New member Introduction (1 Viewer)

Antwoord

New member
Local time
Today, 16:46
Joined
Dec 22, 2021
Messages
19
Hello All,

I'm so glad to have found this vibrant and helpful community.
As an accountant in commerce I have been using ( and misusing Excel) for decades to get work done as quickly as possible and I love it, my database work with proper database software is somewhat limited to SQL report writing courses (long since forgotten), lotus notes applications and finance based database applications such as Hyperion (which has a friendly frontend so probably doesn't count) and data cube tools.
As far as Microsoft Access is concerned I'm a total beginner but now is the time to learn it well, it's well overdue!

The project that has brought me here is a multi-currency trading and accounting system, I have something that is already built and running in Excel but it is creaking and the limitations of excel for this really do show.

So far Access has been a humbling experience, quite a lot of thinking and not enough progress! I am driving friends and those around me nuts with enthusiasm, confusion and a little frustration!
I am about to start building a second version, the first abandoned when I understood better the process of data normalization and better ways to design tables and best practices for Databases.

I am already scanning the forum threads and found some very useful insights, and I look forward to learning and contributing more :)
 

Jon

Access World Site Owner
Staff member
Local time
Today, 16:46
Joined
Sep 28, 1999
Messages
5,909
Welcome to the forums! We are the most active Microsoft Access community on the internet by far, with posts going back over 20 years!

To get started, I highly recommend you read the post below. It contains important information for all new users to this forum.

https://www.access-programmers.co.uk/forums/threads/new-member-read-me-first.223250/

We look forward to having you around here, learning stuff and having fun!
 

bob fitz

AWF VIP
Local time
Today, 16:46
Joined
May 23, 2011
Messages
4,444
So far Access has been a humbling experience, quite a lot of thinking and not enough progress! I am driving friends and those around me nuts with enthusiasm, confusion and a little frustration!
I am about to start building a second version, the first abandoned when I understood better the process of data normalization and better ways to design tables and best practices for Databases.
I'm sure that's a path that has been followed by many of us here;)
Welcome to the forum.
 

Uncle Gizmo

Nifty Access Guy
Staff member
Local time
Today, 16:46
Joined
Jul 9, 2003
Messages
14,519
the first abandoned when I understood better the process of data normalization

You may be able to recover some of your tables by manipulating them into to a format more suited to to MS Access with my transpose tool which can be found here:-


Send me a pm (private message) within this forum and I will explain how you can download it with a coupon code for free.
 

The_Doc_Man

Immoderate Moderator
Staff member
Local time
Today, 10:46
Joined
Feb 28, 2001
Messages
22,815
Hello and welcome to the forum.

So far Access has been a humbling experience, quite a lot of thinking and not enough progress!

Ah, but that is the optimum usage of Access. Have you ever heard the Old Carpenter's Rule (which I learned from my late father-in-law)... Measure twice, cut once. The equivalent in Access (in fact in any programming environment) is: Design once, review more than once, implement once.
 

Antwoord

New member
Local time
Today, 16:46
Joined
Dec 22, 2021
Messages
19
Thanks for the welcome Bob, good to know I'm not alone in that - so far for me it seems like a case of breaking old ways of thinking and learning new ones along with learning lots of new skills too, I think my project would be pretty simple for an experienced programmer so all things considered - hope springs eternal!!
 

bob fitz

AWF VIP
Local time
Today, 16:46
Joined
May 23, 2011
Messages
4,444
Thanks for the welcome Bob, good to know I'm not alone in that - so far for me it seems like a case of breaking old ways of thinking and learning new ones along with learning lots of new skills too, I think my project would be pretty simple for an experienced programmer so all things considered - hope springs eternal!!
I believe that the learning curve for Access is quite steep (and never-ending). But be warned.....it can also become very addictive :ROFLMAO:
 

Antwoord

New member
Local time
Today, 16:46
Joined
Dec 22, 2021
Messages
19
Design once, review more than once, implement once
Thanks for the welcome Doc_Man, I totally see that now, once the tables were designed and populated with data it soon became clear that the table design had comprised reporting ability albeit by making it harder than it needed to be rather than "impossible". In addition a little research on normalization showed me that the foundations made by the tables would create an inefficient database and likely other limitations too. Of course being a novice meant that to get to that stage took far longer than I liked, so lesson learned (I hope!! :))
 

Uncle Gizmo

Nifty Access Guy
Staff member
Local time
Today, 16:46
Joined
Jul 9, 2003
Messages
14,519
Design once, review more than once, implement once.

