Access as a Client-Side CMS

By Deane Barker • Posted on June 24, 2003

How about Microsoft Access as a client-side content management tool? After playing around with Radio UserLand and CityDesk, I’m finding more and more utility in a client-side apps. They’re responsive, they don’t need to be connected (great for laptops or dial-up), and you can do a lot more with a client-side user interface than a browser-based interface.

So, I got to thinking the other day, how about hot-rodding Microsoft Access into a client-based CMS? Microsoft VBA is a very competent langauge, and it essentially gives you a fully-functional Windows interface inside of an Access file.

You could easily develop a set of VBA forms that allowed WYSIWYG entry, category assignment, publishing management, etc. These forms would just modify underlying Access tables in that same file. Everything would be self-contained and it could generate and FTP files to a remote server (or file-copy, if you were on the same network as your server).

For all its faults, Access is an extremely mature data storage app, so you get all the functionality of a true, relational database backend with the full functionality of a Visual Basic application interface.

I’m not going to write this, but I wish someone would.

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