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Inspiring a New Generation of FileMaker Developers – PCI Focuses on Hiring Local Talent

March 17th, 2017

CSUSM
Back in February, Productive Computing’s CEO, Marc Larochelle, was invited to speak to the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) club at California State University San Marcos.

During his talk, Marc showcased the FileMaker platform, including the numerous connection points to other database systems, technologies, and plug-ins. He also explored the new FileMaker Cloud hosting option that is available through Amazon Web Services (AWS).

As a live demonstration of the capability of FileMaker, Marc created a database that would track a list of member names and the group attendance across the school year. The database featured a dashboard that displayed the data – complete with graphs and charts. Marc accessed this database on a desktop, iPad, and via the web – showcasing the variety of access points available with FileMaker Pro, FileMaker Go, and FileMaker WebDirect and just how quick it is to create and deploy an app.

The president of the ACM club, Omid Azodi, remarked, “After taking a database course, I can see how powerful FileMaker is, how visual it is, and that it is low on the coding side for queries, etc. All the students I talked to really enjoyed the demo and learned a lot from it.”

One of the goals of the speaking engagement was not only to expose students to FileMaker, but also to expose them to Productive Computing as a potential employer. Productive Computing has hired over half their staff from local universities. Five of their current 15 employees were hired from Cal State San Marcos.

When asked why he enjoys these types of presentations, Marc said, “As a resident of North County for over 25 years, I love this place and I want to give back in any way that I can. We work hard to hire local talent from our universities, and we make a point to do these kinds of presentations – because it not only showcases the FileMaker platform to a new generation of developers, but it also demonstrates to students that the skills they are learning in their classes have a very real, direct application once they graduate. Productive Computing believes in investing in its community and supporting the strong economy in North County.”

Former Cal State San Marcos students and current Productive Computing employees include: Francis (hosting and tech support), Jeff (hosting and solution development), Chris (plug-in development), William (developer), and Stephanie (marketing and product coordination).

“When I was going to school back in 2012, I had the opportunity to see Marc present on FileMaker. I was really intrigued and approached him after the presentation to inquire about employment opportunities. Productive Computing allowed me to work part-time while I was in school and then I had a full-time job waiting for me when I graduated.” Chris, plug-in developer.

The transition from school life to the “real world” can be difficult for students, many wonder what a typical day in the life of a career professional looks like or if they will be able to apply the skills they have learned in school to their daily jobs. Francis, who graduated in 2015 with a B.S. in Computer Science, reflected that many of the classes he took at California State San Marcos have helped him perform his job at Productive Computing. “Intro to Networking helped me with basic troubleshooting techniques and my Database Management Systems class taught me about working with general database systems and how to develop ERDs (entity-relationship diagrams) to plan out and design databases – especially FileMaker and SQL.”

“While the classes I took at Cal State provided me with a great ground work of valuable knowledge, the one real takeaway from CSUSM was that my classes always put an emphasis on working as a team to accomplish something.” Francis remarked. “That’s something that I find is a big part about working here at Productive Computing. You will hear everyone in the office asking each other questions and tapping into one another’s knowledge and experience to help come up with the best possible solution for a given issue.”

Our solutions architect and main hosting engineer, Jeff, was an active member and officer of the ACM club during his time at CSUSM and attended two presentations by Marc Larochelle during his four years there. “I was pretty amazed by the capabilities of FileMaker 12 when I attended Marc’s first presentation. Then, a year later, Marc and Chris returned to present the latest features of FileMaker 13 and demonstrated how quickly a developer could create and deploy a solution that was accessible via FileMaker Go. When the ACM club hosted a job fair for the Computer Science community, Productive Computing was the first company that I gave a resume to. Within my first month working with FileMaker, I was working on client solutions doing custom development for desktop and mobile environments. FileMaker, in my opinion, is a simple to learn platform with great scalability and almost endless opportunity.”

Reflecting on his education at CSUSM, Jeff commented, “While I was a student, I took a job as a learning assistant and grader for the Data Structures course. Reviewing code written by other students was an eye-opening experience. I graded so many different solutions for a single problem that it made me realize there are always new ways to improve existing code, schema, or design. This realization drives me to solve problems and build solutions that bring Productive Computing’s products to the next level. Efficiency is key and I’m always looking for better ways to process data, enhance user interfaces, and strengthen workflows.”

When asked about his hiring practices, Marc said, “Keith and I are so proud and lucky to be in a position to offer career opportunities for computer science graduates from universities right in our own backyard. It has been so satisfying to watch these candidates go from being a college student to a first-time career employee in a job that is in-line with their degree. Our training program, which gives new developers the ability to learn FileMaker quickly, allows us to offer full-time positions to graduates right out of college, whereas other high-tech employers are typically only able to provide an internship to the same college grad.

“There’s really nothing more rewarding than seeing the next generation of FileMaker developers come alive with the same enthusiasm and inspiration I first had when I learned FileMaker back in 1991.”

PCI is Now Offering Dedicated Hosting Plans for FileMaker Server 15

July 18th, 2016
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FileMaker Hosting

 

 

 

 

PCI is Now Offering Dedicated Hosting Plans for FileMaker Server 15

With the release of FileMaker Pro 15, a new End User License Agreement was introduced requiring a dedicated server for each customer.  This new requirement inspired us to develop a new series of hosting plans to accommodate our customers on this new platform.  Using a combination of Amazon Web Services (AWS) and our existing infrastructure we developed three affordable options for FileMaker 15 users.

These new plans allow users to host their solutions in a secure environment taking advantage of the benefits of FileMaker Server 15 with the peace of mind and convenience of having experienced and certified professionals manage and monitor their server.

