1. ZingChart

    April 4, 2011 by accidentalfish

    I mentioned yesterday that I’d migrated track5things away from RGraph and onto ZingChart. I did this because ZingChart has a more professional “out the box” look and feel (the graphs look pretty smart with a minimum of effort) and they have both HTML5 and Flash versions which both function off of the same declarative JSON blocks meaning I could easily support modern and legacy browsers (in fact in theory they could do, for example, an iOS native version, Android version etc. – I’d certainly be interested!).

    However I was struggling to figure out how to make this work (I was using Modernizr to branch my code based on available browser features) and logged a support case with Zing. This, and a follow up question, were responded to really quickly and not with off the cuff “standard” responses but by someone who had taken the time and care to understand what I was asking: even though I was only using the evaluation service.

    And finally: happily the answer I was looking for is that it “just works”. You don’t really need to do anything. The HTML5 chart controls degrade gracefully into SVG or VML depending on the browser.

    So kudos to ZingChart – they exceeded my expectations and earned a new paying customer today for sure.


  2. Iterating

    April 3, 2011 by accidentalfish

    Since I first put track5things online last weekend I’ve pushed a number of new iterations online.

    The site has had its general appearance tidied up a bit, I’ve replaced RGraph with ZingChart, you can enter backdated information, there is a recent changes page and the pre-signed in page shows a graph for a “Random Thing”.

    I’m using it for tracking my weight training, I’m currently trying to add some weight and happily the numbers are going up. If you’re interested go take a look at my public homepage.

    I’m also using it to track the number of Mocking Pad users here.

    I really enjoy working in Ruby on Rails so its been a lot of fun to build and heroku really takes the pain out of hosting – I can do infrastructure but its not something I enjoy or do “hands on” regularly enough for it not to hurt.


  3. track5things

    March 31, 2011 by accidentalfish

    Last night I put a new website online: www.track5things.com. It does pretty much what its URL suggests: it lets you track (and draws graphs of) upto 5 different things.

    It’s insanely rough and basic at the moment and is by far the earliest in development I’ve ever put anything online but it does the bare minimum I need to use it myself so I thought I’d go with the “ship early ship often” mantra and see what happens.

    The plan is to iterate on this starting point over the next few weeks.

    Oh and to use the site you’ll need a Twitter account. I didn’t want to get involved in capturing personal details, email addresses or passwords and so am using Twitter as an OAuth provider, it will then tweet your progress back to Twitter for your friends to see.

    For those who are interested: its written in Ruby on Rails and is hosted on Heroku.

    If its the kind of thing you’re interested in using then as ever I’d love to hear feedback.