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Bento end-of-life -- what next?

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Posted by 22111
Aug 4, 2013 at 08:20 PM

 

Bento is a classic example of a spin-off marketed to its death.

I once had been very interested in Bento, so I tried to discover, in what way was it different from their core product, in which way could I have realized tasks easier and faster with it than with the latter, but where were its possible limitations, and to none of my questions I got any answer, so I dropped it and put my data into askSam, meaning I left all these decisions by taking the easy way out… and after having had a look at Access: there, at least, you have the advantage of help forums and many free (and some paid) standard solutions which form a nice construction kit altogether, but which demands a rather heavy time investment; if you rely upon those “light” databases around 100 dollars mentioned here and elsewhere, this eco-system around your database is missing, though, so Access is preferable in the end, as I see it.

But as said, I took the easy way out, judging I needed good search, but not really a relational database, and Ultra Recall might replace a “real” database for some given tasks, too. Here, there is an additional advantage: If ever you have time to proceed to a real database, some day afterwards, you will have all your data within a standard SQLite database, you will get some standard frontend for it (some are free, really good ones cost around 100 dollars), and there is plenty of community help around SQLite.

This is not to be mixed-up with databases like mySQL which are indeed more suitable for bigger tasks: SQLite is perfect for even the most modest demands.

But as said, there is always askSam 7, regularly on bitsdujour, and version 8 will come out rather soon it appears; of course, it’s not the ideal solution for number crunching, but then, if that’s your priority, you will already know that many people then will use Excel, and here again, there is a fully-developed help and tools ecosystem built up around it, a factor that is never negligeable.

 


Posted by Paul Korm
Aug 4, 2013 at 08:44 PM

 

Had not considered TapForms—thank you for the tip.  I’ve had moderate success importing a Bento-exported CSV into TapForms.  It seems a “date” field in Bento doesn’t export in a way that TapForms recognizes in either “Date” or “Date and Time” form on import.

 


Posted by Stephen Zeoli
Aug 4, 2013 at 09:24 PM

 

Paul Korm wrote:
Had not considered TapForms—thank you for the tip.  I’ve had moderate
>success importing a Bento-exported CSV into TapForms.  It seems a “date”
>field in Bento doesn’t export in a way that TapForms recognizes in
>either “Date” or “Date and Time” form on import.
>

Hi, Paul,

The database I exported from Bento to TapForms via CSV came through Date formated just fine. The original file only had the date, no time. Visually it looked like 7/16/2013 (and was a date field in Bento, with the record being created by selecting the date in a calendar). The import to TapForm wizard gave me the option to select the format for the incoming date data… perhaps that’s the stumbling block in your situation?

Steve Z.

 


Posted by MadaboutDana
Aug 5, 2013 at 10:05 AM

 

This Bento thing is proof positive that the big boys (FileMaker a.k.a. Apple, Google) are just as unreliable as most one-man bands (Catch being the most recent and topical small developer to “change direction” in a customer-irking way). I feel sorry for the 20 FileMaker employees (mostly on the Bento team) who have just been made redundant, too.

It’s a shame. I didn’t use Bento on the desktop, but I liked the iOS app, which was quite flexible and also imported/exported stuff very nicely.

Those seeking an alternative might also like to investigate open-source KeePass, the encrypted database manager that holds your data very, very securely. There are various clients for iOS and Android, and I transfer my heavily encrypted KeePass files quite happily via Dropbox. KeePass files can be extensively customised, and the interface is about as minimalist as you could wish!

 


Posted by Dr Andus
Aug 5, 2013 at 11:06 AM

 

MadaboutDana wrote:
This Bento thing is proof positive that the big boys (FileMaker a.k.a.
>Apple, Google) are just as unreliable as most one-man bands

I’d say the big boys are even more unreliable than one-man bands because they can drop a software that has tens or hundreds of millions of users without batting an eyelid (see Google Reader), while for a one-man band it’s a big part of their livelihood or a labour of love…

 


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