Options To The Point And Shoot Method Within FileMaker Calculations

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

WEB: www.dwaynewright.com
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I know of one FileMaker developer that always tried typing his calculations instead of using the mouse to choose his fields, operators or functions from the lists that FileMaker provides. He wanted to get to a point where he knew his functions inside, outside and backwards. He also thought that over a few years, typing in calculations would save him a lot of design time because he didn’t have to wait for a function or field list to scroll. If he made a mistake, FileMaker would generally warn him that he made a syntax error in his calculation.

Now he had adopted this mindset well before FileMaker 7 came out and FileMaker changed the names of many functions including the entire Status family (now called the Get family). I always wondered how he felt about the time invested in memorizing the names of functions that were phased out.

Overall, I think this is a very good idea and have started doing this myself, when I have time. Now there are some operators that you might not know the keyboard combinations in which to type. I don’t know the Windows versions of these key combinations because I’m more of a Macintosh guy, but here are a few keyboard combinations that are not that obvious if you want to type your calculations in directly.

Carriage Return Symbol ( ¶ )..............option 7
The Not Equal Sign ( ≠ )..............option =
Greater Than Equal To ( ≥)..............option . (period)
Less Than Equal To ( ≤ )..............option , (comma)

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