Tutorial 301:

Highlights in FileMaker 16

Tutorial 301: Lesson 6

Parsing JSON

Parsing JSON using Predefined Functions

FileMaker custom apps are increasingly becoming part of a larger ecosystem where information is distributed across different apps and data sources.

REST APIs are a way for FileMaker custom apps to communicate with third party data sources, so your users can benefit from outside data. Commonly, this communication takes the form of JSON (JavaScript Object Notation). JSON is a lightweight data-interchange format used by many web services to transfer data objects composed of name-value pairs, arrays and other objects.

While FileMaker has been able to parse JSON data for some time, it typically involved extra development or the use of a plug-in.

A new era of FileMaker programming has begun with the introduction of the game-changing FileMaker 16 platform. Developers now have several predefined text functions that enable the quick parsing and modification of JSON data from other sources, so connecting to other apps is easier than ever.

Why is this important?

Interacting with JSON data from outside sources can greatly extend the functionality of your FileMaker apps. There are thousands of non-FileMaker data sources you can query and receive from data quickly, so your users don’t have to find and input that new data themselves.


Parsing JSON

This video shows a FileMaker custom app for storing books that communicates with a books database API to add records by scanning ISBN codes. Learn how to parse the returned JSON into FileMaker fields using the new native JSON functions.

In this video, you will:

  • Scan ISBN code to add a record: use FileMaker Go’s barcode scanning functionality as a data entry mechanism
  • Insert data from URL: use the Insert from URL script step to load API data into a variable
  • Use native functions to parse JSON: Use FileMaker 16’s new JSON parsing functions to add returned data to the appropriate FileMaker fields

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