I have a pretty general question and I'm hoping someone could help point me in the right direction.

Right now I'm a mechanical engineering student. My only programming experience is in C and it was a very basic class intended to introduce us to programming for my robotics minor.

I'd like to make a site/app that does a pretty basic task. All I need to do is scan formatted data from an excel file and make that info searchable from the site and app. In my C class the deepest we got into things like this was scanning data from a text file and putting into a linked list via structures. From there did the strstr() and made the info searchable. This was all strictly console application from code blocks though.

Could anyone point me in the right direction on software tools available, even books on some subjects I will need to versed in in order to go beyond. My goal here is to be able to do the basics to make it functioning from my console, design and all, and then hand it off to someone educated in the subject to execute the final product and make it usable on a larger scale. I interned with a computer engineering student over the summer who gave me a few tips. He told me that with all the tools out there that something like this can be accomplished with out knowing all that much about programming. Something about microsoft having what sounded like a drag and drop program maker. That you can use this program, select options you want it to do, then go in and edit your parameters from there. I'm a firm believe in too good to be true, so my guess is even if that does exist, it's not a one stop shop for linking the options I select to be executable by website and app.

Anyways, sorry for being long winded, just trying to cover my bases. Could anyone out there possible explain what I'm getting into, what I'll need to know/learn, and point me in the direction of some useful tools to accomplish the programming and design. I plan on reading up as much as possible and using mit's open courseware to fill in some blanks and learn some things I need once pointed in the direction I need to be heading.

Thank you