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I'm creating a database to hold our orchestra's library information including information regarding timings and performances. Each record is a different piece.

For the timings, I have a total time, title, sub-time, and section field. Since each piece may have multiple sections, I'd like the subTime and section fields to be repeating. The totalTime will be the sum of all subTimes. I can do all this.

What I would like, is to be able to press a button that would add an extra subTime and section cell below the current one. I'm not sure is ScriptMaker can do this, but applescript is ok with me too.

Regarding the performances, I would like to keep track of the performances including date, orchestra, conductor, and location fields. I would like to do the same thing for this as the timings - have a button that "adds" a performance.

The Timings and Performance History are two different layouts.

How can this be accomplished without cluttering the layout with unneeded fields? Thanks.

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For the timings, I have a total time, title, sub-time, and section field. Since each piece may have multiple sections, I'd like the subTime and section fields to be repeating. The totalTime will be the sum of all subTimes.

What you're describing is a perfect case for using a portal to a related file. This would be used in place of the repeating field or list of similar fields that you currently have set up. I would suggest you read up on portals and relationships to get the basic idea. If you have specific questions, let us know.

Anyway, once the relationships and portals are set up, an option in the relationship definition can be enabled to allow creation of related records directly in the portal. Or if you still want to script it, that can be done too, it just takes a little more work.

How can this be accomplished without cluttering the layout with unneeded fields?

Figuring out how to organize layout elements so the interface is easy to use, but shows all the necessary items is a big part of a developer's job. I'd suggest you rummage around in the Right Brain forum for some ideas. Also, look into using "tabbed layouts".

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Thanks for the idea. I'll look into portals and see what I can find. Something to keep in mind is that I will want the end user to be able to enter in all the data in one db.

As for the other fields, I'm already using a tabbed layout, so it's good to hear I'm on the right track. The timings and performance history are different tabs.

BTW, EVN is a great game.

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Something to keep in mind is that I will want the end user to be able to enter in all the data in one db.

Try not to get hung up on the number of files needed. Using multiple files to get the data normalized is well worth the minor troubles involved.

EVN is a great game.

Ya. Unfortunately I've been flying around in some jumbo frieghter lately. Profitable, but not very exciting.

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I've looked into relational dbs and portals, and it doesn't seem to be quite what I'm looking for.

For the database, I have each piece the library has as a record.

To enter in a new record, the user uses a tabbed layout that has the following parts:

General - This hold basic information such as publisher, editor, bowings, notes, etc. [done]

Part Inventory - This is where the numbers of each part (violin 1, violin 2, horn 1, etc.) are entered. [done]

Instrumentation - The fields in this area are mostly automatically filled in using the part inventory, but can be modified by the user if needed. [done]

Program Information - This includes specifics timings for each section of a piece. This will vary from piece to piece. I have a total time field, title field, subTime repeating field, and section repeating field. I would like to have only the number of repetitions as necessary show up. I would have a button that adds a repetition. If there are more performances than space, I would like a scroll bar to appear. If this can't be done, I would at least like to have all the repetitions and a scroll bar that appears if needed.

Performance History - This holds the performances where the record was performed. I would like the same thing to happen as in the Program Information with the scrolling.

There are also other layouts to allow for the printing of inventory sheets and program information sheets (which are slightly different) as well as blank ones. The inventory sheet is pretty much done. The program information includes the timings and the performance history. I would like there to be minimal space surrounding these. (essentially it would automatically change the layout for each record - but it would be the same layout).

As for using a relational db, there seems to be a set number of entries allowed, and then there's a scroll bar if needed. This is fine except for when I go to print it out. Also, Would I be able to set up a self-join portal? I'm still trying to figure out exactly what I can do with these. Do you have a good reference site?

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I'm pretty sure portals are the best approach for what you've described as they allow an unspecified number of entries. As for printing, that's generally best done from within the related file, using a standard sub-summary report (showing the related parent fields as needed.)

Unfortunately, I don't have a clear enough understanding of the elements in your solution to be able to give you an example of how to relationally structure this. If you can explain the number of each of those things and how they might relate to each other, or post screenshots or a clone of your file, I'm sure I could give more specific advice.

In the mean time, I'd recommend that you study up on relational design and how it works in FileMaker by checking out a couple white papers from http://www.foundationdbs.com/downloads.html . Look at the 'White Paper for FMP Novices' and 'Database Design for FMP.'

Also, there are many popular books on FileMaker which have some coverage of relational design. Some of these books have been reviewed in the Product Reviews section of FM Forums, or are recommended in the FileMaker Books section.

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