FileMaker discontinuing Bento, will remain available to buy through Sept. 30

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Comments

  • Reply 61 of 82

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Frank777 View Post


     


    As TS notes above, Filemaker is Apple. There simply is no way around that. It's a 100% company owned subsidiary.


    And the fact that "There is no cross-pollination going on there." is precisely the problem.


     


    No one is arguing that Filemaker isn't a powerful piece of software. I am aware of its myriad of uses. But asking an app made by Apple to access my Contacts and Calendar only by using third-party plugins is problematic.


     


    IMO, instead of Bento, what Apple should have done was embrace, extend and then extinguish Filemaker Pro.


     


    Split the Windows guys off into a "totally separate development team" and let them continue to build a Windows version.


     


    Then rebuild the Mac app into a 100% no-holds-barred iWork worthy database product. Would have been much better than going the Bento route.


     


    While Filemaker dithered in its little separate silo, Evernote and Basecamp ate its lunch. The Mac still lacks a marquee Project Management app, and Mac-based salespeople are still learning to live with Daylite's flaws. The Filemaker-team-in-a-silo approach hasn't really done anything for the platform.


     


     


    Exactly. The need for Windows compatibility has really killed the potential innovation Filemaker could have brought to the platform.


     


    If Apple was willing to irritate broadcast pros using Final Cut for three whole years to start over with clean code, why are we still labouring with a half-baked Filemaker Pro in 2013?



    Nonsense.


     


    FileMaker is NOT Apple; it's owned by Apple but it's not MANAGED by Apple. Having just gone to the FileMaker Developer's Conference, I can tell you that they are their own entity, separate both physically and intellectually from Apple Inc.


     


    Second, why is it problematic to use plugins for syncing calendar and address book? If you were familiar with FileMaker you'd know that there are plugins for a vast array of uses, from PHP to SQL to credit-card processing, better dialog control, and on and on and on. Plug-ins are one of the many things about FileMaker that make it extensible, flexible and not limited like some dim competitors (Access comes to mind).


     


    Why would anyone want to "split the Windows guys off?" One of the strengths of FileMaker for my clients is that I develop once and deploy to both platforms with very little concern about who's going to use it, other than some font oddities on the Windows platform.


     


    "iWork-worthy?" Idiotic. FileMaker goes far beyond a spreadsheet or a word-processor. Saying that is like saying that ProTools should be rewritten to work like GarageBand, and that would be simply nutty.


     


    I use Evernote every day, and it's a great utility, but it's nothing like FileMaker, unless you know nothing about Filemaker and use it as a flat-file.


     


    Why did Apple start over with Final Cut? Because 99% of the music industry uses ProTools and they couldn't get anywhere with it... because the learning curve is incredibly steep. I know this from having worked in the music business in Nashville since before digital existed, own ProTools and Cubase, and have lots of studio musician friends and studio owners who looked at Logic and dismisssed it. In fact, I've NEVER worked in a studio in Nashville that had Logic; all but one had ProTools, and I've worked in at least 100 studios here.


     


    As a FileMaker Certified Developer (9, 10, 11, and 12), I know FileMaker like the back of my hand; saying that it's "half-baked" shows your ignorance of the software. Before you make erroneous statements like that, back it up; look at some of the things being done in FileMaker. I suppose NASA uses "half-baked software," as do about 300+ universities? 

  • Reply 62 of 82
    frank777frank777 Posts: 5,832member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by longterm View Post


    ...I was shown some of the new things that will be coming in the next version (but I'm under an NDA). Suffice to say, FileMaker has a clear and excellent plan for the future, the tip of which can be seen in FileMaker Pro 12.


     


    As to whether a FileMaker solution can look like a native app: a) it ISN'T a native app and will never be; b) the GUI is up to the developer; I've seen and developed some beautiful solutions in FileMaker, but I've also seen tons of awful designs, mainly because of FileMaker's ease of entry; c) FileMaker themes are only a starting point, and shouldn't be looked at as the limit of what can be done in FileMaker. I design solutions from the ground up all the time, and I'll just say that FileMaker "Next" will make that even better and easier.