When I saw this comment Richard, I imagined a carpenter in a carpentry shop, and I thought what would happen if the carpenter applied the Agile System to carpentry? That train of thought was a non-starter, mainly because, as usual I was distracted.

As I read about "Agile Software Development" I realised that is exactly the model the Elon Musk is following in his factories!

The Wikipedia article stated "the empirical evidence is mixed and hard to find." well I think I've just found it, you've just got to look at what Elon is doing!
 

theDBguy

I’m here to help
Staff member
Local time
Today, 08:46
Joined
Oct 29, 2018
Messages
18,989
Hi. Welcome to AWF!
 

GPGeorge

Grover Park George
Local time
Today, 08:46
Joined
Nov 25, 2004
Messages
676
When I saw this comment Richard, I imagined a carpenter in a carpentry shop, and I thought what would happen if the carpenter applied the Agile System to carpentry? That train of thought was a non-starter, mainly because, as usual I was distracted.

As I read about "Agile Software Development" I realised that is exactly the model the Elon Musk is following in his factories!

The Wikipedia article stated "the empirical evidence is mixed and hard to find." well I think I've just found it, you've just got to look at what Elon is doing!
IMO, the key to successful Agile development has to be the willingness to throw away work that was "good enough" at one point, but no longer quite good enough for changed circumstances or new knowledge and understanding. Also, knowing what can be thrown away without compromising the integrity of the solution, and what has to be retained. Sound impossible when I put it that way.
 

jdraw

Super Moderator
Staff member
Local time
Today, 11:46
Joined
Jan 23, 2006
Messages
14,319
Welcome to AWF! Database is a long journey with some bends and twists often resulting in some redirection.
 

The_Doc_Man

Immoderate Moderator
Staff member
Local time
Today, 10:46
Joined
Feb 28, 2001
Messages
22,815
@Freeconsultations

I regret to have to mention this, but your username makes it seem as though you are seeking accounting clients through the forum. We have a "hidden" discussion system for moderators and at the moment, there is a discussion with the site owner regarding the appearance of a specific type of unauthorized posting regarding your chosen username. Please think about this for a couple of days to see if there is a username you might wish to apply that does not give the aura of improper advertising. Your comments seem quite legit so it may be no more than just an unfortunate name choice, which is certainly forgivable. Note also that until you reach 10 posts, you are restricted from certain acts and therefore, this name change (if you choose to do it) would have to wait for at least your 10th post anyway.
 
Last edited:

Antwoord

New member
Local time
Today, 16:46
Joined
Dec 22, 2021
Messages
19
@The_Doc_Man, apologies just a bad choice of username, no worries completely understand - I will change it as soon as the rules permit, it was certainly not my intention to be advertising for clients or misusing the forum in any way, I am genuinely a new Access user who needs to learn a lot ( as I will no doubt ably demonstrate with my forthcoming posts!! :ROFLMAO:)
 

Isaac

Lifelong Learner
Local time
Today, 08:46
Joined
Mar 14, 2017
Messages
6,525
welcome, @Freeconsultations !!

after reading the posts on this thread I had some thoughts.
yes, access can be a steep learning curve, but from what I've seen, half the battle is related to things that wouldn't be a battle if the learner had already conquered concepts related to general database development, first. in other words, half the battle isn't really "access"--the root cause is people trying to use Access who haven't yet learned general database concepts (normalization, entities, tables, set based queries, etc).

thus, in a "perfect world", i'd actually rather see people spend 6 months or more practicing, say, SQL Server queries at a reasonably well maintained data warehouse environment (built by people who at least mostly did it right, or did it in a common way).

that will teach you a lot of things that are actually common to ALL database / data development. then when you come into Access, you won't spend the first year or two making bad table designs that people on forums are always telling you need to be bulldozed and rebuilt.

