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Bento is one of those applications that's an enigma -- it's mysterious, puzzling and yet astoundingly simple at the same time. It's a personal database for regular people, not the kind of database used for big business. As you might expect from any Apple-related product, it's easy to use. Bento is made by FileMaker, which is a subsidiary of Apple. It's the company that makes the business-class FileMaker Pro database. Bento is designed to help you organize a variety of non-structured data.
I quote you..."As you might expect from any Apple-related product, it's easy to use."
Wow, what a totally stupid comment. You probably believe L. Ron Hubbard, too.
Have you ever tried to master Final Cut Pro? Adobe After Effects? These are Apple programs -- with 3 year learning curves...stupid.
I have found Bento to be an enigma only because it has no application in real life. Not one single reviewer (I've read every review I could find) has actually accomplished anything with this program.
"Bento COULD be used for..." "Bento WOULD be great for..." they gush, but nobody has yet to give any real world example of what they themselves did.
If Filemaker is suggesting we shell out $50 to keep track of our record collections then they're out of their minds.
I tried Bento. It's hopeless. It could do nothing that I had needed it to. The FM forum is filled with replies from the FM folks saying, "No, Bento has no such capability, we have submitted your suggestions for review."
Can it mail merge? No.
Can it even keep track of emails? No.
Can it keep shortcuts to important documents? No.
Can Address Book see the extra fields you can set in Bento? No.
Did Mr. Maxcer actually DO anything with Bento or just play for an hour with the nice colors?
Meanwhile, what Leopard users REALLY need is an alternative to Micros**t Outlook.
We're not going to get it anytime soon are we?
I use Bento to run my personal business as a translator/consultant. I can keep track of clients, payment and invoices very easily. You can shortcut to files and the previous comment's lack of knowledge backs up the reviewer's case.. one needs to know how to use the programme. I recently started working freelance and & was using entourage which I found cumbersome and heavy. Bento, Mail, iWeb, pages and iCal are a breath of fresh air and easy to use.
PS mail tracking is very easy within mail..just create a rule.