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Author Topic: Access programmer with an idea for an app - but I don't want to use Access...  (Read 1880 times)


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I've got to the point where I'm a bit bored with Access (I use it for work) but I want to learn something new if only to preserve my sanity and broaden my skills.

Now I'm not going to ask for straight-up recommendations for languages but instead I have an app I want to develop and perhaps people could suggest what would be an appropriate path to start upon.

Note-taking/documentation application

I'd like something straightforward that does note-taking (there are many excellent programs of course like The Guide which I'm currently testing) but it will also includes tagging and to-do lists.  Then there's my desire to turn my pages of notes into a lovely rich text formatted document with lovely images and being able to embed other media. This would have a variety of uses from presentations to reference documentation.

Maybe each page could store notes about the page itself (so I'm starting to draw in elements of wikis here).  I'm influenced by Backpack from 37Signals which I can't afford and Thymer from Stunf (which I do pay for)  but I want a desktop application.  I'd like to be able to link to local files on the computer or on mapped drives.

There's nothing out there which meets all my desires so, what the hell, I'm quite keen to code it in my spare time.  I'm a Microsoft man through and through so my initial thoughts turned to .NET but overall I'm not certain which combination of language, database and toolsets would be appropriate.  I have a small amount of money to spend on tools.

In some senses I'm a beginner as I haven't written a program you could just easily install on a PC - my Access work depends on the Access runtime and obviously has various built in limitations.  I don't think I can handle something too heavy (like C++) but I'm willing to try most things.  It will be for Windows and I might want to experiment with the interface, i.e a bit more than the useful File, Edit menus.

If I could end with a lame metaphor I feel like I'm in a boat on the shore and I need a push out in the right direction.

So where's a good place to start?  Thanks!

Apologies if this is the wrong place to post but it seemed the most likely starting point.


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Except for the tagging, this would be Wikidpad, and Wikidpad is flexible enough that you might be able to create some sort of "pseudo-tagging" mechanism.
If you're comfortable with Python, I'd recommend starting with the Wikidpad source and modifying it to suit your needs.  It's a WxPython app with sqlite or gadfly storage.