Category Archives: FileMaker Techniques

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One Layout for both iPad and Desktop

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How to make a single layout in FileMaker that works (and looks good) on both desktop and iPad screens.

Creating and maintaining two separate sets of application screens in FileMaker — one for mobile and one for desktop — has always been a pain in the butt. While there are definitely arguments to be made for creating much simpler functionality and screen design on an iPhone, the same argument is harder to make for an iPad versus desktop interface. Believe it or not, many people these days are opting to use ONLY a tablet with an attached keyboard as their primary work machine. Often, this occurs in the same workplace, where some users are on an iPad, and others are using a desktop computer.

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Get(UUIDNumber) is here – how does it compare to Get(UUID)?

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With the long list of new features being released in FileMaker Pro 17, one item that piqued the interest of my inner geek was this new function:  Get( UUIDNumber ). This new function is useful because now you can store your UUIDs in a Number data-typed field instead of having to use a Text data-typed field.  My hypothesis is that storing Numbers in the database will take up less space in the file. (I’m not sure where I got that notion, but it’s stuck with me for a while now…perhaps it was the Tech specs from an older version, where it described the minimum size needed to store numbers vs. text.)

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FileMaker 17: Edit Grouped Objects

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How many times have I been annoyed and delayed by having to ungroup something just to make a simple edit? Too many to count.

I often group many things together to aid in layout setup and positioning. Say you have a set of fields and objects that together make up a ‘widget’ or function (e.g. a custom calendar picker, or custom labeling for a radio button set, a set of fields for an address, etc), and you want to keep them all together in a particular arrangement. But then you might have to make a change to a font, or a hide condition, or a small tweak to the position of one item within the group. Now you can do all those adjustments without having to break the group and then re-group the objects when you are done!

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Card Windows work in WebDirect

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Card windows have changed the way I develop. One of our other developers went over the awesomeness of card windows in this blog post, so I won’t rehash that content.

I was, however, incredibly disappointed when I learned that card windows do not function in WebDirect.  Websites are one of the places you see that UI pattern the most!  And now I have to script completely different on the desktop than I do in WebDirect! Darn it!

Except… I don’t have to rescript anything! Any step that I can use to open a card window works just fine in WebDirect.  The difference is, if I open a card window in WebDirect, it will just take up the whole screen.  Other than that, the user experience is almost identical.  Closing the window will leave the user looking at the window they were on before the card window opened. 

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Free FileMaker Training

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Did you know that FileMaker, Inc. offers free tutorials, webinars and much more?

It’s true!

Check out the FileMaker Learning Center for webinars (upcoming and recorded), self-paced video tutorials, and even the exam prep guide for FileMaker certification!

Of course many FileMaker developers, such as AppWorks, offer in-person training. Contact Shawn at shawn@app.works to receive one-on-one custom training.