Friday, June 19, 2009

G4ILO's logbook lookup

I finally got round to doing something I'd intended to do for a year or more, which is to add a lookup feature to the contact log on my site. So now it's possible for anyone to check whether they have worked G4ILO before or not.

Actually, the online log only contains contacts that I have made since moving to this QTH, in other words, since September 2001. I made a few contacts from the previous QTH during 1999 and 2000, but I went QRT for several years before that, and since at the time I never thought I would return to the hobby I threw away my logs, so those contacts are gone for good.

A few readers may be thinking that they would like this online logbook on their own website. The software I have written to display and search the log works only with log files from KComm, which I upload to the website using the backup log feature. The software is written in PHP as a set of user defined tags for CMS Made Simple, the content management system I use to create the site, and would require some adaptation to be used in a different environment.

KComm log files are plain text files, so searching is not very efficient. I have fewer than 2,000 QSOs in my log at the moment, so it is not too much of a problem, but a search still takes a few seconds, and would probably make me unpopular with my web host if it was heavily used. For those who have a lot more contacts in the log it would not be a good solution at all.

I have often thought about making KComm work with a MySQL database. But this would add a lot of complication that I don't need at the moment. Setting up the database would also probably be beyond the ability of most users of the program. A plain text file is nice and portable, needs no special setup and is easily backed up. So for the moment, I'll live with the inefficiency.
Post a Comment