UI enhancement library

Discussions specific to Team Developer 5.1.

UI enhancement library

Postby lrcuess » Wed Mar 18, 2009 3:58 pm

With Team Developer 5.1, Unify introduced the new user interface drawing engine Prof-UIS which provides a nice way to support multiple themes and introduces some very useful new controls.
Some of them already got introduced into Team Developer.
But currently, Team Developer 5.1 with Service Pack 5, not all features of the controls provided by Prof-UIS are accessible through built in Sal-functions, so I decided to give it a try to use the Prof-UIS library delivered with Team Developer directly, to be able to access additional properties and methods.
I'm glad, that it basically worked and some additional styles of the controls are now accessible.

You can see a screenshot of the sample application here:
Image

The main thing I wanted to have, is the possibility to modify the image and text alignment of buttons.
I'm glad that this works now.
After that worked, I tried to use methods of other controls too, which also basically worked.


This library is meant to be an enhancement to Team Developer until the features are available there.
After all of the features are - hopefully - available through Sal-functions, this module will go away.


PLEASE NOTE, THAT THE FUNCTIONS INSIDE THE MODULE ARE FULLY EXPERIMENTAL AND CURRENTLY ONLY TESTED AGAINST TEAM DEVELOPER 5.1 SERVICE PACK 5. YOU MAY USE IT IN YOU APPLICATIONS FOR FREE, BUT EXTENSIVE TESTING IN YOUR ENVIRONMENT IS ABSOLUTELY NECESSARY!!!

You can get the file here: http://tdsamples.daverabelink.net/index.php?dir=TD5x_specific/&file=RACON.SQLWindows.UserInterface.zip

Comments/wishes are very welcome!

Max
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Re: UI enhancement library

Postby hotzi » Thu Mar 19, 2009 7:35 pm

Yeahh, it's so cool! It works perfectly. :shock:
These are very very helpful features
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UI enhancement library: Questions

Postby ivanlun » Sun Mar 22, 2009 3:59 pm

Hello!

Some questions before I test your enhancement library:
1. Did you implement also some functionality regarding automatically resizing / anchoring / docking of controls or similary?
2. Did you use features, that work/exist only in SP5, or should your enhancements work even with SP4?

Thank you for your answers
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Re: UI enhancement library

Postby lrcuess » Sun Mar 22, 2009 4:42 pm

Hello Ivan!

The resizing/anchoring/docking is not yet available in my module, but this a very important topic on my list as the Prof-UIS library provides the necessary classes. I hope that I can provide it too soon.

My module is tested using SP5 but it should work with SP4 too.
Please give it a try and report the results here.

Thanks!
Max
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Re: UI enhancement library (PropertyGrid_Create)

Postby dezomer » Wed Mar 25, 2009 8:28 pm

hello

good stuff - very helpfull features !

the PropertyGrid -Control (PropertyGrid_Create ) is in my opinion a very interesting control !!

are there funktions available to add items ?

do you have plans to implement the full set of functions ?


tranks for your answers

François
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Re: UI enhancement library

Postby lrcuess » Wed Mar 25, 2009 8:32 pm

Hello François,

thanks for your comment.

I'm trying to get as much (useful) functions into the module, as possible.
First I plan to bring the Page Navigator (currently not in my sample application) control in, but the Property Grid is also on my list.
Currently I cannot give you any date when I'll have it, but I'll update this thread if I finished it.

Max
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Re: UI enhancement library

Postby tlauzi » Wed Mar 25, 2009 10:53 pm

Hi Max,
this library is indeed very usefull, and it is a shame, that as so often the community has to complete the work that Gupta/Unify did not finish.

Wouldn´t it be better to name the functions like Sal* function, that would integrate much better and it feels better Instead of Button_* -> SalButton_*?
I would also prefer the dll to be splitted in several logical parts (like in the ProfUi) like PropertyGrid, Button,... functions, so that I could choose which enhancement functions I will include. and if some functions get provided from Unify I simply could only drop this part of the library.

Then will get a very good und must have SAL(GUI)Extension library, until Unify will provide the appriopriate functions integrated.

Regards,
Thomas L.
Best Regards,
Thomas L.
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Re: UI enhancement library

Postby Dave Rabelink » Wed Mar 25, 2009 11:05 pm

tlauzi wrote:Wouldn´t it be better to name the functions like Sal* function, that would integrate much better and it feels better Instead of Button_* -> SalButton_*?


