Glee! The iBook left Columbus this morning at 7:30am, so it should be here (Ann Arbor) today. Yay!
So we're starting a new project at work. We have a Recreation Department here, and they offer various classes and sports and other services to community members. Currently, signing up for any such program requires them to show up at the Community Center in person. Which sucks.
Unfortunately, the wonderfully crappy recreation-management software they use wants some $45,000 for the add-on to get online registration. They want some $40,000 for the add-on to enable any sort of RPC to let a custom-written web registration system interface with the software. Ack!
Of course, the rec people don't seem to want to switch from their current software, even tho cheaper packages are available. So, I get to write a web registration system that can't actually tie in to the program management software at all.
Among other things, this means the rec employees are going to have to double-enter everything; once in the management software, once in the web-registration interface. It also means that residents won't be able to sign-up in real time. They'll have to sign up for a program, and then wait for an employee to transfer the registration to the management software. This means the registration might be rejected because the program is already full. Were it to tie into the actual management software, we could guarantee that if the user hits "Register", they'll get the opening they signed up for. :(
What a pita. To complicate things, tho, I need to find a new dedicated hosting company that we can actually afford but doesn't suck like Dracula.
Also, I've never worked with database transactions before. I've read the documentation both in MySQL and PostgreSQL, but neither really answered all my questions, and given what I read from them I can already think of tons of ways to screw up the system, unless I go for table-wide locking. Yuck.
Think I need to buy a book on Enterprise MySQL/PostgreSQL Database management...