FileMaker Pro 8 review

  • Expert Rating: We rate this 7 out of 10We rate this 7 out of 10We rate this 7 out of 10We rate this 7 out of 10We rate this 7 out of 10 We rate this 7 out of 10

  • Price When Reviewed: 219 . 129 . 329 . 199

  • Pros: A comprehensive tool for database development and asset management. New features make the creation and layout of databases a lot easier.

  • Cons: FileMaker’s power means it can be a difficult program to learn and may simply offer too much in the way of development tools for those looking for a simple asset management solution.

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FileMaker has been the standard database development tool for some time, at least for people in business markets. It’s also become more user-friendly over the course of its version history, making it a viable solution for creative industries, and those needing a powerful asset management platform.

For artists though, FileMaker’s sheer power has made it a daunting and off-putting solution for the relatively simple task of managing large quantities of digital images, documents, and other files. Indeed, there are purpose-built solutions for simpler asset management, including Portfolio by Extensis and Canto Cumulus.

FileMaker is quite different from these kinds of programs – it offers much more than just out-of the box solutions for digital asset management. FileMaker shines at creating complex relational databases, managing contacts, resources, and stock, but this latest version goes some way towards offering database users, rather then just developers, an easier-to-handle database solution.

 border=0 />There are a number of simple improvements in FileMaker 8, including the ability to save information as Excel or Adobe PDF format files, a common format in the creative industries as well as in enterprise. PDF Maker and Excel Maker offer greater ability to share and distribute database information, including images. There are also new email tools that would be useful for sending custom emails to customers or clients. 
A criticism of the program in the past is that it was difficult for non-technical users to create good-looking, well-laid-out databases. This may be trivial to business users but the alignment tools in this new version make it easier to design custom databases that are as easy on the eye as they are easy to use. 
<b>Flexible friend?</b>
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