Robert Klemme wrote in post #980210:
> On Tue, Feb 8, 2011 at 3:16 AM, Hilary Bailey <my77elephants / gmail.com>
> wrote:
>> What I want to create is a database that can measure the performance of
>> all entities in a school district. The closest software that exhibits
>> some semblance is that of Microsoft Access. Where, as I understand it,
>> the input entry of a single data can be housed and then derived, through
>> a set of queries, then further analyzed through/by Microsoft Solver
>> software.
>
> Microsoft Access gives you a database with application code in a
> single file.  You can even have a GUI to enter data.  This is very
> convenient for small applications.  However, it's best when used by a
> single person at a time - it's concurrency facilities are somewhat
> limited - at least that's what it was last time I checked.  It would
> seem that you could cook something similar with Open Office (or Libre
> Office) Base which has the advantage not to be tied into Microsoft
> OS's.  If you need something that can be used by multiple users
> concurrently chances are that Access is not the best choice.
>
>> The difference with my proposal would be that based on selected
>> indicators [which will be dynamically influenced by changed event(s) and
>> policy(ies], which would be able to measure success. I have been exposed
>> to a statistical software named SPSS and having worked as an economist,
>> has influenced my outlook on creating an approach/database/software
>> which would indicate in real time, measured results.
>
> What exactly does "real time" mean in your context?  I figure, human
> beings need to give this system some input data before it can spit out
> any new information.
>
>> As you can tell, there is an element of nervousness regarding saying
>> too much. But on the other hand, if not much is said, not much help can
>> be given. So it's a "catch 24", where since the last 20 years I have
>> been improving on a systems that would be able to measure defined
>> academic output, vis-a-vis, financial constraints etc..
>
> What does "system" exactly mean here?  Is it a mathematical model that
> you want to implement in software?  Is it a software system that you
> need to improve / extend?
>
>> Mike Stephens recommended Mendix as a possible solution to my woes. Do
>> you know of such arena?
>>
>> Therefore, I figured that, doing it all by myself may be the best
>> solution. However, some of my concerns are: "Why reinvent the wheel?',
>
> Good question.  It's usually a bad idea.
>
>> How can I create a sustainable system that does not compromise quality?,
>> What curriculum structure should I follow that will meet my needs
>> without, straying from my goals?
>>
>> Therefore, this is my dilemma, which seems to be going in circles. Any
>> suggestions.
>
> Clarify your requirements *first*.  Write down a list of things that
> your system needs to do, e.g. things like "someone in every school in
> the district needs to be able to enter course grades" or "I want to be
> notified immediately if some metric X changes".  Then we can start
> about thinking how such a solution might look like and finally we can
> help you develop a curriculum for your training so you can build what
> you want.  I do assume though that it will take you in the order of
> months to arrive there if you do not have an IT background.
>
> Kind regards
>
> robert

What I want to create is a product that is computer accessible, that is 
similar to a teacher's Grade Keeper, but goes farther by adding defined 
info from principals, guidance counselors, lunch provision for students, 
etc.. The reason for this approach is that this will now allow more 
complete view of a what impacts a child.

Therefore, the daily entry of data from all participants (teachers, 
principals, security, janitors, etc...) will give an analyzer a wider 
set of defined parameter inputed data to access, then analyze. The 
problem is where to start. I read a book on Ruby, some say that my next 
step is to play with scripts, alter some commands and then test such 
adjustments. The problems is to follow a logical sequence of learning. 
For example, since i use Windows 7, have installed Ruby 1.9.2 p.136 and 
Rails, Vim7.2, and LibreOffice 3.3. and saved info to htmldog.com from 
which HTML & CSS can be learned.

I know very well that it will take me some time, however, now where do I 
start? Should I star with htmldog tutorials, then open Rails along with 
vim7.2, then the next stage will be to explore SQlite, then MYSQL, while 
having LibreOffice Base as a source of reference?

In terms of distribution, giving it away free will not be taken 
seriously by current educational administrators and policy makers. It 
suits me to market it and if successful, support this community plus 
other social causes of choice.

So based on all that have been said, where, specifically (if possible) 
go from here in creating such a product.

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