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ABCD Features Coming Soon
By Richard Rost   Richard Rost on Twitter Richard Rost on LinkedIn Email Richard Rost   12 months ago

This is where I'm going to keep my notes for what coming up next in the ABCD development queue.

Speak Up!

If there is something you really want to see added to the database, let me know. Speak up. Make your voice heard! Post a comment below or contact me. I'm building this in the order of highest demand. So if many people want to see, for example, printing invoices, then that will get worked on first.

Bug Fixes, Add-Ons

  • ZIP Code lookup
  • Mark people active / inactive so they don't show up in lists. Prefered over deleting people
  • Allow people to be deleted, but need event to delete related records - not using cascade deletes
  • Online Links (like email, address, phone) for FB, twitter, web site, IG, etc. Opens to correct service w hyperlink
  • Jump OnDblClick from MiscTypeF to Helper
  • System values FORM and a way to select a folder for the ABCDFolder variable

Still Needed in Core

  • Contact Management
  • Basic Order Entry
  • Basic Task Manager
  • Splitting the Database
  • Security

Enhanced Address & Phone Module

  • List of countries to select from (helper data). Priority order for commonly used. (US, Can, UK, Aus, etc.)
  • Country table isn't exhaustive. You can add new ones as needed easily
  • Set a default country just like the primary setting for email, phone, etc. above.
  • Assume new customers are from your default country
  • Country changes labels for other fields (Canada changes State to Province)
  • Country can change rules for entering ZIP codes (Canada 6 for example) or list of states
  • ZIP code lookup - populates state, city, county - add new ones if don't exist - show form if multiple
  • Phone number input masks by country
  • Like with the Relationships above, may be able to store State>Country>ZIP code information in the Helper Table. A 2nd ID field would create that relationship. Experiment with this.
  • Copy address from another entity
  • Potential: store city, state, zip in local database but if it doesn't exist, ask the user to query the web to find it. Need to find a free API to get data from. If not, enter it.
  • A multi-select option for Misc Data. For example, someone wants to collect demographic information like ethnicity. The user can select multiple options for this. Have the misc-data field say "Multiple Items Selected" and then double-click to open up a popup form with a multi-select list box.

Contact Management

  • I was originally going to make contacts a separate module because I figured not everyone might want it, but then I said to myself, the name of the product is the "Access Business & Contact Database" so that would be silly. Basic contact manegement is going to be included in the Core.
  • Contacts assigned to multiple entities (group meeting, for example) to make it easy to jump between participant records
  • Show on the subform for the entityT / contacts tab, show date, brief description, notes, another subform with the OTHER participants that can be tagged in this contact "meeting"

System Options

  • which tab is the default start tab on entity form
  • do you want entity form wide or narrow 
  • colors

Misc Data Sets

  • You can also collect these fields into data Sets: MiscDataSetT and DetailT will hold a collection of fields that YOU may want to ask for your business. For example, you could have a "default" set that includes fields that aren't part of the ABCD core, but you ALWAYS ask. If you sell insurance you may always ask: marital status, dependents, do you smoke, height, weight, etc. Pick it, click a button, and all of these questions are added to your MiscT for that entity
  • you can also use these sets to create questionnaires. One click on the SET and the questions are automatically populated into the subform for the entity. then you can fill out the data
  • Add capability to search through MiscData in the EntityList

Entity Search Form Enhancements

  • For dates show MM DD YYYY boxes because you may want a list of people all born in 1950, or all in October
  • Export results of search to text, excel, etc.
  • Printable report based on search results
  • Populate SearchText box with top 10 most popular items from the database, such as states, countries, etc. However this could slow down the database over a network.
  • MiscData searches for dates and numbers need to obey same rules for entities
  • Option on MiscDataType table to "show in search form" because some things like credit card number you don't want there. Yes/No/AdminOnly options.
  • While we're at it, you may only want some of the Misc data being visible to Admin only, like credit card number. Users can ENTER them, but cannot VIEW existing data.

Other Modules in Development

This list represents modules that are currently in development. There are two ways that a module gets "fast tracked." Either a large number of people have requested it, or a client has paid a priority fee to have this module developed. In either case, these are currently in development and will be finished first, after the Core enhancements listed above:

  • Letter Writer - printed correspondence, mail merge, mailing labels, send to group or by other criteria (state, etc.)
  • Bulk Email Sending
  • Tasks - priority TO DO list with date due, auto generate at regular intervals
  • Tracking Insurance Policies
  • Accounts Payable
  • Budgeting
  • Importing Leads - track lead source (vendor, ad, etc.)
  • Heirarchal Notepad (items, sub-items, etc.) like my web notes

If you have a need for a database project for your business, contact me. If I think it will be a good fit for an ABCD module, I'll add it to the list. If it's not already on the fast track, you can pay to have it put on this list so it's developed first.

