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#1 BlackTree Studio

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Posted 25 September 2010 - 05:15 PM

Are you using an inventory software program that you would recommend for a small pottery studio which sells online and fairs? I would like to use or create a database which I can use for several purposes: when I first complete a piece (description and photo) and then add info as the piece is sold (what price, where, and to who). I would like to be able then to access information in various ways to help me determine potential production decisions and marketing.

#2 Seasoned Warrior

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Posted 25 September 2010 - 11:36 PM

Are you using an inventory software program that you would recommend for a small pottery studio which sells online and fairs? I would like to use or create a database which I can use for several purposes: when I first complete a piece (description and photo) and then add info as the piece is sold (what price, where, and to who). I would like to be able then to access information in various ways to help me determine potential production decisions and marketing.


There may well be and there a re some very knowledgeable people on this site who may use such a program. I've always used a database starting with dBase in the 1980's to Microsoft's Excel today with a few segues in between. I do much of my work with database programs because they are so easy to customize for my needs. I use one for my glaze formulas and another for my stock tracking and completed inventory and another for my advertising. Most custom programs I have seen utilize a database as the model for the program anyway. You can even do complex calculations with databases, it may not show but I really LIKE databases!


Best regards,
Charles



#3 Pres

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Posted 26 September 2010 - 09:54 AM


Are you using an inventory software program that you would recommend for a small pottery studio which sells online and fairs? I would like to use or create a database which I can use for several purposes: when I first complete a piece (description and photo) and then add info as the piece is sold (what price, where, and to who). I would like to be able then to access information in various ways to help me determine potential production decisions and marketing.


There may well be and there a re some very knowledgeable people on this site who may use such a program. I've always used a database starting with dBase in the 1980's to Microsoft's Excel today with a few segues in between. I do much of my work with database programs because they are so easy to customize for my needs. I use one for my glaze formulas and another for my stock tracking and completed inventory and another for my advertising. Most custom programs I have seen utilize a database as the model for the program anyway. You can even do complex calculations with databases, it may not show but I really LIKE databases!


Best regards,
Charles



Not to be overly picky, but even though they have almost become synonymous there are differences between databases like dbase, and spreadsheets like Excel. I also use the spreadsheet excel or the Open Office equivalent calc to do my glaze recipes and batch conversions, but will have to investigate using a spreadsheet to set up an inventory. I imagine from there I could automate it to my web site when I finish getting that up.

Simply retired teacher, not dead, living the dream. on and on and. . . . on. . . .                                                                                 http://picworkspottery.blogspot.com/


#4 JBaymore

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Posted 26 September 2010 - 10:03 AM

I was gong to bring up the "database vs spreadsheet" though too, Pres. You beat me to it Posted Image .

I use Microsoft Access... part of the Office Professional suite or available separately. Been using it since about 2002 or 2003 I think. Allows pretty much infinite possibilities for custom configurations. A true relational database.

http://office.micros...m/en-us/access/

best,

............john
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Professor of Ceramics; New Hampshire Insitute of Art

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#5 Jessica Knapp

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Posted 30 September 2010 - 07:52 AM

If you're using a MAC instead of a PC, your best bet for database software is FileMaker Pro. Microsoft doesn't make Access for Macs any longer. In Filemaker, there are set templates that can help you do all of the things you list below, and it can easily set up relational databases, one for contacts, one for sales/ invoices, one for inventory etc. Photos can be included, labels, letters, invoices and other reports can be generated. If you go with Filemaker, I'd recommend you buy a book, too. This helps you to understand ideas like relational databases and how to set them up properly. It is easy to do once you understand the concepts, but the concepts themselves are a bit abstract unless you've worked with a lot of databases in the past. I used "Filemaker Pro The Missing Manual". If you don't want to buy a book, there are several good forums online that will likely have answers to all of your questions in their archived posts/ threads.
http://www.fmforums.com/
http://www.filemaker..._selection.html
http://filemakertoda...m/com/forum.php

Jessica


Are you using an inventory software program that you would recommend for a small pottery studio which sells online and fairs? I would like to use or create a database which I can use for several purposes: when I first complete a piece (description and photo) and then add info as the piece is sold (what price, where, and to who). I would like to be able then to access information in various ways to help me determine potential production decisions and marketing.


