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marco114
Nov 13, 2007, 01:55 PM
The missing component of iWork maybe?
http://www.bentotrial.com/preview/



MacRumors
Nov 13, 2007, 01:56 PM
http://www.macrumors.com/images/macrumorsthreadlogo.gif (http://www.macrumors.com)

Filemaker (http://www.filemaker.com/) has introduced a new personal database application for Mac OS X called Bento (http://www.filemaker.com/products/bento/features.html?ovmkt=D0C70F033B0041D39E0C1FA48B67DA2C&WT.mc_id=D0C70F033B0041D39E0C1FA48B67DA2C).
Bento organizes all your important information in one place. So you can manage your contacts, coordinate events, track projects, prioritize tasks, and more — faster and easier than ever before.
Bento is described as being designed exclusively for Mac OS X Leopard and takes advantage of many Leopard-specific features, such as live linking to iCal, Core Animation, Advanced Find, Time Machine Backups and Multimedia features.

A free preview download is available (http://bentotrial.com/preview/form/entry.aspx). Filemaker, Inc. is a subsidiary of Apple and publishes FileMaker Pro for Windows and Mac OS X.

Article Link (http://www.macrumors.com/2007/11/13/filemaker-introduces-bento-for-mac/)

PlaceofDis
Nov 13, 2007, 02:02 PM
looks sweet, which isn't surprising.

i'll try it just for the sake of trying it. wonder if it'll be standalone software or become bundled in with FileMaker

marco114
Nov 13, 2007, 02:03 PM
seems like a separate app

Squonk
Nov 13, 2007, 02:13 PM
The missing component of iWork maybe?
http://www.bentotrial.com/preview/

It would be cool to have a database tool with iWork. I would think it would not be marketed from FileMaker tho....

heaven
Nov 13, 2007, 02:32 PM
Downloaded it, tried it, deleted it. I cant find any use for it... :rolleyes:

Orng
Nov 13, 2007, 02:35 PM
If it can sync events with Google Calendars, I'm sold.

Or, alternately, I could ask if someone knows how to enable two-way synching with iCal and Google Cal, that would be even better.

roland.g
Nov 13, 2007, 02:37 PM
Before I even try it, I'm curious as to pricing. No mention of that. Why should I try a pre-release preview if I don't know if I would want to pay for it down the line. If it is $25-70 and really useful, maybe. If it is $100+ or so, don't think it's worth it.

jacobhb
Nov 13, 2007, 02:41 PM
Before I even try it, I'm curious as to pricing. No mention of that. Why should I try a pre-release preview if I don't know if I would want to pay for it down the line. If it is $25-70 and really useful, maybe. If it is $100+ or so, don't think it's worth it.

$49

source:
http://www.macworld.com/news/2007/11/13/bento/index.php

akac
Nov 13, 2007, 02:46 PM
I'm still trying to figure out its purpose.

xy14
Nov 13, 2007, 02:49 PM
A free free preview download is available (http://bentotrial.com/preview/form/entry.aspx).

maybe take off one of the frees??

dr_lha
Nov 13, 2007, 02:50 PM
Seems pretty sweet, definitely a "iLife" style database app if I ever saw one.

It'd be nice if it could connect to external data sources (e.g. a MySQL database), but I'm guessing I'm getting more into the Filemaker Pro territory with that kind of feature (I've never used Filemaker Pro so I have no idea what its like).

elmo151
Nov 13, 2007, 02:53 PM
sounds like a poor imitation of journler which does all the listed stuff and more

http://journler.com/features/index.php

dr_lha
Nov 13, 2007, 02:56 PM
sounds like a poor imitation of journler which does all the listed stuff and more
It isn't.

Orng
Nov 13, 2007, 02:58 PM
I'm still trying to figure out its purpose.

Well it's called Bento so it's a fair guess you can use it for storing sushi.

And it's made by FileMaker so it's a fair guess that people who know FileMaker and all of it's magical database abilities, but find it too massive and pricey for average home use, will probably consider this as a possible alternative for a home database program in which you can keep information on stuff like sushi parties, sushi dates, sushi recipes, an inventory of sushi sets you got for your wedding, and that cute little number you met at the sushi restaurant.

Chances are you can import all your contacts from Address Book and say, "Hey, Bento, find all my friends who live in the 123 area code, except for the ones with the last name "Gates", and send them an iInvite to this sushi party. Then show me all the events tagged "salmon" and mark them "sushi".

Squonk
Nov 13, 2007, 03:01 PM
Well it's called Bento so it's a fair guess you can use it for storing sushi.

And it's made by FileMaker so it's a fair guess that people who know FileMaker and all of it's magical database abilities, but find it too massive and pricey for average home use, will probably consider this as a possible alternative for a home database program in which you can keep information on stuff like sushi parties, sushi dates, sushi recipes, an inventory of sushi sets you got for your wedding, and that cute little number you met at the sushi restaurant.

Chances are you can import all your contacts from Address Book and say, "Hey, Bento, find all my friends who live in the 123 area code, except for the ones with the last name "Gates", and send them an iInvite to this sushi party. Then show me all the events tagged "salmon" and mark them "sushi".

Sounds a little too fishy to me.... :p

PS - I like sushi too! ;)

MongoTheGeek
Nov 13, 2007, 03:01 PM
I'm still trying to figure out its purpose.

Whoring out for an Apple Design Award?

motulist
Nov 13, 2007, 03:02 PM
iApps like the integrated iCal, address book, mail, safari, etc. seems to already do everything that bento does. What functionality does it provide that the iApps don't?

Thomas2006
Nov 13, 2007, 03:03 PM
It looks like we have our first Leopard only application. Delicious Library 2.0 is supposed to be Leopard only, but no word on when it is getting released.

Marx55
Nov 13, 2007, 03:03 PM
What about importing from Palm Desktop and synchronizing with Palm PDAs? Then it would be perfect and to get rid of old Palm Desktop once and for all!

Analog Kid
Nov 13, 2007, 03:04 PM
Wow. All fluff, no substance. I can't figure out much of anything from the links so far. Is this like MS Access, or Outlook, or Journaler, Numbers with forms, or what?

Suppose I could download it and see for myself, but I'm not much of a fan of just downloading things I know nothing about...

arn
Nov 13, 2007, 03:10 PM
Wow. All fluff, no substance. I can't figure out much of anything from the links so far. Is this like MS Access, or Outlook, or Journaler, Numbers with forms, or what?

Added a link to a "first look":

http://www.macworld.com/2007/11/firstlooks/bento/index.php

and pricing info ($49) to be released at MWSF 2008 (Jan)

arn

G4scott
Nov 13, 2007, 03:11 PM
It doesn't seem to have much use right out of the .dmg

Like FileMaker, it's no use unless you set it up for what you need, which is still probably confusing for people who have no idea what they're doing.

I use FileMaker quite a bit for work, and it's interesting to see how it's similar and different.

