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InterBase Express vs BDE Paradox

InterBase looks a lot more involved than using Database Desktop to create a
commercial desktop database application.  I feel strongly that I am well
positioned in my niche to market functionality missing in my world.  But
developing that functionality.  I am not a programmer, I am not even an
Access user.

If I use InterBase, will I be able to use the create table method to create
an interbase relational database at run time?  You know, I will need a set
of tables for each company my user wants to work on.

With InterBase Express  :  is it possible at run time to borrow table
structure when using create table?

With a paradox table and the BDE:  is it possible at run time (or any other
time) to borrow table structure when using create table?

Since my project is a desktop application, can I hide the login from the
user that Interbase seems to force me into?

Will the InterBase  PDF tutorial get me to speed?

Does the InterBase Express desktop deploy with a significantly smaller foot
print than using a paradox table and distributing the BDE?  A smaller
footprint is important to me, as is installing one application instead of
two.  I was a little weirded out myself when I installed Delphi developed
Estate Planning software (OSI Software, TrustWise) that used the BDE.

Will the paradox / BDE accept a network table location, with the program
files on the workstation?

Will the InterBase Express table deploy to a network drive, with my
application installed to a workstation?

Thank you for you help.

charles wood

 

Re:InterBase Express vs BDE Paradox


In article <7r53p2$8...@forums.borland.com>, "Charles Wood"

Quote
<cfw...@thegrid.net> wrote:
>InterBase looks a lot more involved than using Database
Desktop to create a
>commercial desktop database application.  I feel strongly
that I am well
>positioned in my niche to market functionality missing in
my world.  But
>developing that functionality.  I am not a programmer, I
am not even an
>Access user.

<sigh> "I am not a doctor.  I don't even play one on TV.  
But that doesn't stop me from recommending medical
treatments."

Quote

>If I use InterBase, will I be able to use the create table
method to create
>an interbase relational database at run time?  You know, I
will need a set
>of tables for each company my user wants to work on.

>With InterBase Express  :  is it possible at run time to
borrow table
>structure when using create table?

Yes.

Quote

>Since my project is a desktop application, can I hide the
login from the
>user that Interbase seems to force me into?

Yes, look at the LoginPrompt property,
Quote

>Will the InterBase  PDF tutorial get me to speed?

No.

Quote
>Does the InterBase Express desktop deploy with a

significantly smaller foot
Quote
>print than using a paradox table and distributing the

BDE?  

Not really.  OTOH you get a much more robust database
engine.

Quote
>A smaller
>footprint is important to me, as is installing one

application instead of

Quote
>two.  

Say what?

Quote
>I was a little weirded out myself when I installed Delphi
developed
>Estate Planning software (OSI Software, TrustWise) that

used the BDE.

Say what?  Why did this app even make you aware of the BDE?

Quote

>Will the paradox / BDE accept a network table location,
with the program
>files on the workstation?

Yes.

Quote

>Will the InterBase Express table deploy to a network
drive, with my
>application installed to a workstation?

Yes.  A better question, however, is "Where will the
interbase engine reside?"

Are you aware that the Local InterBase Server that comes
with Delphi has a run-time fee?  And that you are
restricted to one (possibly two) users?  And that there are
several non-BDE TDataset descendents available (Advantage,
Apollo, FlashFiler, dbIsam, . . . .)

Let's go back to the beginning.  You write, "I am not a
programmer, I am not even an Access user."  Have you
considered hiring someone who IS a programmer to develop
this app for you?

Art Metz
AM...@navco.com

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Re:InterBase Express vs BDE Paradox


Technical issues aside, one thing to consider with Interbase is that you
must pay a license fee for every copy of your application that you deploy.
That may cause you to look at alternatives.

Bill

--

Bill Todd - TeamB
(TeamB cannot respond to questions received via email)

Re:InterBase Express vs BDE Paradox


BDE is looking sweet to me.
I will always flee from such fees.

Also, my asked myself why use IB that can span multiple drives with a hugh
database when my users data will usually be less than 500 kb.  That's right
kb.

Thanks!

Quote
Bill Todd <b...@nospam.dbginc.com> wrote in message

news:7r6rb6$m6h27@forums.borland.com...
Quote
> Technical issues aside, one thing to consider with Interbase is that you
> must pay a license fee for every copy of your application that you deploy.
> That may cause you to look at alternatives.

> Bill

> --

> Bill Todd - TeamB
> (TeamB cannot respond to questions received via email)

Re:InterBase Express vs BDE Paradox


Quote
"Charles Wood" <cfw...@thegrid.net> wrote:
>BDE is looking sweet to me.
>I will always flee from such fees.

You mean Paradox instead of BDE, I think. (BDE is middleware to get
you from Delphi to any number of database engines, including InterBase
and Paradox)

Just because Interbase can be large and you don't have that need is
not the only reason that Interbase is better than Paradox. IB is far
more flexible and stable.