There may well be and there a re some very knowledgeable people on this site who may use such a program. I've always used a database starting with dBase in the 1980's to Microsoft's Excel today with a few segues in between. I do much of my work with database programs because they are so easy to customize for my needs. I use one for my glaze formulas and another for my stock tracking and completed inventory and another for my advertising. Most custom programs I have seen utilize a database as the model for the program anyway. You can even do complex calculations with databases, it may not show but I really LIKE databases!


Best regards,
Charles




#6 Pres

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Posted 30 September 2010 - 02:31 PM

If you're using a MAC instead of a PC, your best bet for database software is FileMaker Pro. Microsoft doesn't make Access for Macs any longer. In Filemaker, there are set templates that can help you do all of the things you list below, and it can easily set up relational databases, one for contacts, one for sales/ invoices, one for inventory etc. Photos can be included, labels, letters, invoices and other reports can be generated. If you go with Filemaker, I'd recommend you buy a book, too. This helps you to understand ideas like relational databases and how to set them up properly. It is easy to do once you understand the concepts, but the concepts themselves are a bit abstract unless you've worked with a lot of databases in the past. I used "Filemaker Pro The Missing Manual". If you don't want to buy a book, there are several good forums online that will likely have answers to all of your questions in their archived posts/ threads.
http://www.fmforums.com/
http://www.filemaker..._selection.html
http://filemakertoda...m/com/forum.php

Jessica



Are you using an inventory software program that you would recommend for a small pottery studio which sells online and fairs? I would like to use or create a database which I can use for several purposes: when I first complete a piece (description and photo) and then add info as the piece is sold (what price, where, and to who). I would like to be able then to access information in various ways to help me determine potential production decisions and marketing.


There may well be and there a re some very knowledgeable people on this site who may use such a program. I've always used a database starting with dBase in the 1980's to Microsoft's Excel today with a few segues in between. I do much of my work with database programs because they are so easy to customize for my needs. I use one for my glaze formulas and another for my stock tracking and completed inventory and another for my advertising. Most custom programs I have seen utilize a database as the model for the program anyway. You can even do complex calculations with databases, it may not show but I really LIKE databases!


Best regards,
Charles


I believe Open Office is still available for Mac is it not? It contains a reasonable data base for free!

Simply retired teacher, not dead, living the dream. on and on and. . . . on. . . .                                                                                 http://picworkspottery.blogspot.com/


#7 Seasoned Warrior

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Posted 30 September 2010 - 04:04 PM



Are you using an inventory software program that you would recommend for a small pottery studio which sells online and fairs? I would like to use or create a database which I can use for several purposes: when I first complete a piece (description and photo) and then add info as the piece is sold (what price, where, and to who). I would like to be able then to access information in various ways to help me determine potential production decisions and marketing.


There may well be and there a re some very knowledgeable people on this site who may use such a program. I've always used a database starting with dBase in the 1980's to Microsoft's Excel today with a few segues in between. I do much of my work with database programs because they are so easy to customize for my needs. I use one for my glaze formulas and another for my stock tracking and completed inventory and another for my advertising. Most custom programs I have seen utilize a database as the model for the program anyway. You can even do complex calculations with databases, it may not show but I really LIKE databases!


Best regards,
Charles




Not to be overly picky, but even though they have almost become synonymous there are differences between databases like dbase, and spreadsheets like Excel. I also use the spreadsheet excel or the Open Office equivalent calc to do my glaze recipes and batch conversions, but will have to investigate using a spreadsheet to set up an inventory. I imagine from there I could automate it to my web site when I finish getting that up.




