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Custom Charts w/ Perl and GD

CmdrTaco posted more than 7 years ago | from the make-a-pac-man-pie-chart-now dept.

112

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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Don't get it.. (0, Troll)

RightSaidFred99 (874576) | more than 7 years ago | (#18919329)

Aren't there approximately 27,352 artcles on this subject out there? What makes this one news or interesting in any way?

"Our next exciting story - a new article from BlahBlah.com with details on how to add active javascript links to your HTML!". zzzzzzz.

Re:Don't get it.. (0, Troll)

DustyShadow (691635) | more than 7 years ago | (#18919473)

Aren't there approximately 27,352 comments like yours for every Slashdot article? What makes yours news or interesting in any way?

The Wierding Way (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18919567)

Ok Slashdot, I'll tell you my first incest experience. It was about 2 years ago; I was 18 and my sister was 16 (and a half). We had a cousin staying at our house for the summer and she was either 16 or 17. Got along great with the cousin, but not so great with the sister. She felt she should have the run of the house since I was about to move out to college and I thought she was a bitch. This caused conflict.

Anyway, the parents were at work, I was chilling in my room, and the two girls were sunbathing/swimming outside. I had nothing for my sister at this point, but my cousin was a different matter. From an objective standpoint, she's good looking. She's the big athlete in the family so the body is pretty good as well.

Here's where things get crazy. I'm building up jack material on my cousin, but I can't stop looking at my sister. Cousin is hot, but my sister has a RACK. Her boobs look like they wanna bust out of the bikini. So I start storing images of her as well. It feels a little sick at first, but that just makes things more exciting.

I want a closer look, so I go outside to the pool and say that I'm going to bust into the booze cabinet and to come inside if they want any. They think it's a great idea and follow me in. They get wasted pretty fast, but I only have a couple drinks. It gets to the point where they're basically passed out on the floor, wearing skimpy bikinis, and I'm sitting there with a raging hard on. So I make the decision.

I run to the basement to grab a camcorder and set it up in the den where we are. Just then, my grandpa busts through the door, tears off my pants, and fucks me in the ass. He's wearing a cowboy hat. Once he unloads, he runs back out of the house and yells, "I have the weirding way!"

DEFLOWERING TINY AMBER LEWIS (1)

Sexual Asspussy (453406) | more than 7 years ago | (#18923371)

On arrival, I found the sexually lovely 26 year old big-titted bitch in a panic about being late for work. She looked horny as hell in a low-cut and very tight white teeshirt, a little black tight hipster skirt, white ankle socks and black low-heeled strap sandals. Her big bottom and fat, heavy milkbags looked so inviting. And she had her sexy hair pulled back in a little pony tail. I wanted to fuck my whore right there and then but couldn't get her to stand still long enough. I just managed to kiss her on her lush mouth before she tore off out the door. Little Amber was in the bath splashing her yellow plastic squeaky duck in the water. The infant whore gave me a sweet little smile and I leaned down to her and kissed her little forehead. Caroline must have washed the child's pretty hair because it was wet through. I kissed both her eyes, licked down the side of her little button nose and stuck the tip of my tongue up one of her nostrils which made her giggle. Then I kissed my tiny sexbaby in its sweet mouth and stuck my tongue right inside. She tried to splash me with the bathwater. I told Amber she would be punished for doing that but she just giggled again.

Standing looking at the baby girl's innocent giggling face and her sexy slender little body, I was overcome with lust for her. I was going this evening to punish this sweet little girl for being so sexy, such a filthy little tart. I was going to hurt her, torture her and, finally, I was going to open up her baby cunt and fuck her in there, no matter how much it scared, hurt or damaged her. By now, I knew enough about the child's tractable personality and had an inkling of its young, beautiful mother's quirky sexual behaviour around the little slut. I believed I could get away with doing almost anything I wanted to it. In any case, the infant was now my property and I would do what I liked with it. I unzipped my fly, pulled out my huge penis and urinated on Amber's sweet little face.

Leaving the little babysex crying in the bath trying to wipe my smelly piss off her pretty face, I went through the few rooms in the small apartment closing all the curtains, locked the front door, and then I stripped naked. Returning to the bathroom, I found the infant girl cowering in the corner of the bath. I pulled the plug but did nothing to lift her out, merely waiting for the water to drain away. When the bath was empty, I forced the child down on her back and got in with her. I squatted over her little head and pushed my big arse down to within a couple of inches of her cute face. While I was straining to open my bowels, I lifted up one of her legs and began to fiddle with her baby cunt. I farted on the tiny girl whore's face three or four times before I felt a huge turd push down my rectum. Knowing I was about to shit on the sexy child and wanting my poo to go in her sweet little mouth, I began spanking its bare cuntlet really hard, sadistically hard. She began to cry out loud and was building up to a screaming frenzy just as my slimy shit started to ooze from my bumhole. As I felt it come, I pushed my arse right down on Amber's face and pood in her mouth. I kept on spanking the tiny cunt mound hard, wanting to hurt her, wanting her little mouth wide open for my filthy shit. I began feeding her out of my bottom, squeezing one big turd and then a smaller one into the little girl's mouth. As I dismounted my infant toilet, I grabbed its head with both hands to prevent it from opening its mouth. By repeatedly pinching the little sweetheart's nubbin of a nose, I prevented her from breathing and, in panic, she swallowed my brown babylove food, bit by bit until it had all gone down into her pixie tummy. I can't tell you what a pleasure it is to watch an infant eating a mouthful of your poo. It made me even more sexually excited, if that were possible.

Using the showerhead, I sprayed the child clean with cold water and cleaned her teeth with a toothbrush and some paste. I made her swill her mouth out with peppermint mouthwash to get the taste of shit out of it (for my benefit, of course, not hers). When she was a pristine clean little sex body again, I lifted her out of the bath and stood her on the toilet lid to dry her off with a big towel and brush her lovely hair with mummy's special hairdryer. When her long blonde hair looked beautiful and very sexually attractive, I started to smack little Amber all over her young body. I started with her calves, then smacked her thighs front, back and inside, her baby cunt, her fat little bottom cheeks, her baby tummy, her little chest, her fat tiny nipples (where her big titties will grow one day, if I let her live to be old enough), the small of her back, her neck and finished with her face. I love to smack a sex animal's pretty face, spank it, in fact, like a bottom. She was howling her eyes out and I was crazy with lust. I grabbed a bunch of Amber's soft, silky hair and pulled her off the toilet seat, making her fall on the floor on her face and knees. Holding the hair firmly, I dragged the screaming little child slut, stumbling, to the living room where I gagged her with a ballgag designed for small children and tied her hands, painfully tight and held up between her shoulder blades, with plastic cable grips.

