Database program. Provue Panorama offer

I’m not sure if this is the right place to post, but I recently got Panorama with a nice discount. The offer ends in a few days:

Since there are a couple of mentions of Panorama in this forum, I went ahead and posted :slight_smile:

It will take a while to learn how to use it, but so far I’ve created a database to backup my email and another one to store my contacts. I am unfamiliar with its advanced features and programming, but there are some tutorials and extensive manuals available.

The introductory price of $99 is only available to new users.
For anyone seeking an upgrade, the cost is a whopping $299.
It’s a good DB program, but I stopped using it because of the upgrade policy.
Or lack thereof. Provue offers no student or educator discounts, either.
I found that DevonThink Pro was far better at archiving e-mail.
And for my purposes, I do better with EndNote and Excel.

Thanks for the comment. Let me start by saying that I’m not affiliated with Provue.
The $99 price seems to be available even for previous users. I just found this by going through VersionTracker, trying to find information regarding their upgrades:

From Provue’s website, upgrading from the previous version is $90:
Panorama 2.x to 5.5 Upgrade (Mac) $249.95
Panorama 3.x to 5.5 Upgrade (Mac) $199.95
Panorama 4.0 to 5.5 Upgrade (Mac) $184.95
Panorama 5.0 to 5.5 Upgrade (Mac) $89.95

I do have Devon Think Pro Office, and my email database is 107 MB vs. 71 MB in Panorama. Both are smaller than FileMaker Pro which is 185 MB. My only other Panorama database is 44 KB for my contacts.
I won’t replace DTPO or Excel with Panorama, but it seems like a nice addition. I think that a beta for DTP 2 will be available soon.

Regarding EndNote, IMO they do have an awful upgrade policy, even with academic pricing. I switched to Bookends a while ago and I’m happier :slight_smile:

As a side note, a company that offers nice academic discounts is Araxis, for both Merge and Ketura. There are similar programs to Merge that are cheaper, but from what I’ve read Merge is pretty much the best of its class. :slight_smile:


I guess upgrades differ considerably for different customers.
I have not upgraded Panorama since version 4.0.
The version of 5.5 I downloaded says I get no discounts, and the charge is 199.95.
However, I just upgraded to EndNote X2 for a mere $3.
My university has a campus-wide license. The fee was for the disc.

I agree that Panorama is an excellent DB program.
I am testing the current beta of DPT 2, and it’s great.
New interface, very fast, tagging, lots of good features.

I will go check out Araxis, thanks for the tip.


$3 sounds like a great upgrade fee! I think that the last version I had was version 7. No more EndNote for me, but that’s a great upgrade fee indeed.

If you go to
Select “Panorama,” “Upgrade” and click search. It will show the upgrade options. IMO they’re a bit expensive, particularly if you’re using an older version such as 4.0.
As a new user I decided to give them a try. It was cheaper than upgrading FileMaker. :slight_smile:
4D used to have a free academic version of their software, but I think they charge $99 now for it.

I hope you find Araxis’ software useful. Their regular prices are expensive, but the software itself seems to be quite good.
Another interesting program that comes to mind is Consideo Modeler. They offer academic pricing, as well as a limited version free of charge.
There seem some Java issues for PPC users, but their support has been great and hopefully we’ll be able to pinpoint the source of the problem.

They don’t have an online store (yet), and documentation/tutorials are sparse. But I find the concept fascinating. I used to do similar stuff in Excel, but this approach is more user friendly and comprehensive.
I hope you find this useful :slight_smile:

I’m building a database in Filemaker Pro 9, and what was written above made me consider looking over to the other fields of ProVue Panorama. I downloaded, and was shocked. No unicode support? Is that possible today on a mac? Or do I have some setting wrong?

It is possibly using some Carbon based toolkit, or maybe if they choose to roll their own text fields instead of using Cocoa’s. I cannot see any reason for why someone would go through all of the trouble of doing that in a DB app though. Developers of word processors and syntax aware text editing programs bother with that kind of stuff.

Maybe that why it uses less space…

Interesting point.
From their Web site, a post from January 27, 2007:

"Panorama doesn’t handle Unicode text.

Jim Rea
President, ProVUE Development"

Apparently some older versions did have limited Unicode support. I’m not sure about the current status, though.

I am confused to see DevonThink Pro and an application like Panorama mentioned here in one context. As I have understood the website, Panorama is rather a real relational database (like MS Access, for example), which would be interesting for me because I really miss a good RDB on my Mac. DevonThink Pro on the other hand is rather for building up knowledge bases, a text-storage-and-retrievel system - you wouldn’t do your accounting with it, would you?

Or have I misunderstood something wrong here :wink: ?


I think you are right. I’ve never used Panorama but I am a great user of DEVONthink Pro and I wouldn’t do my accounts in DEVONthink Pro :slight_smile: Actually I do my accounts in Numbers.

DEVONthink Pro is for storing files of many types and provides a superb system for finding them and creating relationships between them.