Yes, you are absolutely right there are differences between databases and spreadsheets, not picky at all. I guess I should be a lot more careful about my answers. Databases and spreadsheets are actually hugely different and the oversight was unfortunate. In1986 dBase was basically a spreadsheet and was most frequently used to create databases. In those days we basically used a spreadsheet to create a database from which we could draw information and manipulate the data both of which are still functions of programs like Excel. In the dBase program of 1986 there was no graphic user interface for PCs and one had to memorize the commands. Intel 8086 was the processor of choice and diskdrives were rated in kilobytes. That being said you stil canl use Excel to create a database from which you can draw information to manipulate such as a very flexible inventory system, I use a FIFO system based in Excel that I built, the concept is actually quite simple. Excel has excellent form editors and there are also preprogrammed forms readily available from Microsoft and other sources. .

Best regards,
Charles



#8 Pres

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Posted 30 September 2010 - 11:34 PM




Are you using an inventory software program that you would recommend for a small pottery studio which sells online and fairs? I would like to use or create a database which I can use for several purposes: when I first complete a piece (description and photo) and then add info as the piece is sold (what price, where, and to who). I would like to be able then to access information in various ways to help me determine potential production decisions and marketing.


There may well be and there a re some very knowledgeable people on this site who may use such a program. I've always used a database starting with dBase in the 1980's to Microsoft's Excel today with a few segues in between. I do much of my work with database programs because they are so easy to customize for my needs. I use one for my glaze formulas and another for my stock tracking and completed inventory and another for my advertising. Most custom programs I have seen utilize a database as the model for the program anyway. You can even do complex calculations with databases, it may not show but I really LIKE databases!


Best regards,
Charles




Not to be overly picky, but even though they have almost become synonymous there are differences between databases like dbase, and spreadsheets like Excel. I also use the spreadsheet excel or the Open Office equivalent calc to do my glaze recipes and batch conversions, but will have to investigate using a spreadsheet to set up an inventory. I imagine from there I could automate it to my web site when I finish getting that up.




Yes, you are absolutely right there are differences between databases and spreadsheets, not picky at all. I guess I should be a lot more careful about my answers. Databases and spreadsheets are actually hugely different and the oversight was unfortunate. In1986 dBase was basically a spreadsheet and was most frequently used to create databases. In those days we basically used a spreadsheet to create a database from which we could draw information and manipulate the data both of which are still functions of programs like Excel. In the dBase program of 1986 there was no graphic user interface for PCs and one had to memorize the commands. Intel 8086 was the processor of choice and diskdrives were rated in kilobytes. That being said you stil canl use Excel to create a database from which you can draw information to manipulate such as a very flexible inventory system, I use a FIFO system based in Excel that I built, the concept is actually quite simple. Excel has excellent form editors and there are also preprogrammed forms readily available from Microsoft and other sources. .

Best regards,
Charles



Yes, I remember the old 8086 in its day, I was using a Motorola chip when I started out in my classrooms-in the old Amiga's. We had a great database and spread sheet set up, but can't remember the name anymore. I also used Hypercard on the Mac for a while. Then on to the Office suite. As so many people out there I can not see the price of the full suite so just use the Home version. I use Open Office for anything I am missing.

Simply retired teacher, not dead, living the dream. on and on and. . . . on. . . .                                                                                 http://picworkspottery.blogspot.com/


#9 JBaymore

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Posted 01 October 2010 - 09:03 AM

8086...... I started out studying Comp Sci on a mainframe in collegePosted Image . My first home computer had a Z80 processor and I think 2K of RAM. Now I'm running a fast i7 quad core with 6 gigs of RAM with a meg of video card memory. How far we have come!

best,

................john




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Professor of Ceramics; New Hampshire Insitute of Art

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#10 Pres

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Posted 01 October 2010 - 10:13 AM

8086...... I started out studying Comp Sci on a mainframe in collegePosted Image . My first home computer had a Z80 processor and I think 2K of RAM. Now I'm running a fast i7 quad core with 6 gigs of RAM with a meg of video card memory. How far we have come!

best,

................john





I look back at what we were able to do back then on an old Commodore 64, or the Amiga, and wonder how far we have really gotten. Much of our hardware advances have been eaten up by sloppy and glutted code. Efficient operating systems were trashed in favor of popular, but obese ones.

