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Tutorial: How to store UTF8 (indian language) data in mysql?

Well, let me put it straight this tutorial also applies to any other native languages like latin, spanish etc. But, since I have tried for Indian languages I am writing exclusive for it.

Okay, so before we say code I must tell you this tutorial intends, a thought provoking stuff 🙂

Lately, we have seen enough number of Indic-translators, and you must have got your hands on with typing in ur mail/blog. Now, just think for a while, when u sent a mail, and try to read it back from “Sent Mail”, u still see the indian language or even in that case blog articles. For that case, even in Orkut.

How are they stored inside database? Was what I was trying.

Again, I am not sure for any other DB, I have tried with MySQL. But, I guess should be same.

Quick Explanation:

We assume we have a DB with table articles, and a column named posts, which will save the article written in your blog. Best part, we know that all major DB’s support UTF8. And we shall explore that feature.

Now we write a article in hindi, हेल्लो वर्ल्ड

If the UTF8 is not specified, you should see something like ?????? in ur DB else u shud see the hindi data. Clear? Koool lets see the code

Quick Code:

First check for UTF8 compatibility with this query. If it supports you should see the output as “Character_set_system”| “UTF8”

SHOW VARIABLES LIKE ‘character_set_system’;

Now that being checked, alter the table and just modify the column, Posts in our above example and specify it as UTF8


Now, try to insert the hindi value and save it. Query it and u shud see the hindi text 🙂

We have go ahead and use many other options as well, like Collate etc. But this tutorial intends to keep it simple.

I hope you find this useful and interesting. If you have tried any hacks similar to this, pls drop in comments and share with us.


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 book at Packt official site

PHP and Book

PHP and Book


How to learn Programming????

Most of the time, I hear people saying I am NOT good at programming but at “XYZ”, yes this is completely okay, but if you have some inclination towards learning programming or be a good programmer, here are few simple tips, I follow them so I thought I would share with you pals.

1. Join some Developer Network.

With lot of developer network platforms, half-of the work of the developer is already done and distributed in the form of “Packages”.

Im hooked to Yahoo Developer Network, for many reasons. One, it supports all the languages be it .Net, Java, PHP, Python etc etc.

More reasons for using any Developer Network, I can feel are

1. Cross Browser compatibility, one doesnt have to worry about the small issues of browsers

2. Loads of tutorials, code and examples

3. Forums and discussion boards

You can even learn a lot by looking at the code, examples and tutorials.

Some of the developer networks available are

1. Yahoo Developer Network

2. Google Code

3. Facebook Developer Network

4. Network

If you have used or know of any other developer network, drop in comments.


Web Design Tip #3: Epicentric Design!!!

I admit its been sometime I have been out of blogging. Almost a week. I was out coz of some hectic deadlines, personal work and above all I didnt try anything new last week. But I am back!!!

Epicentric Design is a must to read and follow for all the web designers. It is not a new technology or something, but a simple way to make great applications.

Let me just start by giving a simple example.

Consider this blog you are reading. What do u feel is the most important feature?

Yes, you are right. The article.  And then follows the sidebar features, footers and headers.

What does that mean?

It means for this particular page, the epicenter is “the article”. Just that article. Forget rest all.

Now, when you get to really start designing or building an application, consider only the epicenter. Most of the web apps I come across fail to do so, which leads in lot of messy stuff on page and creates confusion., I dont have any personal problem with them, but yes when u see the home page, what do u feel? U feel its for Logging in? or Ads? or wht?

Now, simillarly consider the login page, Its functionality is to implement login system, no need for junk there. Best examples Yahoo Mail, Gmail. Their foucs is only on “Login” rest all are not focussed.

So what should be the best possible approach to build the app?

1. Sketch the raw UI, this is imp as we get an idea of what it shud look like.

2. Figure out the Epicenter for the page. Stick to it.

3.  Design a simple html page before coding. It is a MUST, afterwards it may be of no use but it adds to a clear picture of what it should like and contain.

4. Code it. If u fail to do the above 3 steps, chances are you will loose an eye from epicenter.

A personal note from my side, DONT start coding first. It is a serious time waste. If u cant have a design or layout or epicenter dont proceed to coding.

