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Hi Joel,

Well, on the one hand, changing to a database does mean learning
databases, and putting in a certain amount of time to develop it,
although you should be able to pull in the data from the spreadsheet.
There's also no clear gain, if the spreadsheet works for you, what do
you gain by going to a database? And because databases are a little
more structured, it means changes are harder to make. On the other
hand, it does make things a little neater, and more formalised. Keeping
track of things may be easier, at least mentally.

The point at which one should switch from spreadsheet to database is
always hard to find. Personally, I would switch with this, but I
already know databases pretty well, so it would be that much easier for
me to set up, and I'd probably find it easier to make changes and add

I find such large spreadsheets unwieldy, because you have to work with
the actual data, whereas databases you work with the data container,
and the database applies that to the actual data. Pulling up the
correct information is simply a matter of writing a simple (for me)
query, whereas in a spreadsheet you have to manually select the correct
cells, type in formula to exclude values, etc., etc.

So basically, if it works, why change it? But if you do change to a
database, you may end up with something that is neater and
cleaner, meaning that it is easier to find the information in all the
data, but maybe slightly harder to just change in an ad-hoc kind of
way, which itself can be both good and bad.

Just my thoughts. If you do go ahead with the database idea, feel free
to ping me with further questions when you get into it. I'd be glad to
help if I can find the time. I know databases pertty well, if not Base
so well.


On Fri, 8 Aug 2014 09:29:39 -0700
Joel Madero <> wrote:

Just wanted to bump this to see if anyone has thoughts. Worst case I'm
going to just dive into Database and see what I can learn but I'm
hoping to get a little feedback before spending time which might be
totally pointless as I really don't have the time to just throw
away ;) Thanks again in advance!

On Wed, Aug 6, 2014 at 8:46 PM, Joel Madero <>

Hi All -

So I have been using spreadsheet for about 10 years to keep track
of a goal that I set my first year of college (reading a million
pages before I die). That being said, I keep adding things to it
and it's becoming more and more complicated. This week I decided I
wanted to add yet another thing
- I want to track series that I read and for it to generate the
"next book in the series" after I complete a book. I think I've
figured out how to do this with spreadsheet using match and index
but I'm just debating if it's time for me to really sit down and
create a database with the info.

The file is located here:

Thoughts much appreciated - I have a bit of experience with Access
and am pretty good at "learning by doing" but don't want to change
to database just for the sake of changing. Kind of looking for pros
and cons. Thanks in advance!


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