In the fall of 1982 a temporary software program was developed for University Computing at UNCA to assist in tracking the time and wages of their temporary employees. This program, dubbed LAPROG, was designed only to be a temporary fix. It is now the fall of 2002, some twenty years later, and that temporary fix is still in use. For some time, a major upgrade has been needed, and Midas is just the system to do it.
With Midas, gone is the cumbersome text-based interface, replaced with a user-friendly and intuitive graphical interface. It may look pretty on the outside, but the real heart of Midas lies below in the database, and the ASP scripts used to send information to and from the database.
Midas consists of a Microsoft NT 4.0 Server running IIS 4.0 or greater, an Access database to store the data, and a Internet-accessible GUI running multiple ASP scripts and Java-Script functions.
There are two user levels to this application: an Administrator to perform employee maintenance and process payroll, and users to log their time. Security on the system is provided through NT Permissions on the Application server. Employees are in a separate user group from Administrators
Hardware and Software used:
1. Microsoft Active Server Pages: Active Server Pages is an open, compile-free application environment in which you can combine HTML, scripts, and reusable ActiveX server components to create dynamic and powerful Web-based business solutions. I chose ASP because it interfaces with Microsoft Access and provides a web access point for databases created as such.
2. Microsoft FrontPage 2000: Web Authoring software that allows me to write the code for my site, preview each page, and publish directly to my virtual directory on the web server I will be using. This program can be purchased from Microsoft stand-alone, or as part of the Microsoft Office 2000 Suite.
3. Microsoft Access 2000: Microsoft's stock database application that comes with the Microsoft Office 2000 Suite. I chose this product because it was the database tool used in my CSCI 343, Database Management Systems, class.
4. Open Database Connectivity (ODBC): A widely accepted application-programming interface (API) for database access. It is based on the Call-Level Interface (CLI) specifications from X/Open and ISO/IEC for database APIs and uses Structured Query Language (SQL) as its database access language. ODBC will give me the communications routes I will need to interface with my database via Active Server Pages.
5. Microsoft Windows NT 4.0 Server running IIS 4.0: This was chosen due to its compatibility with the other Microsoft products I'll be using and because it is the Server that University Computing was willing to give me space on
Midas provides the same functionality as its predecessor while greatly increasing its usability and lowering the total cost of ownership over this products life cycle.
Advisor: Walt Turner