9 Replies Latest reply on May 19, 2013 2:48 AM by GuyStevens

    Seeking a Filemaker Mentor



      Seeking a Filemaker Mentor


           Hello, I'm just getting started with Filemaker, I'm probably 150 hours in to a project that I'm doing for an Artist to organize her paintings and inventory. I'm doing alright, but really just want to talk to someone and walk them through what I've done and get feedback. Make sure I'm not making any major rookie mistakes.  Is there anyone willing to share some screentime with me? Happy to barter if there is a task you can delegate online (or I can host you in Maui :) )

        • 1. Re: Seeking a Filemaker Mentor

               If you are comfortable with it you can put your (empty) file online and we could have a look at it.

               Let you know if there are any major mistakes you are making.

          • 2. Re: Seeking a Filemaker Mentor

                 If you have a ERD (entity-relationship diagram), user base (single user, multi-user, online user), and sample(s) of the output needed (print reports, html, pdf, data) you will find the help offered here is often extremely good.

                 Screen shots can be posted here

                 The links here are beginner level to intermediate

            • 3. Re: Seeking a Filemaker Mentor

                   Ok, here goes: 


                   It's the full database. I don't see any harm in sharing the enclosed data. It's still a work in progress, but would love to get any feedback. Cheers!


              • 4. Re: Seeking a Filemaker Mentor

                     Looking good Samuel.

                     A few things I noticed:
                     - In your website adress you might have to add "www." otherwise the GoToUrl button doesn't work.
                     - You don't seem to have any totals on your reports in list view. You could just add a Trailing grand Total part and show your Total Summary field there.
                     - In your Marketing list it's very annoying (I think) that you can't see the fields. You can turn that off by going into Layout mode. Then going to "Layout" - "Layout Setup" - and unchecking "Delineate Fields on Current record Only"

                     But that's just a personal preference.

                     - In your To-Do list you have buttons that perform finds for "Incomplete" and "Complete"
                     You just have 1 perform find step attached to them. But if I were you I would attach a script. A standard find script looks like this:

                     - Enter Find Mode [Uncheck Pauze]
                     - Set Error Campture [On]
                     - Set Field [ ToDo::Completed ; "Complete"]
                     - Perform Find
                     - Sort Records [If necceccary]


                     That way you have a script that's way more flexible then just one script step. You can add all kinds of other funky stuff there.

                     You also don't seem to be using Sub Summary parts yet. That might be a really usefull thing here and there.
                     Like in the income and expenses reports. So you can group per month for instance. And then show a total per month.

                     And another handy thing to learn for your relationship diagram is "The Anchor - Buoy method"

                     It keeps that view more organized and will prevent you from creating a huge relatiosnhip spaghetti that becomes unmanageable.

                     Anyway, just a few things I noticed.



                • 5. Re: Seeking a Filemaker Mentor

                       On a quick look at your file I would caution against using the names of galleries, contacts, companies as your key fields - it is better to have non-changeable fields for this purpose.

                  • 6. Re: Seeking a Filemaker Mentor

                         Thank you very much!  Your feedback is very much appreciated!

                         DaSaint - I've been having trouble with the to do list. I perform a find with the Completed field set to complete, but it returns both results. I tried to follow your script, but get hung up at the set field/ perform find section. 

                         Also, I want to create a report that subtracts the total monthly expenses from the total monthly income and displays a bar chart. Do I create a new table for those calculations? How do I specify to total the records of the same month? 

                         Again, really appreciate the support.


                    • 7. Re: Seeking a Filemaker Mentor

                           The reason your Complete / Incomplete buttons are not working is because your layout has a script trigger attached to it that does a rezise, but also a "Show All Records".

                           I created two example scripts and attached them to the buttons. And I removed this "Show All records" step from the Resize script.

                           You also had a problem with your Month field that was a calculation field set to MonthName but it was set to result in a number. That's not correct. A monthName is not a number, it's a text.

                           Also a Summary field that counts the total of the MonthName field isn't going to do anything. The idea is to summarize the total amount and then sort by month. A SubSummary part will show you the totals per month if you put the summary field in that sub summary part.

                           I created a subsummary part to display the monthly totals in Incomes and Expenses.


                           If you want to create a comparison of income and expenses you have a few options.

                           Either you create two portals. One for income and one for expenses.

                           Or you put all your incomes and expenses in one table and then create a list report.

                           Or you put them together in a temporary table when creating a report.

                      • 8. Re: Seeking a Filemaker Mentor

                             Ok making great progress. 

                             Next question - I want to indicate who bought a painting from my contact list. If the contact is not available, I want to be able to add a new contact right from the field. 

                             If I insert a first name and last name field from the related contact table, the record goes awry once I enter something in the last name field. Any suggestions on how to best go about this?

                        • 9. Re: Seeking a Filemaker Mentor

                               You could have a button on the artwork layout to sell the artwork but the actions that that button performs really depends on how you would like to do this. Do you make an invoice? Or some form of document or certificate to the client?

                               I'm just looking at your file but I can't really wrap my head around the way you are using this.

                               And I don't immediatly see where related contacts would go awry. Except for the fact that you made a relationship based on a name which is about the worst thing you can do.