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Database (Service Manuals) Management Software #65753
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Joe Emmerson Offline OP
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Well, I'm fairly excited about this! An opportunity to let my passion for keeping things organised (bordering on OCD some might say).

I've been throwing together something to help manage our Trusts service manuals with minimum of fuss, hopefully iron out a few creases here and there but essentially I'm just putting the icing on the cake now.

Features:
* Automatic scanning of folders - just point it to a base folder
* Searching/downloading via the application of images for the equipment
* Searching/downloading via the internet for service / operators manuals (Preview, then categorise whilst downloading)
* Automatic checking for special subfolders i.e configurations, archive, software etc
* Add, Edit, Delete, Rename of folder structures
* Automatic categorisation of document by its name
* Double click to launch the document
* Automatic categorisation and renaming when adding files
* Lots of right-click menus appropriate to the area of the screen being viewed, etc.

and more.. check some of the early screens

By the way I'm not a programmer so keep the critique to a minimum smile

Photos now online -------> YES I WILL SHARE IT ONCE READY

Please do share your thoughts or questions!

Admin / Huw - I did contemplate putting this in the manuals section but technically I consider this more of a database/organising software tool.




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Re: Database (Service Manuals) Management Software [Re: Joe Emmerson] #65755
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Re: Database (Service Manuals) Management Software [Re: Joe Emmerson] #65759
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Wowsers Joe, looks very impressive, but I keep having an irresistible urge to click on menus and explore. Any chance of a play? grin

Dave

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Thoughts and information provided on this forum are mine and mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the policy of NSW Health. They may also be complete bollocks!!
Re: Database (Service Manuals) Management Software [Re: Joe Emmerson] #65761
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pm sent

Re: Database (Service Manuals) Management Software [Re: Joe Emmerson] #65762
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Geoff Hannis Offline
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Nice one, Joe. Have you decided on a name for it yet? think

Originally Posted By: Joe Emmerson

By the way I'm not a programmer ...


Your modesty becomes you, Mate ... but don't sell yourself short. smile

OK, just a couple of questions:- is your system embedded in the server where you are, and (or) can the structure be packaged for others to set up and use at their own locations? If the latter is the case, I'm assuming that the new user(s) would need to load in their own data (links to the manuals, images etc. they have on their own *server).

The thought occurs that someone with lots of hosting capacity (and, I guess, a fair amount of time) could set up something like this on a "giant" scale - to serve the Whole World, as it were! Just as long as others (that is, everyone) had not only access to it, but an ability to upload to it as well.

On the other hand, am I right in assuming that your system as it stands could just as easily link to other sources of information (such as .pdf manuals on Frank's website, for example). think

So, do you plan to make your system available as a "package" for others to use?

What are we looking at, Joe ... a directory (folder) structure, a database (Access?) and some hyperlinks? Can it all be set-up easily in a "stand-alone" situation (on just a single PC, for example)?

Lastly, would they (the new users) be able to edit or add their own equipment types, model names etc.?

That's all for now. smile

* Or even the internet (or any available URL wherever it may be hiding).

Re: Database (Service Manuals) Management Software [Re: Joe Emmerson] #65767
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a bit more info:

This system is stand alone, not embedded into any other software at all, its a universal manager for your service information. it allows powerful searching for manuals (operators/service) as well as product images, all from the deep depths of the internet.

- Its just 1 .exe file, just point it to where you manuals sit (no configuration!)
- New users would just need to point to their existing folder structures (provided it was reasonably well organised in \EQUIPMENT TYPE\EQUIPMENT MODEL structure)
- As it stands, it could link (via url files) to places like franks website, however it prefers to download them to your own structure
- When ready? Well I've been working on it for about a week, I'd imagine only a couple of days till I upload it. There will be limited error checking in the first release but it will work fine smile
- Overview: It scans your local folders for files and presents them to you in a better way, no database involved. the hyperlinks you see on one of the screens are one of the options to SEARCH for manuals within the software and add them to your collection automatically smile
- Equipment Models / Types - yes, you can roll your own, rename to your hearts content they are just folders on your hard drive and you can manage them through the application.