Simply retired teacher, not dead, living the dream. on and on and. . . . on. . . .                                                                                 http://picworkspottery.blogspot.com/


#11 Seasoned Warrior

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Posted 01 October 2010 - 01:01 PM





Are you using an inventory software program that you would recommend for a small pottery studio which sells online and fairs? I would like to use or create a database which I can use for several purposes: when I first complete a piece (description and photo) and then add info as the piece is sold (what price, where, and to who). I would like to be able then to access information in various ways to help me determine potential production decisions and marketing.


There may well be and there a re some very knowledgeable people on this site who may use such a program. I've always used a database starting with dBase in the 1980's to Microsoft's Excel today with a few segues in between. I do much of my work with database programs because they are so easy to customize for my needs. I use one for my glaze formulas and another for my stock tracking and completed inventory and another for my advertising. Most custom programs I have seen utilize a database as the model for the program anyway. You can even do complex calculations with databases, it may not show but I really LIKE databases!


Best regards,
Charles




Not to be overly picky, but even though they have almost become synonymous there are differences between databases like dbase, and spreadsheets like Excel. I also use the spreadsheet excel or the Open Office equivalent calc to do my glaze recipes and batch conversions, but will have to investigate using a spreadsheet to set up an inventory. I imagine from there I could automate it to my web site when I finish getting that up.




Yes, you are absolutely right there are differences between databases and spreadsheets, not picky at all. I guess I should be a lot more careful about my answers. Databases and spreadsheets are actually hugely different and the oversight was unfortunate. In1986 dBase was basically a spreadsheet and was most frequently used to create databases. In those days we basically used a spreadsheet to create a database from which we could draw information and manipulate the data both of which are still functions of programs like Excel. In the dBase program of 1986 there was no graphic user interface for PCs and one had to memorize the commands. Intel 8086 was the processor of choice and diskdrives were rated in kilobytes. That being said you stil canl use Excel to create a database from which you can draw information to manipulate such as a very flexible inventory system, I use a FIFO system based in Excel that I built, the concept is actually quite simple. Excel has excellent form editors and there are also preprogrammed forms readily available from Microsoft and other sources. .

Best regards,
Charles



Yes, I remember the old 8086 in its day, I was using a Motorola chip when I started out in my classrooms-in the old Amiga's. We had a great database and spread sheet set up, but can't remember the name anymore. I also used Hypercard on the Mac for a while. Then on to the Office suite. As so many people out there I can not see the price of the full suite so just use the Home version. I use Open Office for anything I am missing.


The thing I hate are the forced upgrades. Years ago in the DOS days I was perfectly happy with Peachtree Accounting software and even kept my old DOS machine strictly to do oaccounting until it finally gave up the ghost. I then went out and got Quickbooks: I don't understand other than pure greed why they come out with a new system every year or so and then you can't keep using the old system because there is no support and if you change computers you have to upgrade. Accounting hasn't changed since the day that monk, Luca Pacioli published his book on math in 1494, why do I have to upgrade each year?

Best regards,
Charles




#12 Seasoned Warrior

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Posted 01 October 2010 - 01:12 PM

8086...... I started out studying Comp Sci on a mainframe in collegePosted Image . My first home computer had a Z80 processor and I think 2K of RAM. Now I'm running a fast i7 quad core with 6 gigs of RAM with a meg of video card memory. How far we have come!

best,

................john





Well I never actually studied computer science but I used to have to schedule mainframe use as an engineering student. In those days we progrmmed in COBOL and FORTRAN and used punch cards. I still fnd it amazing that I have more computing power in my laptop than I had in colege in the early 70's. I remember standing inline to run my calcualtions one day when the guy three people in front of me dropped his tray of cards: talk about angst:)

A little bit of nostalgia here is a picture of the IBM RAMAC 305, the first computer with a hard drive. The hard drive had a capacity of 5MB and weighed over a ton.

regards,
Charles


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#13 JBaymore

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Posted 01 October 2010 - 01:54 PM

