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  1. #1

    Generating countdown gif timer inside email on the fly

    Generating countdown gif timer inside email on the fly


    Hello;

    I am developing a new product which requires generating countdown timer on the fly, inside the emails.

    I haven't checked the technology behind them but these give you an idea of what I want:

    Example 1
    Example 2


    I generate the timers based on the date fields in my database and I am gonna do this using Codeigniter.

    I assume I have to generate gif on the fly.

    Would you please give me some guidelines?

    Thanks


  2. #2

    Generating countdown gif timer inside email on the fly

    What kind of time scale do you have to support?

    A timer for 10 days would have >850,000 frames, and if each frame was 100 bytes (just throwing a figure out) then that's >85MB. So that's not an option. A GIF's minimum framerate is about one per 11 minutes so that won't be able to do days or hours by themselves.
    Splitting the timer into two animations, one of days+hours+tens of minutes and the other of ones of minutes+seconds, would mean that 10 days requires 1440 frames for the first and a looping 600 frames for the second. At 100 bytes that's a much more reasonable 144KB and 60KB.

  3. #3

    Generating countdown gif timer inside email on the fly

    Originally Posted by requinix
    What kind of time scale do you have to support?

    A timer for 10 days would have >850,000 frames, and if each frame was 100 bytes (just throwing a figure out) then that's >85MB. So that's not an option. A GIF's minimum framerate is about one per 11 minutes so that won't be able to do days or hours by themselves.
    Splitting the timer into two animations, one of days+hours+tens of minutes and the other of ones of minutes+seconds, would mean that 10 days requires 1440 frames for the first and a looping 600 frames for the second. At 100 bytes that's a much more reasonable 144KB and 60KB.


    Hi;

    Thank you for the reply. You know how much love I have for you.

    You're a little too ahead of me in this one.

    First I want to understand how to generate a simple 2 frame gif and email that.

    Then I get into the details.

    Can't wait to hear back.

    xo

  4. #4

    Generating countdown gif timer inside email on the fly

    It seems to me that it will always say
    T, T-1, T-2 etc
    - regardless of when the recipient opens the email
    - regardless of how many times they open the email
    - and is easily voided by turning off such cheap tricks like loading images, remote sites, scripting etc.


    If you dance barefoot on the broken glass of undefined behaviour, you've got to expect the occasional cut.
    If at first you don't succeed, try writing your phone number on the exam paper

  5. #5

    Generating countdown gif timer inside email on the fly

    Indeed, if you want an accurate timer targeting a given date then the only way would be to use a remote image which would be blocked by default in most clients.

    If you just want a fake timer then you could probably generate a small gif that counts down like 30 minutes or something, something that's not too large in size and can be embedded into the message.

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