     


    I could be wrong (it's been awhile since I read through the thread) but I don't think anyone's arguing that Filemaker's bad software.


     


    It's incredibly useful, is very extendible, and I use it for my business every day. There have also been new features added in fairly regular releases, and I would expect this to continue to be the case with Filemaker 13 (which no one will buy because of superstition.)


     


    Quote:

    Originally Posted by longterm View Post


    Bento wasn't designed for more than casual users. 



    As to integrating with Address Book & Calendar: there's a huge market for this, as evidenced by the conversations I see on this among good FileMaker developers. It's ot a question of "managing" them, it's a question of integrating with them.



     


    The sore points with Filemaker have been the same since OS X released.


     


    No integration with AB and Calendar. No 'look and feel' of an OS X application. Steep learning curve for some advanced database features.


     


    Quote:

    Originally Posted by longterm View Post


    Nonsense.


     


    FileMaker is NOT Apple; it's owned by Apple but it's not MANAGED by Apple. Having just gone to the FileMaker Developer's Conference, I can tell you that they are their own entity, separate both physically and intellectually from Apple Inc.


     


    Second, why is it problematic to use plugins for syncing calendar and address book? If you were familiar with FileMaker you'd know that there are plugins for a vast array of uses, from PHP to SQL to credit-card processing, better dialog control, and on and on and on. Plug-ins are one of the many things about FileMaker that make it extensible, flexible and not limited like some dim competitors (Access comes to mind).


     


    Why would anyone want to "split the Windows guys off?" One of the strengths of FileMaker for my clients is that I develop once and deploy to both platforms with very little concern about who's going to use it, other than some font oddities on the Windows platform.


     


    "iWork-worthy?" Idiotic. FileMaker goes far beyond a spreadsheet or a word-processor. Saying that is like saying that ProTools should be rewritten to work like GarageBand, and that would be simply nutty.


     


    I use Evernote every day, and it's a great utility, but it's nothing like FileMaker, unless you know nothing about Filemaker and use it as a flat-file.


     


    Why did Apple start over with Final Cut? Because 99% of the music industry uses ProTools and they couldn't get anywhere with it... because the learning curve is incredibly steep. I know this from having worked in the music business in Nashville since before digital existed, own ProTools and Cubase, and have lots of studio musician friends and studio owners who looked at Logic and dismisssed it. In fact, I've NEVER worked in a studio in Nashville that had Logic; all but one had ProTools, and I've worked in at least 100 studios here.


     


    As a FileMaker Certified Developer (9, 10, 11, and 12), I know FileMaker like the back of my hand; saying that it's "half-baked" shows your ignorance of the software. Before you make erroneous statements like that, back it up; look at some of the things being done in FileMaker. I suppose NASA uses "half-baked software," as do about 300+ universities? 



     


    1) Apple owns Filemaker. End of story. If you despise Lincolns, you have a problem with Ford Motor Co.


     


    It's not like Apple's in an unrelated field of business. They're not running a farmer's market at 1 Infinite Loop. It's not unreasonable by any stretch to ask that a company which pushes app developers to support its OS should be expected to ensure their subsidiaries eat their own dog food.


     


    Plug-ins are great for a lot of software extensions. Messing with my Contacts and Calendar (and the whole syncing side of things) aren't one of them.


     


     


    2) "Splitting the Windows guys off" is only slightly different from Apple's embrace of iWork via iCloud - to ensure they don't have to build the apps for a second desktop OS. The benefits are cleaner code, faster development and more OS-level support.


     


     


    3) Idiotic? Hardly. Spreadsheet apps (not including numbers) can sport some serious features as well. Databases are complicated, but the Apple way of doing things is to make the complicated seem simple. No one is asking the ProTools be rewritten to work like Garageband. If anything, I'm asking that ProTools be rewritten to acknowledge that OS X stores a lot of music in the iTunes library - and has done so for a decade.


     


     


    4) My point about Evernote and Basecamp is that more people than ever are using databases in one form or another and, unless I've missed a memo, the Filemaker share of that market is minuscule. There are a million popular To Do apps for Mac, and none of them are based on Filemaker.


