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Problem with a set

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  • Problem with a set

    I'm fairly experienced with database systems, but new to A5. I'm converting an application from Lotus Approach to A5, and, initially, we're trying to do it as quickly as possible - i.e., probably not taking advantage of some of the niceties of A5. I've got two specific problems that don't seem to be mentioned in the forum.

    1 - I'm trying to create a set involving "line item".dbf, invoice.dbf, and "buyer data".dbf. Invoice is the root, and buyer data, and line item are each sub-tables of invoice. All is ok until I try to add "line item". Everything seems OK except that no list of columns pops up to let me create the link between invoice and line item. I've checked column data types , etc. and it all seems ok. I don't get any sort of error message, just no selection of columns to link on. If I make line item to root I can make the links, however, that causes me to have to turn a 1:M link into a 1:1 link in the other direction. Any suggestions? (Incidentally, the documentation refers to an older interface that lacks the graphical point and click way of creating the structure of the set - I wonder if the more graphical interface is part of the problem? I've no idea how long it's been around.).

    2 - In the inherited database I have a memo field containing bitmap photographs. I'd like to display them in a form field, but it doesn't work simply by referencing the field in the form. Another memo field containing text does get displayed. Is there a function that needs to be applied to the bitmap data, or some other manipulation that has to take place?

    I've done a lot of searching to solve these problems myself before posting here, but I may very well have looked in the wrong places, or phrased searches poorly. This is my first forum post, so forgive me if the content is inappropriate in any way.

    Thanks,

    Mike

  • #2
    Re: Problem with a set

    Mike

    Welcome to Alpha. Approach is nice system and easy to use. Too bad it is deprecated.

    1. In the set definition you have the linking established between parent and child. So you either enter a new parent, or find an existing parent and the child is attached to the parent using the set definition.

    Are you building a form based on the set with the parent record and the child as a browse? Look at the AlphaSports sample as a template to design from.

    2. In the table definition is the image field defined as a memo field or a bitmap field? Bitmap will work with a memo field that is holding an jpg or png too.

    Not sure if this is an option, but some choose to store images outside of the dbf and refer to the location of the image file. That helps to keep the size of the dbf smaller. But that may not be an issue for you...

    Hope that helps.
    Al Buchholz
    Bookwood Systems, LTD
    Weekly QReportBuilder Webinars Thursday 1 pm CST

    Occam's Razor - KISS
    Normalize till it hurts - De-normalize till it works.
    Advice offered and questions asked in the spirit of learning how to fish is better than someone giving you a fish.
    When we triage a problem it is much easier to read sample systems than to read a mind.
    "Make it as simple as possible, but not simpler."
    Albert Einstein

    http://www.iadn.com/images/media/iadn_member.png

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Problem with a set

      I am not straight here. May be me.

      invoice s the master table
      link linitems 1 to many
      link buyer as 1 to one?

      I just need to get my bearings before suggesting.
      I am old, so could have read it wrong


      Note: I generally make all linking fields numeric and the have nothing to do with invoice numbers and other. They are hidden to the user on forms, reports.
      Dave Mason
      [email protected]
      Skype is dave.mason46

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Problem with a set

        Al,

        Thanks for the quick response! I feel foolish for missing the bitmap data type - I'll try it asap.

        As for the set creation problem, I'm not sure I understand your answer. I've created a nearly identical set in another application - structurally it is identical: teacher, with 1-1 relationship to subject, and 1-M relationship to students and it works fine (this was just a demo I put together for scratch, not trying to convert from another platform). Seemingly doing the same thing with invoice, buyer, and list of line items fails in a way that looks like a bug - the interface simply doesn't present the opportunity to choose columns to match on and gives no error message as to why it doesn't. It's almost as if it thinks line item has no columns. However, if I (artificially) make line item the primary table and create a 1-1 link to invoice, it works. I may be able to get around all this when I create a grid as the grid will contain the line items and the form containing the grid will have the invoice and buyer data. I'll play around with it some more and if it turns out to be something other than pilot error, I'll report back.

