Thursday, December 14, 2006

QuickBase

One of the categories in the Office 2.0/Web2.0 space is Situational Software - "lego kit" development environments for non-programmers. The idea is that this software doesn't solve any one particular problem but provides an easy environment for creating various applications.
There are couple of other companies in this space, one of them - dabble.com I reviewed earlier in this blog, the other, Coghead.com has been working on its stuff for a while and the description of it sounds pretty promising. But I was suprised to find another solution yesterday from who else but Intuit, that seems to have been in existance since 2001! that I heard nothing about, did you? I'm talking about QuickBase.
In my mind, the following characteristics define this category of applications:
  • data flexibility (data types, data relationships, views, reports)
  • workflow (triggering things off of an event or a change)
  • GUI experience (interactivity, widgets, etc)
  • ease of building an application (both Quickbase and Dabble allow you to start an application from a spreadsheet, but Quickbase also has a respectable number of sample applications one can start with including CRM, project management, real estate app, etc)
Pricing-wise, Quickbase is marketing its 10 user edition for $249/mo and doing some digging I can see that they used to sell single seats for $14.95/mo but no longer offer that.. I can tell they are looking for a more serious clients instead of mere tire-kickers.

P.S. While there are lots of different applications in the Web/Office2.0 space, I think situational software is the one with the most potential impact as it opens up application creation to non-programmers, thus expending the possibilities exponentially.