     


    Why in the midst of a GTD craze, are none of these apps based on the "simple and easy to use" Filemaker?


     


     


    5) Again, no one is saying the software isn't powerful.


    Or that if you have the resources of NASA and the education sector, you can't hire developers like yourself and build a powerful customized solution.


     


    But as for "the rest of us", we still need a flagship database on the platform. Xero made accounting fun. Basecamp makes personal project management approachable for the average person. Final Cut X was stripped and rebuilt to its core to broaden its audience.


     


    Is it asking too much to have a modern database app that makes building databases fun again for the average person? If Filemaker's not going to do that - because their developers will howl louder than FCP X users did - what's wrong with asking that the iWork team go for it?

  • Reply 63 of 82

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Frank777 View Post


     


    ...Filemaker 13 (which no one will buy because of superstition.)


     


    The sore points with Filemaker have been the same since OS X released. No integration with AB and Calendar. No 'look and feel' of an OS X application. Steep learning curve for some advanced database features.


     


     


    1) Apple owns Filemaker. End of story. If you despise Lincolns, you have a problem with Ford Motor Co.


     


    Plug-ins are great for a lot of software extensions. Messing with my Contacts and Calendar (and the whole syncing side of things) aren't one of them.


     


    2) "Splitting the Windows guys off" is only slightly different from Apple's embrace of iWork via iCloud - to ensure they don't have to build the apps for a second desktop OS. The benefits are cleaner code, faster development and more OS-level support.


     


     


    3) Idiotic? Hardly. Spreadsheet apps (not including numbers) can sport some serious features as well. Databases are complicated, but the Apple way of doing things is to make the complicated seem simple. No one is asking the ProTools be rewritten to work like Garageband. If anything, I'm asking that ProTools be rewritten to acknowledge that OS X stores a lot of music in the iTunes library - and has done so for a decade.


     


     


    4) My point about Evernote and Basecamp is that more people than ever are using databases in one form or another and, unless I've missed a memo, the Filemaker share of that market is minuscule. There are a million popular To Do apps for Mac, and none of them are based on Filemaker.



    You're wrong about people not buying the next version of FileMaker; once its features are revealed it's going to sell like gangbusters.


     


    I'm a huge Apple fan; however, and I can't say this often enough, Apple doesn't dictate how FileMaker is developed. FileMaker has its own set of engineers at the Wedge.


     


    Why is it not acceptable to use plugins for doing things like interacting with one's calendar or address book? Furthermore, there are solutions in place already that interact with Google Calendar, and they don't use a plugin. The fact of the matter is that in the list of requested features, interaction with the Mac calendar and contacts is low on the list of priorities; if it were in high demand, it would have been implemented by now.


     


    "No look and feel of an OS X app..." Really? Looks like OS X to me. Works like a good Apple app to me. I live on Mac all day long; I have no complaints at all about the FileMaker UI.


     


    You said that the "steep learning curve for some advanced features" is a sore point; that makes no sense. The fact that they're advanced features is exactly why it takes a little longer to learn them. FileMaker gives a novice user a lot of power out of the box (even more in the next release); if one wants to build a great solution with it, there are tons of resources for learning how to take FileMaker to the next level.


     


    You said, ""Splitting the Windows guys off" is only slightly different from Apple's embrace of iWork via iCloud - to ensure they don't have to build the apps for a second desktop OS. The benefits are cleaner code, faster development and more OS-level support." That's ludicrous. I work on a solution every day that is used on Windows machines; users have no way to tell that I wrote 90% of it on a Mac. That's the beauty of FileMaker, that it doesn't require the developer to write the same solution twice. Having worked in Visual Basic for years, I can remember having to do the same thing twice, and it made no sense and ended up taking longer to support and develop, not to mention the chance for introducing bugs when trying to duplicate a solution in 2 environments. Also, if you were to see how many Windows users there are in FileMaker, you'd realize that the WORST thing they could do is split it into 2 separate environments.


     


    Your ProTools comment was simply nonsense. iTunes and ProTools are totally separate things--they both play audio, and the similarity ends there. 