In terms of stability, the best story I've ever heard about a db
surviving abuse is about IB. A developer in California had a
government contract to write an application with db to run an army
tank while in the field. The platform was a rugged laptop. The problem
was that every time the tank fired its main gun, the electrostatic
charge was enough to interrupt all the electricity in the tank and so
the computer went down hard and cold. The laptop was built to reboot
quickly and the developer configured so that his app would come up
automatically and so there were only a few seconds at most between gun
firing and end of  reboot. But the database.....it had to be one that
survived constant abnormal terminations. It was IB. With its natural
robustness and its forced write feature, the app came up every time
with data intact and at the last view configuration. I don't know
_any_ other database that does that well.

But you are right about the fees. Silly, silly Interbase. They are
(||) that far away from a deployable royalty-free product that would
do nothing but fill their coffers and they won't take the step. As a
capitalist, I can't see it. But then, it takes all kinds....

Phil Cain

--

Re:InterBase Express vs BDE Paradox


IB derives a lot of its revenue from those license fees. Is it better to
sell a few copies for something or a lot of copies for nothing<g>?
Seriously, it is a very difficult question to answer. I am not at all
convinced that IB would sell enough additional copies to make up the
difference if they dropped their license fee.

Bill

--

Bill Todd - TeamB
(TeamB cannot respond to questions received via email)

Re:InterBase Express vs BDE Paradox


Thanks for the food for thought.  If my retail application could sell for no
more than $250,  and since it will be a desk top application, single user
access to the database, do you have any idea of how much of the $250 would
IB want?

Another thought, I would love a VCL spreadsheet to use as a front end to the
database:  data entry by fields (dragging and editing redunant field data)
not records is what I have wanted from windows applications for a long time.
Why have an in place calendar editor/picker when the date, for example,  is
the same for multiple records?  VCL spreadsheet with some constraints and
data validation.  But I don't see any such components out there????

Re:InterBase Express vs BDE Paradox


Quote
"Bill Todd" <b...@nospam.dbginc.com> wrote:
>IB derives a lot of its revenue from those license fees. Is it better to
>sell a few copies for something or a lot of copies for nothing<g>?
>Seriously, it is a very difficult question to answer. I am not at all
>convinced that IB would sell enough additional copies to make up the
>difference if they dropped their license fee.

Bill,

They shouldn't drop the license fees. The ones they have in place now
are fair, AFAIK, if a little difficult to understand.

What I mean is that they should produce another product, an IB engine
that cannot create a database. It should be simple enough to disable
some of the IB features. Then, if it could be run as an application
extension (DLL, say) instead of requiring the whole of local IB, it
could be shrinkwrapped with any app for retail sale.

An engine that cannot create a database is useless to a database
designer. It would effectively be a run-time version of IB. It would
be good for running any IB database so it becomes like any
distribution DLL. If abuse of runtime was an issue, then the
developer, as licensee, could bury a registration code in the EXE
which would then be registered with the DLL on use.

The effect of all this would be to give people like me a chance to
scale downward to small retail programs and the benefit to IB would be
wider saturation. That, in its own way, creates demand.

This is not new. It's already been proven by MS in their distribution
of the run-time Jet engine for access.

I cannot imagine why IB won't go for the money on this. I know I would
pay in the $300-$500 range for such a royalty-free license. The
potential value to me is huge because it leverages what I know about
IB. But my impression is that there is a modicum of elitism at IB.
This "smaller" market, which has made billions for Gates, is just not
in IB's league, or some such.

It's a horse and water problem, I guess. But I've given up trying to
catch anyone's attention at IB. They either can't see the money or
don't want it and they are entitled to what policy they may. As for
me, I'm on to other possibilities for a shrinkwrappable  relational
database.

Phil Cain
--

Re:InterBase Express vs BDE Paradox


Currently single user licenses are running $60 for Interbase.  The pricing is
being looked at and hopefully will be revised down somewhat, but no time frame
is in place AFAIK for doing so.  Additionally buying the licenses in bulk
quantities, 10 pack is $500 and 1000 pack is $2000, can reduce the average cost
per license dramtically if you are going to sell enough to warrent it. (These
are all the Local Interbase licensing prices, the Interbase Server prices are
higher)

Quote
Charles Wood wrote:

> Thanks for the food for thought.  If my retail application could sell for no
> more than $250,  and since it will be a desk top application, single user
> access to the database, do you have any idea of how much of the $250 would
> IB want?

> Another thought, I would love a VCL spreadsheet to use as a front end to the
> database:  data entry by fields (dragging and editing redunant field data)
> not records is what I have wanted from windows applications for a long time.
> Why have an in place calendar editor/picker when the date, for example,  is
> the same for multiple records?  VCL spreadsheet with some constraints and
> data validation.  But I don't see any such components out there????

