Portage Bay
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Portage Bay

Mar/Apr 2013

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Mar/Apr 2013                                                     Volume: 4   Issue: 2

Pause on Error, Portland 2013

portland 2Kate and I attended the Pause on Error conference in Portland this week. "Pause on Error" is a FileMaker developer’s conference organized by the FileMaker developer’s community rather than by FileMaker, Inc.

It’s a very interesting contrast to the ‘official’ FileMaker developer’s conference that is coming up in August. It’s a much smaller conference with consequently smaller sessions, which leads to a lot more discussion and less lecturing, which I very much enjoyed.

Over the two days of the conference, there were 30 sessions on a wide variety of topics. I particularly enjoyed the session put on by Todd Geist about creating a community-wide shared library of re-usable FileMaker code modules. I hope this idea takes off and certainly plan to participate.

We did a session on the second day of the conference on Issue (bug) tracking systems. We showed the tools we use for this, a combination of open source tools and home grown FileMaker applications, and moderated a discussion of the tools used by other developers.

I really enjoyed the conference and also spending a few days in Portland, a city I like almost as much as Seattle.
~John Newhoff


An Introduction

joeHello, friends, fellow developers, and clients! My name is Joe Ranne and I'm the newest addition to the Portage Bay crew, hailing from the simple, big-small town of Omaha, NE. I want to give a bit of warning that this post will have very little to do with technically specific info, but rather general nerdery. Specifically speaking: me.

From tech support to I.T. Director, I like to think that I've seen it all. From the "computer won't turn on because it's not plugged in" to the "server room is full of smoke because a hard drive almost caught fire", nothing seems to catch me off guard these days. Like most tech-types, I've always dabbled in code, but it wasn't until 8 years ago that I really started diving into it. Which brings me to now. Portage Bay will be my introduction into full-time development and I'm looking forward to doing awesome things and expanding my inner nerd.

Nerd Life

I think we can all agree that being a developer means embracing that little bit of "nerd" that lives in every one of us. Admit it: we all laughed the first time we met Nick Burns on SNL. The reality is, being a "nerd" defines, in some strange way, a large majority of who I am. Whether it's time with my family, new technology, classic cars, woodworking, antique furniture, music, golf, food, whisky, tobacco pipes, or programming, embracing my "nerdiness" allows me to be fully engaged and, therefore, enjoy them to their fullest. With that said, I fully embrace nerd culture and all that comes with it (minus the glasses).

So, I'm looking forward to more posts and engaging in this awesome community. If you have the opportunity to visit Omaha or happen to see me wandering around at a conference, feel free to say hello!

For more about me, check out my About.Me page.

If you're into social media stuff, keep up with my adventures in nerdery on Twitter and Instagram!
~Joe Ranne


Create Launcher Files in 4D

4D_DevProFileMaker and 4th Dimension both have a similar requirement that a user needs the ability to launch either application and log into a specific database.

While FileMaker’s approach has been to create a URL protocol for this, 4th Dimension has created a registered file suffix, .4dlink, that allows you to create a simple custom XML file that a user can double click on to launch the database application.

When the user double clicks on a .4dlink file, the operating system launches 4th Dimension and 4D parses the xml file to get the server address. You can also embed a user name and password in the file if you would like to eliminate the need to enter those each time you log in.

4D has a good tech note on the .4dlink file that also includes a simple database that allows you to enter your database information and have it generate a .4dlink file for you.
~John Newhoff


Keep Up to Date with FileMaker and 4th Dimension


Who We Are

Portage Bay Solutions is a database development firm based in Seattle, Washington that's been working with organizations of all sizes for almost 20 years. Our customer service is top-notch; we answer and return calls promptly, stay within budget, and provide quality support to our clients during all phases of the development process.
  • FileMaker Pro & 4th Dimension upgrade and development
  • MS Access to FileMaker conversions
  • FileMaker Pro & 4th Dimension integration with other data environments
  • Web/Database integration
  • FileMaker Instant Web Publishing

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