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.


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 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.


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