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Author Topic: 2004 User Predictions - Technical  (Read 74389 times)
Dave Leip
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« on: November 12, 2003, 10:16:37 pm »

This topic is for the technical issues around the 2004 prediction pages (upload problems, feature requests, etc.).

I'm interested in making this work you and your help in debug is appreciated.
Dave
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zorkpolitics
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« Reply #1 on: November 12, 2003, 10:41:02 pm »
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I get the error messege:
Error: The file name is too long. Please limit the name to 25 characters

But the name is only 16 characters long, 20 if you include the .gif extension.
Any suggestions?  I tried both Netscape and Exploer to try and upload.
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« Reply #2 on: November 12, 2003, 10:54:11 pm »
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I got the same thing, about the 25 character limit. Even though my file name is just pe2004demrepdan1, which is unarguably not 25 characters long. I've even tried shortening it to pe2004demrepdan, pe2004demrep, pe2004dan, and none of these names work to much dismay.
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« Reply #3 on: November 13, 2003, 01:48:39 am »
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Hmmm :-( it seems like I am the only one so far who was able to upload it without a problem.
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Ryan
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« Reply #4 on: November 13, 2003, 04:12:10 am »
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I just realised this post is more appropriate here. Will delete it from the other folder in a bit.

Dave, it may be a little too late to suggest changes in color-coding for your map repeating 2000 results, but I found the shades to red associated with >50  and >60 to be too similar.

Also since the difference between getting 50.16% (Washington) and getting 54.60% (Illinois)  in the last election makes all the difference with regard to predicting competitiveness in the next election, Might I suggest having more than one category for 50-60%?

As to the predictive maps, I myself plan to have four completely different colors
Solid Republican -Dark Blue
Lean Republican - Light Blue
Tossup  - White or gray
Lean Democrat-Light Red
Solid Democrat- Dark Red
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Ryan
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« Reply #5 on: November 13, 2003, 04:16:18 am »
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I just realised this post is more appropriate here. Will delete it from the other folder in a bit.

Dave, it may be a little too late to suggest changes in color-coding for your map repeating 2000 results, but I found the shades to red associated with >50  and >60 to be too similar.

Also since the difference between getting 50.16% (Washington) and getting 54.60% (Illinois)  in the last election makes all the difference with regard to predicting competitiveness in the next election, Might I suggest having more than one category for 50-60%?

As to the predictive maps, I myself plan to have four completely different colors
Solid Republican -Dark Blue
Lean Republican - Light Blue
Tossup  - White or gray
Lean Democrat-Light Red
Solid Democrat- Dark Red


Also come to think of it, if we are looking at predictive value, then margins work better than %vote totals. For instance in the map Maine is shown as a tossup state because Gore won it with less than 50%. However if you note that he won it by just over FIVE % and that five % were left-leaning voters of Ralph Nader, it puts a whole new light on the political competitiveness of the state.

Can we represent this vital angle in any way?
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Dave Leip
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« Reply #6 on: November 13, 2003, 10:11:40 am »

I have fixed the string length problem.  It was a bug I introduced last night after putting a file-length check in (since I set the database length for the name at only 25 char).  sorry about that.

Ryan - I like your suggestion.  What if we have two maps - one with the commit prediction (i.e. the current map) and one with the "solid, lean, tossup" categories.  They could be side-by-side to compare your confidence with the predicted results.

Dave
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Ryan
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« Reply #7 on: November 13, 2003, 10:38:18 am »
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Ryan - I like your suggestion.  What if we have two maps - one with the commit prediction (i.e. the current map) and one with the "solid, lean, tossup" categories.  They could be side-by-side to compare your confidence with the predicted results.

Dave

Excellent Idea! That way we have best of both worlds.
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Michael Z
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« Reply #8 on: November 13, 2003, 10:40:41 am »
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As to the predictive maps, I myself plan to have four completely different colors

I'll do something similar. I think I'll do what English did and simply use red and blue (ie, instead of different shades of red and blue). Would that be a problem?
« Last Edit: November 13, 2003, 10:41:35 am by Michael Zeigermann »Logged
Ryan
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« Reply #9 on: November 13, 2003, 10:58:34 am »
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As to the predictive maps, I myself plan to have four completely different colors

I'll do something similar. I think I'll do what English did and simply use red and blue (ie, instead of different shades of red and blue). Would that be a problem?

Sounds OK to me at least but the prob with a two color map is that it doesnt differenciate between say Texas and Florida (two states that all so far have going republican)

If you are certain enough of your predictions that you feel every state you assign to a party is most likely to do so then its ok.

The utility of multiple color maps are to allow you to distinguish between "Likely" and "Sure" things Smiley
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Ryan
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« Reply #10 on: November 13, 2003, 01:19:22 pm »
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Btw what's the meaning of "sticky topic" such as this thread is marked??

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Michael Z
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« Reply #11 on: November 13, 2003, 01:39:03 pm »
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Btw what's the meaning of "sticky topic" such as this thread is marked??

I think that's when a topic always remains at the top of the list, even if other topics are updated.
« Last Edit: November 13, 2003, 01:41:03 pm by Michael Zeigermann »Logged
Dave Leip
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« Reply #12 on: November 13, 2003, 01:57:13 pm »

Hey all!  BTW, thanks for patience and in helping me to debug this and providing feature feedback.  I have "redone" the page to add a confidence map to the prediction map.

This new page includes the new features and some bug fixes.  The page is run off of new set of database tables (so start fresh! - as initial uplolad and not update).  

