Hard to answer without knowing the nature of the algorithm. In general, you have the following options:
1. Implement the algorithm using Filemaker native functions;
2. Use a third-party plugin that adds more functions; some plugins provide access to other calculation engines, e.g. Java or PHP;
3. Use AppleScript (Mac only) to pass the calculation to another application and return the result;
4. Write you your own plugin.
I want to build an application using filemaker primarily because it works on Mac platforms.
If that's your only reason to use Filemaker, you may well be on the wrong path.
Thank you very much for looking at this.
As to the choice of database - is there another database which would make my life easier? I also need accounting, credit control and customer relationship managment from the database.
LOL, your first post didn't say anything about database… With all its limitations, I doubt you'll find a better choice than Filemaker for this purpose.
About writing a plug-in; someone told me to avoid too specific fixes as they tend to be vulnerable to updates of the software. Is it straightforward to write plug-ins? What language do I use?
Seems like the alternative would be to move the Visual Basic code to Mac OS Excel and then use scripts to get the answers. Again - under the assumption that apple script is less vulnerable to software updates (?).
- and - if this is too many questions just answer what you can. Really appreciate your input!
I'm afraid I know very little about writing plugins. I suggest you read the FMPA Development Guide document that comes with the Advanced version of Filemaker.
However, before you embark upon such adventure: are you absolutely certain that the task cannot be accomplished using Filemaker's built-in tools? Over the years, I have seen very few problems that couldn't be handled by a calculation or a script.