Monday, April 11, 2011

New Project (Ruby Programming pt. 11)

Ok so with the reverse-text project, all I need to do is learn how package it as an app or exe. Not so simple but since it's not covered in my books I'll have to ask it out. So I've come up with another project. It's a Rails project so it's way in the future, but I'll guide myself in that direction.

I want to make a website that calculates how much of your taxes go to different programs each year and presents it in a nice-looking pie graph. It would give you the average federal tax paid in your state and how many dollars of each went to whatever project. The cool thing is that this website would be a data aggregating website. It would scour the websites that have the data and compiles the graph for you. I'll host it on Heroku. Of course, I'm way far away from diving into Rails but, BUT, Ruby can parse websites. So I'll make a stand-alone program that does that first, and renders its output in HTML all ready to be dropped in on a rails project.

However, before doing that I'll do a simpler version of this. This one will look at the FBI's crime statistics for Puerto Rico and will give you the murder statistics in a 1-in-x-number fashion by year then it would compare that to Afghanistan's troop numbers and deaths, and compare the two. I have a feeling that on some years, the two numbers will be closer that you think. Of course getting the Afghanistan numbers is really hard, but the parsing the numbers into a graphic is the programming part I want to do. I'll start by just exporting the numbers in a table, we'll go from there.

On the packaging side I found Mac application called Platypus that packages scripts. But I haven't gotten it to work for me. So frustrating, also very little documentation. Same problem as Rawr. So I think I might as well dig in learn XCode and code it in Cocoa with Hot Cocoa with MacRuby. But I still have a problem on how to package it for Windows.... I think I'll have to buy a JRuby book after all.

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