Tag Archives: 500 point text trick

Conditional Invisibility, part 2

One of my favorite aspects of FileMaker Pro is reporting, and I appreciate it when a client poses a reporting challenge, because the phrase “we can’t do that” is not in my vocabulary (except when used as an example of a phrase not in my vocabulary). But recently I was given a reporting request that momentarily tempted me to utter those forbidden words.

Background: the client gives away prizes. Each prize falls into a “category”, and each category has one or more “types”.

The request: For a given date range, display and summarize prizes by category, and by type within that category, with each category starting on a fresh page… so far so good, right? The hierarchy is Prize Category ā†’ Prize Type, and FileMaker developers can crank out reports like that in their sleep.

But then came the twist: show different columns of information depending on category and type. And yes, the client wanted this all in a single report.

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Conditional Invisibility, part 1

I mentioned this technique in passing a few months ago (Portal Sorting, part 2), but today I would like to examine it in greater detail. Have you ever had a text object or a field that you wanted to selectively change based on some logical condition? For example, say you have a check box, and want the label next to the check box to change depending on whether the box is checked or not, like so:

In the old (pre-FileMaker 9) days, you could have used auto-enter or calculated field trickery, but now, thanks to the modern miracle of Conditional Formatting, you can make this happen at the layout level, rather than having to pollute your table schema.

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