Perhaps I'll find some sort of use for it, but when it comes to the $$$ part, I'll just bust up some mySQL or postgre and PHP if I really need a database that much.

Now if this thing has web accessibility (more than just .Mac), I could really see it being useful, but I haven't had a chance to look into it all that much.

Moof1904
Nov 13, 2007, 03:12 PM
If FileMaker is any indication, they'll dole out new features a few at a time and charge 60% of the selling price for the privilege of buying these "new versions."

FelixDerKater
Nov 13, 2007, 03:12 PM
Add it to iWork, and I'd consider buying a copy.

GregA
Nov 13, 2007, 03:13 PM
I can't figure out much of anything from the links so far. Is this like MS Access, or Outlook, or Journaler, Numbers with forms, or what?Same here. I'd like to know where it fits.

I want to replace ACT! and manage holiday rental of 3 apartments in a calendar style...

bubba451
Nov 13, 2007, 03:18 PM
A bit more detail can be found in this MacWorld First Look (http://www.macworld.com/2007/11/firstlooks/bento/index.php).

But basically, as the copy claims, it's a "personal" database app. The screenshots in the review above are probably the best way to understand some of the sample uses (which are provided in the form of built-in templates):

Media catalog
Home inventory
Simple project management


I remember using FileMaker to maintain a wedding guest list database (which included address, food preferences, gift received, RSVP status, etc.) and would have loved to have something like this.

koobcamuk
Nov 13, 2007, 03:22 PM
I thought this was a lunchbox app... anyone else? :)

Orng
Nov 13, 2007, 03:23 PM
I can't figure out much of anything from the links so far. Is this like MS Access, or Outlook, or Journaler, Numbers with forms, or what?

It's like Filemaker "light" for consumers

iApps like the integrated iCal, address book, mail, safari, etc. seems to already do everything that bento does. What functionality does it provide that the iApps don't?

It doesn't have i at the front, that's a small blessing right there. But more importantly, it's not a mail/calendar/address book; it's a database with a GUI.

Which, obviously, is exactly what the iApps are, really. But if this is like it's daddy Filemaker, then I would guess that the database part is much more emphasized; You can probably control GUI to some extent based on what's in the Database and what info you want to highlight, like Filemaker.

Chances are it has templates, and you can say, give me an "events" template, and it will go and find all the appropriate database items and populate the events, and then you can say, I don't want the "location" field but I DO want the "phone number" field, and it will adjust accordingly.

Probably you can create your own templates too, like a shortlist of cars you're considering buying, narrowing it down to, for example, cars under $40k with standard MP3 player, all-wheel drive and alloy tires, assuming you have entered the info in your database.

137489
Nov 13, 2007, 03:24 PM
I may like the project management part of it. One of my hold backs on Apple for a work PC has been business applications (sorry I work in heavy MS shops that are too cheap to buy legal copies of the product but must integrate with everyone - oops another discussion for another day)... I like that business projects are now making it way into Apple. I long for the day when MS either developes truely compatible cross platform applications or Apple becomes a major playor in the workforce. I am sick of rebooting my work PC twice or 3 times a day...... How much will this cost, MS Project is over $1,000 per license so my work will not buy us copies, yet they keep sending out the darn files like we can read them :rolleyes: Will this me MS project compatible :D

daveslc
Nov 13, 2007, 03:25 PM
Why did they make this Leopard only?

jholzner
Nov 13, 2007, 03:28 PM
Add it to iWork, and I'd consider buying a copy.

I agree. Seems like the perfect app to round out the suite. Maybe Apple will annex it from Filemaker the way the annexed ClarisWorks and renamed it Apple Works.....and then killed it. :p

sigamy
Nov 13, 2007, 03:29 PM
An iPhone companion app would be great, and could lead to some increased small business use.

I'm still looking for an eWallet/account number/password storage app for my Mac that offers an offline iPhone component.

jacg
Nov 13, 2007, 03:32 PM
I tried Filemaker (7 or 8 I think) and hated it for its non-Apple interface. I've always wanted an iTunes for my own data and this might be it.

Unfortunately I haven't worked out how to import any existing data yet. Can I get text files in there or Excel data?

137489
Nov 13, 2007, 03:33 PM
Why did they make this Leopard only?

I do not know apple specifically, but usually software companies only release for the latest OS. Take the PC world, you cannot by software (although it may work) for Windows 95, 98, NT, 2000 anymore. But since 90% of people are using XP still they target XP and the new Vista. It does not surprise me if Apple owns filemaker. They would want everyone to switch to Leopard (especially if more changed under the hood and how applications are developed). Lets face it the windows API did not change much between the first release of 95 up through XP - hence why you can still develop in the unsupported Visual Studio 6. So the question is, how much really changed under the hood between tiger and leopard. If a lot has changed, then it would be very difficult and costly to develop for 2 different OS that are no longer a like. Could be why MS waited on office to go strickly with Apple programming languages?

shecky
Nov 13, 2007, 03:35 PM
Why did they make this Leopard only?

from the macworld article:

Because Bento leverages some of Leopard’s new features—specifically Core Animation, live linking to iCal data, Time Machine backups, and other Leopard-specific capabilities—it only works on Mac OS X 10.5.

aafuss1
Nov 13, 2007, 03:37 PM
Seems that you can import/ export in CSV format, but not Access files,mySQL,etc.

digitalbiker
Nov 13, 2007, 03:38 PM
If FileMaker is any indication, they'll dole out new features a few at a time and charge 60% of the selling price for the privilege of buying these "new versions."

And they'll make the new version completely break the old version so that you can't use existing databases without a rewrite of the entire database GUI and table structure.

Fuchal
Nov 13, 2007, 03:40 PM
Whoring out for an Apple Design Award?

It's not even close to being that good looking and functional. It's pretty cool, however.

psychofreak
Nov 13, 2007, 03:40 PM
Seems that you can import/ export in CSV format, but not Access files,mySQL,etc.

An Access-compatible database app is surely on the cards for a future iWork update...

Squonk
Nov 13, 2007, 03:40 PM
Why did they make this Leopard only?

So let me get this straight. Bento (by the fine folks at FileMaker) is Leopard only. OK. And FileMaker does not yet support Leopard. (correct me if I'm wrong on that). Gee, I wonder what they have been working on... :p

SiliconAddict
Nov 13, 2007, 03:54 PM
Why would you ever want to have an integrated PIM? That isn't the "Apple Way". :rolleyes:

Seriously though iCal and Address book need to die and be integrated into mail. Having multiple apps you need to switch back and forth on simply because Apple is clinging to an archaic design model IS NOT an excuse.

GQB
Nov 13, 2007, 04:04 PM
I'm hoping this will fill the niche left by the loss of AppleWorks/ClairsWorks... whatever.
We still have to keep that outdated POC installed because my wife's customer database (primarily for mailing lists) that she build using the old app.
Now, our only options have been
1) import to Address Book, which is much more limited than I want, or
2) upgrade to Filemaker, which is WAAAAAYY overkill for what we need.

