Google charts

As they say, a picture is worth a thousand words.  If you’re doing any sort of reporting it is always best to have a chart or other picture sumarizing what you’re saying.  When we were writing Sage CRM a significant amount of effort was put into the low level nitty gritty of producing charts on the fly.  We had a charting package but it had to be webified.  That was nearly 8 years ago.  Today what you want is Google charts.  Just give it a url with all the data and it produces the chart for you.  You don’t have to anything else.  So if I add this bit of text to my html page:

<img src=”http://chart.apis.google.com/chart?cht=bvs&chbh=a&chs=400×125&chd=t:10,50,60,80,40,2,66,10,50,60,80,40,2,66&chco=4d89f9&chm=N,000000,0,-1,11&chl=Mon|Tue|Wed|Thu|Fri|Sat|Sun|Mon|Tue|Wed|Thu|Fri|Sat|Sun />

I get:

You can do some really cool things very easily, like produce maps and the like.  I’ve no doubt there are packages that produce better graphics and do fancier things, but for shear simplicity without installing anything you can’t beat it.

http://code.google.com/apis/chart/

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