Need help with database and website

Discussion in 'Technology' started by ChaChaFut, Dec 16, 2005.

  1. ChaChaFut

    ChaChaFut Member

    Jun 30, 2005
    I hope It's cool to ask for help with this here. I know there are other places, but since I'm posting in BS...

    I'm not computer illiterate at all but I'm not a wizard per se, so please bare with me.

    I want to come up with a (soccer related) website. Right now I'm still in the planning and research stages (which have been going on for years), but I want to start thinking about the technical aspects.

    I want to create a player, team, tournament, etc. statistics database that can be published to a website and that can be easily updated. In this site, people should be able to do advanced searches, create filters, and in general, be able to view the same bits of information on the database from different places (I hope this makes sense) If you've used the Major League Baseball statistics search pages, that's sort of what I would like to have. This is meant to be very informative, like an encyclopedia, only powered by the internet.

    On the database, I would like to be able to update scores, etc., and by doing this, other pieces of information would update automatically (like a spreadsheet, I guess).

    I pretty much know what I want, and I understand the basics of HTML, javascript, a few programming languages, web design, etc., so what I want to ask is: What is a good way to develop this? What kind of software should I use? Are there a recommended standards, or are there tons of choices? I want to be able to separate the actual data from the website design, and I understand that things like ASP, PHP, etc. can be very useful, but I'm not very knowledgeable on them. I am willing to learn anything in order to accomplish what I dream of, though.

    I hope this makes sense and thanks in advance for any input.
  2. Foosinho

    Foosinho New Member

    Jan 11, 1999
    New Albany, OH
    Columbus Crew
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Absolutely fine.

    This is not an insignificant challenge.

    For starters, you need to have a solid understanding of how relational databases work. Find a book or take a class - you'll need it. You'll be writing a lot of SQL. There are many options out there for database software; my preference is MySQL.

    The software that takes the raw data in the database and shapes it into useful datasets for your web application will probably be the largest aspect of development. You could look around (on sourceforge, maybe) to see if there is anything out there already, but I doubt it. Soccer statistics are too different from the other popular sports (maybe hockey stats?). You have lots of options here, but I'm partial to PHP. It's syntax is similar to C++, and it's object oriented, so if you take care you could have a pretty robust system.

    Then, there is the layer to take the datasets and display them, and handle other UI issues on the web browser. I'd also suggest PHP for this, especially since your data layer is in PHP. The key is to use templates for the HTML to plug the data into, and use CSS to do layout. If you design it well, you could alter the entire look of the site by changing one CSS file, or even allow visitors to choose from several completely different display layouts.

    Like I said, this will be a challenge, but this is something perhaps to start with. BTW, I've listed these roughly in order of descending importance. It's easy to revamp your interface code, so it's less important to get it exactly right at the start. It's very very hard to change your database schema down the road to fix an oversight.
  3. kerpow

    kerpow New Member

    Jun 11, 2002
    I'll say.

    The other thing you have to think about is where you will get the data from. Carling Opta provide comphrehensive stats for many leagues and is used by most newspapers and fantasy football sites.

    Next, get help or advice. This guys site is pretty good but he explains the problems he has encountered. You might want to get in touch with him.

    The other thing that springs to mind is the leagues you will cover. Is it just MLS or the EPL you will try to cover? There are plenty of EPL sites that do this already, the BBC is a good example. Does the official MLS site do this as well?

    Good luck though, I will be a regular visitor if you pull it off.

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