John Thalhuber : Why MAPPER?

That question – along with the similar one: “What is MAPPER?” – are often dreaded by  those of us having a long history with the product. There is no simple answer – maybe after an hour or two of explanation and demonstrations can you start to convey what makes MAPPER so unique and special.

Given the interest in the recent thread regarding the future of BIS, I thought it might be helpful to start a discussion about what differentiates MAPPER, even in today’s crowded world of software and development tools. Besides the old-timers, there are a lot of folks in this group who are relatively new to the product, so hopefully this will help them understand it all a bit better.

Let me get this started with a few general thoughts I have often used to address the dreaded “Why MAPPER?” question.

MAPPER loyalists are believers because we believe it can do more than any other single software product. And do it faster and more cost effectively. Some of the advantages I try to stress to the non-believers include:

– Unique and powerful built-in data analysis and manipulation functions.

– Incredible flexibility of the run scripting. A single programming language and developer skill set for building virtually any type of business application.

– Versatility – MAPPER can be used to build virtually any type of business application for Windows or Web.

– Unparalleled scalability – the same programs and data can run on a PC all the way to a huge enterprise server with little or no modification.

– Inboard database engine – MAPPER programs can access external systems and databases, but complete business applications can be developed using the internal database alone. No additional expense for other database products and their administration.

– Total cost of ownership – lower for everything from development to ongoing operations. Generally, smaller development/support staff required than for applications built with other technologies.

John Thalhuber was member of MAPPER Software Development group from 1979-1994.
He worked as software engineer and team leader in MAPPER Development group. He designed and/or implemented many significant and innovative MAPPER software features, primarily in the area of run script processing.