Marrying Comments and Tooltips Here's a cute trick that you'll either love or hate. With FileMaker 10 and the GetFieldName function, you can display Tooltips with the contents of a field comment. Not only does this allow you to store your Tooltips with the field definition, it's completely dynamic such that you can select all the fields on your current layout and apply the Tooltip formula one time. Here's the dynamic formula:
Dull Boy FileMaker files were stored in clear text prior to FileMaker 7 so, if you opened a FileMaker file in a text editor, you could see the phrase "All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy" in the header repeated over and over. No, it's not a virus! My understanding is the developers just needed to take up some space in the header and that's what they came up with. Today, modern FileMaker files are stored in Unicode so I'm not sure if the phrase is still there.
Level: Intermediate Version: FileMaker 16 Category: General Tuesday, May 30, 2017
I normally don't like to directly advertise products and services on this blog but there is real FREE content here. What I'm going to do is provide inline videos from part one of my new FileMaker 16 three part video series. I'll discuss why the lessons are important and provide some insight as to how they fit into the whole of the videos series. Happy FileMaking!
Square One I'm a firm believer in the nuts and bolts approach to teaching. So many trainers use dozens of examples to demonstrate techniques but I prefer to start from scratch and create a single solution. If you're always starting with partially completed solutions, you don't understand the entire process of design. That's why I begin my video series with an overview of the end goal. It helps the student understand the lessons better when they can visualize the outcome.
Window Size One of the first lessons I start with is window size. I ask the students, have you determined the minimum screen resolution for your audience? If not, interview your user base. Better yet, visit each computer at your company and write down the resolution. There's nothing worse than designing a solution that's too big to fit on some user's screens. They end up having to scroll in form view and that's an interface no-no. Then you have to retool every layout to match the smaller screen size and that's so tedious and time consuming. This video covers how to make objects move and grow to accommodate larger screen sizes and resolutions.
Cardinality Students always ask how FileMaker determines where to put the one versus the many relationship indicators. It almost seems random. I then launch into my speech about how the ERD (Entity-Relationship Diagram) shows structural relationships while the FileMaker relationship graph does show structure but also includes relationships utilized for additional features such as filtered relationships, dashboards and reports, to name a few. This video shows how FileMaker determines where to place the crow's feet, further differentiating an ERD from the relationship graph.
Adaptive Scripting Have you ever opened an adopted FileMaker solution and seen a billion scripts? While I might be exaggerating a bit, my point should be taken to heart. If every script is singular in it's solution, the Script Workspace quickly becomes cluttered, hard to manage and difficult to update. Dynamic scripting allows a single script to adapt to different layouts, portals, fields, files, records and any other object in FileMaker. This video demonstrates one method for adapting a warning message, in a delete portal row script, to match the current context.
Rolodex Find This is one of my favorite lessons since it teaches the power of adaptive scripting in such a short period of time. Using script parameters, this technique transforms twenty-six scripts into one script using a feature most amateur FileMaker programmers don't even know exists. Not much else to say here. Sometimes one lesson can change the way you look at FileMaker.
Windup While I do hope you purchase my videos after watching these samples, I think it's more important that each one of these sample videos helps you find at least one nugget of truth.