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New Bento 3 makes building databases "enjoyable"

Supplier: FileMaker
12 April, 2010

MacLife has reviewed the new Bento 3, and declares it "Great."

Praising the new personal database’s ability to organize all kinds of data, interface with Address Book, iCal and iPhoto, and new sharing features, MacLife says, "All of these features make Bento 3 brilliant for personal and small-group scenarios ... The easy-to-use interface makes building databases (dare we say it?) enjoyable."

Bento 3 aims to organize your personal life into tidy, neat compartments. Essentially a database application geared toward real-world situations, you can use the software to track expenses, compare vacation destinations, keep tabs on your company's customers, curate car maintenance records, and otherwise organize nearly anything that concerns your personal life or small business. Bento deeply interfaces with Address Book and iCal and also connects to iPhoto, Mail, and other Mac mainstays.

You can even share databases on a local network, like you might share iTunes or iPhoto libraries.

All of these features make Bento 3 brilliant for personal and small-group scenarios. A glossy, Mac-like interface cuts through some of the usual database-software pitfalls, and powerful features creep closer to sibling Filemaker Pro's turf. Although a few tools and omissions disappoint, Bento maintains its reputation as "the database application for those who don’t do databases."

Bento has always effectively connected with Address Book and iCal. For example, you can create or update contacts and appointments within Bento, and changes will be immediately reflected in Apple's applications (although any extras you add to Address Book entries are only shown in Bento).

And in this version 3 release, Bento adds iPhoto support, bringing your picture library into databases.