Saturday, May 28, 2011

First week of GSoC

Although a full week has not been completed since the official kick off day for coding (May 23rd) it will be much easier for me to write my weekly blog post on weekends. So here I am writing my first weekly report. 

In my opinion the first week was very productive and I could deliver the first two features on schedule. Further I was able to do some more work of the next feature, so most probably I will be able to deliver the next feature before its alloted date.

As the first feature I improved the GIS data browsing by adding two new options. Now the user can view GIS data in standard Well Known Text(WKT) and Well Known Binary(WKB) formats. This is in addition to viewing GIS data with indication of its type and size (eg. [GEOMETRY - 2KB]), which was the method that was there earlier with PMA. 

These formats also adhere to other options set when viewing data. For example when 'partial data' option is set, WKT format will adhere to it by truncating well know text to the specified limit. Similarly WKB adheres to the 'Show binary contents' and 'Show binary contents as HEX' directives.

My second task was to support spatial indexes. Spatial indexes can only be created on spatial data columns and contrary to other indexes, spatial indexes can only have a single column. Further spatial indexes can only be crated with MyISAM and specifying a prefix length is not allowed when creating the index. With this feature, now you can create spatial indexes on geometric columns easily by clicking on the button corresponding to the column in table structure page. 

I also improved the index edit page to suit spatial indexes. To prevent the users from wrongly specifying parameters and ending up with errors, some input boxes are hidden dynamically when 'Spatial' is selected as the index type. Both the above features have been pushed to my repository and you can play around with them on my demo server.

To the end of the week I was working on my next feature which involves a considerable amount of coding compared to the above two. I think this is not the post to write about the next feature. So I will preserve those details to my next weekly post. I am looking forward to deliver my next feature, 'Visualizing GIS data', ASAP as it will always be nice to see some graphics :)

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