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Looking for an Organization Chart drawing software linked to Filemaker advanced

Posted on 2007-11-21
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Last Modified: 2009-03-14
Hello
I am trying to create  an organization chart that should be linked to organization data stored in a Filemaker 9.0 advanced data base.
I tried Concept Draw, but it does not link dynamically and  it is cumbersome to implement.
Any suggestion of a better software solution?

Michel
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Question by:MTaillet
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lesouef earned 125 total points
ID: 20331083
no idea, but you should look for apps which are able to use an SQL base, and use the ODBC driver to connect to filemaker because I doubt anyone has done something to connect to filemaker format: it is proprietary, and then subject to changes without notice.
you may try such a thing:
http://www.sqlusa.com/bestpractices2005/organizationtree/
but this unreadable for me, badly shown on top...
Just curious, what kind or organization are you trying to represent? a hierarchy I guess? how do you want to show it?
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by:MTaillet
ID: 20333155
Thanks.
The project is for a small company (27 people) using Filemaker for Budgeting, timesheets, ... They want to create kind of a company dashboard with a graphic display of the 5 sub activities, their organization and some budget, accounting and performance data. It is all mac based.
It also means that they are not using SQLBase, ... Officially, ConceptDraw claims to be able to connect (the advanced version of Filemaker is open to SQLquerries), but I could not make it work properly.

So to me the display is the crucial part indeed. I would be happy with a hierarchy graphic display(tree of some kind) of any kind, based on a excel intermediate file even. Any idea?
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by:lesouef
ID: 20333304
true, fm stand alone can be an odbc server, but if you use a fm server, needs the adv version.
I have no experience with the odbc part on servers / osX.
on fm stand alone, it works... not very fast but... actually, since fm9 it is easier to make fm to read/write to sql databses, but that's not what you need.
graphic apperance: depending on the complexity you need, you can do simple things using the sub-summaries of the layouts in fm. it won't meet any dedicated app, including excel (which I would avoid since nothing can really be automated), but maybe that can help if your goal is to draw a box, and 5 sub-boxes on the line below, but is yr data structure compatible with that?
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by:lesouef
ID: 20333465
the latter idea requires to re-organize data in a table to match the layout capabilites, but at least it remains inside fm. i can only a simple hierarchy, not a flow chart for instance
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by:MTaillet
ID: 20334116
You are probably right. I will investigate further the reporting capabilities of fm.
Thanks again
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by:BadLT
ID: 20354730
if you can handle Flash... FMP can present a Flash based (drag and drop style) front - end for FMP solutions...

there are some mind-blowing examples available from http://www.isolutions-inc.com/ in the webinar area...
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by:BadLT
ID: 20354732
you could also run a connection to Visio via ODBC... i know that will work.  as long as you set up the ODBC correctly on both sides.


wouldn't be animated like flash... but it would display dynamic info on your chart.
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by:lesouef
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what do you mean (I don't use Visio), Visio can read data from an odbc source? can it read sql also? major good point if yes. would the current version of powerpoint or impress also be able to read from a data source?
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by:BadLT
ID: 20360027
well... I will look into this question further today but if you've ever built and published a visio chart... it uses XML and you can make changes ... e.g. an org chart... you can change the displayed phone number for a person simply by changing it on the data table VIsio creates...

this is how it works when you start from scratch in Visio, but I imagine you can use an external data source no problem...

I'll get back to you on this... to run an Object Oriented Database though... Flash is really the way to go, but that's a lot of time and energy one must invest.  (The pay off is incredible though)

The more i think about this solution the more I agree with lesouf.

The EASIEST way to accomplish this is to simply make a black layout and use the FMP drawing tools and drop merge fields from whatever table (and related tables) you want to display... then set the page setup options and you're good to go.. . and it will update info as your database does.

The biggest question here, and one that has yet to be addressed is this:

WHO SEES THE ORG CHART and HOW?

do they see it in FMP?  or do they see it via IWP, CWP??  

cause that makes a difference.

example... you want a chart on the web for your customers/clients??  then you need to plan for restrictions within the FMP designer...

awaiting the update... lol
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by:BadLT
BadLT earned 125 total points
ID: 20361956
Here's more info on Visio and Database connections...

http://www.databasejournal.com/features/oracle/article.php/3529531 - pretty straightforward... this is the how-to for an Oracle DB connection, but as you can see... there's a check box for SQL...

http://www.design-drawing.com/visio/rgavt2.htm - Visio and ODBC.... totally do-able.. and frankly... I can't wait to jump on this... (it will auto generate work-flow charts based on your DB!!)

http://www.maadmob.net/donna/blog/archives/000639.html - another helpful article on Visio and DB Connection...
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by:lesouef
ID: 20362192
interesting indeed
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by:BadLT
ID: 20399878
lesouef:

in response to:
what do you mean (I don't use Visio), Visio can read data from an odbc source? can it read sql also? major good point if yes. would the current version of powerpoint or impress also be able to read from a data source?

Powerpoint SHOULD be able to access an ODBC source... I don't know anything about impress.

but I will look at Powerpoint and get back to you.
B
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by:Loganathan Natarajan
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