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Perturb.org - interesting technology related things from around the internet

UPC Barcodes and PHP/GD

Today I found this really cool site that offers downloadable copies of the public UPC database. It's basically a GPL public database of all things UPC, similar in concept to the FreeDB for CDs. I wrote a quick perl script to load the database into memory and then you could query it with a barcode scanner. Works pretty well considering it loads 55 megs of CSV into a hash for quick access. I tried converting it to a SQLite database but it ended up being 75 megs, and it didn't really offer anything except increased startup time.

I also spent some time working on a script to create thumbnails of images and add some text information at the bottom. Basically it takes the larger image, resizes it, and throw the dimensions and size of the full image at the bottom. I just wanted to try and see if I could imitate what imageshack.us is already doing. Wasn't too hard to do, and I learned a lot about PHP's GD interface. GD is really pretty mature at this point. It does a lot of things really well.


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