Creating a solution > Working with formulas and functions > About formulas
About formulas
Formulas perform specific operations on one or more values in a database file, and return a single result.
Formulas can be used to define:
a calculation field. See Defining calculation fields.
a calculated value for an automatic entry into a field. See Defining automatic data entry.
a calculation that evaluates to true or false for data validation. See Defining field validation.
a calculated value that can be used to replace the values in a field (by using the Replace Field Contents command in the Records menu or a script step). See Replacing the contents of a field.
calculations in some FileMaker script steps, such as the script steps If, Exit Loop If, Set Field, Insert Calculated Result, and Replace Field Contents. See Automating tasks with scripts.
Formulas can contain:
constants - numbers, text, date, or time values that don’t change.
operators - symbols that indicate how to combine or compare two or more values.
functions - predefined, named formulas that perform specific calculations and return single, specific values for each repetition.
field references - fields in the same table or in a related table. A related field referenced in a calculation has the syntax tablename::related field. See Working with related tables and files.
Formula examples
Returns the first and last name separated by a space:
FirstName & " " & LastName
For example, Michelle Cannon.
Returns the value in the SubTotal field multiplied by .08:
SubTotal * .08
Returns the first and last name, each on a separate line:
Field1 & ¶ & Field2
For example,
Related topics 
About functions
Functions reference (category list)
Functions reference (alphabetical list)
Using operators in formulas
Identifying text constants and special characters in formulas
Adding comments to a formula
Using a reserved word or symbol for a field or table name