     


    As to Evernote and Basecamp, WHY would anyone want to write that sort of solution with FileMaker (even though it COULD BE)? Some databases scale better with enormous data sets (in the millions); on the web, mySQL is better for that sort of thing, as any knowledgeable FileMaker developer will tell you. 


     


    You won't see Apple release a database application because they already own a company that excels at it; FileMaker has been around for more than 20 years, has a huge user base (miniscule? hardly), is in almost every industry. They've had profitable quarters for the last 15 quarters, are growing, have added to the # of engineers devoted to the platform; the company is profitable, healthy, releasing great new features in the upcoming version, which is going to blow people away.


     


    There are things that require "big iron;" I wouldn't use FileMaker for a web app that involves millions of records, just as I wouldn't use Garageband for anything more than amateur musical ramblings. I don't use Simpletext to write a business letter either. FileMaker Pro is successful because it allows users to have solutions that are quickly modifiable, fast (I've seen 13 million records sorted in under 3 seconds), can be interface with web applications, works on iOS devices extremely well and in a cost-efficient manner, and, in the next version, even MORE useable across the Internet. 


     


    Try writing something in any other database application (as I have); FileMaker is far ahead, and industry stats support that. It's not trying to be Oracle or mySQL--it fills a great spot in the realm of data storage and will continue to do so. If it's too complicated for you, use a spreadsheet or hire a FileMaker developer; if your needs exceed its capabilities, go to Oracle and spend thousands of dollars.

  • Reply 64 of 82
    frank777frank777 Posts: 5,832member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by longterm View Post


    You're wrong about people not buying the next version of FileMaker; once its features are revealed it's going to sell like gangbusters.



     


    Your humour detector is broken.

  • Reply 65 of 82
    sky kingsky king Posts: 189member


    I'm sure Filemaker is great, in fact I bought it to replace Bento.  On the other hand I am a pretty simple user and do not need the power of Filemaker and find that learning to use it is quite time consuming.  Once they discontinue support I suspect that eventually Bento will cease to work on new OSs.  I may be in the minority but I sure found Bento useful and would be willing to pay an annual fee just to keep it.


     


    Does anyone know of something like Bento that would act as a nice, simple replacement?

  • Reply 66 of 82
    drboardrboar Posts: 477member
    Was this not supposed to be about Bento, not FM?

    As I have bought books and music for 30+ years, I am not allways sure if I have something or just heard about that book or CD.

    To that end I have used Bento with the input made on mac and the mobile database on the iPhone. Now I use iDatabase for OSX and iOS, way cheaper than FM and perfectly adequate for my use. Now I know if I have that Dire Strait on CD or LP on record instead in a memory that might not allways be flawless...

    Is it perfect, no it is not but it gets the work done! And it should be compared to Bento not a fullfledged DB like FM.
  • Reply 67 of 82
    frank777frank777 Posts: 5,832member


    Well like it or not, FM is the only general database app on the Mac still standing, so naturally it's going to be discussed as a Bento replacement.


     


    I've never used iDatabase. I would have expected that the leader in the space you describe would be Delicious Library.

  • Reply 68 of 82
    drboardrboar Posts: 477member


    Delicious Library is good in the US with its Amazon integration, however outside the US this is less useful and it shortcomings of only having 9 types of librarys as well as the more serious of no iPhone App made it a no go for me. Having a database that is no more mobile than my old white iBook, is of limited use for me.

  • Reply 69 of 82
    mr. memr. me Posts: 3,221member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Frank777 View Post


    ... FM is the only general database app on the Mac still standing, so naturally ...



     


    Not true. Not even close to true. Just because FileMaker Pro is the most popular OS X DBMS does not make it the only OS X DBMS. Like FileMaker Pro, 4D is a cross-platform DBMS that has been around for decades. For years, Apple included OpenBase with every shipping Mac. As OpenBase SQL, it is also still around.

  • Reply 70 of 82
    frank777frank777 Posts: 5,832member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Mr. Me View Post


     


    Not true. Not even close to true. Just because FileMaker Pro is the most popular OS X DBMS does not make it the only OS X DBMS. Like FileMaker Pro, 4D is a cross-platform DBMS that has been around for decades. For years, Apple included OpenBase with every shipping Mac. As OpenBase SQL, it is also still around.