I just tried out Panorama and must say that I’m suprised that programs like this are still made. It looks like a program from the windows 3.1 time. Why didn’t the company make it look like it’s made in 2008 instead? I would never buy something like this. At the moment, I’m using filemaker and even that program has a very old fashion look, I believe it’s better.


Does anybody know how many days this ofer is still valid? Like AndreasE I am on the lookout for a relational database ever since I migrated to the Mac but would like to try the demo for a while before comitting.


As I understood, one has to download the special demo before 20th of december.

But then? I don’t know. I think I’ll give it a try the weekend.

I know DTP, I own it myself. (Although I rarely use it because somehow, it stresses my computer to the limit. Everything slows down once DTP is up.)

The point is that DTP doesn’t belong into the category Relational Database Systems; it’s another type of tool. An RDB is something you use for large numbers of records of the same kind (customer adresses, article data, orders, logs, part lists etc.), you manage it by SQL-statements and the like. MS-Access is a prominent example in the windows world.

I think that there’s some overlap between the programs. For example, I would NOT use Panorama to store my research documents. DTPO would be my choice. FoxTrot Professional Search also overlaps a bit with DTPO for this purpose, although FoxTrot is inaccurate and support is non-existent.
But for storing email, for example, Panorama, FileMaker, and DTPO are useful.

Since Numbers was mentioned, from what I’ve seen Panorama can also do some great stuff in terms of dealing with numerical data. My number one choice for that purpose is Excel (or SPSS), but one of the Panorama examples I recall dealt with financial data and some summaries with sub-totals and a grand total.

I don’t really mind how a program looks as long as it delivers in terms of performance. A nice, intelligent interface is definitely a plus, but for my needs looks are not the most important thing.
The Mac is filled with great looking applications, beautiful GUIs with questionable functionality. And many people love those programs. Some software that I’ve used for years could be considered ugly, but for the most part none of the pretty apps have been a replacement.

I do appreciate a great interface. I’m a big fan of minimalist interfaces such as WorkStrip, ApplicationWizard, PTH Pasteboard, You Control, LaunchBar, etc. All of these are backed by superb functionality.

RDBMS (relational data base management systems) doesn’t have a real UI. They are processes that provide abstracted interfaces. Think Oracle, MySql, MS SQL Server, Posgress. The systems you are discussing are more UI than relational data base. The ones that have real relational capabilities are going to cost you. To me a $500 tag on a RDBMS is peanuts. I expect are real commercial RDBMS to have a couple of digits to the left of the comma.

That said, many of the systems available today simulate RDBMS in the UI. This is done with clever programming and utilizing the idle cycles of your processor (you really think you are using all 2,600,000,000 execution cycles available each second?).

So all you really have is a fancy GUI.

All that to say that every one of these systems running on a modern processor is capable of meeting all the needs of “normal” people. I say this to exclude folks like AmberV and bobueland (check out his blog. If his posts there don’t get you scratching your head you must look like that guy over there -->) who are likely to really pound the snot out of a DB for computational storage (all you other db pounders I am sorry that I can’t remember your name).

On the whole spread sheet front … you don’t want to get me started. Let’s just say that a spread sheet is a fancy GUI with some exposed API and formating routines. Oh, and it is built on a very thin dbm. every computation you can do in a spread sheet is possible in any RDBMS and most “fake” RDBMS. You just have to know how to do it. Making it pretty … most folks can’t even do that with a spread sheet, but it is still not part of the RDBMS or DBM raw function. It is all UI.

What is the point of my ranting? Not sure I remember. Oh yeah. [bold]As an end user all you are buying is a pretty interface with some implemented functionality.[/bold] The look and feel should be considered as important as function for end user apps. This is coming from a guy who prefers a command line to a GUI.

BYTW this is one of the things I admire† most about Keith and Kevin (the guy who develops Moneywell Both seem to have a much better connection between the UI and functionality than most large development houses. If only I could get folks to adopt their philosophy … then my job would be easy.

† I blame AmberV for distracting me in the original. Never should have mentioned her. I was doomed to failure the second I took her name in vain.

Spoken like a true sysop.

Grammar was not a requirement for this profession. That is why it works so well for me. :blush:

I have now downloaded the demo (almost 200 MB :open_mouth: ) and played around with it for several hours, read in the manuals etc., but in the moment I am rather disappointed. Panorama does a lot of amazing things, but - as far as I can see - not the one fundamental thing a RDB should be capable of: defining relations between tables. In fact, the mere word “relational” appears only 2 (two) times in the main manual of 1954 pages…

So, no replacement for MS-Access, as it seems… :cry:

I have a Panorama license, but I don’t use it much anymore. At one time the relational topic was beaten to death on one of the Provue mailing lists. Search archive:

If I remember correctly, the developer suggested defining specific objectives then looking for Panorama methods. mentions that Panorama is fully relational.

Hope this is helpful