What better way to keep track of recipes and notes and text documents and telephone book-like information than a database? The 21st century and the smartphone combined to kill of most personal database for the Mac but if necessity is the mother of invention Steward might be your next and last personal Mac database.
Killed By Apps
Today, as we move well into the 21st century, well past the birth of the iPhone, databases are everywhere. They’re just not so personal anymore, definitely not too customizable, but they exist inside tens of thousands of applications. Apple once thought personal database might be a thing and had subsidiary FileMaker whip up a little Mac, iPhone, and iPad database for the masses, one which the masses then subsequently ignored. It was called Bento. It died.
Why? What’s wrong with a personal database? Not much, except they were almost driven to extinction by applications which use built-in or online databases instead.
Enter Steward, a personal database for the Mac. If you ever used or saw Bento then this should look familiar.
What you get with Steward as a Mac database with some personalization capability is much as anyone got with Bento except and iOS version. Steward comes with nearly a dozen pre-designed database templates for passwords, collections, notes, inventory, and more. The database itself has nine different field types including text, number, image, date, attachment, checkbox, rating, choice, and website.
Yes, of course, you can search through the databases you create, plus it will import and export standard CSV and tab file from other databases and spreadsheets.
For anyone who has used FileMaker or dabbled in Bento then you’ll note right away that Steward doesn’t blaze any new ground among personal database applications, and using the templates is mostly self explanatory. But there are times when the Mac faithful may have a need for a simple and straightforward database of a personal nature; one not easily available in an iPhone or iPad database, and for which FileMaker Pro is definitely overkill, if not outright expensive for a simple project.
That’s where Steward shines. If you have never used a Mac database before, Steward makes setup and usage mostly painless. It comes with a bunch of table icons in a built-in icon library, and you can attach images and other documents to each record in the database. It even prints lists of whatever you’ve collected.
As personal, customizable databases go, Steward might seem a bit expensive when compared to iPhone and iPad apps with their own built-in databases, but compared to FileMaker Pro and a few others for the Mac, it’s priced about right and garners a few four and five star reviews from the Mac App Store, and there’s a free trial version with an in app-purchase to the full version.