Tool in hand again!

So finally after a few days, I can see the ripples in the sea of my working time getting stagnant. I had a few fierce engagements which did not allow me even open the lid of my laptop(had issues with my birth certificate, passport appointment etc.). Although I managed to work everyday in tiny fragments this week yet I am encapsulating all up in this post as the work is not much.

So I began with Django which became the apple of my eye after Jasvir’s presentation(sometimes I feel I am moved too easily but this time I researched and then moved astray :P). I really hold the view that people tend to hate the things they don’t understand. So I began with the much recommended and hyped “poll app”. Today I did the following things:

    • installed Python 2.7.5+
    • installed Django version: 1.8.dev20140823121328 from GitHub as under:
git clone git://github.com/django/django.git django-trunk
sudo pip install -e django-trunk/

because I failed to download get-pip.py despite trying many a time.

Tomorrow I will begin with the poll app. Meanwhile I have also joined the $2500 course LinuxFoundationX: LFS101x Introduction to Linux for free on edX(search GD to hunt for more :P). Although I think I have a quite a decent acquaintance with Linux by now yet the learning, this way, is a fun indeed! I spare a little time for this course as this is self-paced and I try to go for this when I feel like course-rotating.

I have ended up with:

Welcome and Introduction

Chapter 01: The Linux Foundation

The chapter 01 consisted of the following:

<quote>

  • The Linux Foundation is a nonprofit consortium dedicated to fostering the growth of Linux.
  • The Linux Foundation training is for the community and by the community. Linux training is distribution-flexible, technically advanced, and created with the leaders of the Linux development community.
  • There are three major distribution families within Linux: Fedora, SUSE and Debian. In this course we will work with representative members of all of these families throughout.

</quote>

The sort of video lectures in the course make learning a thing to crave for a devoted learner. And the “tool” in the title of the post is my “laptop”. 😛

Track Payment Status–Pending (Passport, India)

Applying for passport online from http://passport.gov.in/ is quite a good practice. You may get the appointment the very next day if slots are available, sitting at your home just a click away. But you may face some minor technical problems like I faced a few but you need not worry. I faced a couple of problems while making payment online through my debit card. Firstly I forgot my password, recovering which is quite a simple task. To recover your password just click on forgot password and it will direct you to through the procedure to recover it. Go for OTP(One Time Password) it will text you a number on your mobile number. Once you recover it, I recommend you to jot it down somewhere lest you may forget again. 😛

Then the second problem that I faced was that after recovering the password and making the payment through my debit card, the amount was deducted from my account(I got message on my phone) but was not reflected in the Track Payment Status link. It showed the payment status as pending despite the amount had been deducted instantly from my account.

I e-mailed at customercare.00691@sbi.co.in and called at Service/Helpdesk Phone No.: 011-41561114 too but you know government helpline numbers are seldom picked.

Solution: After making the payment, logout of your account on http://passport.gov.in/ and re-login to your account. Then click on View Saved/Submitted Applications then select your application and then you will see a link Re-verify Payment. Click on this link and ENJOY! 🙂 Although this is a sort of bug in the website but I tried to provide the instantaneous solution so that we may not run hither and thither for the solution. And don’t forget to say thanks in case I have saved your life. LoL 😛

The GSoC 2014 clock halted!

So a few days back the GSoC 2014 came to an end. After the midterm evaluation, I had the following tasks to be completed:

  • A Navigation bar
  • Search by Trait
  • User rights management
  • Validations
  • Update usability
  • Status flag (whether the value is approved)
  • Admin privileges
  • Data import
  • Data export

Navigation Bar: A decent adorable Navigation bar may be seen at the top making it easier to use the features of the extension.

searchm

Navigation bar

Search by Trait: A user can search for the values of traits by selecting any one of the traits from the drop-down. The drop-downs are enhanced throughout the extension as it avoids user-mistakes (typo mistakes).

Search by Trait

Search by Trait

User Rights Management: There are a certain features like delete material, delete trait etc. which should be accessible only to people having special privileges like sysops and bureaucrats so that the data / content is preserved from the tampering of malicious users.

Validations: It is again an essential part of the application as the data to be entered should be valid and consistent. In order to keep a check on this, HTML5 is brought into action to serve for proper validations.

Update: This was also an inevitable and desired feature which lets the user edit / update an attribute or a value which may require rectification or updation later on.

Status: This flag indicates whether a particular value is approved by BRL-CAD admins or not. Digit “1” denotes “approval” whereas “0” denotes “pending”.

Admin privileges: The super privileges of admin include delete material, delete trait and approve the values.

admin

Admin privileges

Data import: Right now the data can be imported in one format ie JSON. This feature would be extended soon to import data in some other formats.

Data export: The data can be exported in JSON, XML and CSV.


 

The extension already supported the following features by the midterm :

  • Sign up / Sign in using the MediaWiki modules.
  • Add Material
  • Add Trait
  • Delete Material
  • Delete Trait
  • Search by Material
  • View all Materials
  • Keeping track of when a material/trait was added using timestamp.
  • Keeping track of the user who added material/trait.

So far this was one of my best experiences with working on live projects and that too of international stratum. I am lucky to have contributed to BRL-CAD which is the epitome of its field. I can apparently observe in myself qualities recently evolved like time management, focus, grappling-ability with deadlines and above all confidence. Talking to international developers was like unprecedented opportunity for me. All in all, GSoC 2014 taught me a plethora of things which I would not have learnt by resting in my own isolated well. I would also like to extend my latent thanks to my latent benefactors. 🙂

I am now looking forward to improve the Materials Database Extension so that it can be used more effectively.