I threw the babysex onto the dining table and, using nylon rope from my bag of punishment and torture gear, tied her ankles to the table legs so that the child was on its back with its bottom out over the edge of the table with its legs painfully wide apart, thus exposing its delicate and deliciously small rude parts. I tied her body to the table with one long rope cord looped around her belly and then tied together underneath the table. Amber Lewis was immobile, in considerable discomfort and made ready to take the whipping she deserved. I removed my strong leather belt from the waistband of my jeans, wrapped the buckle end around my wrist and stood facing the lovely child. She was guilty of being a small, beautifully-shaped girl, with a beguilingly pretty face, gorgeous sexy blonde hair and a well-developed infant child body, of using her body to attract men, of having a dirty whore of a mother, of having a cunt and a bottom, and of being very sexual young meat. And I was to carry out the sentence on this heavenly little creature. I was going to punish her with a whipping, in fact the first of many whippings, all of which she would deserve. And after I'd punished her, I was going to claim her body, as was my right, and brutally fuck her in her babycunt, even though she was barely 2 years old.

I whipped her small bare baby cunny with my leather belt until it was bright red. I was careful not to break the skin but I wanted to really hurt her. After her cunt, I belted the soft flesh between her legs and, with upward strokes of the leather, I lashed her fat bottom cheeks. I whipped her baby belly and her chest, particularly around her little pink nipples. In all, I whipped Amber nonstop for half an hour. She screamed and screamed and screamed and screamed. Tears streamed down her cheeks and her hair was wet with them. There are few things that can make you so horny as cruelly whipping a small defenceless nude infant. I was on the edge of shooting my cum and had to calm down. I got a beer and sat on the little sexy darling's pretty face while I drank it, flicking her between her little legs with the belt.

As soon as I was rested and my sexual urge had gone off a bit, I went back to my bag and fished around for a few instruments to use for the next game, opening up the child's vagina so I could rape her. A jar of vaseline, an expandable dildo, a speculum and cunt clamp, and a scalpel. The little girl was already in the ideal position for my surgical work, so I simply had to place a chair at the end of the table facing her wide open legs to be comfortable. I dipped the dildo in the vaseline and got it coated then pressed the rounded knob-shaped end against her cunt opening. The whipping had already made the baby whore's cuntlips open out like flower petals and so her fuck hole wasn't difficult to penetrate. Having inspected it previously, I knew Amber's hymen was about two and a half inches inside her little baby vagina, so I pushed the two inch diameter rubber dildo in firmly but slowly until it reached the two inch mark I'd made on it. Then a little hard shove drove it the rest of the way until I felt the resistance of the infant's maidenhood. With the dildo in place, I attached the pneumatic bulb and began to pump in air which steadily expanded the penetration of her sweet little cunthole. When it reached a diameter of four inches, I stopped pumping and left the dildo for half an hour to stretch the baby's hole. I waited, sat on Amber's cute little face again, rubbing my big fat bum on her sweetness and pinching her tiny little nipples between my fingernails, hurting her just for the pleasure of it.

After half an hour, I pulled the dildo sharply out of the child's cuntlet and was pleased to see that it had stretched nicely without any damage to the meat. I was ready for the next step. Inserting the speculum was easy and I ratcheted the ring to five inches and locked the cuntclamp. I now had a good view of the girl's little baby hymen and took up the sharp steel scalpel. Getting it in as far as the hymen without cutting her vaginal walls was the trickiest part of the operation but, with a steady hand, I brought the blade down to the little piece of stretched pale pink muscle and stabbed it. She screamed into her gag and humped her hips up and down, thrashing, trying to get away from the searing pain of being cut inside her little body. I eased the blade away until her bucking stopped, then went back to the hymen and, with one slice, cut it around a hundred and eighty degrees so that it hung in the child's fuck hole like a flap. The operation was complete. My little child whore was ready to be raped. Much as I wanted to test the strength of her cuntflesh by expanding the metal ring until she ripped, I needed to get the thing out of her and get inside her little body.

Standing at the join of Amber's legs was wonderful. I especially enjoyed, as I always do with small children, seeing the difference between her tiny, frail little body and the immensity of my huge fully engorged penis. I laid it on her baby belly just to see where it would reach inside her if I pushed hard enough. Erect, I am ten inches long and three wide. I reached beyond her bellybutton to well above the bottom of her little rib cage. If I wanted to kill her with my fat, ugly prick, I could just by fucking through her diaphragm into her lungs and heart, but that might be for another day. That evening, I just wanted the wonderful sensations of raping a baby. I wanted to be inside her tiny cunt. Positioning my bared slippery glans at her tiny but stretched hole, I guided the my huge knob just an inch inside the little girl then leaned forward over her, putting my weight for the moment on the table by gripping its edges. Leaning fully forward across her to get the measure of this sweet little child against the body of a fully grown adult male, I felt my chest press down on her face. She was so tiny. And I was going to rape her! Overcome with lewd excitement, I lifted myself back up so I could look at her face, particularly her tear-filled baby blue eyes as I ripped into her child cunt. With one powerful lunge which would really hurt a grown bitch, I rammed my huge cock into pixie little Amber, smashing through the little half open hymen and burying four inches of my rigid fuckmeat inside her. She screamed hysterically into her gag and, as I began to withdraw and pump back into her little body steadily, the tiny child went red in the face and started to convulse. Within seconds, I was brutally fucking this 23-month old baby girl as she screamed and bucked under me. Partly to stop her from convulsing and also for amusement, I slapped her face. I began spanking her little face harder and harder to the same rhythm as my pounding of her little cunthole into which I was now pushing six of my ten inches, slamming against her tiny cervix.

Close to squirting my filthy cum up Amber's baby cunthole, I suddenly pulled out of her now gaping, bleeding hole and, without care for her tiny size, rammed my rockhard penis in the child's little anus. Having sodomized the little slut before, its ring opened quickly and I pumped myself brutally up into its infant rectum. I buggered the little girl until I sicked my cum up the toddler's bumhole. I emptied my huge balls up Caroline's daughter's pretty backside. When I pulled my prick out of her, it was slicked with her poo, my spunk and blood from her cunny and botty. Even though I'd had a huge, wild orgasm, I was still lust- crazed and wanted to hurt the baby girl even more. Anyway, I wasn't done torturing her. I fished out from my bag a plastic box of needles and set to work on the sexy child's vagina, pushing about twenty of them into her cunt tube in the soft, slimy flesh inside. I was careful to avoid her cervix. I didn't want her spurting blood all over the fucking place. Then I untied the rope holding her to the table and, grabbing a handful of her hair, pulled her up to hold in one arm while I pushed a needle through each of her nipples. With a lighter, I heated them up, one after the other, to burn the soft flesh of the succulent soft little pink teats.

