12 posts in this topic
Let's talk EVERNOTE
Evernote has been a true game changer for me. I think it's such an amazing tool it deserves it's own place to share how we're using it.
Here's a quick description of the way I'm using it recently - but I may change my organization over time. I'm interested in how you all are using it and has anyone done integration with FM with the Evernote API.
How I'm working with it:
• Client Info: I create a notebook per client. I like to keep a NOTE for all business logic, language, etc...
• Features: I often set up 1 NOTE to store historical notes on a single page.
• UI Design Screenshots: I create a note with before and after screen shots, since evernote does OCR on images you can search for a word that might appear on a layout screen shot for finding it again later, for reference.
• Workflow Screenshots: As I work I screenshot before and after graph work or relationship settings, scripts when working fast and wanting to quickly capture changes. Just did a huge data migration and captured screenshots at given points to slow myself down and double check my work. I could see if I had "Add new records" selected. A bit crazy but I appreciated it slowing me down just a bit and forced me to stick to a rule I try to live by, check it 3 x. For the data migration project it was helpful to see the record counts and a bit of import mapping. An odd use case but something I tried.
• Wiki-like Topic Notes: I have a FileMaker notebook, inside that I have a NOTE per TOPIC, like SQL and I'll put most of my links on 1 page for quick reference but I'm not sure if that's better than having individual notes. I guess I'm using it a bit like a wiki. I like it because instead of having to read a really long list of notes within my FileMaker notebook - I can get right to my favorite SQL notes.
I could go on and on here... I will pause and come back when I have some more time. Must leave the forum for a bit.
Inspector Pro and Base Elements
I've been evaluating both Inspector Pro 3 and Base Elements 3. I'm a very small developer, so for me, either of these tools is a significant investment. I've been surprised by the lack of any comprehensive review of a recent version of either of these tools, let alone a thorough comparison. This has made it rather challenging to find my way into either tool.
Both tools are very powerful and would seem very useful. There is a quite a lot of overlap in their capabilities, though the interface design is different. Unfortunately, they both suffer from lack of detailed documentation, tutorials, etc. As a result, the learning curve is steep, and I suspect it would take a user a long time to actually realize the full potential of either tool. Inspector Pro has several video tutorials on specific features, but they are only moderately useful as they are not terribly clear either logically or visually. Better than nothing for sure.
So far, I've found a few small things that are easier to do in one program vs the other -- for instance, finding script triggers is much simpler in Inspector Pro. Finding script steps attached to buttons is easier in Base Elements. I'm sure there are lots of other things like this that I haven't found yet, but unless you specifically need one particular thing, this may not mean that much to you.
As has been said in other places, Inspector Pro uses a more scripted UI - a bit slicker, but less like native filemaker. Pretty much personal preference. Inspector has more reports but I haven't looked at them enough to say how useful they are.
One significant difference is that Inspector pro has some very interesting graphical visualization tools for looking at the schema. However, these are available ONLY in the mac version. I've asked the developer if they will be added to the Windows version - he said they are looking at it, but did not commit that this feature would be added to the Windows version. Both versions cost the same amount and have the same version number, which I find disturbing, as the Mac version clearly has significantly more features. I've seen other apps with a similar difference between the mac and Win version, and they deal with it by keeping the Win version at a lower version number and charging less, which in my mind is more appropriate. I assume that if the Win version is ever brought up to the same level as the Mac version, it will happen as an upgrade which will cost additional money - to get the same features. That bothers me, but that's a personal opinion.
In terms of support - I have asked both developers several questions as I've evaluated their tools. Folks at Inspector Pro have responded to some, but not all. Nick at Goya (Base Elements) has been phenomenally responsive. I give a lot of points for that, as I'm not even a paying customer yet.
Right now, if you're a Mac user, the visualizations in Inspector pro might be a reason to prefer that tool - but you should look at them and see how helpful you find them (I can't tell since I'm not on a Mac).
If you're on Windows, I'd say they both have strengths, and it may come down to what particular capabilities you most need. I wish they'd both work on their documentation. Base Elements definitely wins on the support perspective.
As I continue to evaluate them, I'll post more if I find other helpful differences.