Last week FileMaker launched a new campaign to encourage businesses to adopt the company’s flagship database product line as an app development platform for the iPhone and iPad. The move is unique and the idea of FileMaker as an enterprise development solution does have its appeal – creating FileMaker apps requires no software development knowledge or experience and it can deliver native performance and functionality that HTML 5 web apps can’t.
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FileMaker has announced the availability of its FileMaker 12 Certification exam. As with other certifications for IT professionals, FileMaker’s certification illustrates to potential employers or consulting customers that you have the key skills to deliver a solid and complete solution using FileMaker Pro and related products like FileMaker Go for iPhone and iPad and FileMaker Server.
Last week, I compared the costs of Mountain Lion Server with the licensing for Windows Server 2012 Essentials Edition. Both products are pretty clearly for the small business market. One of the big questions or concerns from readers centered around Microsoft’s Active Directory and Exchange. The assumption being that Apple didn’t provide anything similar.
That assumption, however, isn’t accurate. To clear up confusion, let’s take a look at what the core services and features in OS X Server actually offers and the audience that can best benefit from Mountain Lion Server – small businesses looking to set up a handful of services for a relatively small number of users.
Much of the discussion about the iPhone and iPad in business focuses on larger enterprise companies and organizations. While the devices are clearly have a lot to offer in the big business arena, the iPhone and iPad are also excellent tools for smaller companies. The versatility of iOS devices, the iPad in particular, lets small business owners perform many crucial tasks like tracking expenses, generating invoices, and planning new projects quickly and easily from a single device.
The App Store is full of apps that can help launch, manage, and grow a business of any size. Many business apps useful to small business are fairly well-known. Square’s mobile payment system (and PayPal’s competing solutions) get a fair amount of coverage in mainstream and tech media stories, for example. There are, however, many great apps for small business users in the App Store that don’t get that kind of publicity.
If you’re a small business owner (or employee), here are ten amazing apps that you may not know about which can help you run your business more easily and efficiently.
SeedCode has announced a new and very impressive template/add-on for FileMaker Pro 12 and FileMaker Go that let’s FileMaker developers build real-time instant message style chats into FileMaker database systems. The new template, dubbed FMChat is built entirely using FileMaker 12, which means that no additional backend system is needed to use it.
FMChat is particularly impressive in that it allows chat participants to interact with each other and with database content. It’s even designed with automation in mind. Chat sessions can be used to trigger scripts and automated actions. Potential actions appear as links in the chat transcript. The template can be used in a number of different ways but some examples include approving purchase orders, accepting event invitations, and closing help desk cases.
FileMaker is offering early registration pricing for developers and database professionals attending the company’s annual developer conference. The conference, known as FileMaker DevCon will be held July 16-19, 2012 in Miami. Special pricing for conference attendees extends for nearly three weeks until May 22. Special hotel rates for attendees will continue through the middle of next month.
FileMaker DevCon is a four day event that will feature “under-the-hood” sessions, an Exhibitor Showcase, and several opportunities to connect with FileMaker engineers, product managers, and the company’s tech support team. The event includes more than 70 sessions for creating, managing, and deploying FileMaker solutions. The sessions will cover the latest version of the FileMaker lineup including desktop, server, and mobile versions of the product.
I’ve always thought of FileMaker as “databases for the rest of us” – the software is easy to understand for even novice users, it has an immense focus on visual design that allows users to create impressive looking solutions quickly and easily, and it packs quite a bit of power. All of those traits get a boost in FileMaker 12, which was released this morning.
My first impression on using FileMaker 12 is that the company took all the things I’ve always like about FileMaker Pro and Server and turned them up to 11 – particularly when it comes to making mobile solutions.
SAN FRANCISCO, MACWORLD 2011 — If there’s one thing we’re hearing over and over at Macworld this year, it’s the word “enterprise.” There’s a lot of companies getting ready for a huge wave of iOS deployments by enterprise in 2011.
One company ready to jump on the enterprise bandwagon is FileMaker, whose FileMaker Go iOS app allows FileMaker databases to run on the iPad or iPhone. That means businesses can make custom database apps — everything from email clients to iTunes clones — without going through Apple.
“A lot of people think they have to develop their own app to do something but its not necessarily necessary to do an app,” said FileMaker spokesman Kevin Mallon. “If you’ve got FileMaker Pro, you’ve got an app.”
According to FileMaker, its database software is currently the only way enterprise can get custom apps on the iPhone or iPad without coding a custom solution and submitting it through the App Store.
The pharmaceutical company Merck, for example, created an iOS app to share the company lexicon of drug names, special acronyms and competing drug companies’ names and terms.
“You don’t have to be a serious programmer to do an app,” said Mallon. “It’s dead easy.”