FileMaker Portal Filtering and Sorting, Deliberate Practice

FileMaker Portal Filtering and Sorting

FileMakerHacks recently posted on FileMaker portal filtering and sorting using SQL queries, something a lot FileMaker developer avoid due to the complexity of using SQL queries inside the FileMaker framework:

In this article we are going to explain how to implement portal filtering in FileMaker portal using SQL techniques, because it is easy, powerful and extremely flexible!

I mean you have still to learn some SQL, which has a very different syntax than the regular FileMaker syntax, it has also a very different logic, moreover, as it is not FileMaker native language — you have to type it by yourself, and not make any mistake! Furthermore FileMaker provides you some dynamic parameters, which are inconvenient, because they need to be put in the function parameter in the correct order (like in FileMaker custom functions), but when you call them in your main SQL query you have to call them in the correct order (unlike in FileMaker custom functions) with always the same name: a question mark «?».

This guest post by Joel Englander is long and complex, but is worth the read if you want the following for your users:

  • Minimize table occurrences
  • Increase the speed of portal sorts
  • Allow your users to search from the beginning and the end of the search field
  • Allow your users to search whether or not a the search field Contains the search phrase.

And that’s pretty powerful stuff. In the free example file it is easy and fast to find a list all people in Pasadena, CA with a name ending in “berg”.

For an alternative, easier, more FileMaker native way to sort a portal, check out Tom Fitch’s method here.  He also links a free downloadable example file.

Source: FM/SQL Portal Filter + Dynamic Sort | FileMakerHacks

The Myth and Magic of Deliberate Practice | James Clear

A must read post from James Clear on magic and limits of deliberate practice.  It turns out that the top people in most fields have some genetic markers that make them able to shine in certain areas.  And that is fine, as far as it goes.  But those people don’t make it to the top without a lot of “Deliberate Practice”:

Sun Tzu, the legendary military strategist who wrote The Art of War, believed in only fighting battles where the odds were in his favor. He wrote, “In war, the victorious strategist only seeks battle after the victory has been won.”

Similarly, we should seek to fight battles where the genetic odds are in our favor. It is impossible to try everything in life. Each of us could become any one of a billion different things. Thus, if you aspire to maximize your success, then you should train hard and practice deliberately in areas where the genetic odds are in your favor (or where you can overlap your skills in a compelling way).

Deliberate practice is necessary for success, but it is not sufficient. The people at the top of any competitive field are both well-suited and well-trained. To maximize your potential, you need to not only engage in consistent and purposeful practice, but also to align your ambitions with your natural abilities.

Regardless of where we choose to apply ourselves, deliberate practice can help us maximize our potential—no matter what cards we were dealt. That is the magic of deliberate practice. It turns potential into reality.

Read it all, as there is much more to absorb than just the conclusion.

Genius may have its limitations, but stupidity is not thus handicapped[info]

Elbert Hubbard (1856 – 1915)



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