School Enrollment & Attendance

  • Groups will be used to track enrollment in classes
  • Upgrade Groups so that a group can have subgroups (self-joins) this way you can have departments (science, english, etc.) and each group can have subgroups (sc101, sc102, etc.)
  • Track daily attendence
  • Scheduling, both of regular class schedules (mon, wed, fri from 8 to 11 am) and for individual seminars (date/time)
  • Tuition tracking

Integrate the Check Register as a Module

Payees will be Entities in a special PAYEE system category. make a PayeeF form that shows the category and lets you add people to a listbox/subform on that form. payment categories will be a special system category type

Other Modules

This list is in no particular order. Speak up if you want to see me work on something sooner rather than later.

  • Order Entry, Quotes, Invoices - similar to what is covered in my normal classes, but polished and professional
  • Recurring Memberships
  • Sales reports, forecasting
  • Product Database unit cost, sale price, import products from vendors
  • Vendors - many-to-many with products (products can be purchased from multiple vendors)
  • Inventory management, stock levels, reorder
  • Barcoding - UPC, ISBN, create your own
  • Checking account register
  • Import transaction data from bank, paypal
  • Employee time tracking
  • Employee scheduling
  • Images? Anyone interested in displaying pictures of their customers???
  • Surveys (misc data sets) send out by email and track responses
  • Church management

Other Features

These are features that will be built into the database eventually.

  • Keywords - type in keywords in a text box for any entity. The system will analyze them and if they exist in your keyword database, will automatically add them to that user. If they're new, they will get added to the database.
  • Split database with instructions on how to set up on a LAN and integrate with AccessUpdater
  • Remote data viewing / editing with disconnected mini DB
  • Full security lockdown (everything covered in Security Seminar)
  • Full external strings manager (so you can call Entity "customer" if you want, and other fields)
  • User preferences (colors, fonts, for forms, reports, etc.)
  • Upscale to SQL Server, local network
  • Upscale to SQL Server, online
  • Upscale to SQL Server as a service (I host and maintain your data)
  • Web-based data viewing editing (for web-hosted data)
  • Full training videos for USERS so that you don't have to explain to non-Access people how to use your database. These videos will be presented in a non-technical way how to USE the database. Save time on training your secretary.

Suggestions, Comments, Questions?

Again, let me know if you have any thoughts, ideas, or features you'd like to see in this database. Post them below!


Next ABCD Lesson Upload Images   Link 
Brent Rinehart 
29 days ago
Good evening Richard I wanted to to check in on how the ABCD database is coming along. It looks like it's been about 7 months since the last one and I'm eager to get to learn all the new stuff your going to work Into it, has there not been a lot of interest in it?
Richard Rost
28 days ago
Hi Brent. I've got some new stuff coming out very soon.
Brent Rinehart
28 days ago
Great to hear, eager and waiting.
Add a Reply
ABCD 6 Upload Images   Link 
Michelle Maughan 
3 months ago
Hi Richard
How is ABCD 6 going? Cheers
Richard Rost
3 months ago
Going to be doing some more work on it this week. I know, I'm behind schedule. I'm probably going to do more work offline without recording everything and then give you a video recap of what was done. I'm sure I'll get more done that way. Recording is very time consuming, even if I'm not "teaching." LOL
Add a Reply
Idea For ABCD Database Upload Images   Link 
Joseph Messina 
5 months ago
Hi Richard:

