Databases and spreadsheets

This week, I finished my work on the voters guides for The News & Observer.

I had hoped to improve it more, but I didn’t manage my time well enough. One improvement would be to make it easier for Web readers to compare candidates.

In the paper version of our voters guides, we have tables comparing candidates’ responses to questions about issues. Hopefully, in the future, we’ll also have similar tables online.

One way would be to use a database, such as at offered at Dabble DB. I’ve been playing with Dabble a little for a while, but I don’t have anything worth showing yet.

If you’re willing to make the data public, Dabble is free. So far for me, it’s generally easy to learn and to use. It makes a few types of charts, such as bars, pies and maps. It can be used collaboratively.

I’ve also tried Editgrid a wee bit. This is a spreadsheet instead of a database. It also has collaboration features, and it looks like it will make more types of charts, but I had a little trouble with that part.

Zoho also has similar spreadsheet and database offerings, but I haven’t tried them.

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Published in: on November 2, 2007 at 7:31 pm  Leave a Comment  
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