Sunday, 28 September 2014

What Is It and Why It Is

Data Forms Action! A Database Forms Builder

What it is

Data Forms Action! is a Forms builder tool for Linux. Currently it supports Postgres and MySQL or MariaDB databases. The intention is to also support DB2, Oracle and Sybase in the future.

It is also a Rapid Application Development (RAD) tool, which has the aim of making it as easy as possible for somebody with little experience of software development to build Forms for viewing and entering data.

Why it is

About 2 years ago when I first started developing Data Forms Action! I had some Postgres data that I wanted to view, and was looking for some quick tool that would allow me to throw some controls on a form and start looking at my data. A quick scan of the available software at that time didn't really come up with anything. The closest to what I was looking for was OpenOffice Base, but at the time that didn't support any other databases, and the GUI design element was pretty frustrating to use.

So I thought to myself, what does it take to develop a simple RAD tool on Linux where I can:
  • Connect to multiple databases and retrieve data.
  • Create simple interactive Forms where I can drag n' drop controls.
  • Edit the properties of these controls so I can set colour and font information.
  • Save the Form so that I can edit it, or share it with others.
  • Create a Forms player application so that others can simply run the Form as an application.

The answer to that is Data Forms Action!