------------------
Future (very short term development) aspirations.
* Addition of ID number against the equipment model - to enable you to link with other databases (Saves ID_xxxxxx.txt in the folder)
* Addition of Revision number against the service manual (for later exporting)
* (ISO QMS): Option to automatically archive your old service manual if you add a new version (ISO QMS), adding in the revision/date of the manual
* Automatic generation of a summary Excel document with hyperlinks to your manuals, revision number, equipment type, model, Equiment Model ID
* Option to set equipment models as *DONT DISPLAY* so you can have large archives of manuals but only show the ones you have in your areas.
* Maybe, search for company address by equipment type/model
* (ISO QMS): Email to company stating current version of service manual and equipment type/model to see if this is the latest revision smile
-----------------------

This is a short, fairly simply 'task and finish' project

unlike a database that you feed with information and possibly end up with nothing, this is a tool that you feed nothing to and it helps you become more organised / useful

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Re: Database (Service Manuals) Management Software [Re: Joe Emmerson] #65768
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Oh, Geoff - No Name yet, but since you ask (I've seen you put some good ones in for the Mariner) your welcome to suggest some

Form1 isn't really the best name in the world at the moment smile

Re: Database (Service Manuals) Management Software [Re: Joe Emmerson] #65769
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Surely the directory (OK, "folder" if you insist) structure has to be enforced? Otherwise, how does your Search (gathering?) routine know where to look?

Something like:-

Code:

Eqpt (the .exe gets placed here)
 |
 |--- \Type 1
 |--- \Type 2
 :      |
 :      |--- \Model A
 :      '--- \Model B
 :      :       |
 :      :       '--- \Sub-directories
 :      |--- \Model C
 :      |--- \Model D
 :      :
 |--- \Type 3
 |--- \Type 4
 :


For example, the path to a particular Users Manual could something like:-

C:\...\Eqpt\Type2\ModelB\Manuals\User\Operators.pdf

OK ... so that's as many directories (folders) as you have different equipment types, and a different sub-directory for each model name within each type. That's a lot of directories (and a lot to set up at first). Am I right? think

The name? I'll give it some thought once I've had another *brew. smile

* PG Tips, by the way.

Re: Database (Service Manuals) Management Software [Re: Geoff Hannis] #65770
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Kind of, its not enforced as such, it just wont read past a depth level of 2 if you point it to your existing folders (apart from Special folders which are displayed as blue/grey folder icons! - Config, Archive, Software, Notices)
|
|--- \Type 1
|--- \Type 2
: |
: |--- \Model A
: '--- \Model B
: |--- \Model C
: |--- \Model D
: :
|--- \Type 3
|--- \Type 4

Yes its a bit to set up at first (if your collection isn't vaguely already like that, I'd assume that most have at least Model segregation or equipment type segregation)

-----------------------
At the moment there is a context menu for "Add" which adds a file to the currently selected equipment type/model combination

I plan to add a similar function "Add new equipment manual" which will allow easy input/selection of equipment type / Model in case they don't already exist. The default option on this screen would be to delete the source file after a successful transfer!


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Re: Database (Service Manuals) Management Software [Re: Joe Emmerson] #65771
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Geoff Hannis Offline
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Am I also right in assuming that the system relies on the native Windows Explorer and being able to fiddle about with folder Properties settings and stuff like that?

To be clear then, the system will be able to read sub-directories from wherever the .exe is placed ("to the right of" in the path, as it were).

To be honest, Joe, I'm not much of a Windows wiz myself, so you might need to remind me how to set up a "clickable" file that will link to a URL ... something like the .lnk files normally found in the ...\Desktop directory. smile

Maybe something like saving code like this to a batch file (Test.bat will do) ... then clicking on it. It should work as long as you are running Windows and have Internet Explorer installed.

