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Custom Charts w/ Perl and GD 112

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the make-a-pac-man-pie-chart-now dept.
An anonymous reader writes "This article describes techniques you can use to create new levels of usefulness in your dynamically generated charts with Perl and GD. Cook up some automatically generated graphs for your organizational meetings or live enterprise directory data. Annotate the charts with readable text that delivers more information than the standard pie chart. Using the power of GD and Perl, you can link various data and images together to create sophisticated charts that will help bring visual interest to your applications."
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Custom Charts w/ Perl and GD

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  • Re:So close (Score:2, Insightful)

    by 26199 (577806) * on Sunday April 29, 2007 @01:24PM (#18919559) Homepage

    Heh. Congrats on being modded 'interesting' for that.

    Any chance I can get funny moderation? Or insightful, maybe?

  • by dodobh (65811) on Sunday April 29, 2007 @01:37PM (#18919643) Homepage
    The code is out there. Whenever the graphics folks want to start contributing, they can.
  • by espressojim (224775) <> on Sunday April 29, 2007 @01:55PM (#18919761)
    Remember how programmers always talk about using the right tool for the right job?

    If you want to do something like graphing, then why not learn a language like R, where you can easily and interactively create amazing visuals in very little time? I write code in Java, python, bash, and interact with Oracle and MySQL database. R fits in as a nice way to visualize data, and it's very easy to script up solutions that you can plug into your programming pipeline.

    Check out [] for examples (with source code)

  • by Ysangkok (913107) on Sunday April 29, 2007 @02:46PM (#18920067) Homepage Journal
    I make my PHP scripts output SVG. I feed it to ImageMagick's "convert", and then outputs it to the user.
  • by grcumb (781340) on Sunday April 29, 2007 @04:43PM (#18920969) Homepage Journal

    There is an underlying assumption that even though the coders apparently can't do graphic design worth jack, that graphic designers can somehow code worth jack. Most graphic designers aren't coders, and most coders aren't graphic designers. The disciplines aren't mutually exclusive, but most in one field can't do much of value in the arts of the other field. Usually, it's better to have mutual cooperation than expect graphic designers to come in on their own.

    I agree with what you're saying, but I think you've got the onus wrong. As someone with design and coding experience, I can say that FOSS programmers often bend over backwards to package things nicely, but are often rebuffed by non-programmers if the interface is not 100% to their liking.

    There is a disconnect, but IME it comes from people who think that being a user entitles them to sit back and wait for manna to drop from heaven. The bottom line is simply this: If you're going to work in FOSS, then you have to get your hands dirty. This almost necessarily means learning a little about areas that are not your forte. In order for there to be reasonable cooperation, we need to speak the same language. In the Perl community especially, there is a real desire to learn new things and share knowledge, but if designers et alia aren't willing to learn at least a little Perl, then there's not much to be done.

    "Don't make me look at code" is, unfortunately, not often a valid condition for any FOSS participant, regardless of their other talents.

  • by MikeBabcock (65886) <> on Sunday April 29, 2007 @05:26PM (#18921295) Homepage Journal
    That's the stupidest comment that gets repeated about all sorts of things in Open Source. There are people who can document, who can theorize and who can draw much better than they can code. If coders and those who can't code but have potential for contribution would communicate, we'd end up with better software. Software isn't just code, sorry to say. Yes yes, "show me the code" is a great line, and wrong for almost everything outside libraries and kernel space (and even then, some documentation writers, theorists and idea people should be involved more than they are by the coders).
  • by xixax (44677) on Sunday April 29, 2007 @10:38PM (#18923343)
    Judging by the examples, this brings the readability of Perl into graphs.

    I think I can hear Edward Tufte weeping...

    And the only chart they implement is the pie chart: echart/warning.en.html []


Nobody said computers were going to be polite.