a lot of people see that as an access learning curve, but it really has nothing to do with access - it's database general.

now having said that, it's not a realistic path - the one I've described - for most people.
most people follow roughly the same path - excel, then access, then a real RDBMS like sql server, (often retaining Access at that point as a front end to a sql server or whatever back end), in a workplace environment where they learn a lot about how things should be done. and some just stay with access, which is OK as long as you conquer the right concepts.

keep this thought in the back of your mind even if it doesn't make sense until later: some of the ways access makes things easy are actually bad habits that you should avoid, or, less severely, just things most people don't do or you'll end up reversing at some point down the road.

thus, even though you follow the same path most people do - excel, access, databases: you will still do better if you keep in the back of your mind to make an effort to SEEK OUT the best quality approaches, which are often not what the Access wizard will do for you. (of course there are people who prefer to only use those things, because "they work" [to some extent], and in a way that works, if you want to be a silo developer which I.T. will come to view as first an amusement, and later a threat, and set up walls to protect themselves against - as discussed here which is a great thread by the way with a lot of helpful specifics and more generalized perspectives....and some people are fine with that.....but I think for many people access is a gateway to a professional career in database development, and for those people, the sooner you dip your toes into the larger RDBMS, the better a developer even back in Access it will make you.

of course we are all on a journey and we do whatever we can with the given set of options.
and if we are good developers (defined by constantly challenging your work for best approaches and wider considerations), we should ALL look back on something we made 3 years ago and laugh a little :)
that's how you know you're growing.

the way I know I've grown stagnant in a skillset is when I look back at something I made 5 years ago and would still think it's perfectly fine to run today. then I know I've gotten lazy

welcome to a fun and productive journey, good to have you here!
 

Antwoord

New member
Local time
Today, 16:46
Joined
Dec 22, 2021
Messages
19
@Isaac thanks for the warm welcome
I appreciate your insight on this, I have been pondering the best way and the quickest way to get the Access skills I need.

For sure I'm guilty of being a creature of habit my work in Excel model building demonstrates that, one perspective is "it's tried and tested" another is "lazy, suboptimal and difficult for anyone else to use" and then I will come full circle along the lines of "it's a tool and the time pressure is ever present" all this competes with the perfectionist tendencies that are part nature and part the nature of the work in accounting/finance - I'm rarely if ever wholly satisfied with what I've done but I have come to regard that as positive force for improvement!!

A few days ago I realised that the way I am learning Access is very far from perfect, I came to the same conclusion as you have just outlined that the ideal approach would be a longer period of hands on experience building new DBs, understanding, using, enhancing and tinkering with existing ones after all what I can do in Excel has been developed haphazardly over years and years of work and thousands of hours of hands on experience, why should Access not require at least similar, no doubt it will be a journey.

As ever the "toad" of time pressure has a large influence on what is feasible, once I have built the tool I am looking at now I'm sure I will be expanding it and enhancing it, I also have some other DB's I want to build which will be simpler and less time pressured (typical!) .

With the safety net of Excel familiarity and understandable audit trail removed for me for now I quickly decided best DB practices needed to be understood and implemented and would help me get there faster, it all makes sense and seems essential foundations so far ( for me especially).
I'd certainly be interested to learn more about MySql since I have hobby websites and build them for personal use - would you say that MYSQL would be a good RDBMS to develop skills in?
 
Last edited:

The_Doc_Man

Immoderate Moderator
Staff member
Local time
Today, 10:46
Joined
Feb 28, 2001
Messages
22,815
@Freeconsultations - You have passed the "10 post" threshold, which means you can other things as well, e.g. upload image files or zip files to show us something that troubles you.

You can ponder your name change for a while. I've notified the site owner. When ready, click on your picture to get to your profile, then click on Account Info. To the right of the display that comes up, you will see various things we keep about users. To the right of each item there is a CHANGE button. Click that. IF you do so, you might find that your name change will NOT be immediately approved. It will require a moderator to approve the change. If I am online at the time, I'll approve it, but other moderators are also good about that.
 

Users who are viewing this thread

Top Bottom