I'm hoping this fills that spot.

eyephone
Nov 13, 2007, 04:05 PM
Why would you ever want to have an integrated PIM? That isn't the "Apple Way". :rolleyes:

Seriously though iCal and Address book need to die and be integrated into mail. Having multiple apps you need to switch back and forth on simply because Apple is clinging to an archaic design model IS NOT an excuse.

I totally agree.

I love the idea that ical mail and address book could be integrated into one application. I work at home with dual monitors, one completely dedicated to a triple split screen ical/address book/mail, and switching between the few gets to be bothersome after using outlook 07 or entourage 08 for a while.

Is this the purpose of this bento program?

jaykk
Nov 13, 2007, 04:11 PM
here is a postcast which gives additional info.

http://www.filemaker.com/downloads/podcasts/fm_files_intro_bento.m4a

looks good. If we can hook up some JDBC driver to this database, it will be a great lightweight db.

mdriftmeyer
Nov 13, 2007, 04:13 PM
Reminds me of our demos on EOF inside NeXT.

hooch
Nov 13, 2007, 04:22 PM
Is this an apple equivalent to Ace software which is only compatible for Windows? My friend uses Ace for managing clients, addresses, meetings, etc..

Llywelyn
Nov 13, 2007, 04:25 PM
Seriously though iCal and Address book need to die and be integrated into mail. Having multiple apps you need to switch back and forth on simply because Apple is clinging to an archaic design model IS NOT an excuse.

Oh please no. The last thing I want is to need to open Mail/iCal every time I want to query my address book.

They should be highly cohesive, highly decoupled and stay that way.

Bigtree
Nov 13, 2007, 04:25 PM
I have Numbers ( iWork), and Filemaker Pro Why would I need this?

psychofreak
Nov 13, 2007, 04:28 PM
I have Numbers ( iWork), and Filemaker Pro Why would I need this?

You wouldn't...but someone not into the apparent complexity of Filemaker Pro (personally I've never used it) may be looking for exactly this...

Manatee
Nov 13, 2007, 04:42 PM
Hmm... Sounds like a 21st century update on "getting a computer to keep track of recipes."

tedhogan
Nov 13, 2007, 04:43 PM
Spanning Sync

Google Calendar to Ical two way syncing!

http://spanningsync.com/

Oh yeah... it's sweet...

Ted



If it can sync events with Google Calendars, I'm sold.

Or, alternately, I could ask if someone knows how to enable two-way synching with iCal and Google Cal, that would be even better.

plinden
Nov 13, 2007, 04:54 PM
Oh please no. The last thing I want is to need to open Mail/iCal every time I want to query my address book.

I agree with SiliconAddict. I have Mail, Address Book and iCal open all the time. Why can't I have them in one app?

TheQuestion
Nov 13, 2007, 04:55 PM
I agree with SiliconAddict. I have Mail, Address Book and iCal open all the time. Why can't I have them in one app?

It would be nice if you had the choice to open them as a single, integrated app or as a multiple apps depending on your needs.

Jetson
Nov 13, 2007, 05:02 PM
Does Bento have forms or windows?

Can it create multi-table databases?

Can it generate reports?

twoodcc
Nov 13, 2007, 05:03 PM
seems like something i could use. i'll at least try it out

decksnap
Nov 13, 2007, 05:43 PM
It would be nice if you had the choice to open them as a single, integrated app or as a multiple apps depending on your needs.

That would be nice. Personally I have mail open 24/7, but never want address book or iCal open. Keep 'em separated. We don't need another iTunes!

unity
Nov 13, 2007, 05:44 PM
I am having a strange flashback to OpenDoc.... anyone else?

gadgetmacfreak
Nov 13, 2007, 05:44 PM
Did they finally update Hypercard?

THX1139
Nov 13, 2007, 05:49 PM
Why did they make this Leopard only?

To cut the cost on development and support

TheQuestion
Nov 13, 2007, 05:50 PM
No ability to add graphics to templates (maybe I'm missing something). Limited customization. If it had that feature, I'd have no complaints.

Stile
Nov 13, 2007, 05:55 PM
Does Bento have forms or windows?

Can it create multi-table databases?

Can it generate reports?

It does have forms.

There is this concept of a library that appears to basically be a table. When creating fields for a library you can select a type that contains records from another library. So you can at least setup a simple one-to-many relationship. I haven't played with it enough to see if you can do much past that, but I suspect not.

Reports you can do by way of a find or advanced find and then print out the results. Haven't seen anything past that.

If they opened it up to scripting and Automator then this might be really cool. Or if they let people write custom data links (maybe you can do this through Leopard some how, not sure) or added more built-in ones, like iTunes for instance.

This is basically a really simply version of Access if you want to compare it to something. But there is no way to write any kind of "code" to manipulate the data or UI in anyway. Like I said, would be cool to have scripting support built-in. I'm also not sure if it's possible to access the data from a 3rd party app using JDBC or ODBC.

bellis1
Nov 13, 2007, 06:24 PM
: ) gadgetmacfreak & Manatee, it really does look like glorified hypercard for recipes.

I was not very impressed. It adds a lot more work but without any time savings in return. I wish someone would just make an iTunes like interface that let me add files aliases, emails, contacts, calendar, etc. all in the same place. The app should allow nested folders and smart folders and give me a column and coverflow view. Then to make it actually useful let me easily view/edit the spotlight comments, notes, and other kMDitem metadata attributes. Is it really that much to ask for?

The finder is only a couple steps away from this and one program could easily integrate everything. I like my finder and I don't want a replacement. I also don't want to have to remember if what I am looking for was imported into some other database.

GregA
Nov 13, 2007, 06:28 PM
I'll have to download it and have a play... but it seems that this sits in an unusual position at the moment. It doesn't play with Filemaker Pro, and Filemaker Pro doesn't work on Leopard (yet), but they've released Bento ...

I have to wonder if this means that for Leopard they've worked on a new code base entirely for Filemaker... and Bento just came out before the Pro app.

Also.. it imports/exports CSV, does that mean it doesn't play with iWork's Numbers (or Pages?). Numbers can import Excel sheets but Bento can't? (and Bento can't interact with Filemaker or MySQL which is built into OSX?).

It may be a brilliant program (I have no idea) but it just seems a little isolated within the Apple offerings at the moment.

Snowy_River
Nov 13, 2007, 06:34 PM
I tried Filemaker (7 or 8 I think) and hated it for its non-Apple interface. I've always wanted an iTunes for my own data and this might be it.

Unfortunately I haven't worked out how to import any existing data yet. Can I get text files in there or Excel data?

It can import comma separated text files (CSV), which Excel can export.

arkmannj
Nov 13, 2007, 06:46 PM
I think this app has potential it just needs to go a bit further

Things I think would help this app:
* Google sync support (Calendar, Tasks, Contacts, etc.)
* Calendar view for the calendar events
* User pics in the Address book
* I couldn't see a way to report out of the data
(for example, billing reports etc.)

