FileMaker Arguments Explored

From Dwayne Wright PMP, PMI-ACP, CSM
Certified FileMaker Developer

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An argument is a piece of needed information (otherwise known as input) in a function. So your typical function will have a name and an argument for the input value(s). When there are multiple input values, FileMaker will place some placeholder text in these areas and these areas are called parameters. The structure of the argument and the data you pass to it, act as the wrapper for what the function is going to do.

LeftWords ( text ; numberOfWords )

Here the function name is LeftWords. The argument is text ; numberOfWords (because this is the data needed for the function to perform). This function is made up of two parameters separated by the semicolon. Semicolons are used to separate one parameter from another. Semicolons are a soft boundary between multiple parameters. These parameters placeholders can be replaced with field names, literal text or a variable. You can place another function into one (or more) of the parameter place holders to have one function nested within another one.

FYI ... LeftWords is a function that can return a specified number of words from the left of a field or string of text. For example... LeftWords(LeSaux Media Service, 2) would return a text result of LeSaux Media. This is because I asked for the left 2 words of the string LeSaux Media Services.

FYI ... Variables can be created and used in scripts and calculations. Variables are useful in simplifying complex calculations, passing information from one process to another and opening doors to innovation within FileMaker design.

FYI ... Before FileMaker 7, commas were used to separate one parameter from another. You can still type in a comma and FileMaker will turn those commas to semicolons when you close the calculation dialog box.

© 2010 - Dwayne Wright - dwaynewright.com
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