I understand you are very busy.  When you have a chance not sure if you saw my idea for the ABCD database.  I know you are still building onto the ABCD database.  I have an idea about putting a field for website when a person has a website with there contaxct info with email and phone number and address.  I know some databases have field for website.  not sure where you want to put it.  I was thinking about that idea.  Like if someone goes to go lookup a person in the database and wants to look at their website.  I had that on my mind Wednesday night.
Stacy Atchison
5 months ago
I'm not sure if I am understanding your suggestion correctly. However, in case I am, he introduces the topic of adding hyperlinks to tables in the following lessons;
Beginner Level 1 / Lesson 4 / Customer Table, Part 1 / video mark @ 12:00
"  "/ "  " / Customer Table, Part 2 / video mark @ 0:50 (email)  1:13 (website)
Then Beginner Level 2 has 4 lessons on form design in which hyperlinks are included in the sample data frequently.
If you just keep an eye out for when he uses his personal "Customer Contact" information as he always has both links included.
Richard Rost
5 months ago
Like Stacy said, just add a hyperlink field if that's what you want.
Add a Reply
ABCD database Upload Images   Link 
Joseph Messina 
6 months ago
Hi Richard:
Not sure if you ndid it already ort when you will be doing this.  Can you let me know when you will be doing the zip code lookup in the ABCD database.  I would like to watch the video when you do it.
Richard Rost
6 months ago
I'll definitely post it. :)
Joseph Messina
6 months ago
HI Riochard:

Thank you.  I really appreciate it.  I'm definitely interested watching it when you do it.  I want to do to the zip code look up in my contact database.  I have the Address setup like you do in the ABCD database.

Add a Reply
Outlook Contacts Upload Images   Link 
Stefan Wirtz 
6 months ago
The ability to add contacts to or from Outlook contacts would be a great feature.
Richard Rost
6 months ago
I might make an import routine. Honestly, I kinda don't like Outlook. :/
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Helper Table System Value Upload Images   Link 
Leah Bacani 
7 months ago
what's the system value column about?thanks
Richard Rost
7 months ago
A system value means that the value is being used in VBA code somewhere and CANNOT be changed. For example, if you've got code specific to a particular ID being an Employee, and your HelperID for employee is 24, then once that is set as a system value it cannot be edited or deleted so as not to mess up your code. This is explained in the video.
Add a Reply
Zip Code Lookup in ABCD Upload Images   Link 
Joseph Messina 
7 months ago
Hi Richard:

    I know i mention this think few days ago aho about the zip xode lookup in the ABCD database.  I really appreciate it if you can let me know when you create the zip code lookup in the ABCD database.  I been trying to do it in my contact database and when follow your extended cut video on the zip code lookup I'm taking my time and doing everything.  I'm in the subform doing the zip code and doing the code and everything and making sure i'm spelling everything correct.  I don't know why not working.  I would like to watch you when you do the zip code lookup in the ABCD  database.  Right now i'm just running my database off the first video the free video.
Richard Rost
7 months ago
Yes, I will definitely be adding it. No, I don't have a timeline.
Joseph Messina
7 months ago
Thank you for letting me know.  I really appreciate it.
Add a Reply
Order Entry ABCD Upload Images   Link 
Julian Okolonji 
8 months ago
I have just started a Temporary/Permanent recruitment agency as I mentioned in an email to Richard and have been using excel and word to keep track of my transactions. I supply health workers/Admin to Hospitals and care homes. I have some how built a temporary database by making a few changes to the order entry on Tech Help, many thanks Richard as that has been very helpful. Read More...
Richard Rost
8 months ago
Possibly. I've got so many ideas from so many people... and unless it's a custom paid module I'm trying to do the stuff that will be used by the most people first. I haven't even gotten to contacts and invoicing yet. :) But yes, I'll definitely add it to the list.
Richard Rost
8 months ago
But yes, eventually when we add security, you'll be able to set up specific roles for users so that can see/do/edit things. This user can only input new orders. This user can edit them. This user can't even see them. Etc.
Add a Reply
Mass Email Upload Images   Link 
Brent Rinehart 
8 months ago
I would love to see a feature where you can select a group of people or companies and select a button and email all of them at once, meaning it would load all the email addresses into outlook so you can type one email and send.
Richard Rost
8 months ago
I really hate - HATE - using Outlook. I was going to make an Email module, but it will send direct to your SMTP server. Personally I use Gmail, but you can connect to anything you want. Outlook is just such a pain. Would that work for ya?

I mean... I could do Outlook, but... ew...
Brent Rinehart
8 months ago
I use outlook at work and at home, I have all my Gmail go through outlook as well and I even use the outlook app, I thought you preached Microsoft LOL. Is there a way just to default to the user's default email client whatever is setup?
Add a Reply
Web Based Data Upload Images   Link 
Antony Lee 
9 months ago
To be able to do this utilising a Tablet would be an absolute game changer.

This is number 1 on my wish list.
Richard Rost
9 months ago
This would involve designing a web interface. Alex is working on something like that.
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