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Nuts & Bolts

It's Simple...Yet Difficult

Until recently, Paradox was a product owned by Borland, a formidable name in the software industry and maker of some of the most successful software developing programs around (including C++ and Visual dBASE). Corel, the company that owns WordPerfect and the WordPerfect Suite 8, has taken over the marketing and development of Paradox, presumably to maintain its consumer-oriented focus. Still, Borland will continue to provide Paradox with its Borland Database Engine. This means the guts of the program are extremely strong.

The first impression I got upon opening this program is that users won't be overwhelmed with too much information or too many choices. I immediately opened one of the sample databases provided and began working with it. Within minutes, I had saved it as an HTML file and had even selected specific colors for the background and text and viewed it from within my browser. The process was seamless and simple, an easy way to publish basic database information to the Web.

But when it came time to manipulate the data in the file or to create an entirely new database, I had to refer to the manual and take a good, hard look at the process. Of course, it's necessary with all database programs to refer to the manual often when creating something completely new. Even with help from the manual, however, I often felt lost in this program.

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This article was originally published in the March 1998 print edition of Entrepreneur with the headline: Nuts & Bolts.

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