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  1. #1
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    Web Development Project

    Hey guys, I am interested in knowing, what new Web Development projects you are doing, curious to know, what data base you use, and if you are using Linux or Windows platform. Also, will like to know, if there are any alternatives to Adobe products, that you may be using

  2. #2
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    I guess I'll get the ball rolling....

    I'm a student at the University of Minnesota and work part time as a member of the College of Liberal Arts Webteam. Most of the applications we develop are for internal purposes but I can explain them:
    The first app I worked on when I started over the summer was a grant management application. Every year a fee is paid by CLA students that goes into a general fund for IT grants. People can submit proposals to have access to those funds for projects. Our app lends itself as the application process and is used by the committee to track, review, and approve or deny grants. Once a grant is approved, the application is then used to track spending and reimbursements for each grant.

    Our biggest application is http://dcl2.cla.umn.edu which is a Digital Content Library. A lot of the functionality is hidden behind UMN Authentication because of digital copyright reasons.
    This is actually a large production. Why? The DCL has been around for many years, and started with a Filemaker back end. There is a definite process in getting content into the DCL and that still uses Filemaker for data entry. Our application actually syncs a MySQL database with the FM database, because it would have been more work than we were able to spend to port all of the Cataloger's processes into this application. (Filemaker works okay on smaller data sets to serve directly to the web,a few thousand rows. DCL has well over 2 million distributed amongst over a dozen tables).

    Hidden to you, would be MediaDrawers, which allow Professors to create a subset of the content in the DCL (say for an Art History Class) and then give all the students enrolled in a class (or just one section of the class) access to the drawer so they can view the art for that week, or however else they'd like to use that. Departments can also sydnicate media drawers onto their department websites.

    There is also a load of processing that goes on behind the scenes for new files. The DCL handles image, video, and audio content, the catalogers upload the original file to a specific directory, than we have a few scripts that run that classify the file, and decide what to do with it. Video files, for example, get sent to another server for processing to create 3 derivatives (different sizes & qualities) and can be quite large (gigabytes per file). The very complicated part of this application was to build an interface for the catalogers to track and control this process (it has many steps). The DCL has several TBs of data in it.

    We're working on more projects (these were the University's first two Rails Apps) and we're slowly abstracting a lot of things from our applications and putting them into plugins, to streamline our processes, which we will most likely be making public once they're polished (I just wrote a csv_exportable plugin this week that I'm pretty proud of).

    Our deployment set up is Apache + Mongrel Cluster (number depending on the app) running on Red Hat Linux using a MySQL backend.
    For development, we're all working on iMacs (10.4) with subversion. Two of us on textmate, two on pure vim.
    I hope that's enough info for you
    If you give someone a program,
    you will frustrate them for a day;
    if you teach them how to program,
    you will frustrate them for a lifetime.

  3. #3
    l 0 l silver trophybronze trophy lo0ol's Avatar
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    I'm involved in a few different projects right now. Good-Tutorials is the most public of them all, of course, and a new version's on the way, but I also just rewrote my blog using Rails, I'm in the middle of a semester-long independent study at Carnegie Mellon with another student working on a super-cool Rails app, and I'm contemplating an interesting Facebook app that I might get started on now that my blog project is finished.

    Traditionally I usually go the Ubuntu + Apache + MySQL + Mongrels + Subversion route, though I just launched my blog on Nginx and I'll likely move towards that instead of Apache for future sites. I've also started taking a gander at Git, though I'm not quite sold on that yet for solo development projects. I use MySQL in production, though with Leopard's easy SQLite3 setup (and Rails 2's preference for that) I've moved towards that as a development database.

    I'm a Mac user on the development side of things, and as such I go with TextMate for all my code editing needs. Just love TextMate... haven't found anything coming close to competing with it; it just seems perfect for the way I use a text editor (and Rails). I use TextMate's Subversion bundle (or just Terminal)... never really got into the whole GUI Subversion client thing.

    As for Adobe... if you're looking for alternatives then I think OS X is the place to find them, really. I dropped Dreamweaver for TextMate a year or two ago and haven't looked back. Then there's also an array of web development software like Coda or CSSEdit. For Photoshop alternatives, the amount of graphics editors on OS X seems to be increasing by the day. Pixelmator, Acorn, DrawIt, etc. You can also go the open source route with GIMP, of course. Guess it sort of depends what you really are looking for an alternative for; there's a lot of options nowadays.

  4. #4
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    Well, I am a Java developer in my full time job, but Ruby on Rails has taken over the role PHP used to fill for me - client projects on the side and my personal projects.

    The projects I build for clients are mostly internal apps (ie, working on a document management system for one right now). My own projects are sites like my rails hosting website (http://www.rails-app-hosting.com/) - nothing terribly big or highly popular.

    I use MySQL for the database, Linux (typically Ubuntu) for the deployment server. For development, I usually do Ruby stuff on my iMac. I used to be a big TextMate fan, but I tried out the Ruby support in NetBeans last year and haven't gone back. I know some people still prefer TextMate, but for me at least, NetBeans is far superior.

    As far as alternatives to Adobe products - Adobe makes a pretty wide variety of products now. Can you be more specific?
    Spencer Uresk
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