Code:

start iexplore http://www.frankshospitalworkshop.com/equipment/electrosurgery_service_manuals.html


Or (if you're lucky):-

Code:

start firefox http://www.biomedbuddies.com


That is, use the batch file START command to call your favourite browser, followed by the URL address. OK ... it's a work in progress! whistle

Re: Database (Service Manuals) Management Software [Re: Joe Emmerson] #65772
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It doesn't rely on windows explorer, its a stand alone piece of software that has similar functionality but dumbed down i.e. add, delete, rename, etc

It reads sub directories from wherever you point it to, the application does not have to sit in the root of the folder to be scanned

if you want to add an internet shortcut, just copy and past whatevers in your browser bar in windows explorer and normally a file is created (just like a bookmark/html file) - whenever this is clicked on it opens your internet browser and goes to the page

have a play, I've emailed a copy through

Re: Database (Service Manuals) Management Software [Re: Joe Emmerson] #65773
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Nice one! smile

Just had a quick go (on various machines) ... but it keeps insisting that "the following version of the .NET Framework needs to be installed: v4.0.30319".*

mscorees.dll also got a mention on my Win 2000 rig. frown

I'll have another go later (and also take a look at the other files) ... but you'll need to be aware of the above if you're planning to make the package generally available. smile

* Which is looking like a 48 Meg download.

Re: Database (Service Manuals) Management Software [Re: Joe Emmerson] #65774
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In Windows Explorer:-

1) Navigate to the folder of interest
2) Click on File | New | Shortcut
3) Create Shortcut dialogue box will appear
4) Enter the URL (http://www..... etc.)
5) Click on [Next]
6) Enter a name for the shortcut
7) Click on [Finish]

Later:-

1) Right-click on the shortcut
2) Go to Properties
3) Click on [Change icon] etc., etc.

*.url files. I learn something new every day! Thank you, Joe. smile

My excuse (somewhat feeble, I grant you) is that normally I almost never use Windows Explorer (but prefer Good Old Total Commander instead).

Re: Database (Service Manuals) Management Software [Re: Joe Emmerson] #65775
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Originally Posted By: Joe Emmerson

No Name yet ...


How about Pathfinder? think

Re: Database (Service Manuals) Management Software [Re: Joe Emmerson] #65776
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I like Pathfinder for many reasons ;o that works for me.

.net 4.0 framework is a freebie download from microsoft (used by a variety of packages). Available here: http://www.microsoft.com/en-gb/download/details.aspx?id=17718


In Vb.net to open web pages (or any other file!) I'm using
process.start (strFilename) which sends the command to your existing system so it opens with whatever the default application is (in the case of a .url would be a browser) or in the case of pdf etc would be whatever viewer you use.

Likewise with explore from here etc, I'm using process.start ("Explorer",strFullpath)


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Re: Database (Service Manuals) Management Software [Re: Joe Emmerson] #65778
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Yes. I had already hounded down that location, Joe. smile

Trouble is that (on the rig I have here), I have yet to successfully download it! frown

As an Old-Timer I can't help but comment on the similarities of those VB commands (scripts?) and Good Old-Fashioned command line (and [or] batch file) commands (aka "DOS commands").

I've had a look at some of the stuff you sent me, Joe ... and I see what you're doing. But at this stage, I'm wondering if many others will be able to replicate your method.

Perhaps, in the first instance, you could lay out the folder structures required, and let potential users decide if they want to arrange their own collection of documents to suit. After all, I find that I can (when using a logical folder structure) pretty well get on OK using whatever file manager (Windows Explorer, whatever) I have available on any machine I'm using.

What your system adds (as far as I can see) is the nice paneling ("windowing") of the display. And the menu panel relationship between Equipment Type and Equipment Model. A bit like your own bespoke file manager, if you like. It's a nice approach. smile

I'll leave you to it for the time being, Joe. But when I get some time I might have a go at doing something similar, but by "other means" (just for my own satisfaction, as it were). smile

Re: Database (Service Manuals) Management Software [Re: Joe Emmerson] #65779
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OK, Joe ... I've got it going. smile

Following the link you gave, I was able to download* the (standalone) "bloat" of MS .NET Framework 4.0.

That is:- dotNetFx40_Full_x86_x64.exe ... all 50 Meg of it!

I then installed it OK on a Windows 7 (32-bit) machine. Happily the installation proceeded effortlessly.