Amber was beyond screaming now, and a groaning noise came, instead, from the base of her throat. Her whole body was shaking and she seemed near to going into shock. I laid her back down on the table, pulled all the needles out of her lovely meat, untied her legs and carried her over to the sofa. It seemed prudent for the moment to leave the gag in place but I untied her little arms and massaged her arms and legs where she'd been tied to get the blood flow working properly. Then I drew her into my arms and began to caress and gently rock her. Using the remote, I started the disney video which I'd put in the VCR earlier. The magic worked within a few minutes. The stupid child was becoming absorbed in the cartoon. Her shaking and moaning had subsided and I removed the gag. She immediately put a sexy little thumb in her mouth and began to suck on it. I debated for a moment about whether I should put my cock in her mouth to suck it clean of her bodily fluids for me but decided against it. I left her curled up nude on the sofa for a few minutes while I went to the kitchen to prepare a drug cocktail for her which included a mild sedative and something to relieve the pain she must be feeling in her bottom and uterus. I also took my special shit and chocolate ice cream from the fridge and scooped out a bowlful for her.

Re:Don't get it.. (1)

carlivar (119811) | more than 7 years ago | (#18919779)

With rather strict standards for article/submission acceptance on slashdot, I tend to agree with the original poster. Which article does not look like the others? This one.

Re:Don't get it.. (1)

Ross D Anderson (1020653) | more than 7 years ago | (#18920051)

Yeah!
This one isn't a dupe, isn't cussing microsoft, doesn't mention open source and has no reference to apple!
I'm dissapointed. Those standards are slipping boys!

Re:Don't get it.. (1)

carlivar (119811) | more than 7 years ago | (#18921641)

You're right! I'm going to write and submit an article called "how to defragment your hard disk". That doesn't have anything to do with those subjects either.

Re:Don't get it.. (4, Funny)

Hijacked Public (999535) | more than 7 years ago | (#18919549)

I don't know man, they have a donut chart on there with some pretty serious graphics laid into it. That beats most other articles with their plain Jane donut charts, these ones have upper management written all over them.

Maybe they should email a link to Edward Tufte...amybe he'll be insterested. Data graphic geniuses these folks.

Re:Don't get it.. (2, Interesting)

Bodero (136806) | more than 7 years ago | (#18919719)

Agreed. I had the same problem not too long ago about making dynamic charts that look professional.

My solution was to use Perl and Win32::OLE to interface with Excel 2003 using VBA scripting within Perl. Sure, it's a Windows-only solution, and it's not open source, but it was an intranet problem that needed to be solved.

Re:Don't get it.. (2, Interesting)

vk2 (753291) | more than 7 years ago | (#18919883)

Have you seen this? http://www.advsofteng.com/ [advsofteng.com]

Re:Don't get it.. (1)

caramelcarrot (778148) | more than 7 years ago | (#18919615)

Plus, if you actually want decent open-source charts for documents, use gnuplot, they've done the hard work for you. Or any one of loads of plotting libraries for perl/php/whatever.

Re:Don't get it.. (1)

krishn_bhakt (1031542) | more than 7 years ago | (#18927055)

http://www.gnuplot.info/faq/faq.html [gnuplot.info] says: "Gnuplot is freeware in the sense that you don't have to pay for it. However it is not freeware in the sense that you would be allowed to distribute a modified version of your gnuplot freely. Please read and accept the Copyright file in your distribution." Further, http://www.gnuplot.info/faq/faq.html#SECTION000310 00000000000000 [gnuplot.info] says: "gnuplot is copyrighted, but freely distributable; you don't have to pay for it." "gnuplot is not related to the GNU project or the FSF in any but the most peripheral sense. Our software was designed completely independently and the name "gnuplot" was actually a compromise."

Re:Don't get it.. (1, Offtopic)

Riverman5 (1018024) | more than 7 years ago | (#18919763)

I think the business interests involved in this want to see to it that you're modded down.

Yeah this GD/Perl stuff is old news, I use flash for charts, fusion charts.

These charts look like shit (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18919379)

When will open source advocates learn to delegate the graphic design aspect of their work to professionals? Plenty of designers would be more than happy to contribute, if only the programming types in charge of these projects would admit they're better at making code than graphics.

Re:These charts look like shit (2, Funny)

Solra Bizna (716281) | more than 7 years ago | (#18919433)

I'm better at making code than graphics [deviantart.com] .

Now, if only other people were better at waiting on my every graphical need, free of charge...

-:sigma.SB

Re:These charts look like shit (3, Informative)

dbcad7 (771464) | more than 7 years ago | (#18919531)

I think the examples are meant to show how it works, not to wow you with art.

The code looks easy enough to experiment with your own artwork, so I look forward to seeing how much better you can do.

Re:These charts look like shit (4, Insightful)

dodobh (65811) | more than 7 years ago | (#18919643)

The code is out there. Whenever the graphics folks want to start contributing, they can.

Re:These charts look like shit (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18919703)

Whenever the graphics folks want to start contributing, they can.

I've tried, but there isn't any software that'll convert my graphics to code. I mean, this is 2007, isn't there a something GL tool out there that'll program from my pictures?

SO, it's really back in the coder's court now. So, get with it! Geese!

Re:These charts look like shit (1)

zeroduck (691015) | more than 7 years ago | (#18919757)

Theres always graphical programming languages, like LabVIEW. You can make your code a piece of art.

Re:These charts look like shit (1)

Jeff DeMaagd (2015) | more than 7 years ago | (#18920177)

The code is out there. Whenever the graphics folks want to start contributing, they can.

I think this is indicative of a disconnect.

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.

Re:These charts look like shit (3, Insightful)

grcumb (781340) | more than 7 years ago | (#18920969)

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.

Re:These charts look like shit (1)

Have Brain Will Rent (1031664) | more than 7 years ago | (#18921299)

I have done a lot of software design and implementation and a lot of UI design and implementation but I tend to agree with the sentiment that programmers shouldn't be doing UI work - the results usually leave a lot to be desired and to see why you only have to read /. for a while to get a sample of the attitude that many programmers have toward users. I also have problems with the other side, as the parent says, waiting for manna to drop from heaven.


