FileMaker has launched a new program aimed at enthusiasts and developers of its software. The FileMaker Technical Network is different than the traditional FileMaker developer programs because it is targeting more general participants, according to the company.
“The old program didn’t attract as many people as it should have,” Keith Robinson, vice president of Sales for the Americas and Asia Pacific at FileMaker, told Macworld. “A lot of people don’t think of themselves as professional developers, but they use it and develop for it in a professional way.”
The Technical Network provides users with a members-only online library, offering in-depth information on a variety of development topics such as web integration, linking to external data sources and increasing database performance; FileMaker Tech Talk provides a live 24/7 online discussion forum dedicated to helping FileMaker Pro users network together to share tips and expertise in developing FileMaker database solutions; and FileMaker Server Advanced Development License delivers a cost-effective way to build and test FileMaker Pro-based solutions over the web.
The program also offers five free FileMaker Applications — Recruiter, Tasks, Meetings, Donations and Work Requests — designed to manage specific key business tasks.
Users will also get access to pre-release FileMaker software and FileMaker Pro Design Packs that include ready-to-use graphics and pre-designed data templates to help members create better looking solutions faster.
“We are trying to make sure that all of the best information is available is in one place for our users,” said Robinson. “We want the brightest developers mingling with new users to help each other.”
The company also announced the FileMaker Business Alliance for organizations whose primary line of business is developing and selling FileMaker products or services. The FileMaker Business Alliance provides marketing and sales support directly from FileMaker.
The FileMaker Technical Network costs $99 per year.
“In terms of the power of the product — it is night and day from 5 years ago,” said Robinson. “The one thing we never trade off is ease of use. The reality is FileMaker is a powerful application and people can get lost — that’s where the Technical Network comes in.”