ruports + RMagick = CrystalReports?

Discussion in 'Ruby' started by Kev Jackson, Oct 11, 2005.

  1. Kev Jackson

    Kev Jackson Guest

    I've been browsing around the ruby eco-system, trying to put together an
    idea of exactly when/where I'd be prepared to use Ruby on projects at work.

    So far I've only done some file munging tasks (basically using Ruby as a
    glorified sed/awk). Looking at the last Quiz and finding ruports, and
    knowing that for a lot of the websites that we have to do here, Rails is
    perfectly adequate, the main missing piece (for basic database-backed
    websites) is for "Crystal Reports"

    Customers always seem to want some form of reporting feature and they
    invariably reference Crystal I supose as it's the de-facto.

    Having (very recently) struggled with Crystal XI integration with a
    Java/Spring/Hibernate project, I never want to touch it again - all the
    documents suck and it is very much focused on Microsoft integration -
    which is really useless for 99% of teh projects we do here.

    On the other hand I think it would be possible to do most of the reports
    that customers ever need with RMagick + Ruports. Now I'm very
    inexperienced with Ruby + it's libraries, so I could be way off here,
    but would it be possile to use a dataset to create a chart? A simple
    graph, or a pie chart I would think would be possible.

    If this would be possible, then one more barrier against using Ruby here
    will go and make it much more easy to convince people to let us trial Ruby

    Thoughts?
    Kev
    Kev Jackson, Oct 11, 2005
    #1
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  2. Kev Jackson

    Guest

    I think Ruport is trying to do what you want by itself. It's a new tool
    and is still in development.

    I'm sure it is currently quite feasible to do printable data-based
    charts using Ruport + RMagick. I think Ruport would appreciate that
    kind of contribution, too.

    PDF::Writer may be better applicable to your situation than RMagick,
    considering Ruport's current stage of development. Check out
    http://ruby-pdf.rubyforge.org/pdf-writer/demos/

    Cheers,
    Dave
    , Oct 11, 2005
    #2
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  3. Kev Jackson wrote:

    > So far I've only done some file munging tasks (basically using Ruby as a
    > glorified sed/awk). Looking at the last Quiz and finding ruports, and
    > knowing that for a lot of the websites that we have to do here, Rails is
    > perfectly adequate, the main missing piece (for basic database-backed
    > websites) is for "Crystal Reports"


    Yes, avoiding Crystal Reports was my motivation for starting the Ruport
    project :)


    > On the other hand I think it would be possible to do most of the reports
    > that customers ever need with RMagick + Ruports. Now I'm very
    > inexperienced with Ruby + it's libraries, so I could be way off here,
    > but would it be possile to use a dataset to create a chart? A simple
    > graph, or a pie chart I would think would be possible.


    I am not particularly familiar with RMagick, so I'm not entirely sure
    how quickly this will become a feature tightly integrated into Ruport.
    However, the system will always let you use whatever libraries you'd
    like to get your job done, so if you can see a way of using RMagick
    with a Ruport template, by all means try it out.

    What I can say about Ruport is that in versions to come, it will
    feature integration with PDF::Writer, which will hopefully make things
    like this fairly trivial to do. The next version of Ruport (0.2.0)
    will be released from the RubyConf and will feature a lot of cleanup
    and internal reworking. The version following that will focus on the
    integration of Ruport with other tools, to include PDF::Writer for
    output, automatic CSV generation, possibly a way to output Excel's XML
    format, and other formatting goodies. Ruport 0.3.0 will also implement
    methods to make use of James Edward Gray II's chainsaw data munging
    tool Parse/Input.

    So can Ruport eventually meet your reporting needs? Well, I hope so :)
    If you do end up implementing some RMagick tools that can be
    generalized and integrated into the Ruport core, that would be great.

    Right now, Ruport is under very active development (It's my day job
    actually, when I'm not in school), and is basically alpha software.

    Ruport 0.2.0 is going to be somewhat less fragile, and I'm using it in
    work presently, but 0.3.0 will be where the cool features start to come
    in. :)
    Gregory Brown, Oct 11, 2005
    #3
  4. wrote:

    > I'm sure it is currently quite feasible to do printable data-based
    > charts using Ruport + RMagick. I think Ruport would appreciate that
    > kind of contribution, too.


    Yes, I'd love to see how people are using Ruport so that I can
    generalize it and make it easy to do things quick for them.


    > PDF::Writer may be better applicable to your situation than RMagick,
    > considering Ruport's current stage of development. Check out
    > http://ruby-pdf.rubyforge.org/pdf-writer/demos/


    Yeah, it'll be a little while before Ruport is "Production Grade".
    But currently I'm already using PDF::Writer to do things like print
    mailing labels and using CSV output for a number of reports and the
    like and it's not too painful. I plan to include a few sample
    templates with Ruport 0.2.0, for those who want to play with them.
    Gregory Brown, Oct 11, 2005
    #4
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