1. Introduction

1.1 Problem Definition

Databases are an integral part of many businesses around the world. Through the Internet or an Intranet, it is possible for these databases to be made accessible to whomever the company wishes. Employees, clients, distributors, or other interested third parties may all wish to view the data contained therein, without the need for installation of extra software, every time they want to view a different database.

There are various solutions to this, but in general, they all suffer from similar drawbacks, including problems of navigation, security and viewing of non-standard data.

Another problem, separate from the functionality of the solution, is that the data is to be accessed through the Internet, or an Intranet. Thus, it needs to be useable on many different machine architectures and operating systems, working in a similar way in all cases.

1.2 Objectives

A database-viewing package is needed, which allows an external user to access the specific information they require in a structured and controlled way. The format of this information, and the type of database and platform, wherever the information resides, should not matter.

The package should contain all of the necessary programs to allow the database administrator to set up the database for access, and the client user to retrieve the information they require as quickly, and as easily as possible.

A detailed specification follows in Section 2.

1.3 Constraints

The package is to be completed within ten months.

As this is an Internet package, so it should be designed to run on as many different machine architectures, operating systems and databases as possible, in a standard way.

There should be a common look and feel between all programs included within the package