I'm not sure what you mean by "rebranding itself…" FileMaker, Inc. has been a wholly-owned Apple subsidiary since 1998 (as was its predecessor, Claris, before that).
FileMaker, Inc. is remarkably clear about their corporate vision: making "workgroup" database software. All of their strategy is oriented toward that; they've shown no interest in larger "Enterprise" software, and that's unlikely to change. It's been a highly successful strategy for them. They've been profitable for every single quarter since their creation, even through the recent, severe economic downturn, something that a heck of a lot of tech (and non-tech) companies can't claim.
Appreciate it for what it is (and not what it's not) and it will serve you well.
The Apple Subsidiary title is popping up more than before. I feel you on the corporate "workgroup" vision. It's just wishful thinking on my end. Since the iOS is becoming or is a big part of many corporations, having the means to scale up the web connections would be a lovely option.
Do you have any specific numbers in mind? How many users, how many web users?
When larger corporations look at web based database systems, how many people would actually consider FileMaker Pro seriously?
Same thinking happens with Apple products.Take a look at what Apple have done, X-serve, Apple RAID and a "real" server, these products don't exist anymore. Sadly, because of this, no one takes Apple seriously.
No one takes FileMaker seriously for the same reason, the product does not cater to that environment.
It might work for Apple, because there are a lot of kids who want their iPads, but FileMaker, I'm beginning to worry. A LOT.
When ever I am looking at a solution for a client I think about getting the right tool for the job. In my opinion, WebDirect was never meant to be for a "public" facing website. It is for FileMaker users who want to access FileMaker on a computer that does not have FileMaker Pro installed.
As for the "enterprise" question. Here at ODITech.com we run FileMaker Servers on enterprise level hardware with lots of redundancy and develop many public facing websites using PHP and FileMaker which handle tons of traffic.
That being said, FileMaker is targeting its focus at solving specific needs of all businesses large and small and, in my opinion, this is very smart. They play nicely with other "enterprise" databases like MSSQL, Oracle, etc. to tackle specific tasks for businesses with less development time and cost.
That's very true...totally forgot about the x-serve. I work for a very big school district and the things we are doing with FileMaker is so productive and innovative. It’s awful that most IT departments consider FMP has a simple desktop app. I’m currently working on a way for IT to consider and accept filemaker has a serious development tool. Not sure if it’s worth the time and I should just be the “lone-wolf” developer.
I've always kept away from IWP and now WD for the same reasons. For 10 years now I've been using CWP and LASSO and love it. Never had any big issues, mostly thanks to Point In Space hosting. Just wish our IT folks could see how powerful FMP is, but for them everything is enterprise or access.
We have been using CWP with LASSO and never had any bandwidth issues. When communicating with other departments for possible solutions and only being able to have 100 concurrent web connections seems to be a turn-off to them.
Here in Australia, FileMaker is NOT supported by the DET (Department of Education and Training).
If they did i'm sure it would produce results.....
when you say tons of traffic with PHP and filemaker how much do you mean ? How many concurrent users on the public facing websites?
Alejandro Yescas wrote:
I’m currently working on a way for IT to consider and accept filemaker has a serious development tool. Not sure if it’s worth the time and I should just be the “lone-wolf” developer.
Choose your arguments carefully. The key in these situations is not to fight IT.
I've had some success in positioning FM as Rapid Application Development tool: design / develop and deploy something quickly. Tactical vs. Strategic. Enterprise applications have much longer development cycles and typically cost more.
So you can put something in the user's hands that produces value much quicker with FM. But IT is free to take over when the application becomes so critical that policies dictate that it needs to be brought into another environment. If they want to do that, let them. Very often the cost will be prohibitive and they will find that out. No need for you tell them. Preserve your reputation of being cooperative that way. Position your solutions as protoypes and throw-away software, just proving a concept until they are ready to take over. Sometimes they will, sometimes they won't.
Access can be used as a tactical tool just like FM, but it does not have the robust sharing that FM has; it does not scale from 1 to 10 to 100 users like FM does.
I worked with 2 school districts in Virginia, doing Special Ed. It is a challenge. The teachers loved getting a custom solution, but the administration never quite "got" FileMaker
For 7 schools, we had about 40 concurrent users, using client. What is your load ?
My guess is that Web Direct will eventually allow multiple servers, for more users, as they did with FileMaker 5.5 Unlimited
> I work for a very big school district and the things we are doing with FileMaker is so productive and innovative. It’s awful that most IT departments consider FMP as a simple desktop app
Thank you. It's so easy to get defensive and irritated by the IT folks, but in the end cool minds prevail. Thanks for the sound feedback.