Online Database Development

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Paisley Systems has been providing robust, scalable, and stable online database systems to our clients for years.  By leveraging open source technologies such as PHP, MySQL, and Apache, we have brought these systems to fruition at a much lower cost than competing proprietary technologies.

Design Concepts

Much of a project's success comes from a simple, straightforward, and attractive design.  Our systems are designed to accommodate users with a wide range of technical skills while still providing powerful features.  This is accomplished by careful attention to detail and continuing refinement of the user interface and program behaviors. 

The primary goal of our design is to guide users through the process of data entry and retrieval in a clear and concise manner.  When done correctly no additional explanation is required for a user to immediately use the system effectively.  Here are a few examples of this concept in practice:

  • Menu items are arranged in a logical order from left to right, and top to bottom.  Advanced users could access these forms in any order, while new users would simply move from one form to the next.  Forms that have missing or invalid data are highlighted so that users will not simply overlook them.
  • When the system requires the user to choose from a long list of available choices, only relevant choices are displayed.  Search and browsing tools are provided to narrow down the results, but their use is strictly optional.  This keeps the learning curve at a minimum, as new users do not need to familiarize themselves with these tools right away.
  • Advanced functionality is implemented in several ways to raise it's visibility to more users. Form can provide several valid methods for limiting results.  For example, the user could fill out a search form, click the slices of a pie chart, or click a link in the legend.  Any of these methods could provide the expected results.

A large part of using the system effectively is ensuring the data entered is relevant and accurate.  This can be achieved through several broad methods:

  • Provide the user with default values where possible.
  • Use programming logic to limit available choices ahead of time.  For example, when adding a contact, only relevant organizations are displayed as available choices.
  • Validate all data to prevent typographical errors, illogical entries, and missing information.
  • Display missing or invalid data to the user via color-coded menu tabs that suggest the corrective action required.
  • Provide administrators with a real time auditing tool to find and eliminate invalid or missing data.  Exceptions can be made to suppress error messages on a case-by-case basis.

Getting Started

We're looking forward to talking to you about your upcoming database projects.  Why not Contact us and see if we can help?

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(703) 879-6985