But graphic artists can contribute without knowing anything about programming... they need only mock up screens (pencils, paper etc.) to show what could be done to improve an existing design. Whether that's the color scheme, the layout, the interaction sequences or what have you, they don't need to know anything about programming to help the programming crowd improve the end result. They don't need, as one poster put it, "GL" tools to make programs from their designs. They simply need to be able to create designs that other people can understand. If they aren't willing to do that they they should quit their bitching and if software people aren't willing to accept that those designs might be better, than whatever they came up with on their own, then then should try and figure out what it is they are hoping to accomplish.

Re:These charts look like shit (1)

dbIII (701233) | more than 7 years ago | (#18922299)

Sliding a bit off topic here but gimp is a prime example. It appears to be great stuff for people putting together web page graphics on a platform where you have multiple screens (not really sure - only ever did that on a small scale) but print graphics designers don't go past saying "it's not photoshop - come back when it's a slavish photoshop clone" so gimp gets what the developers think might be useful and have to play a guessing game. The "don't ask me for what features I need just give me photoshop" attitude does not work because the developers do not use other packages as much as a graphics designer so really do not know what features in photoshop they are using - just skimming the surface. They also may see a feature that can be better implemented without knowing that it is that way to work with other features. The older photoshop GUI (not sure about now) would be horrible on a multiple desktop situation like in X windows - even the old gimp 1.* GUI was a far better solution in my view for opening up a few dozen images at once to cut and paste stuff into all of them - that would be very hard to manage on a single desktop which is what photoshop is restricted to.

People also hate change and defend even the worst features of the application they are used to - I accidently started off a pile of flames on a photoshop newsgroup long ago when I asked how to use "undo" in photoshop back when gimp had it and photoshop didn't (which I did not know, since I only had limited access to the thing on a shared work PC and no docs). I was informed by many that true professionals saved their work before every major operation so the feature was not needed (I think most of those flaming were not graphics professional either and just wanted to have a go at a noob) - obviously it got added in afterwards but that is an example of the attitude faced if you just ask someone at random. How do we make these people want to be involved and come in without a defensive attitude?

Re:These charts look like shit (1)

lpq (583377) | more than 7 years ago | (#18923881)

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.


If there is any question in people's mind about whether or not Linux or FOSS software is is ready for the average user's desktop, maybe it can be answered here. Users can't expect to just get software and have it work. Before they can do their work (or play, whatever), they first have to get their hands dirty and learn programming. Yeah -- that makes FOSS just so appealing. One needs to be a developer and willing to run beta's on every software product they want to use. They can't just "sit back" and expect it to work (these days, programs that "just work" are a bit like "manna from heaven" and about as common). It's like requiring users to be car mechanics in order to drive an FOSS car. And if a user should want to ask for an automatic transmission like they have on cars from MS or Apple? They are often told to become a transmission expert themselves and to write the code.

If a car manufacturer required all drivers of its cars to be auto mechanics and car system experts vs. simply providing a working car and allowing the driver to be an expert in something else, I suspect the car with the lower "cost of ownership" (especially in terms of "invested knowledge") will appear considerably more attractive.

I don't think it is unrealistic to want to use an auto as a tool to get other things done. Requiring every user to be a "developer" is one of the biggest problems of FOSS. It makes cost of ownership too high. It only seems suitable for those willing to have "no life" outside of maintaining their car (or computer programs). Might partially explain the fanaticism surrounding Open Source.

Next thing, you'll be expecting "managers" to have to "code" to use FOSS programs. Unfortunately, many companies look down upon managers who waste their time doing "development" instead of managing and getting others to do it. Same applies to higher level engineers. They are expected to spend most of their time doing design -- it's inefficient and poor resource usage to expect them to work with inadequate tools (or tools that need development time invested in them before they will work).

That so many in FOSS can't see the inefficiency of requiring all users, to be some level of developer, on every tool they use, makes me doubt that such FOSS developers (and their projects/software) will ever do well in a business environment or home-desktop environment.

Re:These charts look like shit (1)

chromatic (9471) | more than 7 years ago | (#18924419)

That so many in FOSS can't see the inefficiency of requiring all users, to be some level of developer, on every tool they use...

Besides you, who said anything about requiring any users to become developers? Contributors, yes. Developers, no.

Re:These charts look like shit (1)

dodobh (65811) | more than 7 years ago | (#18924407)

The designers sure can offer suggestions and help. You don't have to write code to contribute (but it sure helps).

Re:These charts look like shit (3, Insightful)

MikeBabcock (65886) | more than 7 years ago | (#18921295)

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).

Re:These charts look like shit (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18922383)

Oh, right, there's a productive answer: if you're a graphic artist and want to contribute, all you have to do is learn Perl first.

Re:These charts look like shit (1)

dodobh (65811) | more than 7 years ago | (#18924427)

Or you know, actually SHOW fixed versions of whatever they think is wrong, with explanations of why.

Someone at a conference (Aaron Siego, KDE dev, IIRC) explained this little tidbit about usability:
The usability people who volunteered to try and help the KDE developers were speaking their own language, not one the programmers understood. Once that little hurdle was found, both sides got together and figured out common ground. The thing is that you have to learn to communicate with the programmers in the FOSS world, not they with you (they try, but without some effort from the other side, communication isn't going to be feasible).

Re:These charts look like shit (2)

EsbenMoseHansen (731150) | more than 7 years ago | (#18919693)

KDE have a quite a few very good contributors who are of the more graphical persuation. I believe firefox have a few as well. But they are always in short supply even compared to coders, so if you know any, please direct them to the appropriate sites. (I'm sure it is the same with Gnome, but I agree with Linus on that one).

Re:These charts look like shit (1)

hxnwix (652290) | more than 7 years ago | (#18919759)

Hey, don't let us stop you.