FYI: when I tried your Manuals.exe it threw up a message insisting that it could not find the path "C:\SampleManualsFolder". But once I had created that directory (folder) the .exe fired up OK (from, as you mentioned before, any location). I then shifted your sample folders across (into that root directory), and then there they were:- displayed as you had intended. Nice one! smile

* By "sniffing" off someone else's Wi-Fi connection ... but let's not go into that now.

Re: Database (Service Manuals) Management Software [Re: Joe Emmerson] #65780
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After putting on the kettle (it is Sunday morning, after all), I then proceeded to add a few Equipment Types and Equipment Models of my own:-

Code:

1) At the root directory (C:\SampleManualsFolder in my case)
2) Add new directories (for example):-
   \ECG Recorder
   \Suction Pump
3) Go to \ECG Recorder
4) Add new sub-directories (for example):-
   \Fukuda M.E. Cardisuny 501-F
   \Siemens Cardiostat 1
5) Go to \Suction Pumps
6) Add new sub-directories (for example):-
   \M.G. Electric SAM-420
   \Eschmann VP-45-TL
7) ... etc.


Yes, some "blasts from the past" I know (but just for purposes of illustration, as they say).

But that's the drill, guys:- a new directory folder for each type of equipment (and you decide what those types are), then a new sub-directory folder for each model (manufacturer-model if you prefer) within the type.

Observations:- as expected, the entries both the Equipment Type and Equipment Model panels appear in alphabetical order (and also in UPPER CASE).

Thoughts:- "if it were me" I believe I would have added another layer of structure (and yes, another panel) to display the manufacturers name separately (if only to enforce "correct" spelling of manufacturers names!). That is:-

...\Type\Manufacturer\Model

If you take a look at the screen shots given at the top of this thread, you will see (under Equipment Model) that some entries include the manufacturer name, whilst others don't (and simply show the model by itself).

OK, it's another layer of folders (and, perhaps, of complication) and I realise (and respect) that it would have been a decision (and one of many) taken at "design time". smile

Lastly for now, Joe ... how about being able to tab (you know, the good old-fashioned <tab> key) to er, tab (step) between panels? think

Re: Database (Service Manuals) Management Software [Re: Joe Emmerson] #65781
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Geoff, thanks for taking the time out to have a go and provide some feedback.

Yep, its pretty much a folder browser, but don't forget the potential power of those search buttons for images and manuals!

On my hitlist so far then is:

* Add new manual and delete source file after sucessful transfer (Some limited logic to try to determine what you are adding and provide you with choices) <IN PROGRESS>

* Addition of ID number against the equipment model - to enable you to link with other databases (Saves ID_xxxxxx.txt in the folder)

* Addition of Revision number against the service manual (for later exporting)

* (ISO QMS): Option to automatically archive your old service manual if you add a new version (ISO QMS), adding in the revision/date of the manual

* Automatic generation of a summary Excel document with hyperlinks to your manuals, revision number, equipment type, model, Equiment Model ID

* Option to set equipment models as *DONT DISPLAY* so you can have large archives of manuals but only show the ones you have in your areas.

* Maybe, search for company address by equipment type/model

* (ISO QMS): Email to company stating current version of service manual and equipment type/model to see if this is the latest revision smile

* Add Tab between panels (and right cursor)

* Supply Default folder structures to get started (might also encourage some domination standard!)

* Consider Adding Company Field between Equipment Type and Equipment Model (I was previously debating using the ID number of the equipment, relating to the specific model to look up the company name from a separate list?) take the 572 volumetric pump for example, IVAC, Alaris, Carefusion bit of a nightmare if someone started adding new manuals because they didn't know. ID Number = 7 (572), Separate list ID 7 = Company 10 (Carefusion). Possibly could do it both ways and make it an option, I'll add this when I've struck some of the earlier ones out of the way.

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Re: Database (Service Manuals) Management Software [Re: Joe Emmerson] #65783
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Point taken about IVAC ... Confusion. But (as I say) it's a design choice. smile

Personally, I think I would shy away from codes (for the manufacturer etc.) - I have had a lifetime of that! I believe I would just stick with directory folders named Alaris, Eschmann, IVAC et al simply following what was written on the kit itself. And then hope for the best! After all, someone with "dominant" powers (as you put it) could always come along and tidy things up later. whistle

Also about the power of the search facilities. Although it seems that you need to be on line to gain full use of those. Maybe you could have it (optionally) search the current hard-drive and (or) network as well. Or indeed any other source available to the native machine:- memory stick, USB link to another machine (via software "by others"), a Wi-Fi or Bluetooth link ... or any other means (just as long as the PC can "see it").

