View Full Version : A challenge for programmers! (for the sake of learning)

02-21-2012, 04:01 PM
Hello Everyone,
Iím new to this site and to be honest I know between nothing and very little about computer programming! (What an introduction I know!!!!)
I have a little challenge for anyone who may be interested... the Ďprizeí shall we say will be of an academic nature only. But first Iíll give you a bit of background on the issue and myself (the guinea pig).
Me: Iím a 32 year old university lecturer in Philosophy (specialising in the philosophy of Technology) and as a side business I run a comic book shop. My shop is small and stock is large so I was hoping to build a computer program (like a web page) where the customers could search through what I have. At the moment I am inputting the comics into a database designed for collecting but not usable as a shop/customer resource. I had looked into web designers and professionals but the quote was too high and I canít afford it. I am an intelligent enough man with basic computer skills. I did some programming when I was a teenager but the language was primitive in comparison to anything today. I do have an understanding of some computing principles and a firm grasp on logic (thank you philosophy!)
The Challenge: I would like to build this program myself! What I need from you in cyberspace is the basic advice, directions, inspiration, criticism, etc., to get me to the point where I can build this myself. Last week I had no idea how to build a simple website and I learnt how to do it (poorly) in 6 hours. I figure, hey itís worth a shot. However, it would be difficult to research everything online without being able to ask specific questions and have the answers aimed at someone of my ability. The program I am using outputs information (in a variety of manners) in html and plain text. At the moment I have 60 000 comics and am hoping to get a lot more! :-)
Whatís in it for you? Well, a number of things: Bragging rights, the joy of seeing someone building a project from scratch; the chance to practice your teaching skills; being able to help a fellow man; passing on wisdom; the list goes on.
Iím going to attach a diagram below of what I would like to have. The goal will be to eventually put this business online. Thanks in advance for your help and advice. It was Plato who once said ĎTeaching is the noblest professioní I am forever in your debt as knowledge can last aeons.

I Can or upload images of what I'm hoping to achieve Thanks again folks!

02-22-2012, 04:23 AM
If anyone could even point me in the right direction that would be great too!

Thanks again!

02-23-2012, 03:53 PM
You might get more responses if you get this thread moved to "General Web Building".

Three immediate approaches occur:

- Build the whole thing yourself from scratch - use a MySQL database and (say) php to access it. It'll take you a while and there's lots of challenges, especially if you want to sell online, but you'll learn a lot, and it'll end up doing exactly what you want.

- Use Wordpress (have a look at Wordpress.org). Slightly less to learn, some things come ready made (eg. logon and some search stuff). e-Commerce plugins are available as well. However still a steep learning curve in parts. You might end up compromising exactly what you want.

- Use a ready made eCommerce application (eg. Opencart). Up and running more quickly, lots of stuff done for you, more complex to understand if you start adding bells and whistles. Again, you might end up with a few compromises.

Hope that helps. If you want to sell online in any volume I'd certainly consider option 3.

Incidentally, from your screenshot: "Regester"?!> :eek: