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Office Map


Ryan Prager
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Our company has a need to have a map of the office. This map would include all of the offices, cubicles, and other areas that are occupied by an employee or piece of equipment. These areas have certain data tied to them such as a user, PC, network ports, monitors, ect.

For example:

Office 220 has:

User

Network/Phone Ports

PC

Monitors

All of the data I have stored into FileMaker. I'm wondering if there is a way to make a map out of my data. Attached is a simple example of what my map would look like. Thanks

Office_Map_Example.bmp

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Hmm, "Map" implies there's importants to the relative locations of each cubical, but your data doesn't seem to include coordinates. If you only need them listed by Room, in two columns (as your example shows), this is easy enough to do with a List View layout, with the column option. Perhaps you can clarify your needs.

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Thanks for the quick reply.

Well actually to make more sense of my original post, I would probably actually divide the map up into 3 sections (we have 3 different suites of offices). This could be 3 different records in FileMaker (Suite 100, 200, 300)

Most of the offices are not lined up in columns like the picture.

My original idea was to use Microsoft Visio to import our building map and then using ODBC I would be able to take my data from FM and place it anywhere I needed to in Visio. I tried this method a couple months back with no real luck. It would work but it isn't dynamic when changes occur.

That's why I was wondering if there was a way in FM since all my data is already in there.

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If you had just a few workstations to map, you could hard-code them on a layout (using a separate relationship for each to see thier related data), but the layout itself would have to be modified for any changes to the physical locations of the cubicals.

If you want something more dynamic, I think you'd have to use Flash or a plug-in, like xmChart. I don't know my way around Flash, but I seem to remember a demo that allowed the objects (like your cubicals) to be movable, while staying linked to their related data.

Using xmChart to put together a map wouldn't be quite that interactive, as the coordinates of each cubical would need to be figured out ahead of time and entered as record data for each Cubical. The plugin then takes all that coordinate data, and basically puts it together on an x-y chart.

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I took a look at the website you provided. They had something about system maps but it seemed much different than anything I was looking for. However, the chessboard file was very interesting. I just wish I could see the code behind it. I'll see if I can track down the creator.

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If all your cubicles can fit a common grid (common to all suites), then it can be done - and it's not that difficult either. Otherwise you'll need to look for a solution outside of Filemaker.

Well yes there are some areas where the cubicles are in nice rows. There are others like offices that are just spread all over the building. But I am interested. How would I go about this project assuming they can fit a common grid for all suites?

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Basically, you create a table of GridSlots (could be nothing but serial numbers), and a "x" (all records) relationship to this table. You place multiple portals to GridSlots on the layout, each portal starting on different row, and showing one or more rows.

Now all you need to do is assign each cubicle to a slot and relate cubicles to GridSlots by SlotID. Place fields from cubicles inside the portals. To show only cubicles from a particular suite, add a global gSuiteID field to the GridSlots table and filter the relationship to cubicles by this field.

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Now all you need to do is assign each cubicle to a slot and relate cubicles to GridSlots by SlotID. Place fields from cubicles inside the portals. To show only cubicles from a particular suite, add a global gSuiteID field to the GridSlots table and filter the relationship to cubicles by this field.

That's what I meant... with a navigation engine moving things around

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Interesting concept....however, in my "basic" example a button will get to the desired information faster than the "pause" you must wait for, for the tool tip to kick in.

A tool tip needs to be "programmed," and is not a record. Example... if an employee moves cubicles or is fired... you are not altering a record, you have to re-program the change. I would not go that route... you want to be able to modify a record.

I am contimplating building my office network map in the style I presented. However, I only have about 80 terminals and printers and 30 employees. I pretty much know all my IP addresses by heart... and who sits where.

Edited by Guest
More thoughts on tool tips....
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Here's a way to dynamically view all locations graphically within one view.

You have a table setup that contains one record for each cubicle with an id field, and another id field for floor. You can add more if necessary, building, state, country, etc.

Do a self join relationship on these id fields.

In a new layout make a one row portal, and use the set initial row on each portal to increment thru the quantity of locations you have.

I've set this up for different floors and rooms for reservations for instance. Or in the case of factory quality control I used this to graphically allow operators to choose from the map on a touch screen different machines.

Then within the portal I normally have a calculated text field that gives details, such as table occupied, or next reservation information, etc. This is a clear background field, then behind it is a calculated container field that can change the color of the entire portal area or a graphic, etc. Makes it easy to see open tables, running machines, etc.

You can also put buttons in these. Use a scriptparameter to identify the button, simply a number 1,2,or 3, then program all the buttons to perform the same script. And test the scriptparameter to determine which button was pressed, use the go to related record script step to set the working record, and go from there.

I've set these up quite quickly, once you do one the way you want the graphics, just duplicate them and go in and change the initial portal row number. Group them and move them around where you want on the layout.

I've set these up to where the admin user can move them around, make a new layout, say for buffet's versus sit down, etc.

Hope this makes sense.

Rod

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