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Before I go any further, here are some things to note:

I am a normal individual with a normal low-paying job, with a passion for collecting. I am not some big business owner CEO with thousands of dollars to pour into the software. However, I am open-minded about software suggestions. If you suggest software that is too expensive (more than $12.00 monthly) I might be able to accept donations or find a cheaper alternative via Google.

I know intermediate CSS and HTML only (I coded websites back in the day before WYSIWYG editors…I do not know HTML5). After embarking on this journey, I am SLOWLY trying to learn what I need to know to continue with my project, such as learning the “Velo” code stuff for Wix websites. Anyway, let’s continue with the problem.

Problem:

I am trying to build a database for a collector community where anyone can view, edit, and search for items, just like a wiki…but for items. For examples, see below for links to the already slapped-together databases.

Think of an online store and its products or items. A user can view and search for items from a fancy website. A user can also click on an item or product to view a detailed page.

This is exactly what I want, but I need to be able to have the general public be able to add and edit the products/items themselves from the website.

However, I need it to be run via the cloud...kind of like a webpage.

Here are some solutions I have tried:

Google Sheets:

Pros:

  • Unlimited data rows, etc.
  • Free!!!

Cons:

  • Ugly
  • Can't insert galleries
  • No relational linking
  • Very costly to integrate into websites via places like “Site2Sheet”.

Airtable:

Pros:

  • This works excellent for storing data and being able to link to other records. This is a must for items of the same "sculpt" but with different releases.
  • Fast and easy to use for mass data adding and has an integrated form that will allow anyone to add to the “database”
  • Awesome card feature
  • Excellent built-in searching/filtering features via tags, etc.

Cons:

  • The free version is limited to 1500 (already exceeded that 🙁) rows and very limited on “file” space, which is needed for a rather image-heavy database.
  • Expensive
  • The general public cannot edit items
  • Ugly website widget

I have found something called Pory.io that can integrate Airtable into a website, but it is not very customizable and the service adds an extra cost.

Wix:

Pros:

  • Website Builder
  • Database collections
  • Repeaters (like the product list)
  • Dynamic item pages (detailed product page)
  • Relational linking (Very finicky and tedious, not as good as Airtable)
  • Can build a form to add items to the database

Cons:

  • Users cannot edit items
  • Forms to add items are a pain to code
  • Adding relational linking impossible through a form? Doable in Airtable.
  • Creating and setting up filters and searching is a nightmare.
  • Slow AF
  • The table view in the back end is very constricted, finicky, and slow.
  • Importing data was a nightmare…converting fields is a nightmare

I basically want Wix and Airtable to come together and have a baby. Is that possible? :p

LINKS: Before proceeding, be aware that some of the items that will show are relatively anatomically correct and may be NSFW. They are dolls cast in resin that can be customized, very much like resin kits, pvc figures, etc.

Pory solution example: https://dollfeaturefinder.pory.app/find-a-doll

Wix Solution: https://dollfinder.wixsite.com/dollfinder/doll-database-1 This site is a total mess…. I'm just trying to figure things out.

There was a database once, but it was shut down because the person no longer wanted to pay to run it and lost interest in it. I am trying to create something where the data can be freely shared/downloaded so that can’t happen again. If paying is a must, it needs to be cheap so it can run off donations.

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