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Re: OpenOffice, Go-OO, ODBC, Offline Data Entry

From: Albin Blaschka <albin(dot)blaschka(at)raumberg-gumpenstein(dot)at>
To: pgsql-odbc(at)postgresql(dot)org
Subject: Re: OpenOffice, Go-OO, ODBC, Offline Data Entry
Date: 2010-08-18 06:29:54
Message-ID: 4C6B7DE2.70401@raumberg-gumpenstein.at (view raw or flat)
Thread:
Lists: pgsql-odbc
Hello!

Maybe a solution with SQLite (http://www.sqlite.org/) for which an 
ODBC-Driver also exists (http://www.ch-werner.de/sqliteodbc/) could be a 
solution? In the way that for offline use, the user pulls data into the 
forms, the ODBC-Connection to the database server is cut/switched to 
SQLite, the data can be entered offline. A SQLite database is a file 
similar to MS Access and can be copied without problems - so with a nice 
naming scheme and a scripting language with sqlite-bindings (python, 
php...) even a batch process of several databases seems doable for 
syncing...or, if the offline user comes back to the office, adds the 
connection again and inserts the data...

Don't know if this is possible, but maybe some hints...

kind regards,
Albin Blaschka

Am 18.08.2010 07:45, schrieb Lord_Devi:
> Hello,
>
>   I am new to the mailing list here, so I'd like to introduce myself
> quickly. My name is Casey Quibell, and I am also rather new to the
> concept of programming a database (Or in this case, more specifically
> using an ODBC connector to tie OpenOffice into it.)
>
>   Just a bit of technical preamble. While I am currently implementing
> this solution using Go-OO and MySQL, I am not tied to them. I like
> PostgreSQL as well, and there is little wrong with OpenOffice. Hell, if
> there are recommendations to be made even beyond these software
> selections I am listening.
>
>   I have a project I have been commissioned to complete, and while the
> majority of it seems very simple and straight-forward to me, there
> remains an issue that has me concerned. Simply put, this agency which
> needs a database, has a large number of paper forms they have to fill
> out on a regular basis. Many of these forms ask the same questions over
> and over again. Using an ODBC connector and OpenOffice, I am able to
> create .pdf files that resemble very closely the forms they are already
> used to. By entering information into these forms, they are able to have
> the information parse directly into a SQL database which they can then
> create reports from later (A very important ability for them).
>
>   In addition they are able to bring up an empty form to fill out, and if
> the relevant individual being processed is already in the system, it
> will fill out most of the 2nd form's fields for them; leaving only the
> remaining fields which are new and specific to the 2nd form. All of this
> is a massive time saver for them.
>
>   Here is the catch. The SQL database itself exists at a 'home office',
> and these workers are wanting to be able to enter this data remotely; in
> an 'offline mode' as it were. Because they are required to fill out
> these forms away from the office, I have a logistical problem. If they
> could have WIFI or Internet access while away from the office, I would
> simply configure a VPN solution for them. However this is not something
> I can do; where they must go frequently has no Internet access at all,
> and a cell phone tether with a dataplan would just be inordinately
> expensive for this particular group.
>
>   What options do I have available to me? I realize that while these
> workers are on-site, there is likely very little that can be done as far
> as the forms 'pulling' data from the office SQL database to auto-fill
> fields, but what about the other way around? I.e. Them going off-site,
> filling out the necessary forms, and then once they can get back to the
> office, upload the data to the database then?
>
>   I don't know if maybe having a local SQL database running on each
> worker laptop which could somehow 'sync' the data would be a viable
> option or not... That is something I have never tried before. One option
> as far as that route goes that I have found is an application called
> Pervasync: http://www.pervasync.com/ which claims to be able to sync
> database material in this manner. However, it is commercial, and I am
> quite devoted to using only Open Source software.
>
>   So far, it almost seems like I might have to tell the clients that it
> is simply not even possible what they are asking for. That they may have
> to enter the data twice: Once on-site, and a 2nd time when they get back
> to the office. Essentially copying the offline data, into the 'live'
> forms essentially.
>
>   Thank you for your time and consideration. I appologize if my post was
> a little long, but I really wanted to try and be as clear as I could be
> as to my over-all intent, as the possible solutions are so very vague to
> me.
>
> Regards,
>   Casey Quibell,<lorddevi(at)gmail(dot)com>
>
>
>


-- 
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** Albin Blaschka, Mag. rer. nat.
**
** HBLFA Raumberg - Gumpenstein
** Projektmanagement & Support
** Tel.: ++43 (0)3682 / 22451 - 244
** For the creation of this message 100% recycled electrons were used!
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