2004.12.09

[Editor's Note: If your browser does not support SVG images, you should be seeing PNG images instead, which will not look as good as the SVG versions. If you don't see any images, let me know what browser, version, etc. you are using. It seems some of the popular browsers out there don't "do the right thing" hmph!]

[Editor's Note Part 2: Seems that RSS 2.0 can't handle the <object> tag properly? At least that's what the validator tells me. The Atom feed seems ok though...]

I’ve been working on some simple graphing utilities in Perl to create SVG graphs… Here’s a few samples…

graph

Our cost for phone service seems to have gone down.

graph

Local utilities continue to rise. Ugh…

graph

We’re spending less on food, well, most of the time. ;)

I like the fact that these are very simple, showing just the trend and not going into details like month, amount, etc. In fact, to create one of these just takes the following:

perl ggraph2.pl "Phone" "44 54 50 53 44 41 43 53 42 42 44" >phone.svg

Run the script passing in the name you want on it, and a string of numbers space separated, and output it to a file. It’s still a bit fragile, and only does some basic normalizing, so wacky things will break it, but it’s a start. Like all other quick little hacks, in the hands of the guy who wrote it, it “gets the job done” while users would break it in less than 10 minutes and start yelling.

I really like SVG. It reminds me of the old days of plotting out graphics on the Apple ][+ and that’s a good thing! It’s another one of those “edge technologies” I keep hoping will finally catch on big one of these years…

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