Applications, Updates

Back End Storage

Aside from fixing a few graphical quirks, not a lot has happened to the client side part of the tool over the last couple of weeks. Actually that’s not entirely true, as some of the internal data structures have been refactored (that’s programming speak for rationalised and reorganised) in preparation for the Ajax code that ties the client side to its server side counterpart.  But that’s hardly worthy of a new video.

Ajax is the modern way web pages communicate with their web server in the background (without reloading the page or jumping to a new page).  As we’re using the excellent open source jQuery library (rapidly becoming a favourite with almost every web developer) we already have a tried ‘n’ tested Ajax platform on the client side; on the server side we’ve opted for a thin PHP layer marshalling the data into and out of a MySQL database.  Both PHP and MySQL are well established open source projects, of course, which was a major factor in their choice.

The PHP code, as currently planned, amounts to three relatively simple web scripts, so if someone wanted to run their own copy of the tool on a non LAMP set-up (that’s Linux the OS, Apache the web server, MySQL the database and PHP for scripting) they could do so with only modest re-coding.  At a guess, an afternoon’s work to move it over to ASP and Windows, or JSP and Tomcat, for an experienced programmer of those platforms.

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