* ODBC Driver so I can connect the data to other apps
(Word, Excel, Pages, Numbers, other mail merge type stuff, etc.)

* More Export options (I only was able to select CSV)
* Project charts or some sort of integration with OmniPlan

dicklacara
Nov 13, 2007, 07:14 PM
It appears to use SQLite3 as the DB engine.

The Bento app is only 53 Meg-- a skinny version that didn't contain the db definition overhead would prolly be much, much smaller.

The DB size can be less than 1 Meg

I think Bento is the forerunner of several apps that are designed (in some form) to run on both (hopefully, soon to be all three) ultra-portable OS X Devices.

This way you will be able to take all your important stuff with you (hiking, concerts,sport events, etc.), but not need to carry a laptop.

The keys here are it is:

1) the stuff that is important to you
2) defined, formatted and organized the way you want
3) can be accessed and updated anywhere, even when no phone or WiFi is available.
4) can be synced via iTunes or Back To My Mac

gwangung
Nov 13, 2007, 07:16 PM
I'll have to download it and have a play... but it seems that this sits in an unusual position at the moment. It doesn't play with Filemaker Pro, and Filemaker Pro doesn't work on Leopard (yet),

That's not correct.

gwangung
Nov 13, 2007, 07:17 PM
It appears to use SQLite3 as the DB engine.

The Bento app is only 53 Meg-- a skinny version that didn't contain the db definition overhead would prolly be much, much smaller.

The DB size can be less than 1 Meg

I think Bento is the forerunner of several apps that are designed (in some form) to run on both (hopefully, soon to be all three) ultra-portable OS X Devices.

Hm. Of which, the iPhone is only the first.....

seamusk
Nov 13, 2007, 07:38 PM
Right off the bat there are several things that I like. Obviously it integrates with address book and iCal. I've only played a bit with the Address Book part so far.

It allows me to add fields to my address book contacts that are heretofore impossible to create in Address Book. And it is very easy to do so. This allows me to do what I'd like to do in Address Book, but cannot do, which is simply create a smart album which says that the Board of Directors (via a field) for Organization A is ____ and to do so very easily.

However, I do not see a way to reverse this where I can see the new fields I've created, or "Collections" (Address Books groups) in Address Book itself. This would be ideal. But in either case, having the ability to ramp up the info on my address book contacts with very little effort is a really useful tool.

Update: So, this does potentially work really well. I do a lot of media work. So I have a media group in Address Book. In Benta I just deleted all of the names. I looked into address book and the group was empty. I then created a field that is a checkbox for media. Went through and start just checking it next to names. Did a sort by media, dumped them back in the "Collection" that was imported from Address Book. And they magically reappear in Address Book. Very easy (could be easier) and very helpful.

So here is my plan. Use Benta to create checkboxes for all of the groups I work for. Create a custom form that shows the name, company, and just the checkboxes. Now I can see for my address book people if I remembered to add them to a group. Now I just need to automate the updating. But I cannot figure out how to get a smartcollection created in Benta into Address Book. I've been looking for these features in an easy, intuitive, drag & drop environment for a LONG TIME!

Stampyhead
Nov 13, 2007, 07:45 PM
Hmmm, this sounds promising...

FileMaker, Inc. cannot guarantee that data entered into the preview version will be accessible by the final shipping version

seamusk
Nov 13, 2007, 07:56 PM
Hmmm, this sounds promising...

yeah, that doesn't sound good.

Btw, I just figured out that if you create a smart collection in Bento with Bento-only fields, that while this will not show up as a group in Address Book, you can make it show up in any of the other groups in Address Book by right clicking and choosing "Add to..." and it adds the contents to a static group which automatically updates in Address Book's groups.

I'm pretty much sold for these reasons alone. Sorry for my absurd excitement.

Virgil-TB2
Nov 13, 2007, 08:13 PM
Seems pretty sweet, definitely a "iLife" style database app if I ever saw one.

It'd be nice if it could connect to external data sources (e.g. a MySQL database), but I'm guessing I'm getting more into the Filemaker Pro territory with that kind of feature (I've never used Filemaker Pro so I have no idea what its like).This seems like the central point to me as well.

If it could connect to, or at least be updated by, another FileMaker database running on the FileMaker server, then it could be really useful for deploying simplified front end clients.

Otherwise it's just another HyperCard, which unfortunately, to a lot of people just means a good way to store recipes or Christmas card lists.

Analog Kid
Nov 13, 2007, 08:24 PM
I may like the project management part of it. One of my hold backs on Apple for a work PC has been business applications ...Will this me MS project compatible
This is off topic, but I'll point you to two sources:
Merlin (http://www.projectwizards.net) is what I use. It will import and export MS Project files.
OmniPlan (http://www.omnigroup.com) is sure to be pretty good too. I haven't used it, but everything out of Omni tends to be good.

Orng
Nov 13, 2007, 08:30 PM
Otherwise it's just another HyperCard, which unfortunately, to a lot of people just means a good way to store recipes or Christmas card lists.

Nothing wrong with that. For some people, that's a sweet app. Not for me so much, but I might use it like that as well.

gwangung
Nov 13, 2007, 08:55 PM
Nothing wrong with that. For some people, that's a sweet app. Not for me so much, but I might use it like that as well.

Yah, for a lot of people, that's a feature, not a drawback...

Merser
Nov 13, 2007, 09:06 PM
I for one am really enjoying this app. I just cleaned up my address book in a flash.

theBB
Nov 13, 2007, 10:21 PM
It would be nice if you had the choice to open them as a single, integrated app or as a multiple apps depending on your needs.
I agree completely. At work, I like Mail, Addressbook and Calendar functions to be integrated, but at home I prefer them to separate, as I use Yahoo's Mail and Calendar through their web interface. When I need Addressbook at home, I need just Addressbook.

As I use a Windows machine at work and a Mac at home, I am OK for now. :)

theBB
Nov 13, 2007, 10:32 PM
This is off topic, but I'll point you to two sources:
Merlin (http://www.projectwizards.net) is what I use. It will import and export MS Project files.
OmniPlan (http://www.omnigroup.com) is sure to be pretty good too. I haven't used it, but everything out of Omni tends to be good.
Thanks a lot for the pointers.

zarusoba
Nov 13, 2007, 11:00 PM
If it's as tasty and elegant as a Japanese bento, I'm in!

universityprof
Nov 13, 2007, 11:23 PM
Wanna see why corporations hire professional actors?

Listen to how horrible this is:

http://fmdl.filemaker.com/MISC/bento/bento_ed_preview_sm.mov

Pretty amazing!

Analog Kid
Nov 13, 2007, 11:28 PM
Anybody know how the Filemaker group is handled within Apple? Does this now preclude this kind of interface being added to the iWork apps? Forms would be a welcome additional front end to Numbers tables, and Numbers would let me plot data that's been entered.

