April 11, 2019

Do you wish it was easier to work with databases?

I've been working on a desktop application to make managing databases easier. I've always been frustrated that existing tools are designed to help you write SQL, rather than help you understand and change your database.

I've just launched my website at https://modeldba.com/. I'm looking for some objective feedback on my messaging. Do you understand what the product is and what it does? If you work with databases or are building an app, is this something you wish you had?

#landing-page-feedback

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    Context: I'm not a programmer by background, but I've taught myself quite a bit about backend dev over the past two years by building side projects and tackling tasks programmatically at work.

    I'd say that I understand at a high-level the problem that your product solves, but I'm not going to go through the effort of downloading it without more details. My biggest question is whether this just applies some sort of Microsoft Access-esque UI on my DB or does it do more?

    I think it'd be super beneficial to include some sort of < 3 minute demo video that demonstrates the 2-3 core features that differentiate your product from a mysql workbench or pgadmin.

    Hope that helps!

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      Thanks so much for taking a look, this is excellent feedback!

      I was already planning to create more detailed landing pages for the four main features I mention, but wasn't considering creating a video before. I agree that a video would be very beneficial to better familiarize potential users. I'll create one around the time of my launch.

      As for your question, for the MVP it is a lot like a Access-esque UI for databases. I have much bigger ideas for the product in the long-term, but it needs to start somewhere :). Thanks again for the thoughtful feedback.

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    I'm a programmer, am working with Postgres databases. I don't use visual tools currently, just plain psql. I'm using Django and so typically don't need to manually change database schema, and use Django migrations instead.

    Not sure about the "Spend less time writing SQL. More time getting s#!* done." tagline. Writing SQL is how I get things done :-) Also, subjectively, I would not have the "s#!*" bit in a such a prominent place. It would be fine when casually pitching the product over beers, but on the landing page it's a bit too pretentious for me. I would tone it down.

    As someone who likes to test database migrations in a dev environment, and use automated process to apply them in production, "Changing your database made easy. Add, drop, alter, it's all a simple click away" sounds like a disaster to me...

    It seems a tool like modelDBA would be useful when you're dipping in an existing codebase + database, and are exploring and getting familiar with it. I'm not sure how I would use it after that phase.

    I would like if the landing page explicitly said what is the target audience for this tool. People doing regular web development? People mocking up new systems? People doing code reviews? People who can't write SQL but want to make schema changes? Is it for me?

    As a cli user I'm probably not the target audience, but hope this helps anyway!

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      Thanks for taking a look and the thoughtful response!

      I agree that you're probably not the target audience for the tool like this. It's not really applicable if you're using an ORM like the one built into Django. That said, I think it's a good point about clarifying who the target audience is.

      At this stage I'm aiming this at:

      • Developers who aren't super familiar with SQL and aren't using an ORM

      • Data scientists who are more interested in understanding their data than managing their database

      • Data modellers who would like to be able to instantly apply their changes after modelling them

      I'll need to think more about how to get that across on the homepage. Will it be obvious to those users that this is for them? I'll definitely create a landing page for each type of user at a later date with more direct messaging, but I'm not yet sure how to get that message across to the wider audience from the homepage.

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    What are you using to generate the database UI model?

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      I'm using elkjs (https://github.com/OpenKieler/elkjs) to generate the layout, then using Konva.js (https://konvajs.org/) to display it.

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        Awesome- thanks! I'm working on a (non-competing) database tool and think those might be useful.