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Thread: Pen Database

  1. #21
    Senior Member tandaina's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pen Database

    If it evaporates I've got bigger problems. Though the data IS stored locally, so even if the service went away I'd still have the most recent local copy, it isn't all cloud.
    ---
    Current pen rotation: way too many!

  2. #22
    Senior Member cedargirl's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pen Database

    For those who have never seen the FPI program, here are a couple of screen shots. It has some very useful features.

    Pen databse Capture.PNG
    Ink database Capture.PNG

    Many of the fields have cutomisable pull down menus.
    And note the tabs across the top which lead to additional pages.
    Last edited by cedargirl; June 2nd, 2013 at 11:48 PM. Reason: add extra words
    ... Inspiration exists, but it has to find you working [Pablo Picasso] ...

  3. #23
    Senior Member Susan3141's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pen Database

    I've tried the FPN Database but on my Mac it somehow disconnects the application from the data, so if I close the application and reopen it, it says it can't find the file. I simply don't trust it.

    I have Bento and find it cumbersome. I tried Home Inventory (a Mac App) but can't customize the fields like I'd like. I really do need something now, because after I buy a pen, I often lose access to the original listing and I need the information in case I want to sell it someday.

    I hate Evernote. I wish I didn't, but I do. Maybe I'll have to try it again just for this purpose I can use the FPN Database fields as a guide for a template and go from there.

    We need a decent pen collecting app!
    Show me a shiny blue fountain pen and I will probably buy it.

  4. #24
    Senior Member cedargirl's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pen Database

    I do recall having some issues like that when I first installed it. The trick is to make sure all the files are saved into a single folder, then if you want to move it around, you can just move the entire folder. I also remember that it wasn't clear to me which file to use to open the program with data in it, but I must have sorted that because my shortcut works every time.
    ... Inspiration exists, but it has to find you working [Pablo Picasso] ...

  5. #25
    Senior Member Susan3141's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pen Database

    I wound up buying Tapforms Database for Mac (I already have the iPad version). I used the FPN Database as a reference for fields and created my own form. The nice thing about this is I can add fields if I want to and the database can be backed up to Dropbox and synced with my iPad. Plus, it's aesthetically much more pleasing to the eye. Of course, it wasn't free, but I can use it for other databases as well, and I know it won't wonk out on me. I can export it, so that's another safety feature.
    Show me a shiny blue fountain pen and I will probably buy it.

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  7. #26
    Member Heliotrope's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pen Database

    Here's the complete list as of 6/8/13 (read the posts for tips/criticism):

    1) MS Access
    2) Excel (can be paired with Skydrive)
    3) FileMaker (upgrade or perhaps contact Jonro; export for printing)
    4) Open Office Database
    5) Google Docs
    6) Bento (for Mac, iPad, iPhone)
    7) Numbers (for Mac)
    8) www.penventory.com
    9) Evernote
    10) Home Inventory (application for Mac)
    11) other home inventory applications
    12) Tapforms Database (for Mac)

    Thanks everyone for all of your suggestions! I have been traveling, so I'll try some of these ideas when I get back to my home computer. I'll update the list if more suggestions are posted.


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    Default Re: Pen Database

    Nothing fancy, but I created an Excel spreadsheet and assigned ratings to nibs, inks, and pens. I find it's easiest for me to use.

  9. #28
    Senior Member AndyT's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pen Database

    I've just installed the GCstar package for Linux and will have a play about with it when time permits. If it works out all right I'll report back, and happily supply a pen inventory template file if anyone's interested. Seems to be suitable for Mac and Windows too, but it might be less than straightforward: "GCstar ... can be used on any operating systems on which gtk2-perl is available. It has primarily been tested on GNU/Linux systems (used to develop it) but also on Microsoft Windows". Website:

    http://www.gcstar.org/

  10. #29
    Senior Member peterpen53's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pen Database

    Quote Originally Posted by Susan3141 View Post
    I wound up buying Tapforms Database for Mac (I already have the iPad version). I used the FPN Database as a reference for fields and created my own form. The nice thing about this is I can add fields if I want to and the database can be backed up to Dropbox and synced with my iPad. Plus, it's aesthetically much more pleasing to the eye. Of course, it wasn't free, but I can use it for other databases as well, and I know it won't wonk out on me. I can export it, so that's another safety feature.
    Big fat thank you for this tip, Suzy. This might be the one I've been looking for (not just for my pen collection). I had a look at their website and it shows great promise. If it lives up to that I even consider it a bargain.


    May Your Force Be With You

    If I mention a supplier, I am ONLY affiliated if I EXPLICITLY say so.

