FileMaker Pro is widely used throughout the MIT community for many reasons. For data management needs that exceed what a spreadsheet can offer, FileMaker provides great flexibility, an intuitive interface, and a shallow learning curve for basic database development. Add a volume license and it's no surprise that thousands of FileMaker databases proliferate throughout MIT departments, labs, and centers. They range from simple single table files, used mostly for sorting and searching, all the way to complex applications with dozens of related tables and sophisticated functionalities.
When to develop and deploy a FileMaker application
If your database needs fit within these constraints, developing a FileMaker application is appropriate if your database:
Does not house any combination of personal information as defined in section 17.02 of the Massachusetts regulation for safeguarding the personal information of Massachusetts residents. This includes a person's name in combination with ANY of the following:
- Social Security Number
- Driver's license or state ID number
- Financial account or credit card number
- Is not a system of record
- Will not share sensitive information via the web
- Will not exceed 80 simultaneous connections (if web-enabled)
- Will be accessed through FileMaker clients from a single department, lab, or center
If the statements listed above are True, then FileMaker may be suitable for your needs. When implemented according to MIT standards and best practices, FileMaker should serve your department well.
You are strongly urged to refer to the checklist of security guidelines.
If your needs exceed the limits listed above, you should probably be looking at another technology. DCAD can help you make that judgment call and provide you with the necessary services to get you on your way.