Saturday, February 9, 2008

hackystat problems

i was inspired to work on hackystat this weekend. being that i've been out of the game for a while, so i decided to check out the user interfaces first. unfortunately, things didn't work out so well. here are some highlights of my journey into trouble.

i started out by executing a sensor:

C:\java\svn-hackv8\hackystat-sensor-ant>ant -f


[hacky-checkstyle] 35 Checkstyle issues sent to (1 secs.)

Total time: 5 seconds

then i went to view it in the sensor data viewer. but, oops where did that data go? i remember something about it not being historical and it just shows the new data. okay, that is strange requirement, but maybe it isn't "broken". but then again, thats a pretty strange requirement. who is going to go to the sensor data viewer before sending data so you can watch new data coming in. anyway.... moving on....

i fired up sensor data browser and found the data. it looks pretty good there.

okay, so what now? i have data, so what can i do with it? i fired up the telmetry viewer and found that none of the charts worked. well, i guess i'm not sure if the telemetry viewer was busted, or if it was the DPD service, or if it was the sensor base client, or if i didn't check the sensor data browser first i might have thought i didn't send the data. i had to double check at this point; i checked my sensor log file, sensor data browser, and then tried to fire up the DPD rest api...

following the REST api instructions for the DPD service, in constructed a URL that i thought would show me some data. i executed the url and found an empty set of data. hm....

i kind of don't understand what is wrong at this point. it would be great if i knew at the very least if my url was right. i tried typing in some crazy date and got a blank page. i guess that validates that i got the previous URL right. i think...

i'm not sure what is wrong at this point. to summarize here is what happened.
1) sent some checkstyle data (validated it in my sensor logs)
2) saw the data in sensor data browser
3) didn't see the data in the sensor data viewer, because it only shows new data
4) none of the telemetry charts worked
5) i couldn't figure out if my URL for the REST DPD service was right or not and i couldn't see the DPD data as i hoped
6) my last chance at doing something was ended when i couldn't create a new project in the project viewer.

needs more transparency
so, i guess i wasn't too successful in working on hackystat tonight. i'm even more confused when i started out. i think the problem is the transparency into what is going on. the distributed nature of the applications hides the "knowledge" of what is actually going on. an outside user would have no clue that the telemetry viewer uses the DPD service, which uses the sensorbase (actually i'm not even sure thats correct). the transparency in data flow is set to pitch black.

hm....... i guess it's just me.


Philip Johnson said...

Hi Aaron,

No, it's not you. There is a problem with the DPD service which makes the TelemetryViewer take too long to respond to requests.

A regular user shouldn't need to worry about the DailyProjectData service or even know its there.

Your interpretation of the sensordatabrowser vs. viewer is correct.

It might be a good idea for the sensordata viewer to fetch the last hours (or whatever) of data on startup so that the order in which you bring things up doesn't matter so much. But I generally recommend that people just use the sensordata browser.


aaron said...

> A regular user shouldn't need to worry about the DailyProjectData service or even know its there.

I agree. But, a developer should be able to see the data coming in and the data coming out. Thats the only way to debug a service that isn't yours.