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From "Niall Martin" <>
Subject Re: Total User confusion
Date Wed, 30 May 2012 19:18:40 GMT
I didn't want to provoke a flame war, but since the article he cited (which I read with 
interest) mentioned that we'd worked on Smartsuite, make a suggestion that he could use his

background to improve Open Office and make it more usable.  

Perhaps I'll explain what I have in mind.  In Approach, I can, just as in Base, be in Browse

mode or Design mode.  I can display records in Forms or Worksheets, dealing with them in 
either mode, in the former I look at records individually, in the latter in bulk. In either
view I 
can add or delete a record, and I can print as required, and I can design any of them to 
display whatever fields I am interested in.  I can also create reports, showing whatever fields

I want, from whatever underlying database [in DBase format] I am working with, provided I

have first joined them on suitable common fields.  I can also search in any Worksheet or 
Form for all records with particular values of any field of interest. I suppose the Base 
equivalent of a worksheet is a  table?  But in Base what is a form, and what exactly is a

Query?  I assume that a Table is the equivalent of a Worksheet, but in my experiments with

Base, the Forms look like Worksheets to me, but also to Reports.  What exactly is a query,

or is it an elaborate way of doing a search? I need some kind of orienting help, and maybe

the website Dan mentioned could be it.  The help files need to start back at the beginning

and explain things.  

A further feature of Smartsuite that I found very helpful when I was feeling my way with it

was the close integration of Approach with 123, which made setting up Approach databases 
relative easy.  I had come to it like many others with an Amstrad and the LocoFile flat file

database that went with LocoScript, the programme that ran on them, and which I continued

to use  when I first went over to a PC in the early 90s.

Best wishes

On 30 May 2012 at 12:46, Dan Lewis wrote:

Send reply to:
Date sent:      	Wed, 30 May 2012 12:46:33 -0400
From:           	Dan Lewis <>
Subject:        	Re: Total User confusion

> Alexander Thurgood wrote:
> > Le 30/05/12 17:03, Dan Lewis a écrit :
> >
> > Hi All,
> >
> > Sorry to butt in, but Approach was way simpler to set up and get
> > something functional than anything OOo Base has ever provided.
> >
> >
> >
> >>       It does take some patience for a while to learn the
> >>       difference in
> >> the terms used. And it pays to be flexible.
> >
> > Hmm, flexible as in "being able to do the splits, juggle 5 balls
> > with one hand, spit fire, and dance the tango on one leg all at the
> > same time" ? ;-)
> >
> > To get the equivalent out of 30 minutes using Approach you would
> > have to spend several days and much pulling of hair and gnashing of
> > teeth to get the same thing out of Base - the user experience just
> > isn't the same - period, and it ain't getting any better :
> >
> > - dropped support for native mysql connections due to licensing
> > issues;
> >
> > - dropped support for the Oracle Report Builder due to licensing
> > issues;
> >
> > - non functional or incomplete ODBC connection implementations;
> >
> > - no multi-table querying/update DBF support - complete opposite of
> > Approach - in fact DBF support in AOO Base is rudimentary, it was
> > actually even better supported under StarOffice 3-5.1 ;
> >
> > - terrible JDBC query/retrieval performance via the UI or any of the
> > wizards, including mailmerge, for anything more than a hundred
> > datasets with 15 to 25 fields - even less than a 100 tuples can
> > bring the app to its knees ;
> >
> > - paranoia inspiring instability of the integrated HSQLDB engine,
> > resulting in complete loss or corruption of databases after a few
> > hours/days of usage ;
> >
> > Need I go on ?
> >
> >
> > But you can live with all of this if :
> > - you know how to manage/secure your precious data outside of AOO ;
> > - you know how program AOO to do the things that it just doesn't
> > provide via the GUI, or use alternatives ; - you know how to use
> > ODT/ODS templates and how to inject your external data sources into
> > them, either via the UI, or via separate programming languages or
> > document framework manipulation (php, perl, python).
> >
> > I am perhaps harsh here, but for me, Base is in no way comparable to
> > anything like Approach, FMPro, etc.
> >
> >
> > Alex
> No, you don't need to go on: your rant is long enough. It 
> was suppose to be about the differences in vocabulary used 
> as well as the AOO facilities. We don't even know what the 
> OP's problem is with these items: nothing specific has been 
> mentioned yet.
> --Dan
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Niall Martin
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