Meanwhile, maybe you need to say a few things about file naming conventions. For instance, every model folder likes to have a Folder.jpg file (for the "picture") ... and it looks like the service manual .pdf needs to be (re)named Service.pdf in order for it to appear in the correct panel (window). Similarly with Operators.pdf and Results.xls. And Spares.xls etc. Am I right? think

I'm interested in the ID_xxxxxx.txt business, by the way. What is the "spec" - format - for that? I'm guessing it can just provide a pointer indicating model (type \ manufacturer \ model) only, but not for each of the (what could be many) individual items of equipment within that sub-set. And ... how does (can) it link to a database, I wonder? More information, please!

A configurable folder browser? Anyone else remember (amongst others) PC-Tools? smile

Re: Database (Service Manuals) Management Software [Re: Joe Emmerson] #65784
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The auto-display (into the relevant section) firstly looks for prefixes then if its not successful it looks at the filename to see if it has any magic words:-

"OPERATOR", "OPERATORS", "USER", "OPERATING" = Operators manual
"SERVICE", "MAINTENANCE", "REPAIR", "TECHNICAL" = Service Manual
"INFO" = Information
"SPARES", "PARTS" = Parts
"RESULTS", "TEST SHEET" = Results
"OTHER" = Other
"ID" = Special code for model number which will open up opportunities to work across multiple database systems without having to rename all your folder structures wink also possible a reverse renaming system to look for problems (all future stuff)

If its not successful then it starts looking at the contents of the filenames to see if it can categorise by filename instead.

contains "OPERATOR","USER" = Operator manuals
Contains "SERVICE","MAINTENANCE","REPAIR" = Service manuals

--------------------------------------------------------

Search facilities, not thought about searching hard drives but that's a good point! (might be difficult to do non matching really fuzzy searching though) but its worth a go.

--------------------------------------------------------

I've been rehashing the file names to the above, so it might be slightly better than the version you have.

Ps, thanks Geoff it's been informative feedback!

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Re: Database (Service Manuals) Management Software [Re: Joe Emmerson] #65785
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It would be nice to have all those recognitions (file extension associations, file names and what-have-you) in the .config file, I reckon. That way, any "power user" could play away to their heart's content. Differences in terminology for non-English language users comes to mind.

By the way, Joe, I thought I might have been able to trick the system into searching my C:\ drive (for example) by simply playing about with the "rootURL" setting in the .config file. But no such luck. frown

But at least I'm now aware of JIT (just-in-time) debugging messages! LOL.

Another thing that you might like to look at is returning to the last equipment page used each time the system is (re)started. Not sure how you would go about such a "feature", but I'll leave that to you!

Also, an option to permit single-clicking on an icon (object) to open it would be nice (for me, at least).

But I must say that, the more I have played, the more I like what you have done. There's a great deal of potential there!

Oh well, one more cup of tea, then I really must get on with "other projects". Ciao! smile

Re: Database (Service Manuals) Management Software [Re: Joe Emmerson] #65789
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Geoff, use the menu to set the options [Configure] --> [Settings]

You can browse for your default paths there (shouldnt need to edit the .config file)

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Re: Database (Service Manuals) Management Software [Re: Joe Emmerson] #65791
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Yes. I've already noticed what happens when you go to Configure -> Settings and change the Service Manual Folder entry to simply C:\ whistle ... how to deal with that one?

What I was getting at earlier was a way - a "button", maybe on the Document Search form - to search for (and gather) documents on the current drive (etc.).

As you know, at present "Search Via This Form" expects a URL in the "Bing Root Url" field.

