Saturday, February 16, 2013

Access 2013 is one of the Pay as You Go carrots

From this article at ZdNet, the following quote says a lot about the future of Access in the Office suite.  "With an Office 365 Home Premium subscription, you get those programs (Word, Excel, Powerpoint and OneNote) and Outlook, Publisher, and Access.

My thoughts on this "Though I haven't read the fine print, this means that Microsoft need to keep including Access in the Premium line-up because the licence entitles users to free upgrades as long as they keep paying. So there you go dear readers, Microsoft have to keep Access going... As Excel and Word and Outlook work well in the cloud, its a good bet that Access will get the resources to fly to the cloud in the not to distant future. 

Garry Robinson - Access MVP from 2007 till now.

Friday, February 15, 2013

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Access 2013 - Close to A Revolution according to the Scottsman

In this MS article that I mentioned in a recent post, Access aims to be the "easy to use database tool for the web". For anyone who has ever headed out into this world, you will realise this was always going to be hard. As this is early days in a new tool, the best place to look is the book writers as they can be a little impartial and certainly have to test the product well. So when I saw I post by Andy Couch, author of a few books and way smarter than me, I thought I would share his early insights.

Book Links:  Access 2013 Inside and Out  by Jeff Conrad (Andy is an editor)

Microsoft® Access® 2013 Plain & Simple by Andy Couch

Microsoft® Office Professional 2013 Step by Step by a bunch of people

From Andy...

Hi All,

Like most of you skilled Access users, what I really want to see in Office 2013 is a cracking offering from MS for Access. For too long we have been wandering in the wilderness. All of you have wanted a browser based experience, and it has not come to pass. Until now.
I have said this so many times is we needed a solid platform for the internet before we added the WOW factors. After working with the beta and now the live version of 2013, I think it is difficult to dispute that we now have the platform.

I have just spent all of today going though one of Jeff Conrads Chapters on constructing views (which is basically a form in the browser). What Jeff has show me is that these views go much further than you would imagine in an online programming world. This excitement is something that I haven't experienced for a 15 years. When I was a Paradox Developer and got my hands on Access 2.0, and I saw just how great that product was. Then with Access 97 when OLE Automation came of age, I thought wow. When the Ribbon came along I thought well it is nice, but not a revolution. Other than that, Access has just been good old Access.

Now I have pleasantly had my third Access Revelation. The work that has gone into the View Design Tool is just awesome. Not only have the Team managed to preserve so much of the standard productivity of good old Access, but they have added features that actually make the UI surpass Desktop Access!

For a simple example, when you drag and drop a field onto a form, the design surface moves all the other controls out of the way to make space for when you drop down or move an existing control. But that is just one of a number of very sexy new features. Now we wait while Microsoft posts some worthwhile examples, great help guides and videos and irons out the kinks in Office 365 to see if these revelations actually become a revolution. In the meantime, why not pre-order one of these books to whet your appetite"

Andy Couch

Monday, February 11, 2013

Surface Pro = MacBook Air

 FYI: A Surface Pro has very similar usable disk space to the MacBook Air according to ZDnet.  Especially if you move the recovery space to a USB stick.

For more pesky questions to the MS team about Surface pro, read this page or just read an early ZDnet review

FYI 2: People who use Macs, Ipads and Google devices don't seem to develop custom software and just like suffering with what they have been given. Good businesses should continually improve their business practises, standing still or downloading the odd app is unlikely to liberate the information that individuals collect.

Monday, February 04, 2013

Access 2013 - Wots in the Box

Access 2013 looks like it can be summed up by the following words  - SharePoint, SQL Server, Macros, Azure, Office 365 (this may not be ready) in an environment called MS Access Web Apps

So if you are looking for the upside, my guess is it may be an environment where Access programmers can generate solutions that run in more worldly places than our conventional files server solutions. I believe we had better hope that all those big companies with SharePoint find this is a great idea and then they start looking for people with Access skills to build these apps. Only grandfather time will reveal if this is going to come about.

Remember when installing a new version of MS Access to test, always install with the additional options and do not remove your old version of Office. Generally I like to only add Access and leave Excel and Word at the lower levels.

Note:  Access was included in the Office 365 Home Premium pack, something people can rent for 15$ a month or thereabouts. That's a positive sign.