There is a new release of the IDE for Laszlo on alphaWorks. It supports the latest OpenLaszlo 3.0 software and includes a neat WYSIWYG editing feature.
OpenLaszlo 3.0 let's you do more with your Laszlo applications, including improved XML handling and better and smaller standalone SWFs. See this Press Release for more info.
The WYSIWYG editing is extremely helpful when doing layout and fine-tuning your components. In fact, I know of a certain Programming Contest where this feature might come in handy...
Jim Hsu[Read More]
Emerging Technologies You Need to Know
Two new ETTK packages are now available: Compound XML Document Editor and XML Forms Generator.
A compound document combines XML markup from several namespaces into a single physical document. A number of standards exist, and continue to be developed, that are descriptions of XML markup within a single namespace. XHTML, XForms, XML Events, Scalable Vector Graphics (SVG), VoiceXML, and MathML are a handful of prominent examples of such standards, each having its own namespace.
To authors of content, each of these standards is useful and important. However, it is the combination of elements of any number of these standards that lends true flexibility and power. A document may exist to be displayed within a Web browser, to display an input form, with a scalable graphic and a bit of mathematical notation, all on the same page. XHTML, XForms, SVG, and MathML, respectively, serve these needs, and would therefore be combined into a single multi-namespace, or compound document.
Recently, the Opera and Firefox browser teams announced plans to add native SVG support in their upcoming browsers. I think as more and more browsers natively support SVG, XFORMs, MathML, etc., Compound documents will be used extensively.
John Feller[Read More]
Let's see how small we can make our Laszlo apps! Since a Laszlo contest for lowest LOC count would probably result in a lot of messy and collapsed code, why not have a contest for smallest UI footprint instead? There's no prizes yet, except for bragging rights. Here are the rules:
1. Add the width and height of your Laszlo app's main canvas, in pixels. Subtract 10 points for each different visible Laszlo component that is used. (For example, if you use two checkboxes they are counted once.) This is your score and we are aiming for lowest score.
2. To score, each Laszlo component used must be fully visible and clickable. Without going into a philosophical debate on what is the smallest component that is still a usable component, let's just say we want our components to look "nice" and still be recognizable. So if a tree component is used, it should have at least one node to expand and collapse, etc.
3. Scrollbars will be disallowed since they essentially give unlimited screen real-estate.
4. Try to color each component with a different color, so it is easily seen and differentiated.
5. Finally, the IDE for Laszlo will be used for its rapid prototyping and easy preview capabilities.
Here is my ridiculously easy to beat example:
<canvas height="85" width="15">
<button height="18" width="12" bgcolor="blue">b</button>
This app scores 60 points. The sum of canvas width and height gives 100 points, minus 40 points for 4 different components.
How low can we go? Will we see negative number scores? Hit the 'Comments' link to post your name and code entry.
Jim Hsu[Read More]
There are some interesting discussions on the XJ Forum on the IBM alphaWorks site. XJ makes XML processing native to the Java language and as such is related to research done for other languages like C-omega, mentioned on the forum. There is some support for the contention that the mismatch between XML and Object-oriented models requires native language support to best support XML document processing. XJ is a good example of doing just that for Java, and one for which we are very interested in developer feedback.
Joel Farrell[Read More]
I am always amazed by how tiny my Laszlo apps turn out. Tiny in terms of lines of code (LOC). It's remarkable how sophisticated an application just 100-200 lines can produce. Of course, the smaller your app, generally, the easier it is to debug and maintain.
How many LOC do your Laszlo apps usually turn out to be? Hit the 'Comments' link to post a reply. As always, bragging is welcome here.
Jim Hsu[Read More]