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Should I use FileMaker for a retirement project?

Question asked by jcaswell on Jan 23, 2015
Latest reply on Jan 25, 2015 by mikebeargie

I am hoping that there will be experts out there in FileMaker land who can help me make a decision about the product.  I have recently retired and want, as part of my 'keep young' drive, to develop an ipad database-based app.  This is not for resale (although I might distribute if for free if it works), but merely to keep my brain young.


I should explain that I am an IT professional of many years standing (since the mid 1980's), and early on in my career I was a database designer and programmer using such long-defunct development enviroments such as Ingres.  I say that to explain that I understand the basics of database design and programming, and also relational databases.


So - I want to develop an app that runs on an ipad that essentially is a database that allows the user to make some basic changes to preferences and data.  That database should be fed from a central server, and the preferences sent from the ipad app to the server.  The central database should be updated from web sources automativally (I hope) and also updated by me.  I will therefore also have the develop the server system as well as the app.  So, in summary


Server application collects data from web sources and feeds server database


I can access server aplication to update information about held data


iPad app is opened on iPad and sucks data, based on locally stored preferences onto iPad and updates local database


iPad app allows user to review data, update it and their preferences, and link to other web sites based on information uploaded


So - can I do this using the tools availble to me in FileMaker without having to write complex C (or similar) programmes?  I am happy to write what used to be called stored procedures or other macros or equivalent?  If there are any 'gotchas' on this, I would appreciate being told.


I must say, what I have read so far leads me to believe that this is possible, but I would like to know that what I am trying to do is do-able before I spend lots of time and money.  And what bits of FileMaker will I need?