It's like Filemaker "light" for consumers

It doesn't have i at the front, that's a small blessing right there. But more importantly, it's not a mail/calendar/address book; it's a database with a GUI.

Which, obviously, is exactly what the iApps are, really. But if this is like it's daddy Filemaker, then I would guess that the database part is much more emphasized; You can probably control GUI to some extent based on what's in the Database and what info you want to highlight, like Filemaker.

Yeah, and it's not much more than that.

Seriously though iCal and Address book need to die and be integrated into mail. Having multiple apps you need to switch back and forth on simply because Apple is clinging to an archaic design model IS NOT an excuse.
Oh God, please no! I'm already disgruntled that notes and to-do's and RSS got integrated into Mail. Leave the poor program alone! I hated Outlook with a passion. I don't want to see it recreated.

I don't want to have to open all my email and appointments just so I can call for a pizza. I don't want my calendars stored on our IMAP server like mail.

I like how things are. All of these are (were...) independent data sources with open APIs for querying them and sharing the data not just within the given application but throughout the system. Much, much nicer, IMO.
: ) gadgetmacfreak & Manatee, it really does look like glorified hypercard for recipes.

I was not very impressed. It adds a lot more work but without any time savings in return. I wish someone would just make an iTunes like interface that let me add files aliases, emails, contacts, calendar, etc. all in the same place. The app should allow nested folders and smart folders and give me a column and coverflow view. Then to make it actually useful let me easily view/edit the spotlight comments, notes, and other kMDitem metadata attributes. Is it really that much to ask for?

Look at Journaler (someone linked to it above). I never got much use out of it, but it sounds like what you're looking for. I started with it and realized my lack of organization isn't due to a lack of tools.

Snowy_River
Nov 14, 2007, 12:01 AM
Hmmm, this sounds promising...

Maybe not, but it's par for the course when dealing with beta software. I do beta testing for other software, and we're always cautioned that the file format is not set in stone early on.

G4scott
Nov 14, 2007, 12:08 AM
If you want to ensure your data will move from this version to the final, just export the data. You'll have to recreate the layouts (sorry if I'm speaking in filemaker mode here), and then re-import the data, but you don't lose all of your data.

As far as integrating Mail, Address Book and iCal, I feel as if they've already been adequately integrated. In Mail, I'm usually querying my Address Book, and I don't use iCal too much with mail, but the new features seem to work just fine.

When I manage a calendar, I want a calendar app. When I manage contacts, I want some sort of contact database. Apple has made these things accessible through Mail, which is all you really need.

coolfactor
Nov 14, 2007, 12:21 AM
The responses posted here to Bento are all over the map. A few things are very clear:

1) a number of people really have no idea how big Bento is going to be.
2) Bento is going to be really big.

jmsait19
Nov 14, 2007, 12:56 AM
If FileMaker is any indication, they'll dole out new features a few at a time and charge 60% of the selling price for the privilege of buying these "new versions."

Wait... They're owned by Digidesign? ha! Sorry, may be a little vague, but I liked it...

Funny observation... We move to Leopard, and finally the iCal icon updates to the proper day without having to open... Along comes Bento, with its icon... This little drawer of things... And sure enough, there's an iCal icon that reads "JUL 17"... How appropriate... Somehow I found a little humor in that.

Okay, so now I'm gonna go play with the actual program...

Jetson
Nov 14, 2007, 12:58 AM
It does have forms.

There is this concept of a library that appears to basically be a table. When creating fields for a library you can select a type that contains records from another library. So you can at least setup a simple one-to-many relationship. I haven't played with it enough to see if you can do much past that, but I suspect not.

Reports you can do by way of a find or advanced find and then print out the results. Haven't seen anything past that.

If they opened it up to scripting and Automator then this might be really cool. Or if they let people write custom data links (maybe you can do this through Leopard some how, not sure) or added more built-in ones, like iTunes for instance.

This is basically a really simply version of Access if you want to compare it to something. But there is no way to write any kind of "code" to manipulate the data or UI in anyway. Like I said, would be cool to have scripting support built-in. I'm also not sure if it's possible to access the data from a 3rd party app using JDBC or ODBC.
Thanks a lot Stile for the lowdown on Bento. That's exactly what I wanted to know :)

mac-convert
Nov 14, 2007, 01:09 AM
The responses posted here to Bento are all over the map. A few things are very clear:

1) a number of people really have no idea how big Bento is going to be.
2) Bento is going to be really big.

Well, I'm not sure where you are getting your info, but it does look good initially. And I have surely blown $50 on many other things - come good and some bad. I think I'll have to try this out, and watch what changes are made before it releases.

BTW - this release claims that it's good until Feb 14, 2008.

coolsoldier
Nov 14, 2007, 01:49 AM
This looks good for keeping track of things that are to obscure to have their own dedicated app. (This doesn't include recipes by the way -- there are already a couple of apps dedicated to that).

Plenty of people have things -- small-time event planning, club activities, etc. -- that are too esoteric for Apple or any other developer to come out with a dedicated solution. If Bento makes databases simple enough to create (and at first look I'd say it does), then this is a kind of catch-all solution for those kinds of things.

The iCal and Address Book integration is cool, not because you would use this application to manage your calendars and contacts, but because you can create data tables that cross-reference the system's built-in databases. So if you add somebody to the list of contacts in your project database, that person automatically shows up in your address book and their addresses auto-complete in Apple Mail. When you add a task to a project, it automatically shows up as a to-do in iCal.

That said, the market for a generic database app is a lot smaller than the market for, say, a word processor. But if you happen to need a database platform that even the poor non-geeks can use, this might fit the bill.

Analog Kid
Nov 14, 2007, 02:19 AM
This looks good for keeping track of things that are to obscure to have their own dedicated app. (This doesn't include recipes by the way -- there are already a couple of apps dedicated to that).

Plenty of people have things -- small-time event planning, club activities, etc. -- that are too esoteric for Apple or any other developer to come out with a dedicated solution. If Bento makes databases simple enough to create (and at first look I'd say it does), then this is a kind of catch-all solution for those kinds of things.

The iCal and Address Book integration is cool, not because you would use this application to manage your calendars and contacts, but because you can create data tables that cross-reference the system's built-in databases. So if you add somebody to the list of contacts in your project database, that person automatically shows up in your address book and their addresses auto-complete in Apple Mail. When you add a task to a project, it automatically shows up as a to-do in iCal.

That said, the market for a generic database app is a lot smaller than the market for, say, a word processor. But if you happen to need a database platform that even the poor non-geeks can use, this might fit the bill.
Yeah, that's a good point. I've been looking at this a little too myopically. I don't have much use for it. The things that I'd use it for, I think I could do better with mysql and some hacking-- but that's not a fair judgement. Most people aren't going to look to that option.

You're right-- there's a lot of things out there that people would want to build a database of and this will make it easy and pretty all at the same time.