 

Dedicated Hosting

PCI’s new dedicated hosting plans will offer the same benefits as our shared hosting plans:  free setup, robust backup schedule (daily, weekly, monthly), and SSL Certificates.

– Fully Managed Dedicated Server maintained by PCI so you don’t have to

– FileMaker Server Licensing conveniently purchased through PCI at a discount

– Amazon (AWS) Certified Engineer offers expertise for secure and scalable options

– FileMaker Certified Developers at your service

PCI is your outsourced hosting team!

 

Shared Hosting

Productive Computing will continue to offer shared hosting for those customers that do not need to upgrade to FileMaker Server 15.

 

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FileMaker Server Licensing

If you are choosing a Dedicated Hosting plan, a FileMaker Server license is required. You may provide your own server license or order FileMaker Server through Productive Computing at a discount.  FileMaker Licensing for Teams provides an affordable option to purchase or rent the server software along with access to FileMaker Pro.

 

Need more information about hosting?  Have a look at our overview video:

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Please visit www.filemakerhostingservice.com for a complete list of plans and hosting service details.

Thirty Minutes with PCI Execs Marc and Keith

October 2nd, 2015

Fm_Consulting_logoPCI Founders Marc and Keith were recently interview by Donald Clark, FileMaker Developer and Owner of FM Database Consulting.

Check out the interview in its entirety here.

If you don’t have thirty minutes right now to watch from start to finish, we invite you to take a look at some of the highlights you might find of interest:

1:00: How Marc got his start working with FileMaker while interning at the National Association of Music Merchants.

2:08: Marc shares how he worked with Patti Page!

Patti

3:45: How PCI started in a small apartment in Carlsbad, CA.

5:25: Keith discusses the key components to PCI’s success: “Marc is the dreamer. He cuts the path, and then I figure out a way how to pave it.”

7:45: PCI’s secrets to success.

10:23: Hear about PCI’s most challenging project(s).

12:12: Marc discusses the makeup of PCI’s client base, and how it has evolved over the years.

13:10: PCI plug-in announcements!

16:30: Marc discusses DevCon, and his thoughts on the future of FileMaker.

18:00: Marc discusses Vessel Service Solutions as a perfect example of the exciting things which can be done with FMGo.

20:33: Marc and Keith share what they do in their spare time. (Top: Keith. Bottom: Marc.)

White and Gold Finish Line BR__4503-Nov08-13 Cropped

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22:24: Keith discusses his music career in the Army National Guard and Air Force.

23:25: Marc talks about his music career in high school and present day.

24:05: Marc and Keith discuss their multi-faceted roles at DevCon.

25:25: PCI premieres SalesPal at DevCon.

iPad_SalesPal_1

28:48: Keith discusses PCI’s company culture and the importance of work-life balance.

Productive Computing Sponsors Alvaka Networks’ Annual Speed and Feed

November 20th, 2013

Productive Computing Inc. co-sponsors the 3rd Annual Alvaka Networks’ “Speed and Feed” technology trade show and performance driving event on November 8th, 2013. This unique expo took place at the Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, CA, and brought together various companies within the Information Technology industry.

Vendors and attendees were invited to ride along with experienced racing drivers or take their own cars out on the race track to drive hot laps. The event wasn’t an actual race, but rather a special “track day” for enthusiasts looking to have fun while networking. Out of the more than 200 attendees, about 100 participants, including PCI’s very own amateur racing drivers Marc and Keith Larochelle, took their own cars out to drive the track. Instructional coaches were paired up with each driver, providing tips while they took laps and drivers were grouped according to their skill level and experience. Alvaka ensured that the event was highly structured and safe for newcomers who have never experienced performance driving. Top speeds in the various groups ranged from between 110mph and 155mph on the fastest parts of the track.

Professional photographers were on hand to capture every vehicle’s drive along the speedway. All attendants were able network with various business executives and racing enthusiasts while enjoying outdoors barbeque, raffles and prizes. This one of a kind event surely exemplified the true meaning of “Speed and Feed.”

“This was my 1st time on a big track and pushing 125mph coming out of a long straight and into turns 1 and 2 which are 2 tight left banking turns, was arguably the most fun I’ve had at a technology expo!” —Keith Larochelle, CFO, Productive Computing Inc.

 

Auto Club Speedway Map

 

Marc Larochelle, Josh Mazur, Keith Larochelle

 

Josh Mazur

 

Railz

 

Flash

 

Railz

 

Flash

 

Flash & Railz

 

Flash & Railz

 

Flash Crossing the Finish Line

 

Railz Crossing the Finish Line

 

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Dash cam video of CFO Keith Larochelle in his 2008 Lotus Exige S240

 

For more information, please visit:  http://www.alvaka.net

 

Productive Computing, Inc. Demonstrates FileMaker Pro to Cal State San Marcos Computer Science Students

October 8th, 2013

Last week Marc Larochelle from Productive Computing, Inc. gave a presentation entitled “Rapid Application Development Using FileMaker” to a selected group of Cal State San Marcos Computer Science Majors. Fifty or more students attended to learn the benefits of rapid application development using FileMaker with Productive Computing customers highlighted as an example.

During the session Marc created a basic FileMaker database from a simple Excel spreadsheet import then immediately deployed that database application on a Mac, a Windows computer, two web browsers and an iPad in a matter of minutes. Productive Computing is a regular presenter at Cal State San Marcos and uses these talks to inspire and educate today’s generation on the benefits of using FileMaker in the workplace and the potential career opportunities upon graduation.

 

 

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