I was wondering if something like file:///c:/ might do the trick, but the system declares that it is still hoping for a "well formed http URL". frown

Re: Database (Service Manuals) Management Software [Re: Joe Emmerson] #65812
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Sorry for the delay, was trying to make the ADD MANUAL feature quite clever (which made it harder)



I'm getting there! (right click and select view image for a larger screen view)

Recently added:
- Recognise device from the source folder (different modes available, see screenshot)
- View file before attaching to your library
- Set manual revision during attachment
- Auto-Rename the manual (clean filename etc)
- Delete original after transfer
- Grab the creation date from the PDF document properties into the version number
- Auto suggest a file type (service manual, user manual) based on the source file/file location.
- OK and ADD Another feature to enable larger imports


Wow 1400 hits already, imagine that at 10 a go! I'm in the wrong job

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Re: Database (Service Manuals) Management Software [Re: Joe Emmerson] #65813
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Ah yes; mission - or feature - creep (and believe me; I know it when I see it). whistle

You might need to think about "pruning" (and simplifying) once you get done ... unless you plan to spend many happy hours writing up your Help file!

Meanwhile, you're only in the wrong job if you see yourself in competition with the likes of Steve Ballmer, Joe.

No-one I have ever come across has got Mega-rich "biomeding" (not in the financial sense, anyway) ... and even less so amongst the sub-group willing to donate their work into the Public Domain, as it were. frown

On the other hand, I am constantly amazed (almost daily, in fact) by stuff that gets published on the web by "others" (non-biomeds in the main - generally "electronics", "retro computer" and/or coding types - but Genius Guys nevertheless).

Keep up the good work, Mate. smile

Re: Database (Service Manuals) Management Software [Re: Joe Emmerson] #65856
Joined: Apr 2001
Posts: 255
Lancaster
J
Joe Emmerson Offline OP
Master
Joe Emmerson  Offline OP
Master
J

Joined: Apr 2001
Posts: 255
Lancaster
Hi Geoff, I've just emailed Pathfinder v1.0a to you.

Hopefully it wont completely crash (who knows). I've only tested it on a development machine so far.

-= Added =-
* Add Tab and Cursor movement with highlights between panels, Enter key to activate selected item
* Set Models OR Equipment types to Active/inactive so you can have large archives of manuals but only show the ones you have in your areas.
* Addition of ID number against the equipment model - to enable you to link with other databases (Saves ID_xxxxxx.txt in the folder)
* Addition of Revision number against the service manual (for later exporting)


-= High Priority (Pre-Release) =-
* Supply Default folder structures to get started (might also encourage some domination standard!)
* Link the listview ADD screen to the listbox ADD screen


-= Med Priority (Pre or Post Release) =-
* Revisit the internet search screen to clone functionalty from the 'ADD Screen'
* (ISO QMS): Option to automatically archive your old service manual if you add a new version (ISO QMS), adding in the revision/date of the manual
* Search for company address by equipment type/model
* (ISO QMS): Email to company stating current version of service manual and equipment type/model to see if this is the latest revision
* Automatic generation of a summary Excel document with hyperlinks to your manuals, revision number, equipment type, model, Equiment Model ID


-= Low Priority (Post Release =-
* Edit/Define the classification paramaters
* Consider Adding Company Field between Equipment Type and Equipment Model
* Add a search facility to search local hard drives for matches

Re: Database (Service Manuals) Management Software [Re: Joe Emmerson] #65859
Joined: Feb 2004
Posts: 13,574
the path less trodden
Geoff Hannis Offline
Super Hero
Geoff Hannis  Offline
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Posts: 13,574
the path less trodden

Put in a couple of "all-nighters" then, Joe? think

I've just downloaded it, Mate ... but I'm away from my main machine(s) at the moment.

I'll take a look later and report back on here. smile

Meanwhile ... I awoke during the night thinking about the "IVAC ... Alaris ... Cardinal ... CareFusion" problem (aka the "Dinamap" problem*) - you know, the way you do. LOL

Through the grog of sleep deprivation my only suggestion there would be some sort of look-up table (database) to enforce the "domination". OK, one track mind, (sad) I know.

Or, failing that, suitable links from "bogus" directory folders (images, whatever) to the "preferred" ones!

* Which has been mentioned on here so many times before!

