Compared to industrial-strength database products such as Microsoft's SQL Server, Access is a breeze to use. It runs on PCs rather than servers and is ideal for small- to mid-sized businesses and households. But Access is still intimidating to learn. It doesn't help that each new version crammed in yet another set of features; so many, in fact, that even the pros don't know where to find them all. Access 2007 breaks this pattern with some of the most dramatic changes users have seen since Office 95. Most obvious is the thoroughly redesigned user interface, with its tabbed toolbar (or "Ribbon") that makes features easy to locate and use. The features list also includes several long-awaited changes. One thing that hasn't improved is Microsoft's documentation. To learn the ins and outs of all the features in Access 2007, Microsoft merely offers online help.
Access 2007: The Missing Manual was written from the ground up for this redesigned application. You will learn how to design complete databases, maintain them, search for valuable nuggets of information, and build attractive forms for quick-and-easy data entry. You'll even delve into the black art of Access programming (including macros and Visual Basic), and pick up valuable tricks and techniques to automate common tasks - even if you've never touched a line of code before. You will also learn all about the new prebuilt databases you can customize to fit your needs, and how the new complex data feature will simplify your life. With plenty of downloadable examples, this objective and witty book will turn an Access neophyte into a true master.
Matthew MacDonald is an author, educator, and programmer extraordinaire. He's the author of over a dozen books about .NET programming, and the author of Excel: The Missing Manual. In a dimly remembered past life, he studied English literature and theoretical physics.