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William L. Staudenheimer
System Guides

Qilan enabled me to build an interactive web site, making, viewing and canccelling reservations, and to connect it to a relational database, in about the time it would take just to organize and set up a custom Java development project to do the same thing.

Qilan helped me to build my HTML pages by keeping them correct, effortlessly, within the DTD for "Standard" HTML 4.0 (loose). It only allowed those tags and attributes that were correct for the part I was building at the time. Browser implmentations are fickle enough that this helps remove one more uncertainty in diagnosis of a problem.

The Qilan editor's tag-indentation helped me always see the scope of a given tag. The ability to collapse a block of tags allows me to focus my attention on what is important at the moment.

I chose Qilan in part for its ability to connect to a variety of different relational databases. This helps protect me from changing client preferences. It allows me to build a Version 2 of a system, pointed at a different database product, with almost no changes to the original pages.

Qilan's Session Server for variables has meant that I can build sites without having the dreaded cookies, and all the static they provoke, and without worrying about whether a given user has them on or off in a given browser.

By running in Mac OS X, QIlan allows me to work using the full set of classical Mac GUI capabilities, as well as a full set of Unix capabilities for getting the job done. Qilan can call any Unix executable to do the custom tasks when I need them.

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From Elton...

I'm a Helix developer and had a Xplatform project. I looked at Filemaker, and 4D; focused on 4D. I purchased Qilan for web development and Helix integration, but found that it offers all of what I intended to do with 4D, is very powerful, scalable with SQL (OpenBase/FrontBase/Oracle, etc.) and it integrated with our current Helix systems.

Using Qilan, which is very "Helix like", I developed the Xplatform backoffice project, quickly, and am very happy with the results and future options that Qilan offers with SQL databases, OSX and Helix.

Cool Helix features like dynamic-popups are easy to do in Qilan: click to edit lists, posting (update, increment, decrement, create, delete), validations, sub-forms, conditional color, text size and styles, etc...

Also, Qilan provides many options unavailable in Helix; variable length sub-lists/ forms, edit on a list, iteration, UNIX calls/tools, SQL tools/functions, unlimited salability, access by any OS, and much more.

Integrating Helix with SQL via Qilan provides the only way to extend Helix's capabilities.

I designed a billing and scheduling system in Qilan w/OpenBase SQL that updates to our main Helix system. This was developed fairly quickly given the similarities of Helix and Qilan. It has all of the features I am used to in Helix: Global table, User_variable table, posting, dynamic pop-ups, lists that click to edit, limited selects of variables, sub-forms, abaci math/logic/strings, conditional color, validations, menus, etc. Qilan and SQL also offer many features that are unavailable in Helix.

Qilan is not just for eCommerce sites. It is also a excellent development environment for a Back-Office System that needs Xplatform clients to access your Helix database via the web and/or a inter-office LAN/WAN. Our LAN response extremely fast and using IE v5 you have all sorts of Keyboard options, providing mouseless browser interaction.

I have cloned Helix functions that run on Qilan/OpenBase, that communicate (both ways) with our primary Helix database. The "Helix like" features are so similar (dynamic-popups, drill down/click to edit, posting, abaci functions, etc..) that I would not use a Helix Windows client if I had it today, because other options are available with Qilan, SQL and browsers that are very advantageous.

Our division that requires Windows is extremely happy because they (also, customers and affiliates) can access our Helix/Qilan/OpenBase system from anywhere in the world (nice in the Aviation Charter/Mgt. Business), and can do so with OS9, OSX, Linux, Win98, ME, Win2k, NT and XP systems --whatever.

Qilan provides a full blown development environment, a IP link to Helix (OG Gateway) and SQL integration. Much more can be done with Qilan directly in Helix given it's internal field definitions and Helix like abaci. However, the "real power" (and ease of use) is to use Helix with a SQL Dababase (OpenBase is my preference and it comes with Qilan). The SQL's JDBC adapter and SQL functions allow for far easier and more sophisticated development; updating back to Helix.

Qilan's development environment is awesome for those how are not HTML savvy, as well as experts; HTML, JAVA and other code like GoLive can also be imported into the developer.

Qilan's ability to mix multiple mainstream SQL platforms (Oracle, OpenBase, FrontBase, Paradox, MS SQL, Sysbase, etc...) with Helix and FileMaker, on the fly, place Qilan in league of its own.

Even with Helix's AEEA limitation, Qilan allows you to define Helix fields that are used as "placeholder" for the data that is being piped through the Qilan via OG using AEEA. These fields can be output, formatted, used in the development environment and manipulated with your HTML, Javascript, etc. and used in Qilan abaci; Far easier that relying on Helix to output data and having to do the tedious encapsulating of HTML around fields and abaci --as with other AEEA apps.

Qilan is fully extensible and can run external routines (UNIX, Perl, C, Applescripts, etc.), acquire data or execute automated processes. You don't need to know anything about the SQL, all database schema: tables, field definitions, indexes, relationships, dataflows, etc. can be setup from Qilan and exported to mainstream SQL databases -- schema can also be imported from existing SQL databases.

Elton Darby Jr./COO
E.H. Darby & Co.

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From Karen...

I own and operate a medical billing and coding company. My website includes several data bases which are run using Qilan by CommonGround Softworks. The data bases have been immensely helpful. There is a database of people requesting more information and one to order a product I sell on line. These have really increased my business. The Data base is easy to use and I have had inquiries from all over the country.

There is a section on my site that I have coding "challenges". Basically, visitors can quiz themselves on their medical coding knowledge. They read the question and click for the answer. The data base created for me Allows me to easily go in and add or change questions and even add or change categories of questions myself. I, personally, am thrilled with it.

Karen Jeghers, PA-C
Compliant Billing Services, LLC.

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From Patrick...

Using Qilan I am personally able to write test and implement extremely complex routines in hours which I would typically need to outsource to a costly vendor or experienced SQL programmer and need to wait weeks to months for completion. When requests for enhancements to the Qilan application are made (e.g. addition of functionality to speak with another database application), they are added almost immediately.

CLM Behavioral Health and I have been using Qilan and working with Common-Ground for over a year. The new version adds extremely beneficial functionality I am just beginning to understand (i.e. I have yet to fully utilize the functionality provided in earlier versions).

As the primary information services development environment at CLM Behavioral Health, Qilan has allowed CLM to accomplish many things that would taken much longer and have cost significantly more using other options. We have our various OS and hodgepodge of databases (Informix, SQL Server, Paradox, Filemaker, Openbase) performing like an enterprise system.

In a nutshell, it has allowed us to do those things in house that information services application vendors have continued to promise, but failed to deliver.

Patrick Ulmen
CLM Behavioral Health

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