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From:Derek Schaefer Date:July 24 2009 6:10pm
Subject:GSoC Week 6 - All Aboard the XLS Express
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G'day all,

Key Accomplishments Last Week

 - Largely finished the ODS import plug-in. I will be making minor
improvements to it from here on out, but it is essentially complete
 - Made a useable Excel XLS import plug-in. More about this below.

Key Tasks that Stalled Last Week

 - (This week) I made a functioning Excel XLS import module using the
phpExcelReader library, which works wonderfully. I added the library
and plug-in to my branch and it is currently living out a happy
existence on my demo server. But, woe is me, Michal pointed out to me
that phpExcelReader is licensed under the PHP license, which is
incompatible with phpMyAdmin’s GNU GPL license, therefore we cannot
include it. Talk about a buzz kill.

Key Concerns

 - Being able to utilize phpExcelReader for the Excel XLS import
module. Without it, I will most likely have to scrap the XLS import
module, at least for GSoC, as reading the XLS’s binary format requires
a specialized library that follows Microsoft’s Binary Interface File
Format (BIFF) conventions. This does not set me back much as the XLS
import module was never a goal for my project, just a happy
side-product. That and Excel can save spreadsheets to CSV, in any case
(and Excel 2007 can save to ODS, as well).

Tasks in the Upcoming Week

 - Continue work on both the CSV and the XLSX (if it is deemed
desireable) import modules. If I finish both of these, phpExcelReader
will not relicense, and I still have a significant amount of time left
then I will likely write my own PHP BIFF library and continue work on
the XLS module.
 - If phpExcelReader’s maintainer will relicense, then continue work
on the XLS import module with the existing library.

-Derek Schaefer
GSoC Week 6 - All Aboard the XLS ExpressDerek Schaefer24 Jul