In FileMaker, this is called "auto-complete" and it's an option that you can set for a text field in the Inspector.
You can either set a text field to auto-complete from all the values of all the records in your table or you can format this field with a value list and set the value list format to auto-complete from all the values in the value list.
But there are limitations. You can't for example, set up a number field to auto-complete and this includes a number field formatted with a two part value list that shows names and enters ID numbers--which is a very commonly used value list in FileMaker.
But there are ways around that limitation so that you can auto-complete on a name and yet be entering (and linking to related records) by an ID rather than a (possibly non unique) name.
You may find "Adventures in FileMaking #2 - Enhanced Value Selection" to be a useful source of ideas.
PhilModJunk: I'm sorry that I don't find the response above very helpful. But, it seems like you know a lot about this program. Could you re-read my original post? It seems that there's a disconnect from your advice and my question. Or maybe I wasn't clear. If anyone else has any feedback, thank you very much in advance!
Please specify how it failed to help you.
Your original post seemed very clear to me, but lacking in a crucial detail: Are you entering text into an edit box formatted field or a field formatted with a drop down list? Both can be set to auto-complete.
If you start entering the letters: Ap, you want it to automatically fill in with a complete word from some other source producing a word such as "Apple" to "auto-fill" the field with data from either the same table or a value list. (You don't specify in your post.)
You also haven't indicated whether you want to be simply entering text into a text field or selecting from a value list when this "auto-fill" that is Called auto-complete in FileMaker and is sometimes referred to as "Clairvoyance" takes place.
Sarah, Phil's solution sounds exactly like what you need. The first option - to set the field to auto complete using the value of all previous records will do exactly what you asked in your original post.
Thank you, both! Phil: I appreciate your response, and upon a second (ehh, maybe third) reading it actually made sense to me. I'm sorry that I didn't understand at first--I'm sure you meant to be very simple, but for simpler people still (me, essentially!) it still looked complex. Mark: your chiming in helped me even further. And to be honest, I had just about had it and called technical support who also explained the super simple way to accomplish what I needed to. So how many times does it take for a tech-un-savvy person to figure out a simple command???--3 repetitive times!!! Mahalo nui loa!