     


    Yes, that's true. Although by saying "general", I really meant "mainstream". No one can argue the fact that Filemaker and Access together hold the overwhelming majority of the desktop database market. Neither of those are serious options for replacing Filemaker, let alone Bento.

  • Reply 71 of 82
    mr. memr. me Posts: 3,221member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Frank777 View Post


     


    Yes, that's true. Although by saying "general", I really meant "mainstream". No one can argue the fact that Filemaker and Access together hold the overwhelming majority of the desktop database market. Neither of those are serious options for replacing Filemaker, let alone Bento.



     


    To give this nonsequitor any adhesion at all, you had to resort to imposing your own definition on the term general. General usually refers to things that have broad applicability. The term mainstream usually refers to how broadly something is accepted. I gather that you don't consider 4D to be mainstream because you had never heard of it. Whether you or anyone else ever heard of something is not the test. The current version of 4D is the 13th full release of 4th Dimension. It is the oldest Mac-based RDBMS currently available and is doing very well. The major difference between 4D and FileMaker Pro is that applications in FMP are developed graphically whereas applications in 4D are developed using a procedural language. Microsoft Access is not only not in the same league as 4D and FileMaker Pro, but also it is not in the same game. Why would you even mention it?

  • Reply 72 of 82
    frank777frank777 Posts: 5,832member


    I am fully aware of the existence of 4th Dimension. Have been for at least a dozen years.


     


    Microsoft Access was mentioned because it is always ranked as the #1 consumer database while Filemaker is always ranked second.


    (The rankings are purely because Access is bundled with MS Office.) This has been the case for some time.

  • Reply 73 of 82

    For an easy alternative for you and your mother, you should check out Dabitat (www.dabitat.com).

     

    Here's the explainer video:

     

     image

     

    And here's the Getting Started Video:

     

    image

  • Reply 74 of 82

    We just launched a Bento alternative.   www.dabitat.com

     

    Explainer Video:  http://youtu.be/WceOr90sHWM

    Getting Started Video:  http://youtu.be/MiZiKNPhfxI

     

    We don't plan to implement features to compete with FM, but but we are a very valid Bento alternative, with some cool additions.  

    We are based in the cloud, so there is no syncing and data is instantly available on all your devices.  Also there is social sharing of your information, so you can collaborate on data entry and consumption.  

     

    Accounts are free during beta.   

  • Reply 75 of 82

    For me as a IT-Engineer and 100% loyal to Apple, this was a step in a real bad direction.

    Most of our Academy administration is based on Bento and all our Students, Group Projects, Database for the Rooms, management of Hardware, Devices, Mail management, Inventory, App Database, Voice Memos etc.

    It was a fantastic idea with databases the users can create and exchange.

    The combination of all the supporting software to Schools, Small business, Musicians, etc. and the Apple Eco System was the reason why so many was shifting to Apple from Windows. 

    Now a stingy attitude from Apple /FileMaker taking the advantages away again.

    I was so happy about the last iOS update in a positive direction. I'm really grateful about that. Now Bento should be part of every new device and with a  e-book or little movie,

    to show all the possibilities. 

     

    Anyway, now FileMaker goes in the wrong direction and Bento disappears. A much more expensive Version is the replacement and we have to buy the same Software ones more. What is 40% on this extreme expensive FM Replacement ? I will never invest that much again, when we did buy the App ones before. And just because not enough people did buy Bento, the loyal customers get punished for this.

    A reprehensible and short-term thinking. A absolutely wrong and stingy attitude from FileMaker Inc. 

     

    When FileMaker will not support their Customers, so will I as a loyal Customers not support FileMaker anymore! This is FileMakers suicide and Apples first huge step in a wrong direction. I hope they come up with some better solutions.

  • Reply 76 of 82
    djbetadjbeta Posts: 30member

    FileMaker is still an excellent choice for many business projects. I work at a research institution, and almost every one of the labs uses FileMaker in one way or another.

