Maca Database Guidelines



Table of Contents

I.      Responsibilities  1

II.   What the Database Manger is not responsible for. 1

III.      Applications under the jurisdiction of the Database Manager 2

IV. Technology Mandates. 2

V.  Restrictions of content or usage  2

VI.      Relationship of the Database Manager to the Board of Directors. 2

VII.      Accepting information for the database. 2

VIII.      Profile of current “day to day” types of tasks  2

IX. Skill set requirements versus Capability Level 3


I.              Responsibilities

A.      To keep and maintain an accurate list of the Maca Membership

B.      To provide mailing labels for:

1.       The Mailing of Chess Horizons

2.       Mailing label service for other organizers promotional mailings

3.       Maca promotional mailings.

C.      To provide information to aid and assist organizers and members

1.       Web based Membership Status

2.       Web based Ratings lists

3.       Printed Membership status lists for organizers (no confidential information)

4.       Information for Journalists ( ID, Name, City and State)

5.       Demographic data

6.       Membership trend Data

D.      Loading and retrieving of information for the Maca Registration Database

E.      To replace non-USCF ID numbers with actual USCF numbers when they become available.

F.      To provide monthly back-ups of the applications and data.  The back-ups must reside in a physically different location than the primary data and shall be placed in the organizations archives.

G.     To inform the Membership Coordinator of the need for Membership cards to be issued or of any issues arising concerning membership status.

H.      To assist the Membership Coordinator in determining the appropriate resolution of any issues arising concerning membership status.

II.            What the Database Manger is not responsible for.

A.      The issuing of membership cards

B.      The receipt of membership monies

C.      Resolving any membership issues.

D.      Dealing directly with the members concerning any membership issues.

III.          Applications under the jurisdiction of the Database Manager

A.      The central Maca Membership Database

B.      The Maca Event Registration Database

IV.          Technology Mandates

A.      The existing Database’s shall continue to be MS Access databases.  The reasons for this mandate are:

1.       A large pool of people with sufficient expertise to make improvements or repairs to the database should continue to exist well into the future.

2.       MS Access while not trivial to learn is has for a long period of time been considered to be one of the most powerful low-end databases available.

3.       The behind the scenes language used for advanced features is based on Visual Basic, a widely used and well-known language.

B.      The database must be run in MS Access 2000 or higher.

V.            Restrictions of content or usage

A.      To maintain the privacy of our membership, personal information shall not be made available to third parties and shall be restricted to Maca board members with a clear need to know.

VI.          Relationship of the Database Manager to the Board of Directors

A.      The Database Manager serves as an Agent to the Board of Directors and may be removed by the board at any time.

B.      The organization retains all rights and ownership of the Applications and the data contained within the applications.

C.      If the Database Manager is NOT a member of the board, the Membership Coordinator shall serve as the administrative contact to the Database Manager and shall have the authority of the board to direct the actions of the Database Manager.

D.      If the Database Manager IS a member of the board, the Database Manager shall answer directly to the board and take directions from the board.

VII.        Accepting information for the database

A.      The Membership Coordinator is the primary source of information regarding members.

B.      The Treasurer is permitted to submit information.

C.      The Tournament coordinator is permitted to submit information

D.      Other Agents of the board may submit information.

E.      Members may submit information regarding their own membership.

VIII.      Profile of current “day to day” types of tasks

Through both the 2001 and 2002 terms of office, almost all Database Manger work was performed via email.  The only non-email based tasks were the sending of reports to the board or the dropping in the mail of mailing labels, primarily for Chess Horizons.

A.      Updating Membership ID numbers

The Central database requires that all people in the database have a unique ID number.  ID numbers shall always be the USCF ID number if available.  Often, players join Maca who have not been issued a USCF ID number yet.  Audit Queries have been created to track who’s ID numbers are not yet USCF Ids.  It is a responsibility to check either with the USCF supplements, the USCF On-line ratings or available cross tables to update each member to have a USCF ID if available.  Typically, every other month is a good time frame to under take this effort.

B.      Updating Membership records for Expiration and other items.

1.       Typical sources of updates

a)Email from the Treasurer, Tournament Coordinator and Prison Coordinator with update information.

b)Email and Excel Attachments containing update information from the Membership Coordinator.

c)Emails from members

d)Scholastics Coordinator returning the Registration Database

2.       Methods of Updating

a)Manual entry.  This consists of copying the update information sent, typically via email, into the Notes section of a members record.  Each item to be updated is put into the copy buffer by double clicking and performing a ctl-C copy operation.  Paste buttons are provided for most fields to allow a one-click pasting of the information into the appropriate field.

b)Appending from the Registration Database.  This is a multi-step process where queries are provided to perform the various operations required.  Typically, 90% of the records will transfer relatively easily.  The remaining records will either require “scrubbing” using queries, research to resolve issues or manual entry.

c)Excel import into Comparison Forms.  This consists of preparing an Excel spreadsheet for import into a temporary table.  The table then needs to be adjusted somewhat and a cursory look at the data made before continuing.

(1)     For records in the temp table that have matching ID numbers, a separate field by field comparison form is provided for rapid updates of the records.  Records updated this way are then tagged as completed to eliminate them from appearing during other update processes.
(2)     For records in the temp table that need to be added as new to the database, the Main edit form has a section that will display these records with various auto copy and paste buttons provided to allow rapid entry into the database.

IX.          Skill set requirements versus Capability Level

The databases are not maintained as fully packaged applications.  This is done intentionally due to the need for many small adjustments to queries and the customizing of reports. 

A.      Full Capability Level

1.       Capable of modifying queries to alter ranges and selection criteria.

2.       Capable of modifying reports to customize labels

3.       Capable of performing Excel imports of data.

4.       Capable of performing all additional following levels.

B.      Maintenance Level

1.       Capable of performing (learning) Registration database preparation, which require editing a small amount of text, located in code modules and compiling the code again.

2.       Capable of safely compacting and repairing the database on a periodic basis.

3.       Capable of re-establishing links to tables located in other Reference databases.

4.       Capable of performing all additional following levels.

C.      Data Entry Level

1.       Capable of zipping files and attaching them to email for off-site backup purposes.

2.       Capable of using Access in a development mode as opposed to a fully packaged application.

3.       Capable of understanding when the large number of queries and reports that must be run and exported.  This includes the various tables generated for demographics and reports needed for the Board and other parties.