Cover image for Using FileMaker Pro 5
Using FileMaker Pro 5
Coulombre, Rich.
Personal Author:
Special edition.
Publication Information:
Indianapolis, Ind. : Que, [2000]

Physical Description:
ix, 551 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm +1 computer optical disc (4 3/4 in.)
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QA76.9.D3 C6774 2000 Book and Software Set Central Closed Stacks

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Special Edition Using FileMaker Pro focuses on experienced developers who are looking for expert advice. The book provides you with in-depth techniques and helps you solve real-life problems. The book assumes a basic knowledge of FileMaker, but no knowledge of relational database theory or planning and designing a relational database. Topics covered include (all topics are taught with hands-on usage of FileMaker Pro): Understanding, planning and designing a relational database; maintaining the database; crafting a user interface; putting your database on the Web; and reporting.

Author Notes

Rich Coulombre is Director of FileMaker Pro Services and co-owner of a database design, development, and training organization specializing in FileMaker Pro whose clients include: Apple, FileMaker, Bell Atlantic, Raytheon, Harvard, and MIT. He has taught literally thousands of people how to develop databases using the FileMaker Pro, and is an award-winning trainer.Jonathan Price designs online information systems and consults with teams at companies such as Apple, Canon, Claris, FileMaker, Epson, GO, Hewlett-Packard, Hitachi, IBM, Nikon, Ricoh and others.Jonathan and Rich wrote the two bestselling FileMaker 2 books for Addison Wesley, both of which are still being used by FileMaker managers as assigned reading for new company hires. Jonathan and Rich are often asked at conferences and via email when their next book will be released.

