FileMaker Pro 12: The Missing Manual by Susan Prosser and Stuart Gripman is a powerful database program that is easy to learn and use. The program uses simple commands like find, sort and connect. FileMaker Pro 12 can even handle a database as large as a municipal school district. There are a plethora of user groups, websites, chat rooms and professional consultants all devoted to making FileMaker Pro workable for its extensive community of users.
The authors show how creating a new database is a snap on FileMaker Pro 12. Just double click the FileMaker Pro icon to launch the program. Click the “Create a New Database Option.” In the ” Save As” field, name the file. Click “Save” and you’re done. An important feature of the program is the ability to customize a report layout.
FileMaker offers ten fundamental chart types. The column chart is the classic method for visualizing data. The Bars can be set to be flat, 3-D, shaded, or solid-colored. Stacked charts can depict how multiple columns of data combine. The formatting options for Bar charts are identical. The software does Pie Charts, Line Charts, Scatter Diagrams and Bubbles.
FileMaker has a significant computational capability beginning with the Let() function which facilitates computations. An advanced Case() function allows users to add conditions later on. Test conditions can be set up with the If() function. These are just a few of the computational tools the authors provide. A ScriptDebugger feature gives users constant feedback about running scripts once invoked. There is an extensive section on scripts and security, sharing data and privilege sets.
Filemaker comes with lots of extras like guides for installation, users, tutorials, advanced development guides, and instant web publishing, to mention just a few. In addition, the program comes with unlimited free technical support for installation purposes. There is a Filemaker Technical Network(FTN), Filemaker Business Alliance (FBA), and an annual Developer’s Conference (DEV) for venting new ways of using the software.
FileMaker Pro 12: The Missing Manual is a powerful software tool for use in a variety of complex data processing contexts. The software is easy to use and understand. There is an extensive support network and an update conference is held annually for avid users. The presentation is very readable with lots of diagrams and pictorial representations of the data and concepts. Most importantly, the technical support network is extensive for users of virtually every level of sophistication and complexity.