When I started school some formal Comp Sci was required. And yup...... learned some BASIC, COBOL, and FORTRAN. Did a tad of the punchcard absurdity... then on to remote login teletype terminals to the computer that took up a good part of a whole building on campus... with tons of air conditioning machines. (The big "game" was to figure out how to crash the mainframe. Posted Image )

"Back in the day" (80s) I was one of the first to write computerized glaze calculation programs for PCs, and sold such software before it was a bit more "in" to do so. But I'm a potter with a familiarity with computers ... not a programmer with a familiarity with ceramics...... so I stopped working on that stuff and let the "code guys" like Tony Hansen really take it over. I've pretty much stopped programming as of about Visual Basic 6.

I recently upgraded to Windows 7 64 bit...... and unfortunately discovered that a lot of my good ole' standyby 32 bit software that I know and love would not RUN on the 64 bit OS. I expected it .... but I then had to spend a bundle on new software to replace the old.

best,

.................john
John Baymore
Immediate Past President; Potters Council
Professor of Ceramics; New Hampshire Insitute of Art

http://www.JohnBaymore.com

#14 Seasoned Warrior

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Posted 01 October 2010 - 07:18 PM


8086...... I started out studying Comp Sci on a mainframe in collegePosted Image . My first home computer had a Z80 processor and I think 2K of RAM. Now I'm running a fast i7 quad core with 6 gigs of RAM with a meg of video card memory. How far we have come!

best,

................john





I look back at what we were able to do back then on an old Commodore 64, or the Amiga, and wonder how far we have really gotten. Much of our hardware advances have been eaten up by sloppy and glutted code. Efficient operating systems were trashed in favor of popular, but obese ones.


that is so true Pres. When I was in engineering school I had a couple of professors whom, at the time I thought wer just sadistic, but in their classes assignments with engineering problems were usually returned with a critique of the approach and then they would add "now simplify it" or "optimize it" Since ia was already in vested in the approach I wold look at the brilliant work I did (or so I thoght) and think to mysleft that there was no way to make it better. usually there was a way to simplify or optimize. I look back on some of those problems and I have to laugh at myself, because I learned to simplify and optimize as a lifestyle and when I was an engineering manager marveled that simplification and optimizations was not a standard used by everyone. Interestingly enough there really is not really much difference between engineering and art, at least not in the abstract; we just use different tools. Good design concepts are still part of both disciplines.

Regards,
Charles




#15 Pres

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Posted 01 October 2010 - 10:28 PM



8086...... I started out studying Comp Sci on a mainframe in collegePosted Image . My first home computer had a Z80 processor and I think 2K of RAM. Now I'm running a fast i7 quad core with 6 gigs of RAM with a meg of video card memory. How far we have come!

best,

................john





I look back at what we were able to do back then on an old Commodore 64, or the Amiga, and wonder how far we have really gotten. Much of our hardware advances have been eaten up by sloppy and glutted code. Efficient operating systems were trashed in favor of popular, but obese ones.


that is so true Pres. When I was in engineering school I had a couple of professors whom, at the time I thought wer just sadistic, but in their classes assignments with engineering problems were usually returned with a critique of the approach and then they would add "now simplify it" or "optimize it" Since ia was already in vested in the approach I wold look at the brilliant work I did (or so I thoght) and think to mysleft that there was no way to make it better. usually there was a way to simplify or optimize. I look back on some of those problems and I have to laugh at myself, because I learned to simplify and optimize as a lifestyle and when I was an engineering manager marveled that simplification and optimizations was not a standard used by everyone. Interestingly enough there really is not really much difference between engineering and art, at least not in the abstract; we just use different tools. Good design concepts are still part of both disciplines.

Regards,
Charles




Great thoughts there, I often find myself trying to optimize and simplify things. When throwing we all do it, the first of the series is slower, has more steps and might be fragmented but a good idea. By the time we get to the last one of the series the motion of the wheel, the fingers and the hands are all in concert with the clay creating the image we originally conceived-simplified.