What should we call it:- "traditional naming"? "customary terminology"? "native lingo"?

Re: Database (Service Manuals) Management Software [Re: Joe Emmerson] #65860
Joined: Jun 2009
Posts: 738
Coffs Harbour, NSW, Australia
DaveC in Oz Offline
Philosopher
DaveC in Oz  Offline
Philosopher

Joined: Jun 2009
Posts: 738
Coffs Harbour, NSW, Australia
Hi Joe, thanks for sending me the base programme to have a play with. I'm not a programmer (at any level) so I can't involve myself in the detail but I have to say I think the concept and base function is great. Seems well structured and above all the ease of use is of a high level. Even a gimp like me could find my way about smirk

Keep up the great work and I look forward to seeing things develop (but be careful that it does not consume your life, people who can't "finish" a project must be very unhappy folk indeed. Get it to a point where you have achieved what you set out to do and then STOP).


Thoughts and information provided on this forum are mine and mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the policy of NSW Health. They may also be complete bollocks!!
Re: Database (Service Manuals) Management Software [Re: DaveC in Oz] #65862
Joined: Feb 2004
Posts: 13,574
the path less trodden
Geoff Hannis Offline
Super Hero
Geoff Hannis  Offline
Super Hero

Joined: Feb 2004
Posts: 13,574
the path less trodden

I agree, Dave. smile

Coding does tend to take over. I *know quite a few good guys (and they generally are blokes) like that.

Some projects need to be developed as time passes, but some smaller, neater, apps shouldn't need to consume a bloke's life if the program "does it right" (does what it is meant to do, and does it neatly and well) in the first place.

Otherwise, the "answer", perhaps, is to develop in small "chunks". Especially for larger applications. The downside with that approach, however, is you end up issuing endless revisions (v23.01.1a beta?), which (quite rightly) tends to p**s off the users! whistle

There have been many cases in "computer history" where what started out as a good little program ended up being "developed" into bloatware (not to mention obscurity). It's the old "version 3" syndrome; meaning (briefly) that it takes three revision cycles to get it tweaked to "perfection" - but anything after version 3 is likely to suffer from feature overload. frown

Like everything else in life (or, in my own case, what passes for life), it's all a question of balance!

In passing ... how many exciting new projects have been announced on here in the past? And how many have stayed the course? (or maybe they are still under development) frown

But I'm aware that Joe has been beavering away on this one for "quite a while", and so - happily - it is almost ready just as it is. smile

* But when I say "know" - I mean via the web, of course. I don't get out much these days! LOL (and what would be the point, afer all?)

Re: Database (Service Manuals) Management Software [Re: Joe Emmerson] #65868
Joined: Feb 2004
Posts: 13,574
the path less trodden
Geoff Hannis Offline
Super Hero
Geoff Hannis  Offline
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Posts: 13,574
the path less trodden

I've emailed some comments, Joe. smile

Re: Database (Service Manuals) Management Software [Re: Joe Emmerson] #65874
Joined: Feb 2004
Posts: 13,574
the path less trodden
Geoff Hannis Offline
Super Hero
Geoff Hannis  Offline
Super Hero

Joined: Feb 2004
Posts: 13,574
the path less trodden

Whilst playing about with the "Document Search" form (which is a brilliant *tool, by the way) at Joe's Pathfinder beta, I came across this collection of manuals:-

internetMED

Off-hand, I can't remember if they have been mentioned before. smile

@Huw: this list could be in need of due review, Mate.

* It searches on-line for manuals and (or) documents relating to the equipment concerned, then allows you to download and automatically poke them into the appropriate "box" (panel, pocket, pouch?) at the equipment page in view. In short it greatly simplifies what can otherwise be quite a laborious process (searching the web, downloading, renaming into a directory somewhere ... then - two months later - trying to remember where you placed it ... etc., etc.).

The Image Search facility gets a big Thumbs Up too. It searches the web for images (one of which you select) so you can insert a nice picture of the kit at top right of the main form. Very nice! And all quick and easy.