Though I agree a consistent functionname could be chosen, I do not think prefixing it with "Sal" is a good idea.
"Sal" indicates it is an internal function, out from the TD box (which could in the end make developers think the enhancement function is part of the standard TD toolset).
Other issue, when TD in a newer version implements a new Sal function with the exact same name. This would brake your existing applications using the custom enhancement library.

A prefix like "Pal" would be better (like "Pam" vs "Sam" ).
Regards,
Dave Rabelink

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Re: UI enhancement library

Postby lrcuess » Wed Mar 25, 2009 11:28 pm

Thanks for your ideas.
Splitting the library into multiple parts is absolutely a very good idea, and I'll do this.
I'll also rename the functions to something like "UISal*".

Examples:
UISalButtonSetTextAlignment
UISalEditSetCueBanner
UISalGroupBoxSetStyle
...

What do you think?

Max
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Re: UI enhancement library

Postby lrcuess » Thu Apr 09, 2009 6:02 pm

Hello,

I'd like to tell you, that I'm currently releasing the version 1.1 of the library.
It should be available soon at the following location: http://tdwiki.daverabelink.net/index.ph ... _Interface

Here is a list of enhancements since the first release:
  • Fix of a missing calling convention specification.
  • New functions for controling labels (Background Texts).
  • New (simple) support for adding a Theme Switcher Bar
  • New support for themed message boxes
  • Splitting into multiple APLs, each for one control.
  • Renaming the functions to UISal...
  • Enhanced sample application using M!Image
  • Preview of Page Navigator control
  • Preview of Property Grid control

Here is a screenshot of the enhanced sample application.
It's a mix of 4 themes, so don't wonder why it looks that striped. :D
Image

This version is also tested against the new Service Pack 6 of Team Developer.
If you find any bugs, please just post them here or send me a private message in the forum.

I wish you Happy Easter,
Max
Last edited by lrcuess on Fri Apr 10, 2009 1:41 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: UI enhancement library

Postby lrcuess » Fri Apr 10, 2009 1:31 am

Hello again,

now it's there.
I wasn't able to upload the files this afternoon, but Dave did it for me now. Thanks, Dave!

The new version consists of 2 ZIPs.
One containing the whole Team Developer sources like APLs and the sample APT.
The second contains the binaries including the DLL.

As this module version was built with help from Unify - "I say THANK YOU VERY MUCH for your great support!" - this module requires TD 5.1 SP6 to run!

Greetings from Austria,
Max
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Re: UI enhancement library

Postby clecaros » Mon May 04, 2009 12:32 pm

HI,

The UI libraries look very good but I try the message box library and the 'Enter' or shorcuts like Alt+O for the buttons do not work when running an executable. The Alt+ shortcut keys work fine on runtime though. Any idea why is this?

Regards
Cesar
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Re: UI enhancement library

Postby lrcuess » Mon May 04, 2009 9:56 pm

Hi Cesar,

I just tried around with the message box and could easily reproduce the behaviour you described.
What also doesn't work neither in EXE nor in APT mode is the tab-key to move between the message box buttons.

I'll see what I can do to fix this.
Thanks for the information!

Max
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Re: UI enhancement library

Postby johaplar » Tue May 12, 2009 8:46 pm

Hi,

I would just like to say I appreciate your initiative to add these UI enhancements. Great work!
What I'd like to be able to do is to pick up current windows background color theme and set the background color of a disabled data field or a child table with disabled columns (editable=No). As of now (SP6) it doesn't work when using themes with gradient background colors like "Office 2007 Release 1" (see attachement below). As I understand it, your UI library does'nt include that functionality. Is it possible, do you think?

Regards,
Lars-Olof
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Re: UI enhancement library

Postby lrcuess » Mon May 18, 2009 10:38 pm

Hi,

in Team Developer, controls like Datafields or Tables only support a plain background color.
Changing this behaviour would only be possible by recoding the drawing of those controls, which would be very time consuming.

I'd recommend, that you use Background Texts for Datafields, that you just use for displaying data.
Currently, using the Background Text identifiers doesn't work, but I hope that in TD 5.2 this will be fixed, so this step will be much easier.
(Unify?)

For the Tables there may be a solution sometime either by Unify (with the new Grid) or maybe by Michael Stoll (M!Table).
But I don't know anything about the details here.

I'm sorry, but I think I cannot help you with this (in a short time).

Max
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