These charts look like shit? No they don't. (2, Interesting)

matt me (850665) | more than 7 years ago | (#18920841)

Those charts look pretty hot to me. Did you look at the chart in the page? http://www-128.ibm.com/developerworks/opensource/l ibrary/os-perlgdchart/pie_step1_step2.gif [ibm.com]
). Anti-aliased lines and text :]

Let's compare this to what I'd get if I asked most professionals for a chart. (These were the first ones from google). The lack of anti-aliasing hurts one's eye, these all look like they're from 1995.
http://support.alphasoftware.com/images/XD_Interac tive_Pie_Chart.gif [alphasoftware.com]
http://msdn2.microsoft.com/en-us/library/aa192481. odc_vststockallocation2003_fig03(en-us,office.11). gif [microsoft.com]
(the second one is 3d)

And in response to your comment
> When will open source advocates learn to delegate the graphic design aspect of their work to professionals? if only the programming types in charge of these projects would admit they're better at making code than graphics.
You seem to have missed the point. The article is about free software that can be used by professional and non-professional alike to create some hot graphics. Perhaps you're referring to the ugliness of the original tux logo? It's not 1995, and developers aren't resigned to producing their own graphics. If you look all free software houses pushing their brand use professional designers. Think of the firefox logo (2004)
http://www.hicksdesign.co.uk/journal/branding-fire fox [hicksdesign.co.uk]
or of ubuntu and gnome's curves, and check out the tango project http://tango.freedesktop.org/ [freedesktop.org]
Desktop linux has never looked so sexy.

Why so sour, AC?

Re:These charts look like shit? No they don't. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18923759)

Jon Hicks? The graphic designer who was happy to do Firefox's branding, but eventually dumped it as a browser in favor of Safari, because, among other reasons, the Firefox team has its head up its ass when it comes to taking UI suggestions from people who are skilled at user interface design, but don't necessarily have the time or inclination to learn C++ and XUL as a side hobby?

That Jon Hicks? Yeah, I think that makes my point.

Re:These charts look like shit (1)

myowntrueself (607117) | more than 7 years ago | (#18922597)

When will open source advocates learn to delegate the graphic design aspect of their work to professionals?

My partner, a graphic designer, says the same thing about the artwork in the Dungeons and Dragons manuals... I guess geeks everywhere and in every age think they can draw or something...

wow! (2, Funny)

jdunn14 (455930) | more than 7 years ago | (#18919393)

With a general purpose language tied to a drawing library I can make custom graphics? Holy crap, who would have thought. For those of us who just want to generate some simple graphs for papers and such, what do people use? I've messed with Excel, gnuplot, R, and now I'm using ploticus. Anyone have better solutions?

Re:wow! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18919483)

Why perl and gd, of course! How come you didn't think of that, you wonder?

Time to whip out that live enterprise directory data and start hacking!

Re:wow! (5, Informative)

Coryoth (254751) | more than 7 years ago | (#18919587)

For those of us who just want to generate some simple graphs for papers and such, what do people use? I've messed with Excel, gnuplot, R, and now I'm using ploticus. Anyone have better solutions?
To be honest I would suggest you try messing with Gnuplot some more -- it is actually a lot better, and produces much nicer plots, than it seems at first. The trick is to use a different terminal type than "x11", which is pretty crappy; the output looks remarkably different if you use "png", "svg" or "postscript". Here are some examples of plots I've done with Gnuplot: [1] [wikipedia.org] , [2] [wikipedia.org] , [3] [wikipedia.org] [4] [wikipedia.org] (for the last link, note that vertical text alignment renders fine in inkscape, just not on Wikipedia -- download the svg file to see).

If that's still not tickling your fancy then I would suggest matplotlib [sourceforge.net] which is actually pretty versatile, and produces good looking plots. There's also PyX [sourceforge.net] if you're looking for slightly more raw graphical interaction with nice output. Truth be told, however, after messing around with many of the same options you have, I've found that Gnuplot, once you get over the initial learning hurdle and figure out how to turn out nice looking plots, is the fastest and easiest way to turn out plots and charts.

Re:wow! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18920631)

I second this. gnuplot is a wonderful tool for plotting, and even for basic data transformation; you just need to spend some time setting various options to make it look like you want (my gnuplot scripts are typically ~25 lines/commands per plot). I use it for all my plots at work. Example [nickersonm.com] : I generally prefer simple plots with lots of whitespace, and gnuplot does this better than any other plotting software I've found.

- nickersonm

Re:wow! (1)

atrus (73476) | more than 7 years ago | (#18922609)

I agree, GNUPlot is quite capable.

Re:wow! (2, Informative)

T-Ranger (10520) | more than 7 years ago | (#18922787)

Its not GNUPlot. Gnuplot, or gnuplot, sure. But it has exactly nothing to do with GNU.

Re:wow! (4, Interesting)

Andy Dodd (701) | more than 7 years ago | (#18922685)

octave + gnuplot + LaTeX = absolutely beautiful plots in anything I submitted (homework assignments, term papers) in grad school.

To get you started (there could be errors here, I'm doing this from memory, but Octave code something similar to this:

plot blah
hold on
plot something
plot otherstuff
hold off

gset term postscript eps color 22
gset output someplot.eps

replot

gset output foo %bad shit happens to your plot output if you don't change the output file when setting the term back to X11
gset term x11

Would do the following:
Plot multiple things in a plot to the screen
Output that plot to an EPS file
Reset the output so the next plot would go back to the screen

You could then run the .eps files through epstopdf, write some document in LaTeX that included your plots by their basename (i.e. without the .pdf extension in the document), and use pdflatex to generate a nice PDF file complete with clickable cross references

(There are a lot of details I'm not mentioning here of course, unfortunately there really isn't any single good central HOWTO for doing all sorts of useful stuff in LaTeX.)

Re:wow! (2, Interesting)

zippthorne (748122) | more than 7 years ago | (#18923367)

Indeed. Also, Matlab runs on linux, and has latex pretty-print modes. So you don't have to get all confused learning the quirky similarities between Octave and Matlab is you don't want to.

And LyX is very convenient. Especially for typesetting those pesky equations. Much less flaky than MS Office, or even OO.org. In fact, I'd classify its equation modes as not flaky at all. Of course, it's convenient that anything they don't support can simply be escaped and typed in pure latex...

My favorite thing about LyX is that even if you have a lot of pictures and included files, when you insert new elements, old elements (like graphics or text-boxes) don't go flying all over the document depending on how you've anchored them.

Gnuplot?? for other than XY charts? (1)

xtracto (837672) | more than 7 years ago | (#18927393)

Just some weeks ago I was looking for a way to make some plots. I usually use gnuplot but as far as I could see it seemed uanble to do bar plots, pie plots, discrete 3d plots (this is, make Z axxis a set of items instead of a continuos range), radar plots, bubble etc. It seems it is only possible to do point and line plots.

I looked for some tutorials on the web to do bar plots but they consisted in half assed hacks (translate the data point, surround it by a bounding box etc etc) which is too much work for something which should be quite trivial to do.

