Filemaker Downloads

Access the downloads for Jesse's FileMaker books

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FileMaker Extra: Importing from a Spreadsheet Simplified

In FileMaker Pro 10 in Depth I described how you can use XML-like structures to pass multiple values into a script parameter ("Passing Structured Data Elements", pp 392-393). Here's a real-life example of how you can use that technique to import a spreadsheet. Now FileMaker already has an import command (File->Import) that can handle spreadsheets, but you have to provide a mapping of the spreadsheet columns to FileMaker fields at import time or at least in a mapping that will be valid at import time. A number of people have pointed out that this can be a serious limitation in solutions for users who aren't used to the FileMaker Pro import dialog (it's not complicated, but can be daunting with its list of all the columns in the spreadsheet and all the fields in the layout. This is a general-purpose solution that lets you import data from a spreadsheet where the first row consists of column names (a common situation). You then can import them into a FileMaker database based on those names. In only one place in your FileMaker script do you need to reference the column names which can make for easy maintenance and reuse. Read on for the details.

FileMaker Pro 10 in Depth

FileMaker Pro 10 provides a wide range of new features, and all of them are covered in FileMaker Pro 10 in Depth. Each new version of FileMaker provides new goodies, but they're usually clustered in specific areas. This release has major new features for the user interface and for scripters along with a host of other changes and additions.



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