Parameter Standards

This reference page provides additional information about the parameters that are common to many of the uShopTM applets.
  1. The CODEBASE Parameter
  2. The ARCHIVE Parameter
  3. The OPTION Parameter
  4. The PRICE and CLASSIFICATION Parameters
  5. The COLOR Parameter

1. The CODEBASE Parameter

The CODEBASE parameter is common to all uShop applets and is used to tell the browser where to look for the class files. Unlike the other parameters, the CODEBASE parameter is actually part of the <APPLET> tag and therefore should be specified on the first line of the applet (see the examples in the applet reference).

In regard to the value of this parameter, the recommended thing to do, is to create a "classes" directory on the same directory level as where your store's HTML directories will be located. Put all of uShop's class files in this directory and then set the CODEBASE parameter of all of your applets to "../classes/". This is based on the fact that different browsers handle the codebase parameter differently and from years of working with Java on the various browsers, we have found this relative codebase (../classes/) to be most effective on most browsers. See the uShop User's Guide for more information about setting up your directory structures and using the codebase parameters.

2. The ARCHIVE Parameter

Due to incompatibilities in different browsers/operating systems, the ARCHIVE parameter is no longer being used.

3. The OPTION Parameter

The OPTION parameters allow you to specify lists of options that are associated with a specific product. The format of an option list is "OPTION 1,OPTION 2,OPTION 3,OPTION 4,....", where each different option is separated by a comma. There is no limit to the number of options that you can specify in this comma-delimited string.

Note that with each option you can specify a price modifier by using the symbols "+" or "-" followed by the price modifier. For example, "OPTION A + $5.00,OPTION B - $10.00,OPTION C" would create an option list where the price of the product will be increased by $5.00 if the customer chooses OPTION A, the price of the product will be decreased by $10.00 if the customer chooses OPTION B, or the price of the product will remain the same if the customer chooses OPTION C.

Important Note: Because the symbols "+" and "-" are special price modifier indicators, it is imporant that you do not use those symbols in the option list unless they are intended to be interpreted as just that - price modifiers. For example, "OPTION A,OPTION B,OPTION C + $20.00" is valid, but if you inserted extra "+" or "-" symbols in there such as "OPTION-A,OPTION-B,OPTION-C + $20.00", then that would cause problems with the recognition of price modifiers. So as a rule of thumb, do not use "+" or "-" symbols in options unless they are meant to be price modifiers.

4. The PRICE and CLASSIFICATION Parameters

The PRICE parameter allows you to specify the price of the product. Simply set this parameter to the value that you want the price to be. The currency symbol is optional. Valid examples for the price parameter are "$19.95", "5.00", or "$ 100".

Note that another valid format for the PRICE parameter is the quantity@price format. That is, you can setup tables such that the price will vary depending on the quantity that the customer selects. For example, suppose you want to setup pricing for an item as displayed in the following price@quantity table:
1 - 4        $ 15.00 each
5 - 9        $ 14.50 each
10 - 14      $ 14.00 each
15 or more   $ 13.00 each
To setup pricing for such a table, you would set the price parameter to "1 @ $10.00,5 @ $9.50,10 @ $9.00,15 @ $8.00". Note that a new quantity@price value is specified each time the pricing changes.

Note that in some instances, you may want your quantity@price tables to span across multiple entries in your shopping cart or even span across various products in your store. This can be done with the use of the CLASSIFICATION parameter. For instance, suppose you have a CD Music Store and want to say "Buy any 3 or more CDs for only $12.00 each!". To do this, you could have the price of all CD's in your store set to "1 @ $16.00,3 @ $12.00". But the trick is how to identify which items count toward the total CD count and which items are not CDs? To do this, you could set the CLASSIFICATION parameter of all of your CDs to something unique such as "MUSIC CD". This way, an accurate count of the number of CDs in the customer's shopping cart can be calculated.

Note if you do not want to utilize the CLASSIFICATION parameter then just leave the CLASSIFICATION blank or set to "NONE".

5. COLOR Parameter

There are three valid formats that can be used when specifying the COLOR parameter.

RGB Hexadecimal Format - This is the format that is very common when specifying colors in HTML. The format is a pound sign (#) followed by a two-digit hexadecimal RED value, a two-digit hexadecimal GREEN value, and a two-digit hexadecimal BLUE value. For example, white would be "#FFFFFF". Black would be "#000000". Red would be "#FF0000". You can use any RGB values you want here.

RGB Decimal Format - This is the format also involves specifing the RGB values of your desired color, however, instead of using hexadecimal values, you specify 3 decimal values - each separated by a comma. For example, white would be "255,255,255". Black would be "0,0,0". Red would be "255,0,0". Again, you can specify any RGB values you want here.

Keyword Format - This format allows you to specify a color by using one of the pre-defined color keywords. The color keywords are "white", "black", "lightGray", "gray", "darkGray", "red", "green", "blue", "yellow", "magenta", "cyan", "pink", and "orange".