Many of us FileMaker developers stumbled into the platform. We discovered it one day on our computer or were given a copy of it. We found FileMaker to be useful to rapidly develop a custom app for our personal or business needs, and so we invested time into learning it. Our evenings and weekends were spent on such places as,, the FileMaker Community, and other places where we could begin to understand how to use the program.

Along the way we picked up techniques that may or may not be the best technique for a given situation. We also may not have become aware of all the tools a developer has to better develop, test, and analyze.

If that is you, stay tuned. In this series of posts, we will explore what it means to learn FileMaker like a boss as we develop the techniques and flesh out mindsets we all should have.

My Stumbling Story . . .

I am a former teacher, teaching for 15 years, in grades 2 through 7. About year 11, I stumbled into FileMaker in a school that used the application simply to print paychecks for students. Though the administrator was the only one to use it, I became fascinated with the app and begged to help out with the development. I did the usual things described above and developed a pretty good system for my school: for the teachers, administrators, and secretarial staff. It expanded to three schools and 100 people using it.

A few years into my development, I stumbled upon parts of the platform that I had never used. I started to learn FileMaker more like a boss, and now those tools and concepts are essential to daily work. I look back on the very clear events and wonder how did I go so long without using, for example, the Script Debugger (I really did spend about 2 years NOT using that thing)

The years have paid off, and I feel like gained my footing in my development. I’ve worked hard, have struggled with learning techniques, and have learned from the community and some of the best (and possibly award-winning) developers. Everyday I regain more of my footing.

Let’s Learn FileMaker Like a Boss

  • learn great techniques quicker
  • understand the essential concepts of FileMaker
  • use all the tools available for the entire platform

These goals are here because I discovered these items ‘late’ in my development learning. We are going to explore how to become a FileMaker Boss! in this series. We’ll start with three items I discovered for the first time well into my development career. We will discuss such things as the Script Debugger, the Data Viewer, the Developer tools and other tools.  Finally, we will explore such concepts as relationships and transactions. We will describe techniques such as related value lists or data visualization. And all the while, we will be a FileMaker Boss!

The Topics

We will cover many topics, and those will be listed here. Check back for a new topic. The first three topics come directly from my own learning back in my beginner days. Those three are:


See yah soon as we Learn FileMaker Like a Boss.