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progressive questionary - structure of database

Question asked by calebmiranda on Sep 8, 2014
Latest reply on Sep 8, 2014 by calebmiranda


progressive questionary - structure of database


Hello fellow developers. I have a question that is more database related than filemaker related, but as fmp has some features that are peculiar, maybe the answer is different for fmp (reason why I'm asking in this forum).

I need to do a automatic system for the employees to know how to act (like a instruction manual). But, my problem is, I'm having trouble on designing the structure of my database. The idea is that a question leads to other question, gives answers to others, etc. Let me give a example.

Let's say my company sells all sort of electronic devices. A customer comes in, and the following questions are asked by the vendor:

Vendor: - what do you need?

Customer: - I need to buy a computer.

Vendor: - what sort of operational system do you need?

Customer: - I want it to be a Mac OS

V: - does it need to be new?

C: - no

V: - how many do you pretend to buy?

C: - 17

V: - will they connect to some network?

C: - yes

V: - how?

C: - wifi

V: - which configurations do you need for each machine?


and the questions go on. The problem is, the complexity of the questions are making me have a hard time.

1) The entry mode for the answers:

When the customer says he want Mac OS, he must have a list of OSs to choose from (list entry mode). When he says, I don't want to be new, he is making a boolean choice. When he says 17 computers, he's doing a numeral entry mode, and then I'll have to allow him to make choices for each computer.

2) The schema of next questions based on answers:

some answers answer other question. For example, when the customer says I need to buy a computer (choosing from a list), we ask the operational system, as we would if he wanted to buy a cellphone or tablet. But if he needs to buy a router, this question is irrelevant. On the other hand, if he says they will be connect to the network by wifi, I know that the answer to the question "does the computer needs to have ethernet port?" is a no. So we have answers that make other questions irrelevant (router -- OS), some answers that answer other questions (wifi -- need for ethernet), and some answer request more answers (Mac OS -- does it need to be able to use the latest build of OSX)?


thanks for the help so far.