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Old 07-15-2014, 01:19 PM   #1
tronayne
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Entry and/or Edit Form for MariaDB/MySQL or PostgreSQL


Is there a form generator or easy-to-use form editor for MariaDB/MySQL or PostgreSQL?

Something would would generate from the schema would be the berries but something easy to set up, understand and use would be just as usable.

I have a need for a non-techie (which really also means a non-LAMP) way of recording and reporting daily sales and payout data for a non-profit service club fund raising gaming (such as pull-tabs). The club is currently doing everything on paper (scary!), is really not computer-literate and I'm looking for the easiest way to convert from paper to electronic; QuickBooks, for example, is not feasible simply because of the complexity of using it and I suspect that LAMP probably is too. The need for a DBMS is obvious, the need for a way to get data in and out... well, my inclination is to set up LAMP and be done with it but the folks that will be doing the work may not be so inclined (the building is networked and I have a spare PC that I'll build as a server and donate to the cause).

I'm almost at the point of getting a copy of Access (which might actually do the job) but, cripes, Access? Chilling thought.

If anybody's got any ideas, I'd appreciate hearing them,

Thanks.
 
Old 07-15-2014, 02:03 PM   #2
michaelk
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I neither see why doing everything on paper is scary nor the obvious need for a DBMS (KISS principle). IMHO a spreadsheet would probably be enough and it could duplicate what the club is doing on paper.
 
Old 07-15-2014, 02:45 PM   #3
tronayne
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Here's the thing. We have Lotto and Pull-Tabs plus a weekly drawing game (Ace of Spades) and weekly 50-50 which are used for fund raising. Lots and lots (and lots) of paper floating around; e.g., the pull-tabs alone are five pieces of paper for the weekly summary (yes, five damned pieces of paper). We have no idea, without digging through wads of paper what we did a month ago, six months ago, last year in same period, etc. From one week to the next, yes, but that's it and it's on paper. The pull-tab machines came over on the Mayflower and have primitive reporting capabilities (like, write it down on a form, transfer that to another form and and both of those to still another form and so on -- there are state reporting requirement you need to comply with).

I've ginned up a spreadsheet that emulates the paper (kinda) and I can load that into a DMBS and over time you can actually see some information. But then there's the But. Spreadsheet files all over the place, file management, who knows what-all. Murphy's Law is in full effect.

The social room (bar, food) all goes in QuickBooks, no problems there: QuickBooks gets shift reports from the cash register and the lotto terminals but there still is a lot of paper involved there, too.

When quarterly reports roll around, it's a day-and-a-half job to extract all that stuff from all that paper (well, only the weekly summaries, but still, it's paper). The state and the feds are picky about those things and I'm just looking for an easier way to handle the weekly burden (it takes at minimum two guys 2.5 hours to do the weekly summary -- and that's the minimum, most of the it's over 3 hours). A spreadsheet that you poke once and everything falls out at the end would be the berries but somebody would still have to (correctly) enter last week's totals for the running results. PITA.

So, that's why a DMBS: a simple SQL query and you've got what you need.

I've been looking at OpenOffice's data base interface and a report generator from Oracle (that may or may not work). At least with that I can get data in and get information out (maybe) and that's what prompts the question.

Thanks for the input -- it may just be one step at time.
 
Old 07-15-2014, 03:34 PM   #4
michaelk
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Sounds like a mess. You do realise that a computer does not always make things more organised... And no matter what tool you use somebody has to correctly enter data.

No experience using a form generator but they are available for both PostgreSQL and MySQL.
 
Old 07-15-2014, 03:55 PM   #5
keefaz
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[deleted] did not see the post about spreadsheet
 
Old 07-16-2014, 09:14 AM   #6
tronayne
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Quote:
Originally Posted by michaelk View Post
Sounds like a mess. You do realise that a computer does not always make things more organised... And no matter what tool you use somebody has to correctly enter data.
Oh, yeah, been doing this sort of thing for decades and thus pretty much know that sometimes it's just simpler and better to use a pencil and a calculator (which everybody does know how to use).

Trick is, I believe, is as @michaelk said, keep the KISS principle in mind. It doesn't have to be complicated, it doesn't have to be confusing, it just has to be more or less obvious and, oh, by the way, easier to understand and use that the pencil and paper method. If you've ever dealt with a state or the feds, nothing either of them have done is intuitive, obvious or simpler. For non-US folks, I can't speak but I can speak to the ease doing income tax returns using Turbotax versus the hours wasted reading complex jargon and filling in boxes and making mistooks all over the place. I'm trying to do what Turbotax does: make it simple question-and-answer and fill in all the correct boxes. Problem is, I don't know what sort of tool I can use to build something that will be usable and understandable if I drop dead the day after it goes into production. No problem with designing a data base and actually no problem with PHP either but we're talking folks that aren't real comfortable ordering something from Amazon and have some degree of difficulty with a browser. So, gotta look in another direction.

Oh, yeah, it has to go on Win7 boxes, perhaps with a Linux server invisibly sitting behind them.

Anyway, that's the story.
 
Old 07-16-2014, 01:42 PM   #7
Doug G
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If you have windows available, you can use a mysql backend database with Access forms and queries.

Also LibreOffice Base has a form generator, and you can use a backend mysql db with Base, but I haven't quite figured how to use the Base form generator yet. It is somewhat similar to Access' form generator.
 
Old 07-19-2014, 01:11 PM   #8
Steve R.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tronayne View Post
Is there a form generator or easy-to-use form editor for MariaDB/MySQL or PostgreSQL?
There are other choices to MariaDB/MySQL or PostgreSQL.

Base currently uses embedded HSQLDB 1.8 as the database engine. It is NOT recommended that Base be used with the embedded database. It is recommended that Base be connected to an external database. One is to install HSQLDB 2.3.2 as an external data source. Another is Firebird. I have not installed either one. I have been using a Base/MYSQL connection. You may or may not have run across this website, but just in case: Apache Open Office Forum.

This Forum has tutorials on Base plus other discussions related to Base and connecting Base to an external database. In terms of my experience with Base, I am still at the bottom of the learning curve. Currently I have Base working at a rudimentary level. Overall, Base is still foreign to me, I have not been able yet to replicate what I can do with MS Access. For your project, I would still encourage you to develop it as database, not a spreadsheet.

Which Would Make a Better Back-End, MySQL or HSQLDB?
Database Engine Thread

Last edited by Steve R.; 07-19-2014 at 01:46 PM. Reason: Addtional Thoughts
 
  


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