I ended using Excel to do my plots (I gave a try to Gnumeric, which has quite nice plotting tools, but they were unstable, specifically the area plots).

Marketing/Management friendly... (1)

thedji (561789) | more than 7 years ago | (#18924443)

If you really want the flashing lights, swirling thingies or generally make your charts management friendly, I'd recommend this library [maani.us] for PHP (or for Perl use the SWF::Chart [cpan.org] wrapper).

With enough animated transitions to last you a good 3-4 promotions you should be set :)

Re:Marketing/Management friendly... (1)

commanderfoxtrot (115784) | more than 7 years ago | (#18924775)

The XML/SWF library is pretty good. There's also a Ruby (and Rails) version of the library at http://ziya.liquidrail.com/ [liquidrail.com]

Gnuplot rocks (1)

tbuskey (135499) | more than 7 years ago | (#18928049)

It's scriptable, can do some calculations, does time series, has multiple outputs and is cross platfor.

My intro was on DOS plotting time series data to screen or an Epson MX80 printer.
I used Excel (4) which had serious issues with time series and Kaleidagraph on a Mac.

It's always there on Unix and I think there is/was a macintosh version.

gnuplot is timeless.

That said, for long term time series with thousands of data points, I like RRDtool. It deals well with consolidating the data.

Yes, actually. (2)

Erris (531066) | more than 7 years ago | (#18919775)

With a general purpose language tied to a drawing library I can make custom graphics? Holy crap, who would have thought.

LibGD was made for this but does more now. There are lots of applications to do the same but "use libGD" is a good tip for people who want to make dynamic images and graphs for web pages from data.

For those of us who just want to generate some simple graphs for papers and such, what do people use? I've messed with Excel, gnuplot, R, and now I'm using ploticus.

gnuplot is very powerful. It has fitting with regression analysis, reports reduced chi squared and other math muscle stuff for papers all from text files.

Gnumeric is a good replacement for excel. It's resource light and the math is correct. It does simple graphs for papers and such.

Re:wow! (1)

ytm (892332) | more than 7 years ago | (#18919805)

I have to use Excel at work for presentation because we need dynamic charts based on pivot tables. For inspiration I recommend these pages [peltiertech.com] . Most of these methods show ways around Excel limitations and twisted paths to display your data right.

For paper presentation I'd go with gnuplot. It requires some work to get it right, but results are impressive and can be easily embedded in LaTeX environment.

As for TFA, I would think that with a programming language and graphics library we would be able to see some more information on a chart. Like the bottom one [logicalexpressions.com] .

Re:wow! (2, Interesting)

choongiri (840652) | more than 7 years ago | (#18921125)

> Anyone have better solutions?

Yes.

eZComponents Graph [ez.no] , from the developers of the eZpublish CMS. It's FLOSS, easy to use, and works very well for some automatically generated graphs [carroll.org.uk] I made that needed to update every week.

Re:wow! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18921131)

For those of us who just want to generate some simple graphs for papers and such, what do people use?

Personally, I just code the plot directly in PostScript. Typically I structure the file so there's a header controlling the look of the plot, the data plotting routine itself in the middle and then the raw data is appended to the end of the file.

The advantage is that the plot and the data are in the same place (the same file even). The disadvantage is that you have to learn PostScript.

Grace (1)

Noksagt (69097) | more than 7 years ago | (#18922505)

Grace [weizmann.ac.il] is an excellent free/open source 2D plotting program. It is in Motif, so some might call it "ugly," but I run it on Windows (it is packaged in cygwin), OS X, and linux. It is the most versatile F/OSS package I know of--both in terms of features & in terms of user interaction. In addition to the GUI (which many of the programs you list lack), you can use a command line interface or bindings [weizmann.ac.il] for python, perl, fortran, C++, OCaml, octave, rlab, etc.

Okay..... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18919403)

Cook up some automatically generated graphs for your organizational meetings or live enterprise directory data.

Yes... I think I'll do just that.

So close (5, Funny)

niceone (992278) | more than 7 years ago | (#18919437)

Ah, the summary was so close to getting the words 'perl' and 'readable' in the same sentence (possibly for the first time), but just couldn't quite pull it off.

Re:So close (2, Insightful)

26199 (577806) | more than 7 years ago | (#18919559)

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

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

Re:So close (1)

niceone (992278) | more than 7 years ago | (#18919845)

Heh, I was going for funny (I use perl every day), but I'll take interesting too.

Re:So close (1)

26199 (577806) | more than 7 years ago | (#18920249)

I use perl more or less every day, too. See my sig ;)

Re:So close (2, Funny)

$RANDOMLUSER (804576) | more than 7 years ago | (#18919649)

Of course, "readable" was referring to the charts, not the Perl, which, as everyone knows, is write-only.

Re:So close (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18919793)

I can read (non-obfuscated) Perl code just fine. I recently took over the maintenance of a 10K line codebase from someone else, and had very little problems with it (my main gripes with it were at the design and algorithm levels, not the actual implementation or code syntax).
I can also go back several years and not only understand the Perl code I wrote, but modify it for use in current projects.
Ironically, when I look at Python code, it seems artificial and less clear to me than the average Perl or C codebase.

hmm (1)

Nutty_Irishman (729030) | more than 7 years ago | (#18919459)

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
And if you really considered yourself a Perl programmer, you'd be able to do it all in one line of code.

Re:hmm (1)

26199 (577806) | more than 7 years ago | (#18921153)

There's always Acme::Bleach [cpan.org] if you're having trouble making it a one-liner.

Re:hmm (1)

myowntrueself (607117) | more than 7 years ago | (#18922615)

And if you really considered yourself a Perl programmer, you'd be able to do it all in one line of code.

I wasn't under the impression that Perl *required* newlines anywhere.. can't you just take an existing perl script, delete all newlines and it will compile/run just as before?

I wish a "slashvertisement" tag could exist (n/t) (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18919469)

--

Re:I wish a "slashvertisement" tag could exist (n/ (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18919653)

Nothing is being sold. The software is free. Should articles about Linux kernels and other OSS be tagged as you suggest?

For the Pythonista wanting charts and graphs... (2, Informative)

MarkEst1973 (769601) | more than 7 years ago | (#18919507)

... there's matplotlib [sourceforge.net] and there's reportlab [reportlab.org] for PDFs. Both are excellent open source packages, and I can tell you from experience that reportlab has outstanding support. I recently posted a question to their mailing list and received three intelligent replies within an hour.

