Programming the Palm

In order to build a handheld computer-based interface to the base's flight

tracking software system, personnel at the Naval Air Station in North Island,

Calif., used a tool from Pendragon Software Corp. called Pendragon Forms.

"I could have made all the databases and conduits myself but it would

have been two or three times the work," said William Ragatz, an aviation

weapons systems operator who developed the application. "The Pendragon software

made it really easy, and what's also nice is that if you need some higher-level

coding or applications, the tool is very flexible and versatile."

Pendragon Forms Version 3.0 allows users and system integrators to quickly

create data-collection applications that run on handheld computers. "Even

end users can build applications with our software quite easily," said Ivan

Phillips, president of Libertyville, Ill.-based Pendragon Software.

After forms are created, administrators can use a centralized database

to control which forms are deployed and which users can access them. The

application also provides the bi-directional, data synchronization capability

being used by the Navy to share data between the Palm computers and the

base network.

Forms 3.0 can synchronize with databases supporting the open database

connectivity standard. The basic software license costs $149; a license

for each Palm device using the software costs an additional $45.

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