Multiple statements in a calculation

Posted on 2014-04-21
Last Modified: 2014-04-22
I have a table with a series of text fields that indicate if a person/company is a particular contact "Type" (I sure wish FileMaker had boolean fields).  I need to build up another field in the same table with a calculation that would go like this:

If ( Cash = "Yes";                 FilterTypes = "C";                           FilterTypes_Current = "" )
if ( Item = "Yes";                 FilterTypes = FilterTypes + "I";      FilterTypes = FilterTypes + "")
if ( Bookstore  = "Yes";       FilterTypes = FilterTypes + "B";    FilterTypes = FilterTypes + "")

FileMaker will not allow me to put the multiple if statements in the calculation block.
This aren't nested ifs but they each stand alone.  I need to end up with a text field that has a one character identified for each type that has been checked as yes.  Each type stands alone and none are mutually exclusive.  They can all be checked or none.

How do I do this?

Thanks in advance.  This is my first post to Experts Exchange.
Bill Plunkett
Question by:William Plunkett
Welcome to Experts Exchange

Add your voice to the tech community where 5M+ people just like you are talking about what matters.

  • Help others & share knowledge
  • Earn cash & points
  • Learn & ask questions
LVL 45

Expert Comment

ID: 40013810
Can you package that into a function?  Pass the three field values into the function as parameters and return the desired FilterTypes value.
You should try this expression:
FilterTypes = GetValue(“¶C”;Exact(Cash;"Yes")+1)+GetValue(“¶I”;Exact(Item;"Yes")+1)+GetValue(“¶B”;Exact(Bookstore;"Yes")+1)

Open in new window

Note:  I think you might have a problem with this part of your expression
FilterTypes_Current = "" )
LVL 25

Accepted Solution

Will Loving earned 500 total points
ID: 40013826
Hi Bill,

FileMaker does have boolean capabilities and will indeed let you do what you are looking for in a number of ways. I don't completely follow the logic of your existing calculation, but the basics are that if you want to create a list of FilterTypes you should probably use the List() function. In additional, rather than having multiple individual fields for Cash, Item, Bookstore, etc. you can create a single value list of all the FilterTypes, display them as checkboxes on a single field and then use the PatternCount() to determine if they are there (or create a calculation that takes the first character of each selection).

So here is one way to do this. I'm telling you how to do what you asked but since I don't know what you are doing with the result of the calculation there may in fact be easier ways to achieve your actual search goal without all of this.

To concatenate a series of values together, whether they are actual field entries or the results of a calculation, you use the List() function. In this case I'm using the Case() function rather than If() because they function the same except for the fact that the Case() let's you make have unlimited If/Then conditions rather than just one. Multiple conditions are needed here but I'm using it anyway. Here's an example:

Case ( Cash = "Yes" ; "C" ) ;
Case ( Item = "Yes" ; "I" ) ;
Case ( Bookstore  = "Yes" ; "B" )

The result of this is a "list" which in FileMaker means a carriage return separated set of values. If Cash, Item and Bookstore were all checked then the result would be:


If you want to make this into a string with no returns, then wrap it in the Substitute() function.

      Case ( Cash = "Yes" ; "C" ) ;
      Case ( Item = "Yes" ; "I" ) ;
      Case ( Bookstore  = "Yes" ; "B" )
    ) ;
"¶" ; "" )

This replaces the carriage return with nothing. Alternately you could put in a space, comma or whatever you wanted in the second set of double quotes.

Now, a couple of tips:

1. If you use single, separate fields for Cash, Item, Bookstore, etc., and assuming the only option is "Yes" or null (empty), you can make it boolean by simply using the is empty() function, so instead of  Case ( not isempty( Cash ) ; "C" )   I've used the "not" before isempty() to say that the field must not be empty for the Calculation to be True.

2. If you use a single field - I'll call it FilterSelect, formatted with Check Boxes and a value list of all your possible filter types, you can do the following:

      Case ( PatternCount( FilterSelect ; "Cash" ) ; "C" ) ;
      Case ( PatternCount( FilterSelect" ; "Item" ) ; "I" ) ;
      Case ( PatternCount( FilterSelect" ; "Bookstore" ) ; "B" ) ;
    ) ;
"¶" ; "" )

PatternCount() like isempty() and some other functions are boolean. It's not necessary to say       Case ( PatternCount( FilterSelect ; "Cash" ) = 1 ; "C" ) . If the string matches - in this case the phrase "Cash" exists in the checkbox field - then the Test is True, if PatternCount is 0 then it's False.

And finally, just so you understand how checkboxes work. When you have a single field with multiple checkbox values, FM enters each checked value into the field as a carriage return separated list in the order that it was checked. So if the user checked Bookstore, Cash and Item in that order, they would appear in the field in that order. Unchecking removes them from the list which is hidden behind the checkbox formatting.

Expert Comment

ID: 40013944
Unless I'm confused, it seems like you'd just need:

FilterTypes =
If ( Cash = "Yes"; "C"; "" ) & 
If ( Item = "Yes"; "I"; "") &
If ( Bookstore  = "Yes"; "B"; "")

Or am I misunderstanding something?

Author Closing Comment

by:William Plunkett
ID: 40015891
This worked perfectly!

Thank You

Featured Post

Free Tool: Path Explorer

An intuitive utility to help find the CSS path to UI elements on a webpage. These paths are used frequently in a variety of front-end development and QA automation tasks.

One of a set of tools we're offering as a way of saying thank you for being a part of the community.

Question has a verified solution.

If you are experiencing a similar issue, please ask a related question

Suggested Solutions

Title # Comments Views Activity
SQL Insert parts by customer 12 63
Identify two keyboard codes and how to enter them 9 85
AutoIncrement column based of FK 11 73
Filemaker, Daily Task Button 2 28
In this post we will learn different types of Android Layout and some basics of an Android App.
Computer science students often experience many of the same frustrations when going through their engineering courses. This article presents seven tips I found useful when completing a bachelors and masters degree in computing which I believe may he…
Viewers will learn how to properly install Eclipse with the necessary JDK, and will take a look at an introductory Java program. Download Eclipse installation zip file: Extract files from zip file: Download and install JDK 8: Open Eclipse and …

752 members asked questions and received personalized solutions in the past 7 days.

Join the community of 500,000 technology professionals and ask your questions.

Join & Ask a Question