Breadcrumbs, or How I Learned to Love the Switchboard

Andrew Wrigley shows how to design a “Breadcrumb” control that will enhance your users’ experience whenever they need to navigate a hierarchical structure (and bitterly regrets his lack of documentation…).

For those of you who think that you don’t know what a Breadcrumb control is: You already do. Breadcrumbs are all over the Internet. Figure 1 shows a typical example. Continue reading

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Accessing Subforms

The Access subform wizards do much of the workin connecting a main form to its subform. In this article, Rick Dobson goes beyond the wizards toshow you how to perform two new tasks with a subform. He also takes you behindthe scenes to increase your understanding of how to access the subform inside asubform control.

A main/subform design is a standard way of presentingdata in Access applications. In this type of form design, one form (a subform)synchronizes the data that it displays based on the data displayed on the mainform. For example, a subform shows the line items for the sales order numberdisplayed on the main form. The subform refreshes the line items that it showswhen the order number on the main form changes. It’s not uncommon for one mainform to have multiple subforms. Each of the subforms shares one or more fieldvalues with the main form. It’s those shared values that allow Access tosynchronize the rest of the subform values with the data showing on the mainform. Continue reading

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Your Future

FOR those of you who have no plans or interest inabandoning the Jet database engine and moving to SQL Server or the MSDE throughAccess DataProjects, our constant harping on Access Data Projects – ADP techniquesand technologies must be driving you nuts. If your future doesn’t  include ADPs,then these articles aren’t any help to you.

I firmly believe that most developers whose futuredoesn’t include ADPs aren’t stupid or lazy or dinosaurs. They don’t look atADPs for a simple reason: Jet works. Furthermore, they know how Jet works andcan build the standard parts of their applications quickly (even cannibalizecomponents and code from other applications for faster development). If thatsounds like you, well, you’re right—you’re very productive with Jet.

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With Friends Like These

One of the benefits of hanging around in this business is that I get to meet a lot of people who are brighter than me and far more knowledgeable. Unfortunately, they keep upsetting my vision of the Access universe. For instance, a recent upsetting incident is about to cause me to issue a heartfelt apology to you.

I was presenting at a conference recently when Andy Baron, one of the most intelligent and capable people I know (and who has forgotten more about Access than I could hope to know), commented that the best way of working with SQL Server from Access was to use linked tables. My whole life flashed before my eyes.

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Who’s the Bad Guy, Part 2

In the January issue of Smart Access, I ranted abouthow awful hackers (in the pejorative sense) were and went on to suggest thatMicrosoft ends up carrying a lot ofthe blame for the actions of vandals. AndrewBenner wrote in with what I thought was a great response:

I certainlyagree with you that each dirtbag who writes a virus/trojan and releases it intothe wild is to blame for the havoc their software creates. By the same token,Microsoft is directly responsible for the software it creates.

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