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Relational Database for MAC

Vernon Keenan vern at BioData.COM
Sat Sep 24 21:37:09 EST 1994


In article <35sigd$6lr at s.ms.uky.edu>, nekay at seqanal.mi.uky.edu (Neil Kay) wrote:

> I am going to purchase a database to be run on a MACINTOSH to help keep track
> of patient data in a clinical research project.  I have identified two 
> programs to consider:  FoxPro (Microsoft) and 4th Dimension (ACIUS).
> 
> Does anyone have a recommendation for either of these programs, or possibly
> a recommendation for yet another program?  I have heard rave reviews about
> Paradox, which is only made for DOS. Is either of the above-mentioned programs
> as good as Paradox?
> 
> Thanks in advance.
> 
> Sincerely,
> Peggy L. Bishop
> Lab Manager, Bishop/Kay Immunobiologic Facility
> nekay at seqanal.mi.uky.edu

Peggy -- If you're going for maximum user interface flexibility, and
you're willing to trade off speed, then ACI US 4th Dimension is probably
the best tool. However, be aware that 4D is famous for its steep learning
curve and somewhat unique approach to database technology. FoxBase is less
flexible, but much faster for some operations. FoxBases' cross-platform
capabilities are also useful, but it lends a lowest-common-denominator
look and feel to the apps.

IMHO, while I love the Mac, its database products are really quite weak. I
used to cover this "beat" for MacWEEK magazine, and things are just as
dismal as they were in 1992 when I was an active reviewer of Mac database
products. In fact, I would say that 4D has managed to corrupt the thinking
of thousands of Macintosh database programmers. 4D's unique method of
doing business would never fly in the PC world, where there are a host of
compeitors that keep each other sharp and there is a strong link between
user interfaces and SQL backend processors.

Anyways, while I'm not enchanted with 4D, I'd say it should be OK if
you've had any programming experience. We are currently using it to
develop a high-throughput screening database package.

Vern

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