August 07, 2013

Shield UI Releases Charting Component for Multiple Web Development Platforms

Shield UI, which aims to cut down on software development time by providing reusable components, recently released a charting component for Web development platforms so developers can add charting features to websites without writing code to create that functionality from scratch.

The component can function as a server-side wrapper in the ASP.Net, MVC and Java Wicket environments. Code is executed at the server to set the display properties of the component. Once these properties are set, the chart is sent to the browser and displayed on the page.

A client-side Javascript version of the control that leverages HTML5 and CSS3 is also available.

Licenses are available on a per seat or volume basis and as part of an annual subscription. Developers have access to updates and help from tech support. Additional support is available in a separate package and priced based on response times of 12 and 24 hours. Individual licenses range from $299 to $499, depending on options.  

A number of different charts can be created with the Shield UI control. Pie and donut charts give visual representations of percentages. Bar charts compare quantities from different categories and come in horizontal and vertical versions.  Line charts take data and connect the points to highlight spikes, while splines behave much like line charts, but are smoother and leave out spikes to show overall trends. Range bars, area charts and scatter charts are the other ways data can be displayed graphically using the Shield UI control.

The concept of controls and reusable code is nothing new; MS-DOS programs and Windows-based apps have used it. Development environments like Microsoft Visual Basic opened up a market for third-party control developers similar to what Shield UI is doing for Web development.

Before the days of computers running on punch cards, one adage has always been said about software development: “Don’t reinvent the wheel!” Sheild UI’s chart solution is one of the latest examples of this concept. No matter how much technology advances, some fundamental concepts don’t change.

Edited by Rachel Ramsey


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