I was kind of disappointed that it wasn't better integrated with iLife/iWork (give access to photo/music libraries, integrate with iWeb for data driven websites, let me pass data back and forth to Numbers and do merges to Pages). I'd need to play with it more to see how it handles mixing of data from different tables, but I think what bothers me is there isn't a good reporting mechanism.

IscariotJ
Nov 14, 2007, 03:04 AM
I was not very impressed. It adds a lot more work but without any time savings in return. I wish someone would just make an iTunes like interface that let me add files aliases, emails, contacts, calendar, etc. all in the same place. The app should allow nested folders and smart folders and give me a column and coverflow view. Then to make it actually useful let me easily view/edit the spotlight comments, notes, and other kMDitem metadata attributes. Is it really that much to ask for?

The finder is only a couple steps away from this and one program could easily integrate everything. I like my finder and I don't want a replacement. I also don't want to have to remember if what I am looking for was imported into some other database.

The SOHO Organizer Suite (http://www.chronosnet.com) does more or less what you're asking for here. It does use a DB, but provides various ways of getting access to what's stored in it. The Notes app is ( for me ) particularly useful, as I can store booksmarks, files, web archives in it.

bellis1
Nov 14, 2007, 03:06 AM
I am glad to hear that it has some unique value to some users. I'd like to hear more about how people are finding it useful. I suppose I just don't have a specific use for it in my work.

I could use it to clean up my address book, but I can also do that by import/export csv and excel/numbers. It is a nicer way to view your todos than ical but I can use iGTD for that. I'm just not sure what the use of having those 2 features is unless it is for project management or PIM.

It would have a lot more value as PIM or project management related software if it had email integrated and a way to catalog and preview files better (i.e. quicklook and/or tagging/spotlight comments). That can't be too difficult to add.

Otherwise I think it is not much more than a glorified rolodex.

Evangelion
Nov 14, 2007, 05:35 AM
Why would you ever want to have an integrated PIM? That isn't the "Apple Way". :rolleyes:

Seriously though iCal and Address book need to die and be integrated into mail. Having multiple apps you need to switch back and forth on simply because Apple is clinging to an archaic design model IS NOT an excuse.

That's dumb. what we need are apps that do some thing REALLY well, but also play well together. Cramming all the functionality in to one app is stupid. If address book (for example) was inside mail, you would STILL have to "switch back and forth". Addresses would not be constantly visible, you would still have to go to a specific address-area of the app. Is it REALLY that hard to switch to a different app, as opposed to switching different view inside the app?

Since the addressbook plays seamlessly with mail, what exactly is the problem here?

Chupa Chupa
Nov 14, 2007, 06:42 AM
Interesting, but not worth $49 to me. It would be a nice addition to iWork, and help that suite's sales, as others have said, but as a stand-alone it really doesn't seem to have much "meat" for the price.

thedave3000
Nov 14, 2007, 06:57 AM
I've tried twice to download this demo but I still have never received an e-mail link to the download page. Has anybody else experienced this? I am filling out the form that has all the asterisks and leaving the other info fields blank. I'd like to test drive this but can't get any response.

Slumbercub
Nov 14, 2007, 07:18 AM
I think Bento looks really promising. Get it added to iWork 09 and it would be even better. It certainly looks like it will integrate very nicely into the rest of the whole Mac experience nicely.

I have tried Filemaker on a number of occasions but it is just too complicated and hard work for a lite user with simple needs like me. :) :o

I WAS the one
Nov 14, 2007, 07:33 AM
Remember Sticky Notes? now it's called SOHO Notes, and let me tell you it is more useful and more complete than any other like it including this new copycat from File Maker, I mean I can do everything that this new app offer on my SOHO Notes plus more. Sorry. SOHO Notes it's the best.

SthrnCmfrtr
Nov 14, 2007, 07:53 AM
I wish someone would just make an iTunes like interface that let me add files aliases, emails, contacts, calendar, etc. all in the same place. The app should allow nested folders and smart folders and give me a column and coverflow view. Then to make it actually useful let me easily view/edit the spotlight comments, notes, and other kMDitem metadata attributes. Is it really that much to ask for?

You might try DEVONthink Pro, which doesn't offer all of what you are asking for... but they keep saying they'll release v2.0 at some point. At any rate, check it out. It's what I'm using right now for my "iTunes for data." http://www.devon-technologies.com/

I've tried twice to download this demo but I still have never received an e-mail link to the download page. Has anybody else experienced this? I am filling out the form that has all the asterisks and leaving the other info fields blank. I'd like to test drive this but can't get any response.

Same thing here. Maybe I'll just see if there's a torrent somewhere...

Orng
Nov 14, 2007, 08:47 AM
Plenty of people have things -- small-time event planning, club activities, etc. -- that are too esoteric for Apple or any other developer to come out with a dedicated solution. If Bento makes databases simple enough to create (and at first look I'd say it does), then this is a kind of catch-all solution for those kinds of things.


That's a good point; so if I am in charge of, for example, a First Aid team, I can keep track of volunteers and the contact info, who's signed the waiver, when the recertification events are, when and where the parties are, who's done the optional extra training, and keep an inventory of AEDs and backboards. And I assume I can access that info in multiple ways, for example, see to it that the keener geeks who did the optional extra training are excluded from the party invite list, because they'll probably think it's a good idea to do extra incident simulations AT the party.

I am actually really looking forward to this program, but of course, I'll need a Leopard-capable mac first.

For the record, I no longer organize a first aid response team, and I'm enjoying the fact that the only thing better than being in charge is being formerly in charge.

FriarTuck
Nov 14, 2007, 09:34 AM
I've tried twice to download this demo but I still have never received an e-mail link to the download page. Has anybody else experienced this? I am filling out the form that has all the asterisks and leaving the other info fields blank. I'd like to test drive this but can't get any response.

I'm in the same boat. 12 hours later and still no e-mail with a link to download the demo even though I provided legit personal info, including a functioning dot mac e-mail address.

So much for "a few minutes."

Thomas2006
Nov 14, 2007, 09:35 AM
It would be nice if you had the choice to open them as a single, integrated app or as a multiple apps depending on your needs.
Daylite does that and more because it is a CRM application. The nice thing about it is if you delete Daylite you only lose the links used to relate documents, appointments, people, etc. to each other, not the actual data.

mozmac
Nov 14, 2007, 10:01 AM
It would be sweet as part of iWork, but then they'd need to raise its price. And it wouldn't be called Bento, it would be called "Data" or "Tuples"

Kelmon
Nov 14, 2007, 10:27 AM
I've tried twice to download this demo but I still have never received an e-mail link to the download page. Has anybody else experienced this? I am filling out the form that has all the asterisks and leaving the other info fields blank. I'd like to test drive this but can't get any response.