ChartDirector (2, Interesting)

rishistar (662278) | more than 7 years ago | (#18919683)

I was looking for graphing and charting stuff last year. The only thing I found at the time was ChartDirector [advsofteng.com] . There have been a couple of other open source ones posted above that I may investigate in future, but finding this was what I needed at the time.

R is very cool (1)

xixax (44677) | more than 7 years ago | (#18923397)

We use R. I t produces visually appealing neat & clean graphics. My only bugbear is that the raster renders are external syscalls and often handle things like fonts and anti-aliasing poorly. We weer also looking at Rserv as a graphing service rather than invoking an R instance each time we want a graph. http://www.r-project.org/ [r-project.org]

Xix.

from the make-a-pac-man-pie-chart-now dept. (1)

schnipschnap (739127) | more than 7 years ago | (#18919695)

In case you missed the memo [themot.org] .

Killing an ant with a thermonuclear bomb... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18919709)

Using Perl to do an org chart?

Re:Killing an ant with a thermonuclear bomb... (4, Funny)

Bodrius (191265) | more than 7 years ago | (#18920119)

Yeah, it does seem a bit overkill.

If you're organization is so dynamic that your org. chart NEEDs to be generated at runtime by a script on your web server, then maybe writing perl scripts to auto-generate org charts shouldn't be your highest priority.

The right tool for the right job (4, Insightful)

espressojim (224775) | more than 7 years ago | (#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 http://addictedtor.free.fr/graphiques/index.php [addictedtor.free.fr] for examples (with source code)

Re:The right tool for the right job (1)

suv4x4 (956391) | more than 7 years ago | (#18920225)

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.


There's Flash for Linux/Windows/Mac, and it can render animated charts with filters, dynamic ordering and show details on demand.

I really doubt someone beats that (and Java doesn't beat that, for 20 times the size it's 20 times harder to pull off the same results there).

Re:The right tool for the right job (1)

espressojim (224775) | more than 7 years ago | (#18920505)

Yeah. You can render data. But you need to do analysis to determine how to render data. It's more complicated than picking where to draw each pixel. I see there are tools to export Excel into flash, what's the big deal there?

The examples I can find in flash are 1-2 liners in R. Seriously, plotting a bar graph or pie graph or scatter plot is 2 lines (1 line input the data, 1 line to plot the graph.) Now, do something complicated and interesting as shown above. Do a multi-dimensonal plot. Do a box and whiskers plot (again, a 1 liner in R) that calculates medians, quartiles, etc.

Unless you're just doing "I could punch that out in excel in 3 minutes" style graphs.

So, I researched your flash suggestion. Did you even click on the link I provided before you said "Oh, flash can do it!"

Re:The right tool for the right job (3, Interesting)

suv4x4 (956391) | more than 7 years ago | (#18920611)

The examples I can find in flash are 1-2 liners in R. Seriously, plotting a bar graph or pie graph or scatter plot is 2 lines (1 line input the data, 1 line to plot the graph.) Now, do something complicated and interesting as shown above. Do a multi-dimensonal plot. Do a box and whiskers plot (again, a 1 liner in R) that calculates medians, quartiles, etc.

Lookup Flex Charts. An open-source Flash library for rendering charts, by Adobe.

It can renders charts if you just feed it the data (in XML format) and what chart type you want.

Re:The right tool for the right job (1)

hey! (33014) | more than 7 years ago | (#18920589)

The right tool for the job is often the one you have in your toolbox that will do the trick.

Yes, you don't use your nice new wood chisel to pry the lid off a can of paint. But you might use it instead of driving down to the home depot to get a specialized router attachment, if you can do the job with the chisel in less time than the drive would take. If you plan on doing this operation hundreds of times over the next few months, then by all means drive down to the store and get the specialized attachment.

Likewise, I might choose to drive a carpet tack with a claw hammer and set it with a nail pumch rather than going to the store to buy a tack hammer, provided I'm only doing a few.

Re:The right tool for the right job (1)

SCHecklerX (229973) | more than 7 years ago | (#18922507)

gnuplot works for me.

Re:The right tool for the right job (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18923217)

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


What an irony. The task at hand is summing 5 and 3 and you offer that we learn MathCAD to calculate it.

Ruby / Gruff (2, Informative)

carlivar (119811) | more than 7 years ago | (#18919801)

Or use Ruby [ruby-lang.org] with Gruff [nubyonrails.com] .

Re:Ruby / Gruff (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18923003)

Gruff: "You can now graph negative numbers"

Very useful... (1)

A beautiful mind (821714) | more than 7 years ago | (#18919823)

I've been using Charts::* for my needs, these look much better. No functionality improvement, but looking better is sometimes a criteria.

SVG and ImageMagick (2, Insightful)

Ysangkok (913107) | more than 7 years ago | (#18920067)

I make my PHP scripts output SVG. I feed it to ImageMagick's "convert", and then outputs it to the user.

Bugzilla way. (1)

Vo1t (1079521) | more than 7 years ago | (#18920273)

Perl and GD. That's how charting is done in Bugzilla. Can't say it's superior, but it fits the needs. If I ever write something in Perl that would require charting then I might resort to GD.

For now, I'll avoid Perl if I can.

What's the "GD" for? (1)

iminplaya (723125) | more than 7 years ago | (#18920297)

Every time you say "Goddammit!" when you try to run it? I gotta see what happens with this

How does one do this in HTML? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18920377)

How can one create graphs and charts in html? I'd like to be able to do this for a web project I'm doing.

Re:How does one do this in HTML? (2, Informative)

LordLucless (582312) | more than 7 years ago | (#18920955)

You don't. You use a library like GD and a scripting language to generate the charts as images(alternatively, if your chart is representing static data, you can just whip up a static image in excel/gnuplot/whatever). There are also libraries built on top of GD (I use jpGraph with PHP) which simplify the process.

You can probably emulate a bar graph using tables, if you're particularly anal about doing it in HTML. Hell, you could probably do a line graph with a whole tonne of 1-pixel cells in a table, but I wouldn't recommend it.

It is a little late (0, Redundant)

slugstone (307678) | more than 7 years ago | (#18920461)

I did something like this over 3 year ago. It even use Apache and Mysql.

This would have been so much simpler (1)

sulimma (796805) | more than 7 years ago | (#18920495)

using Octave or SciLab.

