The Support Group Blog

Naming Styles in the FileMaker Platform

There are different factors that contribute to a successful custom application. Of course, function is important, but even if the app does exactly what users need it to do, users may not necessarily like it if it's difficult to use due to poor legibility, navigability, responsiveness, etc.

FileMaker, the Workplace Innovation Platform, helps to speed up custom app development, right down to the smallest detail, including design styles. The user interface has a huge impact on user experience. A well-designed interface generally equates to a positive experience. Developers must ensure that they use appropriate and consistent fonts, sizes, colors, images, layouts, and so forth within their applications. They can simply accomplish this by creating custom styles for the apps they design.

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Education Enrollment Custom App for The West Side Montessori School

The West Side Montessori School (WSMS) has been offering a Montessori program for early learners since 1963. The school has grown from fifteen students to over one hundred and they also offer a teacher education program (WSMS-TEP) for adult learners training to become Montessori teachers. Based on the Upper West Side of New York City, they also have locations in New Jersey and Beijing China. In 2015, they renovated part of the children’s gymnasium into an adult learning space for their WSMS-TEP students. Needless to say, growth and development are important to the founders, faculty and students, both young and young at heart. And so we knew a Workplace Innovation Platform, like FileMaker, would facilitate that growth.

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How To Share Files in Google App Maker

Google App Maker is a great app development tool to help you streamline and improve the way you work. And, it's also useful for storing the important data that help you get your work done. It's an invaluable tool that allows you to log in from anywhere to view and edit your data. But sometimes you need a hard copy or at least a copy you can view offline. Who hasn’t printed an e-ticket for an event or a boarding pass for a business trip because it's just easier to pull out a piece of paper than to find, launch and then log into an app on your phone, which you hope has enough power? So with that reality firmly clenched in our fists, we created a way to share hard and soft files in Google App Maker.

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How the Stages of Grief Relate to the Software Development Process

We develop custom business software solutions. Our job is to turn a customer’s business needs into functional, organized and attractive software solutions that improve their business operations. At the end of the day, our job is to make our clients look good inside their organizations.

At the heart of every software product is change. Once projects start to take form, our clients begin to see different possibilities and their minds fill with creative enhancements that will make their software even more valuable. We like when clients get excited about new possibilities, but it can also be difficult in terms of managing expectations.

It occurred to me that the process developers go through when faced with very difficult development challenges is much like the well-known stages of grief that psychologists describe. So here we go on the mental journey of almost every technical person faced with almost insurmountable client challenges.

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FileMaker Platform Integrations: Integration Inspires Innovation

One of the reasons FileMaker is a superior Workplace Innovation Platform is because of its integration capabilities. When our clients/prospective clients ask us if FileMaker can connect with other applications, my immediate answer is yes! But I think the better question to ask is: "how easily can the FileMaker Platform connect with other applications?" FileMaker offers many ways to integrate with other technologies. I myself have found very few limitations in terms of connecting a FileMaker application with other applications. As FileMaker, Inc. (FMI) releases new versions of the product, the integration capabilities expand. We've been able to connect FileMaker applications with other applications via ODBC/JDBC, live external data sources, PHP/XML APIs and flexible import/export options for many years. And now we have other integration functions like Data API (REST), cURL options in Insert from URL, native JSON functions as well as many JSON specific custom functions and a Tableau connector.

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How to Manage Your Databases in Google App Maker

Google App Maker is a wonderful tool for solving small problems throughout your organization. You can use it to create an easy way for your team to manage and share contacts or help you track the deadlines and budgets of your important projects. Google App Maker is great for so many things because it hides so much of the complexity of today's data-driven apps behind a drag and drop, "it just works" facade. However, if you're in charge of the Google Cloud instance that stores all this data, you'll quickly find that this ease of use comes at a cost…both mentally and monetarily.

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Retirement Planning App Built Using the FileMaker Platform

Since this time of year is associated with giving, we thought that we would share a FileMaker iOS gift. We created a retirement app using the FileMaker SDK. Some of us may find this app useful sooner than others, but we hope you benefit either way.  The free app is available on iPad only on the Apple App Store

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How To Debug JavaScript

Fun fact: the term debug was coined by Admiral Grace Hopper while working on the Mark II computer in the 1940's. A moth became stuck inside the computer and Grace commented that they were debugging the computer as they literally worked to remove the bug. The moth was eventually freed and then the term stuck. You can now find that moth at the Smithsonian Museum. 

Back when I was introduced to JavaScript, I used alert dialogs to debug my javascript code. If you're chuckling reading this then you're probably a pro! If not, you should watch my demo where I show you a few different ways to invoke a JavaScript debugger to help you find a bug or resolve a semantic issue in your code.

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How To Style Your Apps in Google App Maker

Google App Maker is pretty stylish right out of the box. It has the modern and attractive Google Material Design theme baked right in. As you add new widgets, text objects and buttons, they are automatically styled using this well-known visual language. Nonetheless, there are some of us who would like to give our new apps a little personal flair. Whether it's because we want to get user buy-in or to brand the app so that it works seamlessly with our daily workflow, Google App Maker gives us the tools to put our own fingerprint on our new app. We just have to know where to go and what to do.

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Modular Programming with FileMaker Card Windows

Let’s Play Cards!

The Card Window was introduced in FileMaker 16. We learned some pretty cool development techniques and use cases for Card Windows during one of the breakout sessions we attended during DevCon 2018

TRANSACTIONS

Card Windows can be a great tool for transactional programming. You can easily arrange for transactional events to either pass or fail, meaning all edits/adds/deletes that happen during the transaction are either committed or not. Cards can be leveraged to guide the user through a process, storing the data via global fields, variables or JSON arrays along the way. Ultimately, the data will only be committed if the user completes all of the steps. Incidentally, you can also use slide panels to create this user experience. 

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