Table of Contents

Introductionp. 1
A Developer Muses in Garden Suppliesp. 2
The Gist of the Relational Approachp. 4
The Benefits of Going Relationalp. 5
The Problem with Lookupsp. 7
The Most Common Relationship: One to Manyp. 10
How We Keep Track of All the Childrenp. 14
What's Nextp. 17
I Planning
1 Planningp. 21
Some Good Reasons to Plan Aheadp. 22
What Goes into Planningp. 23
Explore the Culture Like an Anthropologistp. 24
Report on the Plan in a Preliminary Proposalp. 30
2 Articulating Your Plans as They Evolvep. 33
Adopt the Client's Point of Viewp. 34
What Goes into the Proposalp. 34
Create an Entity Relationship Diagramp. 39
Create a File Structure Diagramp. 52
3 Specifying Your Fieldsp. 55
Creating a Field Specification Listp. 56
Naming the Fieldp. 59
Defining the Field Typep. 62
Considering What Actually Will Be Entered in the Fieldp. 70
Changing the Order in Which FileMaker Lists Fieldsp. 76
Deleting Fieldsp. 77
Changing Field Typesp. 78
Changing Field Namesp. 79
Anticipating the Layout for Each Fieldp. 80
4 Case Studies in Planningp. 83
Why Case Studiesp. 84
A Case Study of Old Willy's Country Clubp. 84
A Case Study of Klodner's Kar Dealershipp. 93
II Building
5 Building Your Filesp. 107
Build Your Tablesp. 108
Create Your Fieldsp. 110
Create Relationships Between Filesp. 112
6 Maintaining Referential Integrityp. 133
Why You Need Referential Integrityp. 134
Problems with Referential Integrityp. 134
Following the Rulesp. 136
Dealing with Threats to Referential Integrityp. 152
Maintaining a Unique Compound Primary Keyp. 169
Testing for Valid Referential Integrityp. 172
7 Keeping Your Data in Good Shapep. 173
Keeping Your Data Healthyp. 174
Why Good Data Goes Badp. 174
Enabling Accuracyp. 174
The Dream: Complete Accuracyp. 176
Conditional Value Listsp. 181
Having FileMaker Automatically Enter Informationp. 185
Lookupsp. 189
Allowing or Preventing Entry in Fieldsp. 192
Having FileMaker Check for Accuracyp. 197
Preventing Users from Editing a Record After It Has Been Createdp. 208
Adjusting the Tab Order to Suit the User's Habitsp. 209
Extra Carefulness: Keeping Carriage Returns Out of the Datap. 210
8 Crafting the User Interfacep. 213
The Interface Is All There Is--for Usersp. 214
Let Users' Tasks Shape Your Designp. 214
Decide Which Layouts to Focus Onp. 215
Use Tabs for Convenience and Clarityp. 217
Use Menus if You Mustp. 218
Combine the Best of Both Approachesp. 220
Decide on Your Default Viewsp. 220
Fit Information into a Single Record Viewp. 222
Distinguish Groups of Information by Their Functionsp. 224
Prepare for Consistencyp. 230
Make Data Entry Easyp. 237
Design Meaningful Buttonsp. 238
Print the Reports the Users Expectp. 241
Test Prototypes and Get User Feedbackp. 243
Use the Interface Prototyperp. 245
9 "Webifying" Your Databasep. 249
Letting People Interact with Your Datap. 250
How FileMaker Came to the Webp. 251
Choosing Between Instant and Custom Web Publishingp. 254
Instant Web Publishingp. 255
Custom Web Publishingp. 260
Understanding Securityp. 264
How to Plan for Web Deliveryp. 264
Putting Your Database Directly on the Internetp. 266
Exporting Data as HTML Pages with the Results of Calculationsp. 267
Creating Detail Recordsp. 269
Using Lasso to Go Beyond the Web Companionp. 271
10 Hot Calculationsp. 273
Why Calculations Can Get Hotp. 274
Welcome to the Formulap. 274
Mathematical and Financial Calculationsp. 275
Text Calculationsp. 279
Date Calculationsp. 294
Time Calculationsp. 305
Conditional Calculationsp. 307
Calculations with Container Resultsp. 312
Creating a Fully Formatted Document for Database Publishingp. 313
Calculating with Check Boxesp. 316
Generating Random Numbersp. 326
Creating a Bar Graphp. 329
Exporting or Importing Fixed-Length Recordsp. 331
Handling Aggregate Functionsp. 338
11 Reportingp. 341
Layouts at the Heartp. 342
Using the Report Wizardp. 342
How Layout Parts Workp. 343
How FileMaker Figures Out What to Put Wherep. 346
Creating Summary Reportsp. 348
Putting Sub-summaries on Every Pagep. 355
Using Sub-Summaries Without Summary Fieldsp. 357
Using the GetSummary Function in a Calculation Fieldp. 358
Where Should You Report From?p. 361
Interesting Reporting Techniquesp. 366
Variations in Effectp. 378
12 Dumb Portal Tricksp. 395
What Shows Up in a Portal--and Howp. 396
Dumb Portal Trick #1 Lets You See in a Portal All Records from Another Filep. 396
Dumb Portal Trick #2 Lets You Use Conditional Value Lists with Portalsp. 398
Dumb Portal Trick #3 Highlights Selected Items in Portalsp. 401
Dumb Portal Trick #4 Moves Records from One Portal to Anotherp. 403
Dumb Portal Trick #5 Uses Calculated Multivalued Keys to Filter Which Child Records Show Up in the Parent Recordp. 405
Dumb Portal Trick #6 Moves Portal Rows and Inserts a Portal Rowp. 406
Dumb Portal Trick #7 Allows the User to Choose the Sort Order in a Portalp. 412
Dumb Portal Trick #8 Makes the Portal Disappear!p. 414
Dumb Portal Trick #9 Uses a Portal to Control Access to Records in Another Filep. 417
13 The Joys of Self-Joins and Other Interesting Relationshipsp. 421
The Miracle of a Self-Joinp. 422
Assembly-Subassembly, a.k.a. the Hamburger Examplep. 426
Many to Many to Manyp. 431
An Outer Joinp. 435
III Scripting
14 Scriptingp. 443
The Benefits of Scriptingp. 444
Creating and Editing Scriptsp. 444
Good Scripting Practicesp. 448
Write Once, Run Many Waysp. 453
Startup Scriptsp. 453
Shutdown Scriptsp. 458
Scripts to Help Users Navigate Among Layoutsp. 459
Scripts for Navigating Among Parents and Childrenp. 461
Scripts That Deletep. 465
Scripts for Creating New Recordsp. 468
Scripts for Sortingp. 468
Scripts for Reportingp. 470
Scripts Asking Users What They Want to Printp. 473
Scripts for Preparing Canned Findsp. 474
Scripts That Duplicate Recordsp. 476
Handling Button Actions in Your Scriptsp. 476
15 Troubleshooting a Scriptp. 481
Looking for Troublep. 482
Scripting Gotchasp. 484
IV Reaching Out
16 Integrating FileMaker, Expanding Its Reachp. 497
FileMaker at the Centerp. 498
Examples of the New Connectivityp. 499
How FileMaker Connectsp. 500
Different Ways of Connecting with FileMakerp. 501
Taking Advantage of Industry Standards for Data Exchangep. 505
Using ODBC, JDBC, and Javap. 506
Going from HTML to XML and WMLp. 517
And Don't Forget Reportsp. 518
17 FileMaker Pro Multiuser Design and Deployment Considerationsp. 519
The Idea of Multiple Usersp. 520
Designing Multiuser Filesp. 521
Deploying Multiuser Filesp. 523
FileMaker Serverp. 524
Multiuser Deployment, Design, and Networking Tips and Pitfalls Checklistp. 528
Indexp. 533