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Introduction & Creating the Project

Database programs with a graphical user interface (GUI) are a very common type of application. In many cases, this is the only type of application that some people may need to create, though if the package becomes complex, it may well use quite a number of dialogs to get input from users. In this chapter, we will cover the basics of building a database-based graphical program to provide a starting point for building more complex systems of this nature.

Tip
Before reading and getting heavily involved in this chapter, it is a good idea to at least read through Chapter 5, Dialog-Style Programs. Many of the techniques for working with the Form Designer are covered in that chapter.

In this chapter we will build a basic contact manager. This will be a program that manages an address database using a form hosted in a window. We will also use a tool bar for selecting records, and a menu with a small set of items.

The steps to follow in creating this application are:

  1. Create the database
  2. Create the form
  3. Build the application code

In essence, this is not very dissimilar to the steps followed to create the dialog-style application, except first we need to create the database. So, let's get started!

Creating the Project

Just as we did in Chapter 5, Dialog-Style Programs, it would be a good idea to create the project first, since that will provide us with a location for storing the components of our project that we are creating using Superbase NG Personal. Start the SIMPOL IDE and once it is running from the menu, select File → New Project. In the dialog window that appears, select an appropriate location for the project, and give it the name addressbook. Then click on the OK button to create the project. Take note of this location, we will use it save our new database in a moment, plus our form design later. For now, minimize or close the IDE.