Use JPGraph instead (2, Informative)

yahyamf (751776) | more than 7 years ago | (#18920917)

JPGraph [aditus.nu] uses PHP and GD, and they have dozens of very fancy graphs along with excellent documentation and code examples. You can have beautiful looking graphs in a few minutes with less than a screen full of php code.

I think it's dual licensed, with a very modest fee for commercial use.

Re:Use JPGraph instead (1)

Teddy Beartuzzi (727169) | more than 7 years ago | (#18923787)

XML/SWF charts are gorgeous, easy to use from pretty much any language, and completely free for personal use. I've been very happy with them. XML/SWF charts [maani.us]

Gantt-like chart code (1)

mattr (78516) | more than 7 years ago | (#18921173)

A year ago I went looking for code to draw Gantt like charts (for project scheduling, not the whole kebab).
I ended up rolling my own in GD with perl (making a wxPerl gui app). Reading this made me think (why doesn't he put it on CPAN) and then my next thought was (maybe I should put my own code up there before talking).

Not sure when I'll have time but anyway keep up the good work.

For everyone talking about design, yes it would not be a bad thing to take a first step to seeking designers interested in working on open source projects. Probably a bunch at every design department of a university and even high school maybe. Professionals may do it on their free time. Even choosing colors that go well is nice, and having a designer do a mockup of what they think it should look like might be enough for a programmer to grab on to.

It might be nice if there was an easier way to build charts (and yes I know JPGraph) but it seems you always want something custom in there, and only the person actually using it will know for sure if it is enough. Some more perl-based pluggable tools on CPAN for this would be a boon to a lot of people.

Incidentally I've done this before with driving the gimp from a perl program designed interactively with a readline-based gimp shell. It worked fabulously, and composited 1000 photos and as many html pages in about 5 minutes. But it was a one-off job. A simpler way to drive these tools (natural language based?) and get them configured would make them more accessible to people.

Do you like my dynamic GD::Graphs? (1)

maccallr (240314) | more than 7 years ago | (#18921601)

TFA is hardly news, but whatever... here are some of my dynamic plots with GD::Graph. Comments welcome.

They're quite pretty in my opinion, but having read this thread, I realised they are not anti-aliased and that's not easy to do in GD::Graph at the moment (while drawing the lines, at least - I just read there is a trick one can do with resampling a 4x image).

Also, there's a problem with the lines not really being the desired thickness perpendicular to the direction of the line...

It was dead easy to get working though!

Re:Do you like my dynamic GD::Graphs? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18922019)

I really don't get what you're trying to say with that first line graph. My best guess is that you take a couple minutes to bang your girlfriend in the afternoon, but you still keep the browser window open. Later in the evening you turn off both your girlfriend and slashdot to play with your wii and your ps3. Then at night you start reading slashdot over your girlfriend's shoulder while you're making out before bed. Then when you wake up in the morning you have a massive woody for slashdot.

Ah, charts in Perl... (4, Interesting)

glwtta (532858) | more than 7 years ago | (#18922085)

I do most of my work in Perl, and the lack of a good chart package has been annoying for a very long time. GD::Graph will give you very basic (and not terribly ugly) line and bar charts relatively quickly, but that's about it; it's missing even rudimentary features that make it less than useful (eg error bars).

There just isn't a general purpose charting package for Perl that would even come close to JFreeChart [jfree.org] . Grace [weizmann.ac.il] can produce some nice results, but the Perl interface to it is just a wrapper around their terrible command line interface (maybe it's improved in the last few years, but when I tried it it was almost entirely undocumented and nigh-unusable).

So, if you want publication quality charts you basically still have to learn gnuplot, which is great, but sometimes just a little too involved.

At least this thread gives a nice summary of what the other languages have to offer: the PHP [aditus.nu] and Ruby [nubyonrails.com] packages aren't faring any better, but Python's matplotlib [sourceforge.net] looks freaking beautiful.

Re:Ah, charts in Perl... (2, Informative)

Noksagt (69097) | more than 7 years ago | (#18922557)

Grace can produce some nice results, but the Perl interface to it is just a wrapper around their terrible command line interface (maybe it's improved in the last few years, but when I tried it it was almost entirely undocumented and nigh-unusable).
I like grace a lot. I use it through the GUI & occasionally through python, so can't comment extensively on the perl interfaces. Neither Chart::GRACE [cpan.org] nor Chart::Graph::Xmgrace [caida.org] seem TOO obscure.

The command line interface of grace isn't terrible--it is MUCH more powerful than most plotting software which has a GUI. I do agree it is under-documented, though. Fortunately, the developers are very responsive in the forums [weizmann.ac.il] .

90ies news (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18922575)

I miss the days when slashdot would post actual news. Using perl and GD is something you've been able to do for over a decade. What's next? News about how you can use zlib to compress stuff?

This place has become a pointless site where you can only read about point releases of the linux kernel and flamebaits of various kinds. And the saddest thing is those articles cause the most comments, thus the most revenue for slashdot, and thus this is what we will see more and more of from this website.

Getting GD::Graph on Windows (1)

cryptor3 (572787) | more than 7 years ago | (#18923715)

I used to use GD::Graph on my Windows-based system, but then the PPMs never got updated for the latest versions of ActivePerl.

For the longest time I have been without it since I updated ActivePerl, and there was no PPM available for GD::Graph on the ActiveState repository

http://ppm.activestate.com/BuildStatus/5.8-G.html [activestate.com]

After looking at the site, I found the link at the bottom of this page [activestate.com] that says you can install GD from Univ of Winnipeg, and I was able to install GD Graph from their repository.

You can draw charts on the client side instead (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18926299)

Some of the open source JavaScript toolkits can be used to draw charts on a browser window with inline SVG and VML. This makes it possible to draw charts on the web browser instead of having the web server draw them.

Some examples:
Dojo Toolkit [ajaxian.com]
I think I've seen a live charting demo on Dojo's official website, but it seems to be no longer there.

WT Toolkit [sourceforge.net]
This one seems to be a new project, judging from the activity charts on their SourceForge page [sourceforge.net] . The way they can draw 3D charts (like, pie charts, 3D bar charts) with inline SVG and VML is quite amazing though.

Re:You can draw charts on the client side instead (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18926543)

Ooops... I misspoke... I saw Perl::GD and immediately thought about web applications (yes I'm a web developer), because that's what I do every day.

Looks like you guys are just talking about charts, however.

Welcome to 1998! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18927341)

Wow, Perl and GD...that was big about 10 years ago. And the quality of the graphics produced by GD looks like something that belongs in the past.
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