     

    Not every application requires 1000+ concurrent users.  For databases that require under a 100 concurrent users, I can't imagine using anything BUT FileMaker because it takes 10-20x (or more)  the amount of time to develop an application with PHP or .NET.  I can build applications in weeks that would take a .NET team months.

     

    Maybe you want to pay those .NET developers for all that time, but I do not, unless it's *necessary*.

  • Reply 77 of 82
    djbetadjbeta Posts: 30member

    Well, no one is stopping you from using it for the next few years. Get a good FileMaker developer to help you re-build your stuff. You'll be happier in long run. You don't want your users to be tied to a Bento client or to a FileMaker Pro client. The future is databases in the web browser, on your mobile devices, etc.  You'll see. You won't regret it.

  • Reply 78 of 82
    Since Bento will no longer run on future systems I bought FM. Yes. I can learn it. Yes I'm going to make it work. Yes it's the best remaining solution. But there is a better one ...

    FileMaker could easily charge the same price for Bento as for FM12 and I would pay it gladly. They could charge the same price every year and I would pay it gladly.

    Everyone seems to be missing the point. Apple used to be the computer for "the rest of us". It was. We noticed. We paid for it and we were happy to do so. Why? Because we had so much power and had to learn so little. And Apple won while we won.

    The same could be true for Bento. It's not that FM doesn't work. It's that it takes a lot if work to make it work...and once you've built your databases you have Bento. (After a lot of work and without all the features that make Bento so likable and user friendly).

    Give me Bento for $75.00 per year and I'll consider it a bargain.
  • Reply 79 of 82
    Well, no one is stopping you from using it for the next few years. Get a good FileMaker developer to help you re-build your stuff. You'll be happier in long run. You don't want your users to be tied to a Bento client or to a FileMaker Pro client. The future is databases in the web browser, on your mobile devices, etc. You'll see. You won't regret it.

    Dude. You are a developer. I'm a business owner. You tell me that the future is DBs on the web. ( in the cloud...on a distant server). Cute idea for someone who has a job, not a business.

    If you actually owned a business and you trusted your DB to the cloud this would happen eventually: your data would either get corrupted or would become unavailable for a few hours (maybe more). The owner of the cloud/ server would send you an apogee tic email saying,"we are really, really sorry about this little problem."

    But meanwhile, your data is permanently in useable.

    How often would this happen? Not often. Just often enough to destroy you financially though. You see , if you are in the 0.00002% that lost data it seems small right? But FOR YOU...ITS 100% loss.

    Think about it. When you have a job, it's just a problem. In fact, it's someone else's problem. You still get a paycheck. BUT YOUR JOB DEPENDS ON THE FACT THAT I TAKE THE RISK...I HAVE THE BUSINESS...
  • Reply 80 of 82

    obviously v5v, you don't know much about Bento, it does have forms and it does inquiries just fine.

     

    I've been using Bento for 3 years and have developed a complete business solution for my business, that is easy to use and does the job very well.  I also have FMP12 and it is very confusing by comparison. They sell it as the easy to use DB and maybe it's easier than other professional grade DB's but it's not easy for a non programer.  There are some drawbacks to Bento, it's not truly a relational database, it has a related data field, but that's not the same.  But the feature that makes Bento much more appealing to me is that it sync's with the Mac.  Where as FMP12 doesn't.  With FMP and FM GO you have to use a server if you leave your LAN.  Not ideal for most small businesses.  I have a company that will rent me use of their server for $25/mo which is an outstanding offer, but that's still an expense that I don't incur with Bento.  I'm still using Bento and will for as long as it works, but I suspect that some future upgrade of the iOS will cause it to fail to sync and then it will be useless.

     

    And I don't know what a large enough following is, since I don't develop and sell software but Bento for iPhone was 4.99, for iPad it was 9.99 and for Mac 49.99 and you had to have the Mac version to develop anything, so the average user probably spent 54.98 and Bento sold more than a million copies.  So, I guess if it cost FM 60 million to develop and service, I'd shut it down to.  Sorry to see it go as it worked for a lot of us non techies.

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