The MightyData crew rolled into the Hilton Bayfront Hotel in San Diego for the 2011 FileMaker Developer Conference on August 1st. We started off the week with a sailing trip around San Diego Bay and saw an aircraft carrier, sea lions and enjoyed a break from the extreme heat we are having in Texas.
Some of our highlights from the conference include:
MightyData hosted the first-ever FileMaker Feud, a version of the iconic Family Feud game show. Eight contestants completed for prizes by choosing the most popular answer to survey questions about layouts, calculations, scripting and more. The game was close and came down to the final question, “Name a reason to use an OnOpen script in FileMaker Pro?” In the end, Laura Betz from Cross IT won the iPad 2 when her competitor was unable to steal the question. Congratulations Laura!
Sessions by MightyData
Our own Martha Zink and Anders Monsen combined to deliver three DevCon sessions. Tuesday morning Martha began on the right foot with Starting from Scratch: How to Plan Your New Solution. Judging by the near-capacity crowd, there is a huge need for this information.
Tuesday afternoon Anders Monsen presented Core Elements of PHP for FileMaker. He discussed the concept of CRUD (create, read, update, delete) with an emphasis on helping a new developer start working with PHP.
Then, Friday morning Martha Zink explored Ideas for Enhancing Your Existing Solution With the Latest Features. She explained how a developer can use the newest FileMaker features to improve solutions started in FileMaker 7-10. Not only did she provide reasoning on when to implement new features but also showed some creative ways of using features like filtered portals and snapshot link.
MightyData had a booth at the conference and offered free coaching sessions. Several attendees took advantage of the opportunity to test drive our MightyCoach services. Coaching is designed to bridge the gap between classroom/online training and real-world development. We simply stand by your side and offer guidance through your development process.
Also at DevCon, we announced MightySummit, our all-you-can-learn event for FileMaker developers in Las Vegas, March 21-23, 2012. It is designed for in-house developers, although independent consultants are also welcome.
The MightyData team will explore real-world development problems we have solved. For example, how do you process over 100,000 messages from an external system overnight to update the web site for a major retailer? Or, how do you track and report on 1,000 fields in a medical research database when the data points change on a weekly basis?
There were several new product announcements at DevCon. Some of the ones that caught our attention were:
- GoZync – Helps synchronize a database between FileMaker Go on the iPhone/iPad with FileMaker Server
- CCPivot – Adds fast, flexible pivot tables to a FileMaker solution without the need for Excel
- RefreshFM – A framework to automate updating a FileMaker solution including handling the import of existing data
- DocuBin – A complete document management solution for FileMaker, built upon SuperContainer
- CNS Barcode – A FileMaker plugin to create and scan barcodes from the desktop using any camera
Although there were more sessions than time available, these are some of the best sessions we attended:
- Year In Review – John Sindelar from SeedCode reviewed the most innovative FileMaker solutions and techniques from the last 12 months
- WAN Performance – Mark Richman from Skeleton Key discussed how to design a solution for maximum performance over the WAN
- FM Go Showcase – Matt Navarre and Molly Connolly showed real-world iPhone and iPad solutions leveraging the power of FileMaker Go
- Under The Hood WAN Performance – John Thatcher, lead software engineer for FileMaker Inc., explained how to monitor a FileMaker solution to improve WAN performance
- Understanding Commit Record – Todd Geist from Geist Interactive discussed how FileMaker saves data and how to create better solutions with this knowledge
To be honest, this simply scratches the surface. If you want to learn more about DevCon 2011, join us at Dallas FMPug (FileMaker user group) Friday, August 12 from 11am-1pm. Also, start planning now to attend the 2012 FileMaker Developer Conference in Miami, July 16-19. Hope to see you there!