Looking for a database app
October 19, 2017 6:31 AM   Subscribe

I don't think I have the right vocabulary to decribe this, but I'd like to find a app or website that's pleasant to use and that lets me creates flexible libraries of data of different sorts. To function a bit like memory out of my brain, and to store information about my various fields of engagement, add comments, link data up, etc.

I found this, which looks like the kind of thing I want, but it's only available for Android. I'd definitely like it to be usable on my Mac, maybe iPad/android phone too, but primarily Mac.

I'd also like it to be reliable so I know it's going to stick around and it's worth investing all that time into it.

One example of a library I would like to make is a database of tango songs. I DJ for tango, so I'd like to store a database of songs that I have in my collection with metadata about each song, create sets of songs that play well together, store comments from when I played them in the past, etc.

Another might be a Math teaching resource database. I used to teach Math seriously, now I don't, but before I forget all about my teaching resources I'd like to store them in a database that I could access if I ever teach again.
posted by miaow to Computers & Internet (10 answers total) 11 users marked this as a favorite
I think the genre of software you are looking for is "personal information management" or PIM software (nb that PIM is also used as an acronym for "product information management" software. Here's wikipedia on PIMs, sounds like what you are looking for. There is a linked list of PIMs from wikipedia here but it is by no means complete.
posted by rachelpapers at 6:46 AM on October 19, 2017

Not a database, but easy and flexible and may work for you: Workflowy.
posted by 4ster at 6:57 AM on October 19, 2017 [1 favorite]

I think you want Airtable, which we use at work for everything from a makeshift CRM, to a database of ongoing projects, to a project management tool (there is a kanban view), to a shared database of worked-related technologies that we heard about somewhere that at some point someone might want to possibly look into.
posted by soren_lorensen at 6:58 AM on October 19, 2017 [5 favorites]

+1 for Airtable - i've used it for a bathroom remodel project but it has so much more potential than that!
posted by ukdanae at 7:07 AM on October 19, 2017

Response by poster: Thanks!

But I feel i need a more complex database structure. For the tango database for example, the records would be songs, and each record would have fields like 'Song name', 'Orchestra', 'Singer', 'BPM', 'Year'. I need to be able to search and sort by any of these fields. Then I need to be able to make sets of songs and add notes and categories to set. And search for a set.

So it's not so much a list-making or to-do app, but really a database where I can decide what each record is and what its fields are. And then use records to make more complex structures/pages.
posted by miaow at 7:27 AM on October 19, 2017

You definitely want Airtable. It's a full relational database application.
posted by soren_lorensen at 7:32 AM on October 19, 2017 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: Ooh yes, Airtable looks good!
posted by miaow at 7:44 AM on October 19, 2017

Response by poster: Well now the only desire I have is for something similar, even if less beautiful, that doesn't cost $10/month for more than 1200 records.
posted by miaow at 10:00 AM on October 19, 2017

Check out Ragic.
posted by Martys_Friend at 2:49 PM on October 19, 2017

Back in the day (say about a year ago), I would suggest Microsoft Office 365 + Microsoft Access + Microsoft Access Web Database (that "comes"* with a non-free Office 365 subscription level) + Microsoft PowerApps.

*However... Given the constant change I see with their products lately (Microsoft Access Web Database in Office 365 being killed, and eventually to be forcibly removed from even on-premises SharePoint 2016), these days, I find myself looking for something to recommend as well - going to test out the AirTable mentioned above.
posted by jkaczor at 2:33 PM on October 20, 2017

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