Programming
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By Harry Fuecks

Prototypes

By Harry Fuecks

Just dumping a few links to some prototype Open Source projects I’ve run into recently, which are notable both because they’re pushing the frontiers and because looking at the code gives cause for optimism.

PHPRestSQL

http://phprestsql.sourceforge.net/ – publish your MySQL database directly via PHP as XML, with nice friendly URLs (although can we eliminate the ‘?’).

Initial issues that spring to my mind here, without having looked too deeply

– paged result sets? Without them what happens when you have many rows…

– tag naming. Do we want tags called ‘table’ and ‘row’. Keith recently raised what may be a related question here – replace ‘table’ with the plural (e.g. ‘users’) and ‘row’ with the singular (e.g. ‘user’)?

Qwad Framework

http://www.qwad.com.au/code/doku.php?id=qwad_framework – “The QWAD Framework aims to make development of Rich Internet Applications much easier. It is possible to create cross-browser web applications that provide the Rich GUI Functionality users expect from a desktop application.” I know there’s a few Javascript windowing libraries out there but the code here makes me optimistic plus I’m biased as some of the xamples use JPSpan.

xulRecordSet

http://xulrecordset.sourceforge.net/ – “xulRecordset is a project to create XUL widget library with a recordset behaviour.”. What’s cool about this is the way it uses XBL to extend the XUL tagset and make the record set easy to work with (plus it’s also using JPSpan so yet more bias). The remote API is probably too fine grained right now for decent performance – added my thoughts here but think the general notion is a big step in the right direction.

Patronizing and irritating aside (excuse me): if you want to get beyond a prototype, don’t forget your PHP unit tests (or JSUnit – attempt at JS mocks here).

Update

Before I forget, check out http://map.search.ch/not a prototype but rather a fully functional service, powered by Javascript and XMLHttpRequest (check the drag / zoom) – no Flash / Applets etc. involved. And there we were getting excited about Google Suggest…

One further thing about map.search.ch – the “back end” is mapdata.search.ch – here’s the critical line from LiveHttpHeaders in the response to a request to http://mapdata.search.ch/;


X-powered-by: PHP/4.3.9

Speaks for itself.

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