I've used real databases - why would I bother with Ffenics?

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I've used real databases - why would I bother with Ffenics?

Postby Pete Tabord » Fri Feb 01, 2008 4:59 pm

First, Ffenics is a real fully functional relational database system. It implements more of the various rules regarding relational databases than most of its better known rivals.

However, the product is aimed at beginning or non-technical users who understand a business need and simply want to get on and fulfil it without becoming involved in the professional knowledge needed to work with the likes of Oracle, SQL Server etc.

For this reason we conceal the technical features of Ffenics behind a friendly interface that largely employs non-technical terms. Further, although it is fully scalable to trillions of records and thousands of users it is normally limited to 8millon records per form and 128 users - beyond this one really needs to be considering heavy duty equipment, back up procedures, etc, and we would want to have a serious discussion with any user before they went further.

Ok, so its a real database that doesn't look like one. So why might a professional database developer consider the use of Ffenics?

1) Development is very rapid. Most functionality is built in and quick for a data professional to learn and get productive work from. Normally a couple of days is sufficient (although of course many years can be spent learning all the best tricks and wrinkles!) You do need to be prepared to discard preconceptions to achieve this - see reasons not to use Ffenics below.

2) It is very forgiving. You can get the design all wrong and fix it without restarting the project. You can even hot fix while users are working in the system - and for the same reason it is very adaptable to customers with rapidly changing circumstances that would defeat normal development cycles.

3) It is (nearly) data source independent - which makes it an ideal reporting and analysis tool for bringing together information from assorted inherited applications. Ideal for management reporting systems (and your managers will like the flexibility too)

4) Great for rapid prototyping, for all the above reasons, and because the appearance can be made very rich - perfect for impressing folk with the demo - plus of course the demo will be functional, because you create the data storage automatically with the screens. Of course, you could just give them the demo and use the Oracle development budget to visit the Bahamas. For several years.

5) It's fun :shock: . Most application development tools aren't. Don't you want to have fun while you work?

There are however a couple of reasons not to use Ffenics.

1) You require 100% control of every piece of functionality. Only a full programming language can provide this. You need C (which is another fun thing to use) or C++ (slightly less fun).

2) You don't like learning new tricks. You need COBOL (which isn't fun at all :) ).

Hope this helps!
Peter J. Tabord
Head of Development
Database Software Ltd.
ptabord@ffenics.com
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