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  1. While FileMaker may promote the low-code/no code aspects of FileMaker Pro, there's a lot to be said about knowing how to design a great system as opposed to thinking you'll end up with one by default. Especially, one which will perform under load and scale to the degree which FileMaker can. This type of knowledge is learned and simply won't come out of the box when you just start adding fields to your database. If you need to store images, or any type of heavy media, then it may not be a good idea to carelessly start throwing container fields into your tables. In fact, there's a whole bunch of details to know about FileMaker and how it transfers data on a record level basis. As well as knowing what can be done to optimize your storage of container based data. While you'll want things to be easy for your users for adding media, and you'll also want to build a system which will be easy to maintain and update. That's what this video is all about. An optimized approach to container storage and making it easy on yourself when you're going to be working with these types of solutions in the future. Click the title or link to this article to view the video. Afficher la totalité du billet
  2. FileMaker Pro provides a more than capable UI surface in order to design great looking user interfaces. In fact, it's the speed with which you can create that user interface which makes FileMaker Pro so appealing. The great thing about recent releases has been the flexibility of the newer layout objects. When you combine the utility of sliders, tab panels, popovers and layout mode's various layout parts, you can further extend what you can do within FileMaker by quite a bit. This video presents the top five tips and tricks you can accomplish with offscreen options possible with both native layout widgets and layout parts. If you're looking to increase what you know about how you can make creative combinations within FileMaker's presentation layer, then look no further! Click the title or link to this article to view the video. Afficher la totalité du billet
  3. When developing a FileMaker solution, you often want a system where the distribution of labor is such that other administrators can create and manage the users of that system. It can't always come back to the developer who has the only Full Access account. When considering FileMaker's authentication methods, you basically have three options. Internal, external and third party. The external option is typically Active Directory on Windows or OpenDirectory on Macintosh. The newer third party options are from Amazon, Google and Microsoft. However, with both external and third party, you have to manage users and their passwords outside of the FileMaker space. If you're wanting to use FileMaker itself to mange users and passwords, then you'll be using FileMaker's internal accounts. The trick is to have a way to manage those accounts within your database. And, that's up to you to both create and manage. This video is about using a dedicated Users table and how you can securely manage the communication between your table of users and the actual users list within FileMaker's internal accounts. Need to provide a secure method of allowing certain users the ability to create and delete accounts? This video will have the know-how you need. Click the title or link to this article to view the video. Afficher la totalité du billet
  4. When you first start writing scripts within FileMaker, you're typically so focused on the feature or solution you're working on that you integrate it directly into the area where you're working. It takes a bit of time and skill, however, to quickly recognize when you need to make a particular script more generalized in nature and treat it like a routine which simply needs to take input and provide some output. Once you get to this point in your development path, you discover all kinds of opportunities where one script will serve the purpose of many. And, you may find that some of your scripts are in the range of 80 to 90 percent redundant. Possibly varying by only a few lines of code. In this video, I present a very common pattern for many scripts. Treating them like a function and simply following a format for inbound and outbound data from that script. You'll also find a good number of tips regarding documentation, script composition and the big bonus is that we do this with a script which will give you the instant ability to send out text messages via the Twilio API! Click the title or link to this article to view the video. Afficher la totalité du billet
  5. The number of features available within FileMaker Go on a mobile device is more than icing on the cake. It's just downright cool we have access to so many features. And, all without having to write super complex code. There is, however, some learning to do when it comes to interacting with URLs and web viewers. It turns out that many web sites, including Google's web based maps site, will change its url as you interact with the web viewer. This causes a problem when you supply an original url to the web viewer and the user expects the same result when clicking on a button which opens the external Google Maps iOS app. The url, which includes needed pieces of information, may vary depending on the interaction with the web viewer. Fortunately, this video covers all the information you need to know when working with urls and parsing them from either web viewers or from any other location. This video will help you not only interact with the Google Maps iOS application, but also with any other external application which is to be opened from within FileMaker Pro. Need to integrate other iOS apps with your FileMaker Go app? Give this video a view! Click the title or link to this article to view the video. Afficher la totalité du billet