Same here. I'd like to at least try the application before writing it off. Based on what I've read about it so far it seems like a glorified flat file manager with access to pools of data that already exist on your Mac. However, what I am looking for is basically a version of MS Access for the Mac that will enable me to quickly import data into related tables and analyse the data contained in them by running queries (GUI created or SQL is fine by me). I don't need forms to enter data and I'm not looking to create database-backed applications. Presently the only choices that seem to exist are the likes of FileMaker Pro (expensive) or mySQL (complex). Bento sounds like it's going in the right direction but also sounds like it's cut FileMaker down too far for it to be useful for me.

However, if they do ever send through the download link then I'll give it a bash and at least try it.

dicklacara
Nov 14, 2007, 10:58 AM
This seems like the central point to me as well.

If it could connect to, or at least be updated by, another FileMaker database running on the FileMaker server, then it could be really useful for deploying simplified front end clients.

Otherwise it's just another HyperCard, which unfortunately, to a lot of people just means a good way to store recipes or Christmas card lists.

No, it is a fully capable SQLite database.

1) it can be manipulated in the CLI (terminal)
2) it is OAS Scriptable (AppleScript)
3) JDBC drivers are available for SQLite
4) It can be manipulated with Languages like Java, PHP, Perl, ColdFusion, even JavaScript (thru the CLI), etc.-- anything that can use a JDBC driver
5) it can be manipulated with QuartzComposer
6) it can be manipulated with Cocoa apps written with XCode
7) It can be manipulated with any GUI SQL Client that supports SQLite (many are free and cross-platform)

It is lean and fast!

Finally, gPhone supports SQLite... I suspect that Bento will be one way the iPhone adds the ability to customize and manipulate content.

Neuroguy
Nov 14, 2007, 11:42 AM
I'm in the same boat. 12 hours later and still no e-mail with a link to download the demo even though I provided legit personal info, including a functioning dot mac e-mail address.

So much for "a few minutes."

Same boat here. Tried 3 times with 2 different Email Addresses. No response.

Can someone post the direct download link? This is ridiculous.

N

bellis1
Nov 14, 2007, 11:47 AM
http://www.apple.com/downloads/macosx/productivity_tools/bento.html

Slumbercub
Nov 14, 2007, 01:35 PM
I've tried it out and so far I think it is great, in fact, I would go as far as to say it is the missing 'link' to help us (well, me at least) really manage our data. As soon as it is available Filemaker will be getting my 49 bucks. :)

shecky
Nov 14, 2007, 01:42 PM
with the exception of the included themes being utterly fugly (tho i assume you cam create custom themes - have not gotten that far yet) i really like the easy to use front-end that bento provides to implementing and managing databases. that and the integration out of the box with ical and address book makes this something i will definetly be trying it for a few things i can think of:

-project management such as vendors associated with a project, quotes, files, notable milestones, what invoices are sent out, what is pending, what has been paid, etc...

-managing the classes i teach in terms of students names, contact info, what they have turned in, have not turned in, comments about thier work, grades, etc..

-networking contacts, possible projects to work on, etc...

Virgil-TB2
Nov 14, 2007, 02:04 PM
No, it is a fully capable SQLite database.

1) it can be manipulated in the CLI (terminal)
2) it is OAS Scriptable (AppleScript)
3) JDBC drivers are available for SQLite
4) It can be manipulated with Languages like Java, PHP, Perl, ColdFusion, even JavaScript (thru the CLI), etc.-- anything that can use a JDBC driver
5) it can be manipulated with QuartzComposer
6) it can be manipulated with Cocoa apps written with XCode
7) It can be manipulated with any GUI SQL Client that supports SQLite (many are free and cross-platform)

It is lean and fast!

Finally, gPhone supports SQLite... I suspect that Bento will be one way the iPhone adds the ability to customize and manipulate content.Well I realise I was being a bit grumpy and dismissive, but this makes little sense either.

Bento is for beginners and casual users (i.e.- your Mum).

Your mother is not going to build a full-blown Cocoa app to interface with the thing, that's just a ridiculous suggestion.

I am a FileMaker developer so my point was just that unless I can stream data to and fro Bento's Libraries and Collections from the "serious" databases on the server, it remains as a stand-alone "HyperCard" like product with limited utility to an organisation. At this point, it is a user centric personal data organiser only.

Without FM integration, it's a recipe holder, with FM integration the possibilities are (or could be) endless.

Personally, I think the FM integration will come with the released product as it's a no brainer and I anticipate it being used (eventually) for the same uses you describe above. Today however, it's not even a finished product, let alone a part of iWork, let alone the underpinnings of data manipulation on the iPhone. I will start to get excited when it's released, and also when Apple announces how (or if), it fits into their plans.

dicklacara
Nov 14, 2007, 02:56 PM
Well I realise I was being a bit grumpy and dismissive, but this makes little sense either.

Bento is for beginners and casual users (i.e.- your Mum).

Your mother is not going to build a full-blown Cocoa app to interface with the thing, that's just a ridiculous suggestion.

I am a FileMaker developer so my point was just that unless I can stream data to and fro Bento's Libraries and Collections from the "serious" databases on the server, it remains as a stand-alone "HyperCard" like product with limited utility to an organisation. At this point, it is a user centric personal data organiser only.

Without FM integration, it's a recipe holder, with FM integration the possibilities are (or could be) endless.

Personally, I think the FM integration will come with the released product as it's a no brainer and I anticipate it being used (eventually) for the same uses you describe above. Today however, it's not even a finished product, let alone a part of iWork, let alone the underpinnings of data manipulation on the iPhone. I will start to get excited when it's released, and also when Apple announces how (or if), it fits into their plans.


I have programmed web and desktop db applications using various SQL dbs (including MS SQL Server, MSAccess, SQLite and FileMaker). I did not write the apps using FM, I just accessed FM databases.

My web programming language of choice is ColdFusion, but that is beside the point.

You can interface FM and and SQLite in any language that supports the JDBC and ODBC drivers.

So, yes, today, you or I can write an app that integrates FM and Bento dbs.

I don't believe that you can do the same with HyperCard (but I haven't looked at that for years).

If "with FM Integration", do you mean that you want to access the db with FM's programming environment? And that lacking that capability it is just a "recipe holder"?

Wouldn't that same logic apply to any dbms: Oracle, PostgreSQL, MySQL... yadda, yadda, yadda?

I don't mean to be pedantic, but disqualifying Bento as a serious db product just because FM doesn't recognize it, is plain silly!

What other DBMS' have "FM integration"?

Maybe you are using the wrong tool-- I have mentioned several that can access both dbs-- why not use one of these?

FriarTuck
Nov 14, 2007, 05:20 PM
Same boat here. Tried 3 times with 2 different Email Addresses. No response.

Can someone post the direct download link? This is ridiculous.

