Connecting OpenOffice with other open source softwares

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Connecting OpenOffice with other open source softwares

Postby SeegerRob » Tue Jul 03, 2018 8:30 am

Hi! I work for a small business that went from being online based to open a physical shop. Because of the budget has always been limited, we used open office since the business was started. Although now we are using Drive more, we strive to make use of open office as most of data has been gathered in calc spreadsheets and transfer everything will take a lot of time. Besides that, we are more than comfortable and we try to avoid a change.

Because of that, we have faced several challenges when establishing the physical shop. Apart from bureaucratic issues, we never thought the way we offer our customers to pay was going to cause so many concerns. We found out that it was cheaper to buy the machines separately and then there is an open source software that completes the whole device.

http://www.opensourceposguide.com/
https://www.market-inspector.co.uk/blog/2016/05/open-source-pos-software

This is connected by wifi to the desktop where all the data is gathered. I wonder if there is a possibilite to establish a bridge in the code in order to redirect the data to calc and keep collecting everything there.

Thank you for your help!
Last edited by SeegerRob on Tue Jul 03, 2018 12:50 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Connecting Open Office with other open source softwares

Postby keme » Tue Jul 03, 2018 11:24 am

A proper database, as set up by the POS system, is by far the preferred main storage for your data. You can set up OpenOffice Base to connect to that database, whether it is hosted or on-site, to "bridge the gap" to your existing software setup. It should be possible to set it up so that a Calc spreadsheet "shadows" the data, in practice appearing more or less like what you have now. This is not a trivial task. To set up a reliable connection you need good knowledge about your current system, the OSPOS system and database setup in general. The upside is that with this, you run little risk of hurting your business core system, so prototyping against a live system is fairly safe (as long as you know what you are doing).

Setting up the OSPOS system to pipe everything from/to Calc files may be technically possible, but this is not recommended. A spreadsheet file is not a sufficiently robust storage object for realtime data entry on this level. You need intimate knowledge about the inner workings of the OSPOS system (scripting, data relationships, transaction handling) and there are still opportunities of "stalemate" conditions and other lockups. You'd have to have a lab setup mirroring your live system, to develop and test on, so you don't break your business.
Don't venture down that path!
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Re: Connecting Open Office with other open source softwares

Postby SeegerRob » Wed Jul 04, 2018 2:30 pm

Hi keme. Thank you for your answer. The "shadowing" way you pointed out was the most accesible option I was considering, but I got lost since obviously is not something I master. When it comes to the risk of not having enough storage coming data on realtime, it may not be a problem acknowledging the current business flow in the offline shop. It is true it would be a bad choice to start with something easy and poor first and have to fix it later. I realised it's something I will struggle if I do it myself so we will definetely talk with an expert in this matters.

Thanks again for your answer. It gave light to my thoughts.
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