        Thanks, "the pilot"

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Problem with a set

          Dave,

          Yes - that is the arrangement:
          Code:
          invoice -- 1:1 --> buyer
           |
            -- 1:M --> lineitem
          I'm currently keeping things as they are in Approach as we are going to be going back and forth between the two systems for a while (don't ask!)

          Thanks,

          Mike
          Last edited by Al Buchholz; 06-02-2014, 04:24 PM. Reason: clarity in diagram

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Problem with a set

            That diagram was garbled - meant to show that buyer and line item are each linked directly off invoice.

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Problem with a set

              Michael, the general recommendation is to avoid blank spaces in object names, including table or field names. To aid clarity an underscore character might be used without causing an issue. So your "line item" table would become "Line_item", for example.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Problem with a set

                Thanks, Tom - that is probably part of the problem. I have a constraint of having to share the dbf and dbt between A5 and an existing Approach application, so I've been trying to maintain one set of names. I may have to create a script to move files back and forth while changing names as necessary - the problem occurs in table names as well as in column names. Sigh.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Problem with a set

                  You could always download my FREE Invoicing app and see how I constructed the sets.
                  Look in www.allstarapplications.com
                  See our Hybrid Option here;
                  https://hybridapps.example-software.com/


                  There are 3 things you can do in any situation;
                  Live with it, Change it or Walk away from it.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Problem with a set

                    Tim, thanks. At the moment I'm constrained to maintain the same set of base tables and the look and feel of the Approach screens. Once we've got the (semi)exact copy working I'll be trying to talk the user into redesigning. I know we can't be using the full functionality of A5 - furthermore, we're bound to want to go to a web based version that will support hand-held devices. That's probably next year earliest.

                    Mike

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Problem with a set

                      I wasn't suggesting you use it, just to see how the sets were constructed.
                      See our Hybrid Option here;
                      https://hybridapps.example-software.com/


                      There are 3 things you can do in any situation;
                      Live with it, Change it or Walk away from it.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Problem with a set

                        Originally posted by MichaelFrame View Post
                        Dave,

                        Yes - that is the arrangement:
                        Code:
                        invoice -- 1:1 --> buyer
                         |
                          -- 1:M --> lineitem
                        I'm currently keeping things as they are in Approach as we are going to be going back and forth between the two systems for a while (don't ask!)

                        Thanks,

                        Mike
                        Mike

                        Can you show the field names that comprise the relationship? in both Approach and Alpha?

                        An image of both would help too....
                        Al Buchholz
                        Bookwood Systems, LTD
                        Weekly QReportBuilder Webinars Thursday 1 pm CST

                        Occam's Razor - KISS
                        Normalize till it hurts - De-normalize till it works.
                        Advice offered and questions asked in the spirit of learning how to fish is better than someone giving you a fish.
                        When we triage a problem it is much easier to read sample systems than to read a mind.
                        "Make it as simple as possible, but not simpler."
                        Albert Einstein

                        http://www.iadn.com/images/media/iadn_member.png

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Problem with a set

                          I'm at home with Mac access only. I'll look at it in the AM when I get back to a PC. Thanks, Mike

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Problem with a set

                            I'll try to send it to you when I get back to the office tomorrow. Thanks.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Problem with a set

                              Mike

                              Sure. You may want to send the app to me or someone else to help. Or do a quick remote session to save time.
                              Al Buchholz
                              Bookwood Systems, LTD
                              Weekly QReportBuilder Webinars Thursday 1 pm CST

                              Occam's Razor - KISS
                              Normalize till it hurts - De-normalize till it works.
                              Advice offered and questions asked in the spirit of learning how to fish is better than someone giving you a fish.
                              When we triage a problem it is much easier to read sample systems than to read a mind.
                              "Make it as simple as possible, but not simpler."
                              Albert Einstein

                              http://www.iadn.com/images/media/iadn_member.png

                              Comment

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