tilige - generate timelines
October 4, 2009 6:17 PM   Subscribe

tilige - generate timelines
This is a utility to make a simple timeline picture from user input. The scale is worked out automatically, and the program tries to place the text and lines such that nothing overlaps. Outputs in either SVG (default) or PNG.

It was originally simply a command-line program to generate some timelines from an XML input file; I threw a web interface on it so other people could use it. The backend is written in pure ANSI C, and the front end in Perl. The whole project is open source and can be grabbed off github.
posted by spherical_perceptions (13 comments total) 9 users marked this as a favorite

Wow, awesome, I've had the need for something like this a few times, and I'll keep this bookmarked if it arises again. Quite unusual to see open-source web apps with C code in 'em!
posted by tmcw at 9:32 PM on October 4, 2009

Nice work.
posted by darth_tedious at 6:50 PM on October 5, 2009

This is awesome. I've been looking for a good timelining software ever since I read Neustadt and May's Thinking in Time: The Uses of History for Decision Makers, which includes a section on how to create good timelines for decision making purposes.
posted by ollyollyoxenfree at 9:22 PM on October 5, 2009

This is really useful. Thanks. I'm actually going to be using this IN REAL LIFE. OMG!
posted by Jofus at 5:39 AM on October 6, 2009

I, too, will probably use this IRL. Thanks!
posted by odinsdream at 3:53 PM on October 6, 2009

Interesting stuff. I looked into something similar when creating time lines for a recent project, Odbody.com (which, oddly enough I just submitted to this site).

I created a similar effect with css hackery, but we really wanted something more graphical.

We're currently using transparent PNG backgrounds on HTML defintion lists.

A couple of related apps: 3D Timeline, Horizontal Timeline, Javascript Vector Library.
posted by MintSauce at 1:16 PM on October 7, 2009

Also: SIMILE Widgets - Timeline
posted by MintSauce at 1:17 PM on October 7, 2009

Ah, this is wonderful!
posted by DWRoelands at 9:57 AM on October 8, 2009

Pretty cool. Tested it using a handful (7-9) entries with different years and it had some trouble (some extreme overlapping) with the dates - I used 4 digit years and left the end dates blank (as the asterisked comment said was optional).

Using Firefox 3.0.14 on Windows XP.
posted by empyrean at 4:24 AM on October 9, 2009

I was just thinking to myself that GraphViz was missing a quality timeline system this week. Between this and discovering SchemaSpy, it's been a lucky week.
posted by pwnguin at 7:58 PM on October 10, 2009

Huh, the /v2/ link is dead.
posted by Pronoiac at 2:01 PM on November 9, 2009

Oh hey he hasn't commented so this won't show up on Recent Activity - I've dropped a MefiMail.
posted by Pronoiac at 2:03 PM on November 9, 2009

Thanks everyone for the kind comments.

(Commenting so I get notified of comments like Pronoiac's - link fixed btw.)
posted by spherical_perceptions at 6:04 PM on December 2, 2009

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