Chapter 12. Understanding Scripts

When you created the Lease Agreement database in Chapter 4 and Chapter 5, you wrote a script to sort records viewed in a list (Writing a Basic Script). That script didn’t do anything you couldn’t have done manually. But since it remembers a sorting setup, the script runs faster and more accurately than with manual commands. To make it even more convenient, you attached the script to a button that your users could click to sort data without the need to understand how to set up a Sort window. For even more automation, you gave the list layout a script trigger that ran the Sort script every time that layout is viewed. It’s almost like your database knows what your users need before they do.

That basic script introduced you to many of the advantages of scripting. Here are the main reasons to add scripts to your database:

  • Efficiency. For just about any process, a script can run faster than you (or your users) can issue the same commands.

  • Accuracy. Once you set it up, a script won’t leave out a step or perform a series of steps out of order.

  • Convenience. You don’t have to remember how to do a process that you don’t perform often.

  • Automation. With script triggers, processes can run without you explicitly running the script. In many cases, users won’t even know a script is running. They’ll just see the results.

  • Complex processing. Some processes just aren’t possible (or maybe they’re not feasible) without a script handling the grunt work.

Most scripts you’ll write ...

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