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Which development tools should I use?

Which development tools should I use?

Which development tools should I use?

(OP)
Hi, can anybody tell me what platform to use for a new application I need to develop if I give you a brief idea of what platforms I would like it to run on, some very basic requirements and my existing skill set? I have been developing my own packaged database application in Visual FoxPro for many many years now and realise that this tool is now very limiting, is no longer being developed and at some point in the near future is likely to stop being supported. Although I am therefore able to develop most of the functionality for my new application in this tool without a learning curve I am very concerned about it's future as well as limiting me to Windows desktop platforms only. Ideally I would like my new application to be web based and to be able to run on any tablet regardless of whether it has a Microsoft, Mac or Android operating system. That is a must. The next really nice to have is the ability when internet is not available for the application to be able to run on the same operating systems but locally.

The application itself is going to involve some very basic features - it will be used to provide communication and education tools for autistic children in school and at home. Most of the features I am thinking about include form based screens containing objects, text and pictures, some form filling and a back end database. I need facilities to drag and drop objects on the screen onto other objects which in turn will trigger other events such as displaying new objects, running and animation or playing a sound. I have 101 ideas for tasks, games and communication tools but they all include these simple building blocks all of which have been present and easy to develop in Visual FoxPro for many many years. I want the app to run on-line because that is easy to charge on a subscription basis, is easy to maintain and keep up to date and should be platform independent at the client side. This will work great when kids are in school and at home where they have internet access but I also need it to work locally when they are elsewhere where they cannot get internet access, in the worst case scenario perhaps with just some limited reduction in usability.

I have access to a copy of Visual Studio. I have always been happy with Microsoft development tools but to be honest I am just overwhelmed if I go anywhere near Visual Studio at this point as it seems to have so many components and I have no idea what is relevant and what is not and whether my goal of developing one single system that can be run on a web server and also locally on these multiple environments is in any way possible and whether running it locally is a simple installation that a novice customer can do.

Initially I want to develop this on a shoestring with tools I have or can access freely and will probably give the application away freely to people I work with in this environment to prove the development and to help research to develop something that has wide appeal. If and when I sell it I would like to sell it if possible as something like I do with my Visual FoxPro app where my app comes with a free runtime, customers do not have to buy extra things to run it and where customers run it online I can manage that with an on-line database they log into on a subscription basis to use the application.

Can anyone tell me is this all achievable with Visual Studio. If it is can you point me in the directions of the components I should be learning and using to build this and any forums where I maybe need to ask further questions. Where there are multiple options whatever tools most closely resemble my Visual FoxPro background but meeting my demands will be the most favorable. Any help will be really really appreciated. Thanks so much in advance.

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