Simply retired teacher, not dead, living the dream. on and on and. . . . on. . . .                                                                                 http://picworkspottery.blogspot.com/


#16 Username

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Posted 10 October 2010 - 11:08 PM

Something like CRAFTMANAGER might work, although it is more tailored to jewelers :

http://www.jewelryde...ft-manager.aspx



#17 Ann E. V.

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Posted 28 September 2013 - 09:02 PM

ok, so now it's 3 years after this thread started and I'm struggling with the same problem....without all the computer knowledge.  I have an excel spreadsheet with my inventory listed  by item number with prices, sold to and where columns, and all other basic information to keep track of my pottery.  I can import a picture for each individually numbered item but it takes forever to resize it and then it's so small I can't identify it on the computer screen.  Is there some way to resize the excel spreadsheet so I can recognize the photo or import it more easily?????  I have investigated ArtSala, eArtist, My Art Collection, Inventory Organizer Deluxe and Artist Butler software programs but each is designed for more sophisticated use than I require. I'm looking for simple!  Please help if you have any useful comments or information.  Many thanks,  Ann E. V.



#18 Pres

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Posted 29 September 2013 - 02:21 PM

So when you import the picture with the top menu, do you right click on it to bring up the short list that includes format picture? In here make certain to set the two %windows to the same number say 20% and you should get a picture that would fit over your cells. If you arrange your cell information leaving a significant blank area for the picture you should be in good shape. I hope this helps out a bit.

 

best,

Preston


Simply retired teacher, not dead, living the dream. on and on and. . . . on. . . .                                                                                 http://picworkspottery.blogspot.com/


#19 chautauqua

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Posted 25 March 2014 - 11:52 AM

 

If you're using a MAC instead of a PC, your best bet for database software is FileMaker Pro. Microsoft doesn't make Access for Macs any longer. In Filemaker, there are set templates that can help you do all of the things you list below, and it can easily set up relational databases, one for contacts, one for sales/ invoices, one for inventory etc. Photos can be included, labels, letters, invoices and other reports can be generated. If you go with Filemaker, I'd recommend you buy a book, too. This helps you to understand ideas like relational databases and how to set them up properly. It is easy to do once you understand the concepts, but the concepts themselves are a bit abstract unless you've worked with a lot of databases in the past. I used "Filemaker Pro The Missing Manual". If you don't want to buy a book, there are several good forums online that will likely have answers to all of your questions in their archived posts/ threads.
http://www.fmforums.com/
http://www.filemaker..._selection.html
http://filemakertoda...m/com/forum.php

Jessica

 

Are you using an inventory software program that you would recommend for a small pottery studio which sells online and fairs? I would like to use or create a database which I can use for several purposes: when I first complete a piece (description and photo) and then add info as the piece is sold (what price, where, and to who). I would like to be able then to access information in various ways to help me determine potential production decisions and marketing.


There may well be and there a re some very knowledgeable people on this site who may use such a program. I've always used a database starting with dBase in the 1980's to Microsoft's Excel today with a few segues in between. I do much of my work with database programs because they are so easy to customize for my needs. I use one for my glaze formulas and another for my stock tracking and completed inventory and another for my advertising. Most custom programs I have seen utilize a database as the model for the program anyway. You can even do complex calculations with databases, it may not show but I really LIKE databases!


Best regards,
Charles


 

 

I believe Open Office is still available for Mac is it not? It contains a reasonable data base for free!

 

I have used "Bento" on a Mac for years for tracking kiln firings, glazes, add photos, descriptions, etc. User friendly data base organiser for all kinds of inventory input.



#20 Bob Coyle

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Posted 25 March 2014 - 09:07 PM

I gota try a one up one everyone... I started computer programming by kerosine lamp! We lived off the grid at the time and I bought a Commodore 64 and plugged it into my gas generator. The house was not wired for lights at that time so, since I was not a touch typist, I had to use a kerosine lamp to see the keyboard. Sometimes it got pretty frustrating. I would be in the middle of writing code and the damn generator would run out of gas.






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