Which methods do u follow to build your app? Do share with us.


PS: extract from 37signals

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 book {My Book} at Packt official site

Web Design Tips #2: Alternate Row Colors in Resultset!!!!

Web Design Tips #2: Alternate Row Colors

In my recent post of Web design tip, I have shown how to use Yellow Fade Technique. If you have missed it. Read it Here.

Okay, What is alternate row coloring?

Imagine you have a set of records in database, you fetched them and just “echoed” them as a bulk in form of table. How appealing right?

So we solve this problem. I know, I understand not everyone just echo’s the result directly. But then, how you show is, what your user sees!!!

Now, imagine this, we fetch the rows from database and then while placing them, we modify them in a way it looks more clear, decent and ofcourse appealing as well.

How do we do it then?

Simple. let us suppose we have got 17 rows as result of some fetch operation. Now using a while loop{for can also work}, use n/2 formula and get the even and odd results.

For every even result set we use a specific color, and for odd result set we use different color. This helps in making it in a readable and appealing form.

Wasnt it simple? Most of us, programmers make this mistake of choosing wrong colors for display { red/blue, yaak }, which is often called as Programmers Design!!!! No wonder why they call it 😀

Accept the fact that design is not programmers cup of taste!!!!

Anyways, I am working on some script for my project, so soon I will post the result and code of this as well.

If you know/happen to work, or anything related to Design techniques, pls feel free to contact me, and you can be our guest author.


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 book {My Book} at Packt official site

Getting Real : Book from 37signals

37signls needs no introduction.

Yes, the same guys from Basecamp, Campfire, Highrise, backpack, ta-da list!!!! Never heard of these? Okay, Heard of Ruby On Rails framework? Yes, the same guys.

I must tell you, they are awesome.

“Undo your competition”. They focus a lot on design, technology and only essential features and dropping everything else.

If one wants to develop and deploy a successful web application, this book “Getting Real” is a must to read and follow.

Every aspect of project is covered, technology, hiring, users, customers.

Nothing great or something, but I would say these are essentails which we all must have come across but we fail to implement them.

Go ahead. Did I tell u that its free? Read on….


Myers Briggs Personality Type: Whts ur Type???

Heard of Myers Briggs Personality Type? If not, dont panic, even I heard and came to know about it today morning after Winslie’s mail.

I was surprised that such tests can really help you understand your self better and so does others can also.

It deals with ones psychological ability to think. Everyone has there own unique way to think and approach but when your planning for team work, everyones Personality Type comes into picture.

I also felt that, these TYPEs can also change with age, work, environment and other factors. Its about how you see things in different conditions and situtations. Though some people may resist this change.

I must admit that in India, this practice is yet to mature. Yes, some companies take Psychological tests but then it’s about the same meaning in different contexts.

My Personality type : ESTJ

You can read more about it Here. You can even take a free Personality Test.

 Check your type and drop in comments.


For Open Source Lovers!!!!

I must admit, I love Open Source products and applications. I first got introduced to it during my days in Indictrans.

Since then I have always prefered Open Source!!!

Yes, now you will argue that my compaq notebook is running MSFT XP???? Now, everyone has their own stand, so my way to look at it is, something which does not cost you, can modify, distribute even build commercial apps on it.

If one loves Open Source, that does not mean you “MUST” hate MSFT products!!!!

Anyways, its a debateable topic, and we dont want to get into that.

Okay, so I write this post to introduce you,

Yes, Its a new blog :D, dedicated to Open Source products. Most of the time, people get confused at what to use/ Is there any better alternative?

Thats not problem with users, coz everyday so many products are getting released and proposed. You cant keep track of everything. But, yes we shall try to keep in our blog.

What will this blog have?

1. Product Features
2. Applications Features
3. Plug-Ins
4. Categories
5. Scripts
And Lots more

Why the heck again Blog?? Anyhow, Web is full of Open Source.

It sure is full of open source, in this blog, I will try to organize things I come across and write about them as I use.

If you happen to work on Open Source products/plug-ins/apps drop me a line. Will put it up with full credits.