of eleven preset camera locations including the point of view of the project's four webcams. This switch will quickly let you see your design from several perspectives. The "fall" button will bring a camera down to the floor and level the point of view.
If your archive page does not show the appropriate images:
The images documenting the first designs sent to the system may be missing. If time allows we will resend these submissions to the queue so that the final documentation is perfect. Please visit your web page in a few days.
The programs do not load:
All the programs in this site are written with Java. Make sure that Java is installed in your browser and enabled in the preferences. All operating systems except Windows XP have built-in support for Java. You may download a free copy of the software for any operating system at www.java.com
The video loads very slowly
The video from the four webcams should update around once a second in high-bandwidth connections (cable, ADSL, etc). This update rate decreases if there is less bandwidth available or if there a lot of traffic to the website.
My design did not appear in the sky
Depending on the number of designs sent before your submission there may not be enough time for your message to appear. The system will alert you if this is the case and ask you to try again the next day.
The 3D view is slow!
All the programs on this site are made to be compatible with Java 1.1, which is not a very fast release but is compatible with most browsers. Things that affect the performance of your computer include: the processor speed, the connection speed (especially as the programs load textures), the video card and the kind of Java installed. We have seen most performance with Sun Java on Windows.
The program loads partially and then freezes
Sometimes the Java applets fail to load completely into memory. First try to reload the program by clicking on the "refresh" button of your browser. If that doesn't work try emptying the cache (the temporary memory that the browser uses to store frequently accessed documents). To do this visit the "preferences" or "options" settings in your browser and "delete or empty the cache", which is also called "delete temporary Internet files". Once you have done this quit the browser and open it up again...fresh copies of the programs should reload and work perfectly.
What operating systems and browsers are supported?
We have tested the applets in Windows 95, 98, NT and XP with Sun and MS Java in Explorer and Netscape. MacOSX runs fine in Explorer, Netscape and Mozilla. MacOS9 is supported in Explorer and Netscape but please increase the memory allocation of the browser (in the "get info" window of the application in the finder). Netscape under Linux is great.
Frequently Asked Questions
Where can I find this site in other languages?
The Dublin version of this project is in English and Irish. Please go to www.alzado.net and choose the language of your choice. Previous versions have been done in French, Basque and Spanish (Mexico and Spain).
Can I send a design at any time or only at night?
You can send a design at any time and the system will automatically queue it and show it at night.
What happens to a design once it has been shown in the sky?
Four cameras take pictures to document the design and a web page is made for it. An email is sent to the author to let him or her know the address of the web page.
How can I find a design?
At the bottom of all the pages of the site you can search for a design by its unique ID code. Alternatively you can enter any search term, like a name, a location or word, and the system will find any matches in the archive.
Are the comments in the web pages private?
No, all comments sent through this system are public and may be read by any visitor. In addition, messages are stored in a permanent public archive so please do not send confidential or private information.
Why do you ask for my email address? Will I get spam?
The email addresses are needed in order to notify senders when a design has appeared in the sky. Even though all comments are public the email addresses are NEVER revealed to anyone. You can ensure that we will not give your address to any spammers.
How can I make sure I never get an email from this project?
If you receive an email from this project it is because you or someone else entered it while they were sending a design. Please write to firstname.lastname@example.org if you do not want to receive messages from anybody and we will ensure that no email is ever sent to you.
What will happen after May 3, when the piece is finished?
The site will remain operative and people will still be able to make designs. However, the searchlights will not be operating and thus the system will just show the designs from the archive that are most similar to the submission.
Will the project happen again?
As the project is set-up again in different cities the interface will still be available through address www.alzado.net so please bookmark the page.