Archive | February 2007

Why we started OpenIndx?

Google’s Mission 
“Google’s mission is to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful”

Well, I sat thinking on this for a while. I found out, there is enough data around us available in all possible formats. Data is useless untill we are extracting the information out of it and represnt it properly.

Hence, the idea is born, which we call it OpenIndx.

We aim to provide set of suites which are easy, flexible, powerful and above all useful for users/ organizations/ Institutes to extract needed Information from data and represent in more effecient way, ofcourse for free.

                                   Data –>Information

 We aim to provide a powerful middleware, which will become something like this.

                                  Data –> OpenIndx  –> Information

I hope for those who were still wondering what purpose OpenIndx is going to server. This explanation would make it clear.

Still have some query? Drop a mail …right away…

Cheers
Sridhar

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Official Blog for project OpenIndx

Finally, here we go live with the official blog for project OpenIndx!!!

Today 21st Feb 2007, OpenIndx goes Live with official blog!!!

OpenIndx Official blog : http://openindx.wordpress.com

Project OpenIndx finally gets an official blog where all the stuff related to Developement, Technology, AJAX,Learnings, Fun, Team,just anything and everything about OpenIndx will be geared up!!!

Do you have an extra edge to contribute? Do you wish to change the rules someone has set? You like challenging self?. Read further!!!

Yup, OpenIndx is the project you should be working on.
Just hang on pals. Spread the word. Let the project grow exponentially.

Call for go MAD {Make a Difference}!!!

Cheers
src

Things I am learning about building a cool web site!!!

Obviously, many of us visit more than 10 websites a day, atleast I do. But, then what makes a website look awesome while some seriously suck?

While working on OpenIndx, I am learning couple of things which I am sure will make the difference between a wonderful site and a sucking one!!!

1. UI is the software:
This is a universal rule for all web apps. Users will see what you are selling. If your site is one which takes Ruby On rails, AJAX, Perl, Python and above all looks like a porn one, trust me users will never visit your site again, ofcourse untill you really offer porn.

I came across couple of sites which uses almost all the colors avialable in the color pallete. False assumption that mmore colors will make the site more impressive.

Moral: Web apps UI should be appealing, decent, easy and above all dead friendly for a user to use it and make them comeback. Colors used should be eye-candy to make users fall in love with the site.

Case Study: In OpenIndx we are trying to make the look, UI, feel simpler and effective.

2. Features should be rolled frequently:
I started deciding a bunch of features to roll out for the beta version of OpenIndx. But, this book GettingReal,really helped me giving a nice inputs on how-to approach when it comes to features.

I identified simple, must and new features for OpenIndx for the beta version and the rest features will be rolled out to make the users stick to the site and the application.

3. Take Feedbacks at every point
Feedbacks/Positive Critics are really helpful, provided you take it in a positive way. I talk with many people and friends, mainly to identify the solution they expect to be, the way they want, what will appeal them in the app.

Once, you identify the key points, analysis of the same has to be done. Because our goal ultimately will be to provide end user what they want, to solve their pain points.

These are some of my learnings while working on OpenIndx. Will keep posting more as I learn more from the progress of the project.

Meanwhile if you are student,developer Designer/DBA or just interested in joining the project. Please drop a line. We can form a great team together.

Cheers
Sridhar

How to use JPGraph with PHP and MySQL?

Getting frustated with very less content{Docs,Blogs, tutorials etc} available on web on how to use JPGraph with PHP and MySQL. I then decided to work and post an article which will give a clear picture on how to utilize the same.

Lets start with the basics, tool required and softwares a must to have:

1. PHP
2. MySQL
3. Web Server {WAMP, LAMP}
4. JPGraph {Most Imp since we are trying to hack it}

Now, assuming that everything required is in place. Lets start hacking JPGraph!!!

First thing that we should do is to place JPGraph in the web folder. i.e WWW. Once we are done with the same, we can just run a trial on our localhost.

While hacking JPGraph, I learned that whosoever have Object Oriented background, they can hack in less than 10 mins. Yes, less than 10 mins. U ready? OKay…Go ahead.

include “/some folder/jpgraph/src/jpgraph.php”

Now, depending on the need, of what chart,graph or diagram you are trying. Include the respective header file also. I will teach u how to hack for Bar Graphs.

include “/some folder/JPGraph/jpgraph_bar.php”

Now, since we have included the required libraries. Lets get straight to create objects of the same. and then call the functions to add more features.

$graph = new Graph(250,150,”auto”);  // Declaring the graph and its properties
$graph->SetScale(“textint”);
$graph->img->SetMargin(50,30,50,50);  // set the margin to the graph
$graph->SetShadow();  // Show a shadow behind

Now, we will declare a object of BarPlot class.