  6. When mobile devices first became prevalent over a decade ago, it was a pretty easy process to design for both mobile and desktop. You just made one layout for each respective device. There weren't as many variations as there is now. In fact, these days, things are much more complex. If you decide to design for smartphone, tablet and desktop you could easily end up having to create three layouts for each possible view. This isn't something I'm personally fond of. I'd much rather limit myself to a maximum of two layouts for each possible view. One for the smaller form factor and the other as a hybrid approach for both tablet and desktop. Fortunately, this is totally possible within FileMaker. It's a simple matter of finding the most ideal width and height which will account for the widest range of devices your solution will run on. Figuring this out, however, does take a little bit of work. By walking you through my own process, and the tool I use for creating a hybrid design, we'll get you familiar with hybrid layout design. A design which would work on a Microsoft Surface Go, iPads and both Mac and Windows desktops. You'll establish a strong understanding of how to approach your hybrid layout design by watching this video. I also provide a few tips about working in Layout Mode with regards to making sure you create a consistent look across all of your layouts. Click the title or link to this article to view the video. Afficher la totalité du billet
  7. When you're the one creating the database, you're the one who says which data makes it in and which data doesn't. This all happens through the various methods of data validation. Data is either considered valid or not - and this happens according to your data validation rules. If the data is valid, then everything proceeds as normal. If, however, the data isn't exactly what's required, then you get to choose what happens. In most cases, you can let the user keep taking a whack at it until they get the right combination, or you can shuttle the user off to another part of your UI. In this tutorial video, we take a look at the three primary tools FileMaker provides for data validation. You can use any single option or combine them to mix and match for the perfect data validation solution. We've even got a nice little text formatting mask feature which provides a great looking phone number field. Click the title or link to this article to view the video. Afficher la totalité du billet
  8. Prior to FileMaker 13 we never even had the option of performing scripted tasks where the data actually exists. The processing of a script, client side, always had, and still does, make a full round trip for all kinds of these processing activities. Many times, FileMaker does it's best to optimize whatever is being done, but it's still not as fast as executing certain things directly on the server. With the addition of Perform Script on Server we gained a REALLY BIG performance boost by being able to perform most any script on the server. While there are still various limitations, such as the number of simultaneous server side scripts, it's absolutely something that any serious FileMaker developer needs to know how to use. One of the biggest issues with running server side scripts with Perform Script on Server is the fact that you need to know what's happening when the script is running, how to troubleshoot and most importantly, how to replicate the current user context. That is, the proper layout and the exact same found set to be used for processing the data. This video specifically covers how to restore the user context for processing a found set of data. If you're interested in making this process happen as quickly as possible, then using Perform Script on Server is what you should learn to use. Click the title or link to this article to view the video. Afficher la totalité du billet
  9. One of the most wonderful aspects of FileMaker, or any development project, is implementing a portion of the software which can be used system wide. Meaning you don't have to recreate functionality over and over again in order to benefit from what you implement initially. Especially when it can be used in all locations universally. In this video, I show you how to implement a Universal Tagging System in which you can apply tags to any other element you're managing within your database system. Are you needing to divide up the people you are tracking into multiple different groups? No problem. Do you anticipate that those groups will change and vary over time? No problem. Do you have more than one thing which could benefit from being tagged for the purpose of organization? No problem. This system implements tags in such a way that they can be used to pretty much tag anything you can think of within your database solution. The data is managed via a join table and the logic for the UI will handle tagging any system element universally as well. Watching this video and using the provided file should make your system that much more flexible in terms of data organization and you can expand upon it as much as desired. If you enjoy flexible, yet powerful features, within your database solution then make sure to watch this video and learn from the provided file! Click the title or link to this article to view the video. Afficher la totalité du billet
  10. While many FileMaker solutions will manage multiple parameter passing in very simple and straight-forward ways, there are some solutions which you know will grow over time. Because of this expected growth, you may want to have an additional level of comfort knowing you've implemented a very strict system for managing data transfer between scripts. You also may be interested in working with external APIs and connecting to systems and data which is provided via the currently popular format of JSON (JavaScript Object Notation). Since the release of FileMaker 16, we've had access to the fundamental JSON* functions. With their initial release, there were a number of developers who immediately jumped on the bandwagon. Since FileMaker 16 was released, we've had a good bit of time to codify some methods and helpful custom functions for working with JSON formatted data. This video is all about providing comprehensive initial coverage about how JSON can be used for passing multiple parameters within FileMaker. If you never quite taken the plunge into using JSON for parameter passing then this video and the associated file may very well provide you with the incentive to take a more serious look. At the very least, you'll know what's going on when other developers mention they're using JSON parameters! Click the title or link to this article to view the video. Afficher la totalité du billet