N

Not that it matters anymore now that someone provided a direct link to the download... but I just got the e-mail about 18 hours after signing up.

jaykk
Nov 14, 2007, 08:53 PM
Looks like a neat app from outset, now that it stores files as Sqllitedb, its extensible with Cocoa. I think it is CoreData with a nice GUI, we can extend it with CoreData api.

addicted44
Nov 14, 2007, 08:58 PM
Its a sweet app for people who have a need for it. It provides a great customizable front end to database tables. Now, if only I could find something I would want to put in a database!!

Fukui
Nov 14, 2007, 10:34 PM
http://www.apple.com/downloads/macosx/productivity_tools/bento.html

Thank you!!

thedave3000
Nov 14, 2007, 11:39 PM
Not that it matters anymore now that someone provided a direct link to the download... but I just got the e-mail about 18 hours after signing up.

Same here - took right at 18 hours to receive the e-mail - and I received it twice since I submitted the form twice. Must've been one huge log jam of e-mails all at once.

Kelmon
Nov 15, 2007, 05:43 AM
Well, Bento does allow you to relate data between data Libraries created but it's not what I was looking for. What I wanted to do was relate existing tables of data for the purpose of running queries, i.e. only show records where a given field appears in both tables of data. However, the Bento definition appears to be somewhat different. You can relate a Library to another Library or Collection but what that basically means is that you can link a record in your Library to a record (or records) in the related Library/Collection; you cannot link an existing field to another in a different Collection/Library. Given this Bento is largely useless for my purposes, which is particularly annoying if it is indeed built on a full RDBM engine like SQLite.

Honestly, I get the feeling that to get what I want on the Mac I'm going to have to write the application myself (a terrifying prospect given my programming skills). The advent of Core Data should make this process a lot easier but definitely not a cakewalk.

hayesk
Nov 15, 2007, 09:58 AM
I like that business projects are now making it way into Apple. I long for the day when MS either developes truely compatible cross platform applications or Apple becomes a major playor in the workforce. I am sick of rebooting my work PC twice or 3 times a day...... How much will this cost, MS Project is over $1,000 per license so my work will not buy us copies, yet they keep sending out the darn files like we can read them :rolleyes: Will this me MS project compatible :D

Why not use FastTrack Schedule instead?

There's also OmniPlan that is Mac only, but I think it can import from others. Not sure, though.

hayesk
Nov 15, 2007, 09:59 AM
And they'll make the new version completely break the old version so that you can't use existing databases without a rewrite of the entire database GUI and table structure.

The only time that happened was from version 6 to 7. 7 was such a massive architecture improvement over 6 that is was understandable. How can you fail to see the huge improvement of migrating to 7 over 6?

hayesk
Nov 15, 2007, 10:00 AM
Does Bento have forms or windows?

Can it create multi-table databases?

Can it generate reports?

Sounds like you need FileMaker, not Bento.

hayesk
Nov 15, 2007, 10:01 AM
The SOHO Organizer Suite (http://www.chronosnet.com) does more or less what you're asking for here. It does use a DB, but provides various ways of getting access to what's stored in it. The Notes app is ( for me ) particularly useful, as I can store booksmarks, files, web archives in it.

Notes is useful, but their quality control has been spotty as of late. StickyBrain used to be rock solid. Now everytime I have to upgrade SOHO Notes (which is too often) there's always issues.

I'd dump it if there was another notes database that would let me assign notes to the context menu for pasting into other files. All of the other notes products focus on helping you get data into the database, but not out.

ifjake
Nov 19, 2007, 12:22 AM
yeah i can't get this Bento to do what i want. i'm trying to construct a checkbook database. it worked well enough at the start. i've got a "Transactions" record list for creating little transaction objects, which i then make a related records field inside an "Accounts" list, which is cool because then i can sum stuff. but then i try to get the account record to link back to the Transaction, so that if i create a Transaction in the Account the Transaction knows what account it's supposed to be in. i couldn't get it to work. the "calculation" field looks like it might show some promise. but then i tried to do the "smart collection" command and i broke the app. it won't even open now.

makes me wonder how hard it would be to learn SQLite and get it to work in some cocoa prettiness. probably actually pretty difficult. too bad this Bento thing is just shy of doing what i want it to.

BenHoleton
Dec 11, 2007, 12:20 PM
This would be about perfect for my little home based business if I could share databases over my LAN. Sadly, Filemaker is far too expensive fore only 2 computers. I guess I will jhust stick with Address Book and iCal

PinkyMacGodess
Sep 30, 2008, 08:20 PM
I am interested in buying Bento and their 'KnowledgeBase' is down for 'update'.

The punchline is: Check back after NOVEMBER!!!

Yeah, I want to buy Bento now... Is FileMaker/Apple dropping Bento? I was a beta tester!

m2uk
Oct 13, 2008, 04:11 PM
Did you ever find out more about Bento's future ?

bobbleheadbob
Oct 19, 2008, 07:08 AM
Bento 2 just came out this month. It's available at the :apple: Store or thru www.filemaker.com only for the rest of October.

m2uk
Oct 22, 2008, 02:15 PM
Ah thanks. Will look. Has anyone tried it yet (reviews, etc ?)

El Tel
Oct 23, 2008, 01:28 AM
Honestly, I get the feeling that to get what I want on the Mac I'm going to have to write the application myself (a terrifying prospect given my programming skills). The advent of Core Data should make this process a lot easier but definitely not a cakewalk.

Maybe you should take a look at Servoy (http://www.servoy.com/)....

CTYankee
Oct 29, 2008, 11:50 PM
Ah thanks. Will look. Has anyone tried it yet (reviews, etc ?)

Not much different than v1. It is basically a fixed version 1. As of right now there are no plans to fix v1 (loses data, screen refresh issues, and more). There are also some of these data issues in v2.

Bottom line v1 was broken and to get it fixed you have to buy v2. Even then it does not work as advertised (just try adding address information from Mail...shows up in Address Book but not Bento).

MacNeilly
Nov 16, 2008, 11:06 AM
To read the opinions of Bento users (rather than gushing magazine reviews), potential purchasers should check the disgruntled posts on versiontracker.com, macupdate.com, macworld.com, etc as well as the Filemaker/Bento forums:

http://www.versiontracker.com/dyn/moreinfo/macosx/33479&mode=feedback
http://www.macupdate.com/info.php/id/26231/bento
http://forums.macworld.com/thread/106146?start=0&tstart=0
http://www.tuaw.com/2008/10/14/filemakers-bento-goes-2-0/#comments
http://forums.filemaker.com/fmbnto/board/message?board.id=contsugother&thread.id=746

Quite a few unhappy purchasers out there!

rajasekhar1242
Nov 28, 2008, 03:20 AM
hai,
i want to develop a database application by using java as front end and bento data base as back end. i am searching the related topics on inter net. but i didn't get any positive reply.
pls send me reply to rajasekhar1242@gmail.com

CTYankee
Dec 1, 2008, 05:35 PM
FYI...Bento is not updated to fix bugs.

http://digg.com/apple/filemaker_announces_it_doesn_t_fix_bugs