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Looking for a (free) online database system
July 12, 2011 12:33 AM   Subscribe

I am on the lookout for a free online database and would like your opinion on the options out there.

I produce a radio show for a community radio station and am trying to find a cheap (free) way to maintain a database of content that we produce. I'm trying to catalogue the show's weekly content, and then on a deeper level want to establish and maintain a database for all the interviews/guests we have, and be able to tag the entries about the content for future use. It needs to be online so that other volunteers can access the information as well.

I can use Google Spreadsheets to a point but I find it clunky and the lack of a list function really bums me out. Has anyone used Grubba or FlexLists? Can you share your opinion on any other online database management systems out there? I'd really like to incorporate tagging and keywords into the system, but if Google docs is the best option, so be it. Any archivists among you who can chime in?
posted by mooza to Computers & Internet (5 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
 
A content management system such as Drupal or Wordpress could do this for you, but would need a certain amount of setup and configuration.
posted by cbrody at 4:37 AM on July 12, 2011


Please take a look at the hosted version of Wordpress over at Wordpress.com. Essentially it allows you to create a highly functional web site with little or no coding skills. Each content would have its own page and you can use categories and tags to manage all the data. I believe Wordpress.com supports multiple users so your volunteers can even help you out using their own accounts and such.
posted by Foci for Analysis at 4:47 AM on July 12, 2011


There are other options available but they tend to be more complex.

You could, for example, use Dropbox to share the database. You could also use GitHub to share your data.

As for a data storage solution, even Wufoo could work. Zoho offers an entire online application suite.

But none of the above offers data storage + data classification as easily as Wordpress.com.
posted by Foci for Analysis at 4:53 AM on July 12, 2011


Keep a "TiddlyWiki" - a wiki that is locally editable. You can create "Tiddlers" (sections) for each piece of info, and tag them to be searchable. There are journaling features and plugins as well. It's all run through a self editing html/JavaScript file, though you, nor anyone else needs to know that.

At the end of each edit section, SFTP it up to a hosting account. People access it just as they would any other web page.
posted by csmason at 6:17 AM on July 12, 2011


I would also recommend WordPress. It's a pretty good free front end for just about any kind of categorization, even only on a desktop used by just one person. Being able to add custom fields is one of its biggest pluses, and the ability to add files to posts is the clincher.
posted by Mo Nickels at 11:23 AM on July 12, 2011


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