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Thread: World Standard?

  1. #1
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    Unanswered: World Standard?

    Ok, I guess I feel partly responsible because I suggested that a Crystal Forum be added to the site a few months ago, but who the heck wrote the forum description:

    "A world standard for high performance reporting, Crystal Reports is an intuitive reporting toolkit that helps you rapidly create flexible, feature-rich reports and tightly integrate them into web and windows applications."

    ???

    Sounds like it was lifted straight from some Crystal promotional brochure.

    Any developer worth his or her salt hates Crystal Reports and emits an audible shudder every time he finds out that some unthinking project manager or client has built it into a specification. Its not intuitive, its full of bugs and design flaws, and it isn't even tightly integrated into its own components let alone Windows. Development in CR is ungodly tedious, frustrating, and slow. That's why I suggested that a forum be started on it. The only way it could be used as a world standard is by measuring how much better any other reporting solution is. For example, MS Access reports could be described as 2.5 CR, while Active Reports might be rated 3.75 CR or above.

    Post-it notes would be rated about 0.8 CR.

    How bad Crystal is is evidenced by the number of questions posted on this forum versus the number of answers. Still, I hope it takes off and some real Crystal Gurus (never actually met one...) join to help people out.
    Last edited by blindman; 03-16-04 at 17:32.
    If it's not practically useful, then it's practically useless.

    blindman
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  2. #2
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    I'm new to reporting writing other than in Access but am converting our database to an online app. From what I've seen so far on my internet searching you're completely right. But Crystal Reports seem to have done their marketing right. It's hard to find what other "standards" are out there by doing a simple google search. Can you suggest some 3rd party report writers for me that would replace my Access report writer? Once that would be classed as industry standards. I need a report writer that can receive url parameters or session data and manipulate the data in the report on the fly. With output to pdf. And, if possible have scheduled reports emailed out to clients.

  3. #3
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    Check into Active Reports by Data Dynamics. I have not used it, but I have heard good things about it from people who have.

    http://www.datadynamics.com
    If it's not practically useful, then it's practically useless.

    blindman
    www.chess.com: "sqlblindman"
    www.LobsterShot.blogspot.com

  4. #4
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    Would you have any you have first hand experience with that would be classed as a standard in the industry?



    Originally posted by blindman
    Check into Active Reports by Data Dynamics. I have not used it, but I have heard good things about it from people who have.

    http://www.datadynamics.com

  5. #5
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    I don't think there is an "Industry Standard" for reporting. I certainly wouldn't want Crystal to be a standard for other products to model. It has an awful SQL interface and it's lack of event-driven programming makes development difficult at best and impossible at worst.

    Crystal Reports is nothing more than an old piece of shareware that is masquerading as an Enterprise Solution. To save it, it would have to be scrapped and rebuilt from the ground up.
    If it's not practically useful, then it's practically useless.

    blindman
    www.chess.com: "sqlblindman"
    www.LobsterShot.blogspot.com

  6. #6
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    So, from your actual experience what is better?

    Originally posted by blindman
    I don't think there is an "Industry Standard" for reporting. I certainly wouldn't want Crystal to be a standard for other products to model. It has an awful SQL interface and it's lack of event-driven programming makes development difficult at best and impossible at worst.

    Crystal Reports is nothing more than an old piece of shareware that is masquerading as an Enterprise Solution. To save it, it would have to be scrapped and rebuilt from the ground up.

  7. #7
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    Access is a much better programming environment for building reports, even off of SQL Server data. The fact that is is event driven makes custom programming much more manageable.

    As I said, one of my colleagues who has worked with both Crystal Reports and Active Reports says the difference is like night and day. He is more of an interface programmer than I am, as I work mainly on database design and SQL programming.
    If it's not practically useful, then it's practically useless.

    blindman
    www.chess.com: "sqlblindman"
    www.LobsterShot.blogspot.com

  8. #8
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    Thanks for the info. This is probably the first forum that's actually replied back regarding report writers that I'm on. Seems hard to find any info on what's good out there. Thanks.

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