|End User Software||1987-...|
Description: Friendly Finder is an MS-DOS utility program that allows users to browse the contents of dBASE format database files in a new and very friendly way. One might describe its operation as interactive error-tolerant query-by-example. The user TABs to select a field and begins to type. As characters are typed, the most similar database records are displayed below the query line. Even highly garbled queries usually find the desired record. The program can be installed as a pop-up (TSR).
Background: Friendly finder descended from PBASE, a program written to demonstrate the string matching capabilities of the PF474 VLSI chip. As general purpose processor speeds increased, this chip was no longer necessary for the processing of small database files. Friendly Finder was Proximity's recasting of the PF474 algorithm and ideas into a purely software form. The company also made available a run-time module for dBASE developers and a C library for source code developers (called P2).
The program was the first to illustrate this kind of as-you-type friendly retrieval and won many satisfied users.