$bplot = new BarPlot(“Here parameter will the data u want to represent can be sent through DB or direct array”);
$bplot->SetFillColor(“yellow”); // Fill the graph with yellow color
$bplot->value->Show();
$bplot->value->SetFont(FF_ARIAL,FS_BOLD); // use these fonts
$bplot->value->SetAngle(45); // at what angel you want the values to be shown
$bplot->value->SetColor(“black”,”navy”);
$graph->Add($bplot);  // add the bar graph to actual graph
$graph->Stroke();

Simillarly, we can do for rest also for Pie Charts etc.
Before I conclude I will give some tips on how to use the JPGraph reference materials.

1. Open the folder:   /JPGraph\docs\ref
2. In these you can find reference to all the classes and their respective functions, which makes very ease to access and use directly.

I hope this article will be of use to you. If you still have any doubts or issues. Drop a comment or mail. I will glad to help you out.

Happy Hacking!!!!
Cheers
Sridhar

If you are reading article, you might also be interested in the PHP and Scriptaculous Book I have authored.

The book gives you insights about effects, drag-n-drop, slideshows, applications, auto-completion, in-place editing and more. Complete code snippets and explanations.

CHECK out and BUY the PHP and Script.aculo.us book at Packt official site

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http://www.packtpub.com/php-and-script-aculo-us-web-2-0-application-interface/book

Apple Inc 2.0? iTunes 2.0? Will it work?

Yesterday I read the article written by Steve Jobs on the music industry and the piracy issues involved. If I was to draw a conclusion out of it, I would say Steve jobs is now against the music industry gaints including SONY BMG, Universal, EMI etc.

Before you read what I think, it would be good if u read the article.

Steve Jobs Article on Music Industry
http://www.apple.com/hotnews/thoughtsonmusic/

Steve Jobs only suggested only 3 ways of how the future can be with DRM’s, the music, the devices and above all the customers!!! Here, I suggest One more way of how Apple can outperform other players, Music companies to win greater markets.

Lets us say, Apple goes the Web 2.0 way. and iTunes store becomes Store 2.0. In which  they call users, customers to upload songs to the Apple music server and from there they can download without any DRM’s.

When a company sells CD’s/DVD’s, it does not come with DRM,{DRM is just for security and to stop piracy}. But, still peers circulate the Disks and this is one form of piracy which companies can never stop.

So whats wrong in people collecting their information on web?

Once, users start collecting on the music server, there will be absolutely no bars on which device you can play songs or even on multiple devices. This can only give boom to 90 million already sold iPods.

On these 90 Million iPods only 3% of the songs are taken from iTunes Store. What about the rest 97%? Anyhow, users dont want to pay for music, since lot of websites are giving the same for free, What can any music company do to stop piracy?

Better release all DRM’s and make music a new religion.

So what do u people think, will the Apple 2.0 model work? Drop your comments.

Cheers

Shri 

PodTech: Interview of Apurv Pandit of PagalGuy.com – A forum for helping students choose B-Schools

Apurv Pandit is the chief editor of PaGaLGuY.com, India\’s biggest Web site for MBA students. (\”Pagal\” actually means \”Mad\” in Hindi)

This site, which had a humble beginning as a discussion forum, has grown tremendously to attract close to 100,000 members.

In this interview, Apurv shares the story behind PagalGuy, site monetization and their future plans.

Prior to this, Apurv has had five years\’ experience as a reporter in a number of national newspapers and an international news agency.

[podtech content=http://media.podtech.net/media/2007/02/PID_010122/Podtech_KS_ApurvPandit.mp3&postURL=http://www.podtech.net/indiatech/technology/1329/apurv-pandit-of-pagalguycom-a-forum-for-helping-students-choose-b-schools&totalTime=858000&breadcrumb=3F34K2L1]

want to develop cool web 2.0 applications? Try Aptana!!!

If you are really interested in making some cool web 2.0 applications, And above all you are not aware of what the heck is AJAX. Now, we all have a magic solution for the same reason.

Aptana Web IDE is the solution. Its IDE is far more like Eclipse if you by UI and its functionality will make you go crazy at one shot!!!

Some of the most striking features I liked from Aptana are:

1. Code Completion
2. Code Assist
3. UI Browse
4. Support for AJAX( Prototype, Dojo, Rico, AFLAX)
5. Neat and Clean (Ofcourse you can make messy look as well)
6. Built in functions of Javascript

Above all if you are not yet convinced about the features, why dont you see movies? Yes, movies to describe the potential of Aptana.

http://www.aptana.tv/movies/

I have tried Aptana, and I can now suggest you. Go and Ahead and hack in no time.

Cheers

Sridhar