Check... Done... Now What
November 4, 2010 2:10 PM   Subscribe

What script/code/technique would you use to make a project based personal checklist site that can scale upwards easily.

I want to build a task checklist creator. I am creating a syllabi for a group project that has multiple paths for each section the teammates can take on [build team, art team, etc]. I want to be able to build a site that allows all my team members to create a profile and then pick a path and have a checklist populated for them so that they know what they have to complete and by when. I have a casual background in website creation and database use. What code/scripting/technique would you use to create this type of customizable form for multiple users? I would like to make sure I build something that can scale upwards to hundreds of users (I want to build my skill at building databases during this project.)
posted by elationfoundation to Computers & Internet (5 answers total)
Python, Django, MySQL. Lots of ajax for the UI. For example.
posted by phrontist at 2:12 PM on November 4, 2010

Best answer: I'm not sure the questions you're asking will produce helpful answers.

What script would I use? I'd use a script that I wrote myself. Probably a few dozen of them, actually. Perhaps a few third-party libraries.

What code would I use? That's doesn't exactly make sense. "Code" is a mass noun, like "money", "dirt", "furniture", or "water"—it's a substance, not a discrete, quantifiable object. (Therefore, the phrase "HTML codes" is grammatically incorrect, like "discount furnitures" or "stolen moneys".)

But, I'd use code that I wrote myself. Because scripts are made of code.

What techniques would I use? That's a very broad question.

You'll need some way to store the user and checklist data on the server, so it will persist between pageviews and sessions. Relational databases are the standard way to do this, and MySQL is the cheapest (free) and most widely available relational database system.

You'll need to pick a server-side scripting language to write your scripts in. Those scripts will retrieve info from the database, render HTML pages to the browser, and handle form submissions (e.g., when a user submits a form to update their profile).

There are many server-side languages to choose from, and the decision really boils down to personal taste and what kind of server is available to you. phrontist has recommended Python, which is a perfectly legitimate option. I personally use PHP, which is kind of the de facto standard (at least in the sense that it's very widely used, and almost universally supported by webhosts).

AJAX isn't essential, but it would definitely make the UI nicer for a project like this. You'll want to use a library such as jQuery.
posted by ixohoxi at 3:55 PM on November 4, 2010

Best answer: Beyond the basics, I'd recommend looking into multi-step forms and nested sets.
posted by rhizome at 4:08 PM on November 4, 2010

HTML and CSS + Javascript -> XHR -> PHP -> MySQL is probably the fastest. From your problem description I don't see why you need scale.
posted by jeffamaphone at 4:14 PM on November 4, 2010

I would start on the most basic needs to have a working (not pretty) product.

I would focus on backend before frontend. I would draw out how I want the site to look ideally, but also how I want it to look at base functionality. Then I would sketch out a database structure that would cater to the base functionality (you may need to do a little research on relational databases).

If it were me, I would use HTML (obviously), PHP (as the language and do grab data from the database), and mySQL (as the database). After you set up your database (and mock populate it), code PHP that grabs data in the way you need to use it, then use PHP to work with that data and HTML/PHP to display it. When you have something that hits the basics, start making it pretty.

As for scaling - if you build your databases efficiently, scaling should just be a matter of bandwidth and storage space,
posted by jander03 at 8:27 AM on November 5, 2010

« Older Thanksgiving with a twist   |   Heated Clothing? I'm Warming Up To The Idea :0) Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.