--
Jeff Overcash (TeamB)
      (Please do not email me directly unless  asked. Thank You)
Have you ever met a lady screaming angst potential?
Have you ever dreamed of romance no matter how experimental?
Have you ever felt an alien drifting back into your hometown?
Did you think you were buying safety when you bought that peice of ground?
             (Fish)
--

Re:InterBase Express vs BDE Paradox


Quote
"Charles Wood" <cfw...@thegrid.net> wrote:
>Thanks for the food for thought.  If my retail application could sell for no
>more than $250,  and since it will be a desk top application, single user
>access to the database, do you have any idea of how much of the $250 would
>IB want?

If IB had a run-time version without the ability to create a database,
the idea is that they would sell it royalty-free. That is, you pay
them $300, say, and you can distribute unlimited copies with your app.

The per-seat orientation that IB has for all its products is not
suitable for retail, especially for products that sell for under $100.

Quote

>Another thought, I would love a VCL spreadsheet to use as a front end to the
>database:  data entry by fields (dragging and editing redunant field data)
>not records is what I have wanted from windows applications for a long time.
>Why have an in place calendar editor/picker when the date, for example,  is
>the same for multiple records?  VCL spreadsheet with some constraints and
>data validation.  But I don't see any such components out there????

Yeah, well. A spreadsheet that understands the data. Somewhere between
what we have and the starship Enterprise, there may well be one of
those. But to make such a thing useful for all data views on all
databases would be a bit of a trick in the current market. If I
understand you right, then underneath the spreadsheet is the idea that
we could resolve all relational ambiguities in all views. Not on
anyone's radar today, AFAIK.

Phil Cain
--

Re:InterBase Express vs BDE Paradox


"Jeff Overcash (TeamB)" <overc...@onramp.net> wrote:

Quote
> Additionally buying the licenses in bulk
>quantities, 10 pack is $500 and 1000 pack is $2000, can reduce the average cost
>per license dramtically if you are going to sell enough to warrent it.

Current seat-wise pricing isn't bad. There's a lot of good value
there.

But there's also a lot of retail that isn't priced seat-wise and local
interbase is too bulky for a lot of applications.

In the under $200 market, I can write a number of salable products.
But it's high risk, I can't predict the sales, and product life cycles
are often less than one year. Seat-wise pricing at any level is too
great an administrative burden, not to mention that I'd have to buy
all those seats before the sale and whether or not any of them sold.

Then theres the bulkiness of local interbase. It's light and fast for
any serious business development, but when I sell a utility to a
pensioner in Zaire I can't get into the wonders of the Interbase
Guardian. It becomes too much technology for the target user.

Phil Cain

--

Re:InterBase Express vs BDE Paradox


Quote

>Yeah, well. A spreadsheet that understands the data. Somewhere between
>what we have and the starship Enterprise, there may well be one of
>those. But to make such a thing useful for all data views on all
>databases would be a bit of a trick in the current market. If I
>understand you right, then underneath the spreadsheet is the idea that
>we could resolve all relational ambiguities in all views. Not on
>anyone's radar today, AFAIK.

>Phil Cain
>--

I saw some marketing material months ago on Tidestone Technologies Formula1
pages that suggested it was being used for data entry.  And I am thinking
small - one data table with a spreadsheet view that writes back to the
table, even through an intermediary file.

Dimak & Vlad's Delphi Page
http://www.uniyar.ac.ru/~vlads/dpage.htm

They didn't respond to my inquiry.

As to earlier, I was thinking BDE as sweet because even though it has to be
distributed as a bit too much technology for Mr. Tanzania, at least it
doesn't accounce its presence with a system tray icon.  There are a lot of
users who wouldn't notice the new directory on C and who wouldn't notice the
BDE administrator in the control panel.

Thanks for all your orienting comments.

Charles Wood

Re:InterBase Express vs BDE Paradox


Quote
Bill Todd wrote:

> IB derives a lot of its revenue from those license fees. Is it better to
> sell a few copies for something or a lot of copies for nothing<g>?

Why not just choose to take the both of those. I have heard that US military
forces pay easily $1000 for a usual iron bolt, and $2000 if it was zinc
coated:) Then paying according the given list price for a "NATO-standard
Interbase version" should be no problem.

No seriously, I myself can easily:
 a) make slightly different product versions from any of my applications
 b) do several, several different pricings about those versions

Product variations, and then pricing and targeting these to different
customer sections, that's an old marketing trick that has worked for
decades.

Microsoft is an undeniable market leader in Office products, maybe even
the main supplier also for the US Defense. Yet this has not stopped them
from doing about 10 different packaging and princing versions from
their MS-Office products.

I really, really do not understand why Interbase would be the big exception,
where any clever pricing and differentiating would just not work.

One could easily make for instance a Delphi Specific limited 1..3 user
version, that won't run without some delphi trick, and which definietly
lacks that essential M1 tank feature.  And then bundle this unimited
IB distribution license with specific Delphi version number, and sell
it for Delphi customers for some sum of money.

Where is the big leakage of profits from IB's pocket in this scenario?

Markku Nevalainen

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