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TAB Wrangler
November 30, 2011 1:02 PM   Subscribe

Mr. Data Converter takes CSV, Excel, or tab-delimited data and coverts it into web-friendly formats, including HTML tables, PHP arrays, JSON properties and MySQL tables. via
posted by Bora Horza Gobuchul (29 comments total) 120 users marked this as a favorite

 
I want to make a site like this. But mine will steal people's data and sell it to their enemies at outrageous prices.
posted by goethean at 1:09 PM on November 30, 2011 [10 favorites]


Very cool! I've been grappling with various ways of producing JSON data. My current procedure is to use R with the RJSONIO package which works pretty well. But sometimes it's nice for a small file just to sling it into something like this.
posted by a womble is an active kind of sloth at 1:24 PM on November 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


I just downloaded the .zip file from GitHub.
I opened it, then hit the index.html page with my browser.
Mr. Data Converter is now happily converting data on my desktop.
How cool is that?
posted by dougzilla at 1:25 PM on November 30, 2011 [5 favorites]


Very cool. I was worried for a sec that this guy had you submitting the data to his site which would be horrible for privacy. But it appears to run on the client side in Javascript. Very useful! I'd been having to use Google Refine to do this sort of thing before.
posted by Catblack at 1:54 PM on November 30, 2011


pretty cool, I think client side apps run from a .html on the desktop written in javascript is an idea who's time has come.
posted by Ad hominem at 2:01 PM on November 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


That's very useful, at the very least because (as has been mentioned) you can basically save it as an HTML file so it's not dependent on site availability or Internet connection.
posted by codacorolla at 2:11 PM on November 30, 2011


I feel the need to mention that I have written a Python script that takes my gradebook as a csv file and produces LaTeX. Because I hate printing spreadsheets.
posted by hoyland at 2:16 PM on November 30, 2011 [2 favorites]


I spent four hours yesterday converting excel spreadsheets into xml for a project I'm working on. My excel-to-xml work is already finished. Why couldn't you have posted this yesterday? *cries*
posted by specialagentwebb at 2:16 PM on November 30, 2011 [6 favorites]


Great resource. Great post. Thanks.
posted by davebush at 2:25 PM on November 30, 2011


Excellent!

I'll use this next time I need to shut down Firefox in a hurry. Works better than the "Quit" button.

(I kid. Firefox 3.6 and 7 are horribly unstable on Solaris. Thanks for this)


posted by mmrtnt at 2:47 PM on November 30, 2011


... wait. MySQL tables? Really. This could be very helpful indeed.
posted by penduluum at 3:04 PM on November 30, 2011


I feel the need to mention that I have written a Python script that takes my gradebook as a csv file and produces LaTeX. Because I hate printing spreadsheets.

There's a R package xtable that turns data into pretty latex. Combined with sweave it can fetch and process inside the document.
posted by a robot made out of meat at 3:16 PM on November 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


holy crap! sending this to coworkers immediately.
I may have to email this Mr. D. Converter individual and ask him if it's okay if I incorporate this into my (free-use) project at work. and thank him profusely.

(anyone know how impossible it would be to convert to microsoft word tables in such a manner?)
posted by sarahj at 3:50 PM on November 30, 2011


I feel like I owe you for this post it's so awesome.
posted by odinsdream at 3:55 PM on November 30, 2011


sarahj, Mr Data Converter was released under the MIT License, so by its nature it would be fine to use it in your own projects.
posted by ndfine at 3:56 PM on November 30, 2011 [2 favorites]


Incredible! So much time will be saved! Great post!
posted by woodblock100 at 4:20 PM on November 30, 2011


I think client side apps run from a .html on the desktop written in javascript is an idea who's time has come.

Maybe Windows should bring back that black desktop that was designed for this.

Also: great post!
posted by CCBC at 4:45 PM on November 30, 2011


This is a lot better than the old system that I was using, which involved 106 steps using stone tablets, FedEx, a telegraph key and two tin cans with a string.
posted by double block and bleed at 4:48 PM on November 30, 2011 [2 favorites]


Data Artist in Residence at the times?!

I have a new fucking life goal.
posted by stratastar at 5:17 PM on November 30, 2011 [2 favorites]


Creepy. I had just sat down to search for something that does this (And, y'know, the first step to any search is, "Hey I wonder what's on MeFi right now").

I owe you a beer, BHG. And, uh, MetaFilter.
posted by regicide is good for you at 5:43 PM on November 30, 2011 [2 favorites]


(anyone know how impossible it would be to convert to microsoft word tables in such a manner?)

If you have it in any of the formats it takes as input, you can import to excel directly in excel. And then just copy and paste to a word table.
posted by spaceman_spiff at 6:21 PM on November 30, 2011


Yup, great. I will use daily. Thanks.
posted by the noob at 7:04 PM on November 30, 2011


Hah! Thanks! Very useful.
posted by carter at 7:37 PM on November 30, 2011


...well, Data Converter. We just say Data Converter.
posted by blue t-shirt at 8:30 PM on November 30, 2011 [2 favorites]


I spent four hours yesterday converting excel spreadsheets into xml for a project I'm working on. My excel-to-xml work is already finished. Why couldn't you have posted this yesterday? *cries*

Spent a couple hours yesterday myself converting Excel data to JSON properties...

But thanks for this Bora Horza Gobuchul! Much time will be saved in the future.
posted by FreelanceBureaucrat at 9:26 PM on November 30, 2011


I don't understand the difficulty with converting Excel or CSV to whatever. Python has a reasonable-enough excel parser, which you can tie together with anything. I'm pretty sure Perl has a good equivalent also. I guess it's nice that it's done, but it really is a 10 minute job at worst if it's an easy transliteration, and once you have done it once, it's done for all time.

Of course, this is already done...
posted by wierdo at 10:37 PM on November 30, 2011


This is the type of thing I use to justify to myself web surfing on the company time. That I probably spend much of that time on Metafilter and this is my first work-useful discovery I'll try not to think about much.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 5:12 AM on December 1, 2011 [2 favorites]


This is a lot better than the old system that I was using, which involved 106 steps using stone tablets, FedEx, a telegraph key and two tin cans with a string.

Ha! I got you beat. With the same setup, I can get it done 98 steps.
posted by grubi at 6:08 AM on December 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


This is like the third Github-hosted thing I have seen in just a couple of weeks where someone is distributing something really cool that's not just a blob of source code & libraries to tweak and compile but instead is immediately useful. (The other were ad-killing /etc/hosts files, and sparklines for the Unix shell.)
posted by wenestvedt at 7:28 AM on December 2, 2011


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