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Best practices for filtering a found set?

Question asked by cdv on Feb 8, 2019
Latest reply on Feb 12, 2019 by cdv

I apologize in advance for what's bound to be a super basic question to everyone on this site.


I've been working on a simple database that stores contact information for authors, the stories they have written, and which magazine each story was published in. There are three tables: Contributors, Manuscripts, and Publications. It looks like this:

Screen Shot 2019-02-08 at 1.28.57 PM.png

I've created a layout, based on the Manuscripts table, where I can track things like whether we've received a signed contract, paid the author, etc. Basically, I want to be able to search for a specific magazine issue and see all the contributors, what we're paying them for their contribution, etc.


Here's where I'm a little lost: On this "tracking" layout, I'd like to be able to divide my found set via two portals, based a "manuscript type" field (which categorizes each manuscript as either a column or essay). Ideally, I'd also like to be able to update the author's address (in the Contributors table) without having to navigate to another layout.


Right now, I have this layout with List View as the default, with related address fields from the Contributors table in the footer, which makes updating the address easy enough. To filter the manuscript types, I can use search queries to see one type at a time, but is there a way I can have these manuscript types automatically filter via portals instead? Or are searches the better way to go?


Alternately, I've tried using a layout based on a second table occurrence of the Publications table, which makes it easy enough to use two portals that filter the manuscripts based on their types. But then I don't see how I can select a portal row, for example, and see address information from the Contributors table elsewhere on the layout. (I've figured out that I can place fields from the Contributors table in the portal itself, but the portal is already pretty cramped with information, and there's not really room.)


So, I've come up with a couple imperfect workarounds, but at this point I'm hoping someone could share some best practices for this kind of situation. Am I thinking about this all wrong, or is there a pretty standard way of setting this up?