Database Analysis

One of the great beauties of FileMaker is that it's very easy to just jump right in and start building things that work. And this is fine, as long as you can keep the whole plan in your head.

Earlier chapters have looked at some practical techniques for separating and organizing data in a FileMaker database system. This chapter takes that work another step. Here you'll learn some tools for analyzing database problems and translating them into buildable designs.

This chapter approaches things and their relationships somewhat abstractly. Your goal here won't be a finished FileMaker system, but rather a more general design document. You'll learn a simple but powerful design process to help you take a real-world problem description and translate it into a blueprint that a database designer could use to build the database in a real-world database development system. This design document is known as an entity-relationship diagram (ERD). The process for creating an entity-relationship diagram, somewhat simplified, looks like this:

  1. Identify all the types of things involved in the problem that's being modeled (customers and sales, for example, or trucks, drivers, and routes).
  2. For each type of thing, identify its attributes (customers have first and last names, truck routes have a beginning and an end).
  3. Looking across all the types of things, determine the fundamental relationships between them (truck drivers have routes, trucks have drivers).
  4. Draw up your findings into an entity-relationship diagram.

The ERD, again, is an abstract document that you can implement (build) with FileMaker or some other database tool. The sections that follow examine each of the steps of this process in much more detail.


Working with Entities and Attributes

Part I: Getting Started with FileMaker 8

FileMaker Overview

Using FileMaker Pro

Defining and Working with Fields

Working with Layouts

Part II: Developing Solutions with FileMaker

Relational Database Design

Working with Multiple Tables

Working with Relationships

Getting Started with Calculations

Getting Started with Scripting

Getting Started with Reporting

Part III: Developer Techniques

Developing for Multiuser Deployment

Implementing Security

Advanced Interface Techniques

Advanced Calculation Techniques

Advanced Scripting Techniques

Advanced Portal Techniques

Debugging and Troubleshooting

Converting Systems from Previous Versions of FileMaker Pro

Part IV: Data Integration and Publishing

Importing Data into FileMaker Pro

Exporting Data from FileMaker

Instant Web Publishing

FileMaker and Web Services

Custom Web Publishing

Part V: Deploying a FileMaker Solution

Deploying and Extending FileMaker

FileMaker Server and Server Advanced

FileMaker Mobile

Documenting Your FileMaker Solutions



Using FileMaker 8
Special Edition Using FileMaker 8
ISBN: 0789735121
EAN: 2147483647
Year: 2007
Pages: 296

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