This month's WROCC club meeting was a Zoom-only session. It was free to all Club members to attend. Chris Hughes was the presenter, and the topic was the Impact Database which is is developed and support by Sine Nomine.
Impact is a database application and consists of 4 programs - Impact 3, ImpMail, LabPrint and DrawPrint. It started life as Impact Pro/Lite/Major from Circle software. It was marketed by CJE Micros until 2003 when Sine Nomine took it over. They do offer a trial version of the software if you want to try it. Latest version is v3.66 and price for a new user is 36 pounds (upgrades for older versions).
Chris has been using Impact since 1994 when introduced to it by the late Mike Wilson. It was used to create the original club database. There is an HTML, PDF and StrongHelp version of the manual.
The focus of the talk was an interactive demo on creating a database, merging a record to PDF, editing, merging data into other applications, exporting data, configuration options, label printing and draw export.
There were also lots of tips - like be very careful if you password-protect your database!
Creating a database is a very visual drag and drop process which Chris showed us in great detail. Lots of nice tweaks in the GUI builder and you can configure the toolbar on your database. Everything is drag and drop.
Creating new records, editing, searching and deleting is super simple and records can include lots of data types, including images and files. These are rendered in the Database if Impact recognises the filetype and edited and resaved back into the Database. You can also create a Database from a CSV file.
Mailmerge makes it very easy to send out highly customisable emails, labels and letters. It integrates nicely with Impression, MPro and Ovation. It can also integrate with RiscOSM which is useful for checking addresses.
You can also add code to Impact, for example a button to calculate the next membership number automatically.
There is lots of export facilities, and being able to select fields on a record and drag them into another application is very slick.
Impact databases can definitely be as simple or as complex as you want.
Many thanks to Chris for a very informative and interesting tour through Impact.
The meeting was recorded and hopefully will be available soon if you missed the live talk.