For Atari ST
Requirements: Atari ST computer with
disk drive. Printer optional.
Zoomracks by Quickview
Systems is a powerful, easy-to-use database manager that lets you keep
track of lists, names, addresses, notes, schedules - almost anything
you can think of - in a unique and interesting way. What's unique abput
the program is the concept of the "rack."
Consider a familiar timecard rack-the vertical
holder that sits next to the time clock and holds employee timecards.
The first line of each card is always visible. You can remove any card
to examine its contents. Cards can also be inserted or moved into other
slots in the same or adjoining racks. Cards in the racks are typically
in the same form (timecards), but contain different information, such
as names and hours worked. They may be arranged in some order, such as
by name or employee number.
This describes the visual metaphor upon which Zoomracks is based-the card rack.
It is a familiar concept and translates well to the computer. When you
choose a card from the rack in order to see its contents, you notice
that it has several fields, each of which shows the top line of
information just as all the cards appear. Each field can be pulled up
to expose as much as three pages of information.
Stretching The Rack
The way your information is organized is always visually obvious
because the screen shows as many as ten racks at once. The number of
cards in each rack is limited only by the amount of computer memory,
and the racks grow or shrink as required. If your rack is too large to
fit on the screen, it can be scrolled. Or you can search for the card
or field you're looking for. The cards in one rack can be sorted by any
field, and each card can have up to 29 fields.
three different field types: short fields, text fields, and columns.
Short fields are similar to those found in traditional database
programs. One field is displayed at a time on each line. Text fields
are used for multiple notes. The document (your notes) is displayed
across the entire width of the screen on consecutive lines. Finally,
the column field is used for spreadsheet-type information-for example,
Rack formats can be inserted and deleted by moving
fields; cards and fields can be copied between racks; you can do simple
word processing, since any field can be up to 250 lines long; and the
cards and racks can be printed in many different formats.
One interesting feature of Zoomracks is its macro capability.
Macros are any series of Zoomracks commands
that are strung together and issued at once by a single keypress. You
can have one rack with up to 26 macros. There are several sample macros
provided, and one serves as a tutorial for the program.
Zoomracks uses a unique visual meta-
phor to let you organize and retrieve
The program disk contains several sample racks as well. One sample
which is useful for more than just learning about Zoomracks is a
mail-merge template. One card within a rack serves as a form letter,
and the card-merge macro can be used to print out a rack of cards
consisting of names, addresses, and salutations. With a little
imagination, you can develop all kinds of applications by using macros.
All in all, Zoomracks
is a practical and even a fun way to keep track of various types
of information. With its visual interface and zooming feature, you can
always visualize your data as you want-from a broad overview of the
whole database to a specific detail of a single field. Help is
available at any time and the menus are straightforward. As you get
more experienced, you can use the commands instead of the menus. In
either case, there are few rules to follow and few limitations.
a well-done program and a unique concept. If you need a database
manager and want to get up to speed as quickly as possible, Zoomracks
is an excellent choice.
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Los Altos, CA 94022