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Bento is a personal data organizer for Leopard that provides a place to store any information Mac users might want to collect, track, or connect. In Bento 2 Essential Training, database expert Cris Ippolite introduces the concept of databases to Bento users and demonstrates techniques for getting data into the application. He describes the features of Bento that allow Mac users to create libraries and Smart Collections for all sorts of information, and he shows how to use calculation and media fields. Exercise files accompany the course.
Bento makes it very easy to not only store your own data but also to share your information with anyone else that you would like to. There are a couple of supported formats and then you can save your data in one of those formats and then give your data to other people with other applications. First, what you need to know is you need to pick which data you're going to be exporting, so it's important for you to choose the library that contains the data that you want to export first. So, in this case, we'll choose Properties and we'll go under File, to Export. You'll see here the compatible file formats. The first one you see is Numbers, this could be Numbers '08 or Numbers '09, and then also you could save it as an Excel file. But it's important to note that it's going to save it as an .xlsx, which would require Excel 2008 or later to open.
So if you are sharing this with a user that does not have Excel 2008, you could then just save it as a Text file. And Text files can be imported into tons of different applications, so this is usually a pretty safe option. And if you choose a Text file, you have to determine whether or not it's going to be Comma, Semicolon or Tab separated information. So just check with the recipient, the person whom you want to share this data with and see what their preferred format might be. Now regardless of which format you choose, you notice that you've got two selections. First, I can either import in all of the records. So in this case inside of the Properties table, you see I have got 43 total records. Or I can choose Only current records.
Now what that means is that if I done a search using the Search field or Advanced Find, and created a file set or a smaller group of records. Let's say I do a search for just everyone in Boulder then I have 4 different records, then I would choose only Current and then it would export only the four records that are in my file set. Otherwise, whether I have a file set on screen or not, I can choose, All records and it will just take all 43 records inside the chosen library. Same is true for the fields that you are going to be exporting, you see that I'm in Table View and I have 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 different columns or 5 different fields visible inside Table View. I can choose to only export those that are displayed in this table view. Or the other option is to choose all table view fields.
And now what this means is that there are some fields that are not compatible inside Table View like list fields, related list fields and that type of thing, media fields. So in that case, it would take all of the fields that are defined inside of this library and export only those that are compatible in Table View. The reason for that is because in two of these cases, you are creating spreadsheets and list fields and media fields and that type of thing, are not things that you can store inside of spreadsheets. So in this case, we pick the different options that we would like. We hit Next and we are going to choose a location to save this information and a name.
And we'll go ahead and hit OK. We have successfully created an export of our data that we can now give to other users or just archive or import it into another application.
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