Way back in the day Mac databases were all the rage and there were plenty available. Today, most database on complex relational monstrosities with capabilities far beyond the domain of mere mortal Mac folk. MySQL is free but you’re required to build your own app. FileMaker runs on Mac, iPhone, and iPad, has plenty of useful applications, but comes with a hefty price tag.
Is there a Mac database app for the rest of us? One that’s simple to setup and use, but also doesn’t cost an arm and a leg, and has enough power, flexibility, and capability to grow as both needs and knowledge increase?
Stepping up to the plate is General DB. It’s a general SQL database for the Mac and it’s priced right.
As Mac databases go, this one is somewhat unique. Start with simple lists of data, spreadsheet style.
Create database tables with a click. Import database text files into tables. Select values from a drop down list.
Up to this point General DB is a nice list database manager. Simple. Elegant. Straightforward. And not complicated.
Now the fun begins.
General DB can execute SQL queries, create SQL templates for tables, and go a few steps into relational database territory by using JOINs of two or more tables.
Suddenly, what is a simple list manager starts to take on some very powerful functionality. Rows added to a table are sortable, searchable, and selectable, which makes General DB very good for customized product inventory tracking, customer management, accounts, lists, and much more.
Field types go well beyond typical database lists as a SQLite database with field types, including text, number, data, time, location, duration, photo, and custom types.
What I haven’t figured out is the app’s name relative to the logo. General DB invokes a military general which commands, or a general product with generalized capability. The logo is that of a master sergeant in the army.
Regardless, General DB is priced right, very capable, and simple to get started on lists that could become complex databases.