[kwlug-disc] What's the simple next level beyond OpenOffice Base?
rbclemen at gmail.com
rbclemen at gmail.com
Fri Nov 26 16:22:36 EST 2010
Openoffice functionality is extendable using Java. You can code whatever data integrity and interface requirements you have. I have never done it. But I was looking to try it soonish
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Date: Fri, 26 Nov 2010 15:40:02
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Subject: [kwlug-disc] What's the simple next level beyond OpenOffice Base?
I have some users migrating from paper based contact and scheduling
activities to computer based. OpenOffice calc for the most part
suffices, especially as they work through their admin processes and
establish what's what. e.g. They are prototyping at this point, so not
infrequently add columns to the spreadsheet(s).
As a result of working in a spreadsheet, they are running into data
integrity and consistency problems. So it's time to move parts of the
information into a database. While not losing the spreadsheet ability
to move things all around as they establish what's useful.
I have been playing with OpenOffice Base and found it insufficient.
As one oo forum poster pointed out - Base exists as a mechanism for
individual users to pull other database information they might have
into calc, for use there. It does not create an app, uses writer as
its form interface, and is not multiuser.
Things like MS Access, FoxPro, dBase, and so on, provided a similar
database browse / update facility, much like a spreadsheet. (As does
Base.) However, they were also able to go further into complete
applications, can be multi-user, provided an IDE, and facilitated
maintenance tasks. (For my purpose here, ignore that they are also
usually tied to specific back ends.)
The advantage of OpenOffice is that it's FOSS, universal,
cross-platform. I can hand a file(s) off to anyone, anywhere, any
time, and they can be productive.
What's the next step, app wise, with similar universality? Base is
insufficient, yet I have no interest in a fully programmed environment
where the users cannot just pop into a spreadsheet like interface and
get on with their day for the moment.
It feels like I'm looking for an Access like front end, probably to
talk to a local MySQL (SQLlite?) back end, but nothing occurs to me as
being an obvious choice, and having the same universality as
OpenOffice. [Most users are Windows based, but I don't want to be
constrained to windows, as OpenOffice is not. Google Docs doesn't do
it - no database functionality, and loses functionality such as data
validation in the file transfer.]
Suggestions as to what I might investigate?
(There is no server here, just the local machine - nor is there likely
any chance of there being one any time soon. Free/FOSS web site
suggestions, 'a la GoogleDocs', would be welcome - that multiple
disparate internet connected users could work against simultaneously.)
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