  11. Having worked with FileMaker for well over 20+ years, and experiencing a wide variety of data models, it's always possible to get into a situation where you need to re-evaluate the data decisions you've made with regards to your structure. The data model you may have initially thought would handle all situations may need to be modified. Knowing about the multiple options you may have available for structuring your data makes a big difference when you start to consider simply "adding that new field" to your database. It may be that the workflow or process required would cause duplication of data and therefore increase the complexity of your solution unnecessarily. In this video, I cover the topic of a Single Source of Truth for storing field data. While the topic isn't limited specifically to fields, and should be considered for tables and data overall, it's good to know how to deal with specific cases where storing data becomes a big concern when dealing with additions, updates and deletions. Be prepared to learn more about strategic ways to store data in this video about Single Source of Truth. Click the title or link to this article to view the video. Afficher la totalité du billet
  12. It's a curious question and the answer may be good or bad depending on your perspective. "Why doesn't FileMaker have a time picker?". It has a calendar widget for working with date fields, why not time values? The solution to the problem, as is often the case, can be managed by simply creating your own picker. In fact, if you don't like FileMaker's desktop based date picker you can create any variation you desire based on being able to create any style of layout you can imagine. While the same applies to a time picker, it may not be obvious how to implement if you've not worked with FileMaker for some extended amount of time. In this video, I showcase a straight-forward time picker which works with both timestamp fields and time fields. It also includes some valuable utility scripts and concepts which can certainly be used in other areas of your FileMaker solutions. If you've ever come across the need for a time specific picker then adding this to your solution should save you a ton of time! Click the title or link to this article to view the video. Afficher la totalité du billet
  13. It's a curious question and the answer may be good or bad depending on your perspective. "Why doesn't FileMaker have a time picker?". It has a calendar widget for working with date fields, why not time values? The solution to the problem, as is often the case, can be managed by simply creating your own picker. In fact, if you don't like FileMaker's desktop based date picker you can create any variation you desire based on being able to create any style of layout you can imagine. While the same applies to a time picker, it may not be obvious how to implement if you've not worked with FileMaker for some extended amount of time. In this video, I showcase a straight-forward time picker which works with both timestamp fields and time fields. It also includes some valuable utility scripts and concepts which can certainly be used in other areas of your FileMaker solutions. If you've ever come across the need for a time specific picker then adding this to your solution should save you a ton of time! Click the title or link to this article to view the video. Afficher la totalité du billet
  14. Unless you've got a billion dollars to send out tens of thousands of cars with specially fitted technology mounted on their roofs; and, you can send them all across the planet, then you'll likely need to rely on mapping data from a third party. So, here we go with learning how we can leverage Google Maps APIs within FileMaker. This video will cover the essential knowledge you need in order to make the requests about geolocations whether they be latitude longitude coordinates or an address. As you've likely used Google Maps within the web browser, it's great to know you can access that same data directly within FileMaker; even the traffic data. It's just a simple matter of creating the right url. Making a request for what you want, and then parsing the data right back into your FileMaker table. Let's learn about the process and wire up the technology! Click the title or link to this article to view the video. Afficher la totalité du billet
  15. If it's not obvious by the types of videos I produce, one of my most favorite areas of software development and design is the user interface. It's where the real test of your software happens. A user either "gets it" or not. If they don't, then you're back to the drawing board. Of course, there's always the learning curve which is present for anyone, but if you can create something that has less of a learning curve, then you feel like a winner. In this video, I cover a wide variety of topics related to FileMaker development. The video introduces a subtle ui widget which I implemented based on the intended usage of the software. This is what reflects the real process of software development within FileMaker. Not just taking the super obvious approach, but the one which might make more sense to the user and is a bit more difficult for the developer to implement. This requires you to know how to get things done in FileMaker and implement a feature which is user friendly and facilitates a fluid workflow process. Click the title or link to this article to view the video. Afficher la totalité du billet
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