  11. #30
    Senior Member tannie's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pen Database

    Quote Originally Posted by Susan3141 View Post
    I wound up buying Tapforms Database for Mac (I already have the iPad version). I used the FPN Database as a reference for fields and created my own form. The nice thing about this is I can add fields if I want to and the database can be backed up to Dropbox and synced with my iPad. Plus, it's aesthetically much more pleasing to the eye. Of course, it wasn't free, but I can use it for other databases as well, and I know it won't wonk out on me. I can export it, so that's another safety feature.
    Would you share your templates?
    I've fiddled around with it myself, and am curious what you have made. And how you 'did it'.
    ~ Tanja

    my daily drawings: http://inkblobs.nl/

  12. #31
    Senior Member AndyT's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pen Database

    Well it seems like I now have pen and ink databases (and a good deal of data entry to be getting on with). GCstar turned out to be straightforward to use and rock solid stable, so it's definitely an option for Linux and probably worth investigating for other platforms. Oh, and it's free, naturally. Screenshots:

    GCstar Pen Inventory screenshot.jpg

    GCstar Ink Inventory Screenshot.jpg

    I've saved blank templates in case they might be useful to somebody, they're a breeze to modify.

  13. The Following 6 Users Say Thank You to AndyT For This Useful Post:

    79spitfire (June 12th, 2013), caribbean_skye (June 10th, 2013), cwent2 (June 10th, 2013), Heliotrope (June 10th, 2013), Jon Szanto (June 10th, 2013), RuiFromUK (July 5th, 2014)

  14. #32
    Senior Member cedargirl's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pen Database

    Well done AndyT. That looks very useful. Who's going to try it on Windows??
    ... Inspiration exists, but it has to find you working [Pablo Picasso] ...

  15. #33
    Senior Member AndyT's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pen Database

    Actually, it looks like a Windows installation ought to be straightforward because the developers have treated it like a Linux package and included all the dependencies. Plug 'n' play, almost. Mac users might will have more fun and games! Here's the Windows installation page:

    http://wiki.gcstar.org/en/install_windows

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    Frank (June 19th, 2013)

  17. #34
    Senior Member Jon Szanto's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pen Database

    I just downloaded and installed the Windows version in under 5 minutes. Andy, I'd love to try the templates if possible, I'll send you a PM...
    "When Men differ in Opinion, both Sides ought equally to have the Advantage of being heard by the Publick;
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    Senior Member cwent2's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pen Database

    I can try it my collection is still rather on the small side. Meaning it probably won't take me too long to set it up - input some data and try my hand at a review.

    That is of course if that is ok.

    Also have a new computer coming so if program blows up my mother board - I won't be lost for too long

    Cw
    Cw



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    Forgive quickly, Kiss SLOWLY.
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  19. #36
    Member Heliotrope's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pen Database

    Quote Originally Posted by AndyT View Post
    Actually, it looks like a Windows installation ought to be straightforward because the developers have treated it like a Linux package and included all the dependencies. Plug 'n' play, almost. Mac users might will have more fun and games! Here's the Windows installation page:

    http://wiki.gcstar.org/en/install_windows

    This looks very promising. Thanks, AndyT! I can't wait to take a look at this when I have a moment. Hopefully tonight.

  20. #37
    Member Heliotrope's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pen Database

    Quote Originally Posted by AndyT View Post
    Actually, it looks like a Windows installation ought to be straightforward because the developers have treated it like a Linux package and included all the dependencies. Plug 'n' play, almost. Mac users might will have more fun and games! Here's the Windows installation page:

    http://wiki.gcstar.org/en/install_windows

    Thanks again, everyone for all of your great ideas. I've experimented with various options and like several of them.

    I really like GCstar, but I'm not entirely convinced yet. It loaded quickly and easily on my Windows 7 machine. I was putting together my own templates within a few minutes. AndyT provided some nice templates (Thanks again, Andy!), but making new templates is so simple that I also made one of my own. Layout options on screen are limited but sufficient. There is no direct print function, but it's simple to export. I couldn't get all of the export functions to work (probably due to my technical limitations), but I was able to export to HTML and get an acceptable result. Not elegant, but good enough for now. The honeymoon was over fairly quickly when my first pen library crashed. And since that was the last library that I had open, the application would not start up after that because it kept trying to load the broken library. I uninstalled/trashed everything and reinstalled. No problems for a couple of days now. I have entered minimal information for about 80 pens as a test. (It really is that quick and easy to use.) I'll start adding photos and run through some of the same things I did before to see if it crashes again.

    Still looking at a few of the other options. Just wanted to post some feedback for anyone with a Windows machine interested in GCstar. Please PM me if you see something that I may have missed.

  21. #38
    Senior Member cedargirl's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pen Database

    Thanks for keeping us up to date on your trials.
    ... Inspiration exists, but it has to find you working [Pablo Picasso] ...

  22. #39
    Senior Member Frank's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pen Database

    Thanks for the info and link, Andy T!
    This database looks pretty good!

    Regards,
    Frank
    "When, in the course of writing events, it becomes self-evident that not all pens are created equal" (Federalist Frank)

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  23. #40
    Senior Member AndyT's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pen Database

    You're very welcome, and I'm pleased to see that it's worked out well for for a few people.

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