View Full Version : advice website/database

05-25-2008, 11:52 PM
I am considering developing an application for my university as part of a resume builder. All students have access to a portal to check grades, email and whatnot. I am wanting to make a bulletin on the web, similar to a craigslist/autotrader, that all students can see what other students have to offer.

I have a few ideas, but not a great deal of experience. When I say experience, I mean project planning/database.

If someone could provide a few "professional insights" that I might not recognize at first, I would really apprieciate that.

Also, I have limited database experience, we really have only stored single entries in the tables, so I would like to have a column that would be something like "description" and it could store a paragraph of text. Can this be done?

Len Whistler
05-26-2008, 01:07 AM
I would code it with PHP and MySQL. MySQL can handle all sorts of data and your "description" column could be a TEXT data type, which can handle a maximum of 65,535 characters. MEDIUMTEXT is 16,777,215 characters.

I highly recommend you buy a PHP/MySQL book.


05-26-2008, 02:04 AM
i forgot to mention, the school uses asp.net and sql server. Atleast to my knowledge.

05-27-2008, 03:41 AM
i forgot to mention, the school uses asp.net and sql server. Atleast to my knowledge.

SQL server, that's good. And you can run PHP on M$ IIS servers, I believe.

But you don't say what your question really is? Are you asking about SQL commands? Are you asking about 'RIA' feeds? Is it that you want to use asp.net? And so on.

In general, I'd take it step by step. And if you 'freeze' on some days, get something in, even if you have to revise it and take it all down. It might clarify the thinking. You'll want to know what data. Is it sufficiently fixed that you can use the built-in hierarchy of 'relational' tables? Or will you have to consider a more flexible 'self-referencing' table, within the 'relational' app, if the data is like that? What gets served will change as you understand the problem better. I think so will the design. I suppose you want some 'Web2.0' appearance, but would be happy with a more text-based Google/ebay sort of thing, which does work well in the older cellphones. You'd have to decide how much of the page is composed on the server, and how much front-side functionality you want from the scripting. Step by step. Others have done a lot more, and even pursued startups. It can be done. But it's otherwise difficult to know what you're asking.

05-27-2008, 05:37 AM
My plan is to make a form that will allow a title, and description to be entered by the user. There will be a dropdownlist of the categories to post into (free, services, housing, books...ect...). All this I would assume to be stored in the database for later reference. Also there will be an option to upload an image.

This is going to be part of the universities intranet, so I dont think it will need to be too intense, as far as allowing iphone to access the site (if so it will not be part of my baseline).

To be honest, I am not familiar with php, and am really not sure the differences between that and asp.net. Well, with the exception of php being 'open source'. I had worked on my senior project last semester, and we did a web based scheduling system for a gas station in the region, after the project was over it seemed like if we would have redone the thing it would have been better. I am thinking about taking the same approach with a web form, and that is where my question really comes in. Is this a decent approach to making project happen?

I really don't mind reworking the project later, but I don't what to get over my head in the beginning stages.