Tag Archives: FileMaker Pro 16

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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. 

WebDirect has always worked like this. We’ve actually had this design pattern in WebDirect longer than we’ve had it on the desktop.  This is because WebDirect only shows one window at a time.  The FileMaker documentation refers to these as “virtual” windows. So, in WebDirect, the active window will always be the only one displayed.  If the active window is closed and there are other virtual windows are open, it will go to whichever window was active before the current one. When you open a window for a picker, it takes up the whole screen. Close it when you’re done picking, and you’re back where you started.  This is exactly how I’ve started doing it on the desktop with card windows.

In the future, I would love to see the dimming effect, close button, and few other card windows’ features make it into WebDirect. In the meantime, I’ve stopped lamenting the lack of card windows and started scripting; secure in the knowledge that what I’m writing will work across all platforms. I also wonder why I didn’t start scripting like this for WebDirect a long time ago!


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FileMaker Academy: The Journey from Pro to WebDirect

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On Tuesday, October 17th at 2pm ET, Jerry Salem from IT Solutions presents The Journey from Pro to WebDirect.

In this webinar, our friends will share real-world experiences in readying solutions for WebDirect delivery. They’ll review supported and unsupported features; differences in the two user experiences – some things you expect, others you might not; and they’ll show a few examples of WebDirect solutions versus their Pro counterparts. Please join us on the 17th!

Date: Tuesday, October, 17  2017
Time: 2:oo – 3:00 pm ET / 1 pm CT /  11 am PT
Registration URL: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/3911134769304214785

 


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FileMaker 16: Card Window

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They’re Heeere ….

One of the new features in FileMaker Pro 16 (and one we’re super excited about!) is the Card Window, which is essentially a new window that lives within your current one. So why are we so excited? Cards have all the benefits of popovers plus all the benefits of a new window. In other words, you get to maintain the context you are in by not leaving your current layout, and still work within a different context since a Card can be based on any layout (and table) within your solution. Finally!

How do they work?

Although Cards use the same script steps as regular floating windows, there are some differences in the available options and overall behavior.  So let’s dig in…

Script Steps (look familiar?)
  • New Window
  • Go to Related Record (with the option “Show in new window”)
  • Close Window
  • Move/Resize Window
Options
  • Layout (choose from any layout in your solution, fixed or calculated)- NEW, but not limited to card windows
  • Size (fixed or calculated)
  • Position (fixed or calculated)
  • Dim parent window (on/off) – NEW
  • Close (on/off option to display ‘close’ button) – NEW

Interacting with Cards

The default behavior when a Card first opens is to center itself within your current layout and dim the background. Unlike a floating window, this means you can no longer interact with the underlying layout. You also have the option to leave the background layout visible (not dimmed), however it will still be frozen until the Card is closed.

Here’s the best part: you don’t need to worry about having an existing relationship between the table in your current layout and the table in the Card’s layout, so a Card Window really can be based on any layout.  Card Windows can even open layouts in another file!

Closing Cards

In FileMaker Go with the ‘close’ option enabled, you can tap anywhere outside of the Card to close the window. If you choose to disable that option, you will need to create a custom button for that purpose using the Close Window script step.

In FileMaker Pro with the ‘close’ option enabled you must click the ‘close’ button found in the top left corner of the Card, otherwise you’ll need to create a custom button.

Note: Keyboard shortcuts work either way in FileMaker Pro: Command+W (OS X) and Ctrl+W (Windows)

Start Using Cards. Right. Now.

Cards will be a welcomed replacement for many popovers, windows and custom dialog boxes.

Here are just a few examples:  

  • Use Cards instead of popovers for ‘pickers’. You can create a separate layout customized specifically for them, without the need to create additional relationships used solely for this functionality. This simplifies the relationship graph and generally has better performance.
  • Create truly Custom Dialog Boxes. Unlike traditional dialog boxes, there is no limit to the amount of button options you can have on a layout, and they can be designed in any shape/size/color.  
  • Use Cards instead of portals to add/edit child records. You can create a customized layout and you won’t be restricted to tiny line item in a portal. You’ll thank yourself later.
  • Use Cards in ways we haven’t even thought of yet!