As always, let me know what you think.
Dave
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Demrepdan
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« Reply #13 on: November 14, 2003, 01:05:12 am »
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I uh...well...hmm. I'm probably the only person left who is still having problems. But I attempted to upload my Predictions and Confidence maps, and after I ALMOST had it, and I moved on to step 2, I noticed that the images did not appear above. So...I went BACK thinking that I had done something wrong, and after I tried to upload the maps again, it told me that my file already exists. I don't know what to say....I'm...extremely unlucky...
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Dave Leip
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« Reply #14 on: November 14, 2003, 08:07:27 am »

Demrepdan,
Can you describe your platform?  OS and browser?  The files are there, but have zero file length... like the broser is creating the files in the directory, but not uploading them.  I first thought that this was a permissions problem, but have not been able to reproduce.  Now I am thinking that it may be the browser you are using...

I will delete the zero-length files.  Try a different browser (Netscape 7 or other Gecko-based browsers are pretty good) You can continue to fill-out the step 2 and email me the files as a fall-back.  
Dave
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Ryan
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« Reply #15 on: November 14, 2003, 03:07:32 pm »
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Well true to form I have been unsuccessful at uploading my file. I originally recd. an error saying saying "Error: Must select file to upload"and have now graduated to, "Error: A file "" already exists"

My browser is Internet Explorer 5 and I use Windows 98 SE.
Let me know if you can identify the problem.
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« Reply #16 on: November 14, 2003, 04:29:51 pm »
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I have Internet Explorer 6.0, and Windows XP. I'm not sure what else to tell you. But are you saying that the problem is that I have Internet Explorer, and that I should get Netscape 7?
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« Reply #17 on: November 14, 2003, 05:03:14 pm »
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You can continue to fill-out the step 2 and email me the files as a fall-back.  
Dave
If you check the Predictions page now, you'll see where I attempted to upload the maps. You said to email you the maps in case it didn't work, so I did. I just hope I got the right email address. In case you didn't receive my maps I suppose the only thing you can do is delete my predictions, and I can try again or something.

I also hope my information in the previous post ^^^ can help you figure out the problem. Because I will undoubtedly have more predictions as the months proceed, and especially after the Democratic Nominee is declared. And I wouldn't want to burden you with a bunch of emails of predictions at that time.
« Last Edit: November 14, 2003, 05:17:06 pm by Demrepdan »Logged

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Dave Leip
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« Reply #18 on: November 15, 2003, 12:21:37 am »

Demrepdan,
I got your maps and uploaded.  I'm very perplexed by the upload problem... as I have been unable to reproduce on any of my systems/configurations.  I'll do some more research.

I have also enabled the version tracking feature. This will allow everyone to continue to modify their maps based on new information.  Right now, I'm doing a daily tracking (so if you submit more than one prediction per day, it they will all be logged, but only the most recent version from that day will be tracked).

Ryan - can you try an upload with Netscape 7 on your PC?  
Thanks,
Dave
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Dave Leip
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« Reply #19 on: November 16, 2003, 10:00:50 am »

Well,
I looked around on the net and was able to find one solution to the blank upload problem (maybe).  I had omitted double-quotes around the enctype attribute assignment.  Since I am unable to test this, however, I do not know if it worked.
Dave
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Ryan
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« Reply #20 on: November 16, 2003, 01:43:18 pm »
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Ryan - can you try an upload with Netscape 7 on your PC?  
Thanks,
Dave

Dave, I have now been able to upload my map thanks Smiley Sorry for the trouble.

I'm not sure what errors the others received but according to me I made the following screw-ups

- It looks like both the maps had to be uploaded at the same time. I was attempting to do so one at a time.

- I believe Graphics Interchange Format (.gif) was the type of file to use. I was earlier trying with bitmaps and jpegs

-filenames of the right size

Once I did all of the above it worked like a charm......no problem in the least! Maybe the same applies to at least a few others???

Ryan.
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Dave Leip
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« Reply #21 on: November 17, 2003, 11:13:35 pm »

Glad to hear that you were successful.  I've added descriptions of the constraints to the upload page - and also added an error-checking alert dialog prior to the attempted upload.

In addition, I have created a first-draft of an electoral college calculator at this location.  There is also a link on step 2 of the user prediction pages.

Let me know what you think.
Dave
« Last Edit: November 17, 2003, 11:14:54 pm by Dave Leip »Logged
Ryan
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« Reply #22 on: November 18, 2003, 08:19:10 am »
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Glad to hear that you were successful.  I've added descriptions of the constraints to the upload page - and also added an error-checking alert dialog prior to the attempted upload.

In addition, I have created a first-draft of an electoral college calculator at this location.  There is also a link on step 2 of the user prediction pages.

Let me know what you think.
Dave

Excellent tool! Quick to load and much easier to use. I wont be needing any other electoral calculator from now on Smiley

Btw I had also mailed you on leip at domain uselectionatlas. Did you get that mail and is that the right way to contact you if I need to?

Or do you have any other adddress I should use if I need to contact you personally? If you prefer you could send it to ryanmasc2000@yahoo.co.in

Thanks,
Ryan.
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Dave Leip
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« Reply #23 on: November 18, 2003, 11:40:28 am »

I added some color to the EV Calculator.  Let me know if you like it!
- background colors don't change properly with Opera 5.  Also, you need a browser that supports DHTML (IE >= v5 and Netscape >= v6) in order to view the dynamic color changes.
Dave
« Last Edit: November 18, 2003, 12:12:50 pm by Dave Leip »Logged
Ryan
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« Reply #24 on: November 18, 2003, 12:44:25 pm »
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Well even though I had said earlier that simplicity was best; in this case, I do think the colors are a useful addition. Nice job Dave.  Smiley
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