Re: Database (Service Manuals) Management Software [Re: Joe Emmerson] #65880
Joined: Feb 2009
Posts: 1,802
Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
Neil Porter Offline
Hero
Neil Porter  Offline
Hero

Joined: Feb 2009
Posts: 1,802
Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
Sorry to disappoint you, but it has been mentioned before and I have been a member for quite some time.


If you think hiring professionals is expensive, try hiring amateurs!
Re: Database (Service Manuals) Management Software [Re: Neil Porter] #65881
Joined: Feb 2004
Posts: 13,574
the path less trodden
Geoff Hannis Offline
Super Hero
Geoff Hannis  Offline
Super Hero

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Posts: 13,574
the path less trodden

About internetMED?

Yes ... it is (was) there, on Huw's list.

No disappointment here, Neil ... I was just "spreading the word".

Or (if you prefer), "recycling the word". whistle

But what I was really doing was testing Joe's search engine (bot?) - hopefully to be with you all soon. It accurately (and rapidly) plucked out a link to internetMED (plus a number of others) when searching for manuals for a particular equipment type and model.

Re: Database (Service Manuals) Management Software [Re: Joe Emmerson] #65889
Joined: Feb 2009
Posts: 1,802
Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
Neil Porter Offline
Hero
Neil Porter  Offline
Hero

Joined: Feb 2009
Posts: 1,802
Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
Found another link, http://kickass.to/medical-equipment-manuals-t4249270.html,over 100 manuals.


If you think hiring professionals is expensive, try hiring amateurs!
Re: Database (Service Manuals) Management Software [Re: Neil Porter] #65901
Joined: Feb 2004
Posts: 13,574
the path less trodden
Geoff Hannis Offline
Super Hero
Geoff Hannis  Offline
Super Hero

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Posts: 13,574
the path less trodden

Have you got a decent link for us then, Neil? think

Re: Database (Service Manuals) Management Software [Re: Joe Emmerson] #65908
Joined: Feb 2009
Posts: 1,802
Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
Neil Porter Offline
Hero
Neil Porter  Offline
Hero

Joined: Feb 2009
Posts: 1,802
Jeddah, Saudi Arabia

Last edited by Neil Porter; .

If you think hiring professionals is expensive, try hiring amateurs!
Re: Database (Service Manuals) Management Software [Re: Joe Emmerson] #65910
Joined: Jun 2000
Posts: 2,309
Wales
Huw Offline

Hero
Huw  Offline

Hero

Joined: Jun 2000
Posts: 2,309
Wales
Quote:
Sorry, the web page you have requested is not available through Virgin Media.

Virgin Media has received an order from the Courts requiring us to prevent access to this site in order to help protect against copyright infringement.


frown

Re: Database (Service Manuals) Management Software [Re: Huw] #65911
Joined: Feb 2004
Posts: 13,574
the path less trodden
Geoff Hannis Offline
Super Hero
Geoff Hannis  Offline
Super Hero

Joined: Feb 2004
Posts: 13,574
the path less trodden

Yes. That was my point. frown

Perhaps it doesn't apply to connections into the Magic Kingdom.

@Neil: best get them downloaded whilst (if) you can, then. whistle

Meanwhile, back at the thread, I hear that Joe is busy beavering away. smile

Re: Database (Service Manuals) Management Software [Re: Joe Emmerson] #66033
Joined: Apr 2001
Posts: 255
Lancaster
J
Joe Emmerson Offline OP
Master
Joe Emmerson  Offline OP
Master
J

Joined: Apr 2001
Posts: 255
Lancaster
Beavering away indeed, yes

Happy to say that the NHS budget isn't wasted on this little gem, what little time I have in my normal life has been carried away in a stream of code.

Anyway, I've emailed a copy out - It works well on my machine I'm hoping that this will be stable enough to let a copy into the wild while I continue at a slower pace.

For those that are interested in the recent additions of relevance:
- Choice of PDF Engine (defaults to internal one 'PDFSharp')
- Ability to create a virtual file for hard copy documents
- Internal (did I mention pretty) icon set as default (if it cant find one for the chosen file it will extract the icon)
- Create a 'Link' file to File, Folder or URL rather than copying the actual file across
- Interesting Splash screen

Last edited by Joe Emmerson; .
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