Zoho Creator – Tip of the Day #7

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#7 How to hide a tab to everyone including the owner?

In the Edit mode, click on Tab properties icon Tab Properties Icon. Click on “Hide this tab”. In live mode, this tab will not be available to everyone including the owner. This will be useful if you want to use a tab as a scratch pad.

Hide Tab

Zoho Creator – Tip of the Day #6

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#6 In how many ways, can one create an application?

There are many ways to create an application.

Create Application

1. Entirely from scratch: If you are regular visitor to ZohoCreator and you know what is what about ZohoCreator, you can start with a blank application.

2. Pre-built Form and View: If you are a first time visitor and want to know the basics what ZohoCreator has got to offer.

3. From Templates : There are totally 11 templates for you to choose from. Choose this if you have no time to build from scratch and want to quickly have an application ready for you. More templates will be added in the coming days.

4. Paste your spreadsheet data : Just copy paste the data from your spreadsheet and get an application out of your data. ZohoCreator supports xls data, comma separated values(csv) and tab separated values(tsv). More..

5. Import your spreadsheet file : If you have multiple sheets in a single file, you need not go around copy pasting the data. Just import the file and all your sheets will be loaded. More…

6. Deluge Script : If you want to make your application powerful, choose this option. You can write deluge script, a natural online scripting language integrated in ZohoCreator which helps you to perform actions when a row is submitted or updated. Some of the actions include validating a form and sending an email. It also helps you to define complex formulae and filters.

7. Importing a Deluge Script file : Write a deluge script offline or download a public application script file using “Copy Application” link and import it here.

8. Copy a public application : Impressed at a public application? You want to have it with few modifications? Just follow the “Copy Application” link and you will get a clone of your favorite app.

Kim recommends Zoho Office

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America’s Digital Goddess, Kim Komando has the following to say about Zoho’s Office Suite.

Zoho offers Zoho Writer, Zoho Sheet and Zoho Show. These are free counterparts to Word, Excel and PowerPoint, respectively. You won’t find as many features as you’d find in Office, but there are just enough to be useful.The sites are similar to Microsoft Office, so there are no big learning curves. All files are saved online. You can start a document at work and finish it at home.

All three sites open and save files in a variety of common formats. For example, Zoho Writer will open a previously created Word document, HTML or rich text file. It will also save any file onto your computer’s hard drive as a Word, pdf, txt, rtf or html file.

Google Spreadsheets is less complete than Zoho’s program. It is fine for basic number crunching and the maintenance of lists. But it lacks the capability to create graphs like Zoho Sheet.

Thanks, Kim! Kim’s Columns here – http://www.komando.com/columns

Update: The above Kim’s column got published in USATODAY too.

Zoho Creator – Tip of the Day #5

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#5 How to share few tabs to some and the rest to others?

By default, all the tabs are accessible to everyone who visits your application. If you want to keep few tabs visible to you alone, few to your friends and the rest to everyone, it can be done very easily in one place.

Follow “Manage Users” link in the Edit GUI mode and add users in the “Users/Groups” tab. Then select “Sharing” tab and then select the user. Then select the tabs you want to give access in the right hand side.


What is Success?

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Jason Fried of 37Signals makes a comment about what defines success for a small company when faced with a giant competitor. This is a gem so I wanted to share it here – particularly to those who often speculate that “Zoho is doomed because Google or Microsoft will finish them off”. To quote Jason

Google doesn’t define our success. We do. “Winning” isn’t a zero sum game. This isn’t a 100 yard dash or a boxing match or a F1 race. It’s building a sustainable business. There’s lots of room for lots of those.

We don’t have to match Google’s userbase, or even have 1/10th of Google’s userbase to be nicely profitable and build a sustainable business.

That is success to us. Being able to provide a great service to our customers, follow our vision, generate enough revenue to build a sustainable long-term business, and enjoy doing the work we do everyday is a success to us.

So far so good.

I couldn’t say it better, even if I tried. We are not here to “beat Microsoft” or “beat Google”. We have built a profitable business at AdventNet serving customers well, and we will continue doing it with Zoho too. We enjoy the work we do, and as long as that is profitable and customers keep coming, that is all that matters. Isn’t Intuit a successful company at one 25th the size of Microsoft? Isn’t MySQL a successful company at one hundredth the size of Oracle?

Frequent Requests for Running Zoho Behind Your Firewall

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We get numerous requests for Zoho office suite as a server product, running behind the firewall. We are gratified to see that level of interest, but we still would say that there is another 3-6 months of evolution ahead before we would be satisfied to take off the beta label. Coming from the packaged software business at AdventNet, we understand the issues involved in installation, patching, migration and so on. It would lead to customer pain if we ship something that keeps getting updated every few weeks, as it happens with services such as Zoho Writer or Zoho Sheet. Services such as Zoho Creator actually get updated every few days, something that would cause customers to throw up their hands in frustration if they have to do the patching, migration work themselves. Therein lies one fundamental benefit of SaaS model. Eventually, of course, this pace will inevitably slow down, though AdventNet products still get an update every 3-6 months. In a polished mature product offering, customers don’t want change too frequently, because they start to value stability more than features at that point. Clearly Zoho suite has still a way to go to achieve that level, but we are working hard on it.

Yes, we do plan on offering Zoho as downloadable software, but please give us some time. We haven’t set a concrete time frame, but one key milestone is to move the currently-in-beta services off the beta tag.

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