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Showing posts from October, 2007

FoxTabs lives!

I was concerned a while back about where VFPSolutionExplorer.com had gone - it's nice to see that
Craig Bailey has re-forwarded it to the FoxTabs page on this blog.

If you haven't played with FoxTabs before, it totally rocks! And it definitely gets around - I was speaking to one of my colleagues about various tools - and when he shared his screen, there it was! (and no, I hadn't told him about it!)

Sadly, on the site, he does note that the SolutionExplorer itself has been put on hold. That's too bad as too many great FoxPro projects get put on hold while developers have to grapple with daily life. Still, we can get some ideas about what it was all about from the original powerpoint.

It's still a great idea - maybe this concept will lend itself slightly to what Craig, Bo and Alan are working on...until then, however, I may have to come up with my own workaround for it...

Blogging Southwest Fox

Tod had asked and I'm sure there will be lots of blogging coming from Southwest Fox.

Steve Bodnar has already started SOME of the blogging about going.
Update: Steve continues his coverage with GREAT notes on each of the sessions.
In addition, the FoxShow has some updates and the interview with Servoy.

As well, while I won't be there (sigh), I am planning on having a few calls with Rick and some vendors who are attending while the conference is going on. Instead of waiting for a full show, I plan on posting the updates right away onto the FoxShow site. I definitely will be speaking with Servoy, the Java development platform who is attending the show, hoping to show Fox developers the "java" side of life.

I'll keep this post updated with the other blogging that's going on. If you're on del.icio.us, why not tag it with swfox2007.


Have you picked up your dbi components yet?

It's been a while since their original announcement but dbi-Tech has provided 8 of their controls to all VFP developers using VFP SP2. I covered them about a year ago in FoxPro Advisor (hmm...maybe now it's time to put some revised articles online again).

If you've never used dbi-tech's controls, they all work pretty much the same way so once you get one under your belt, you're well on your way.

Controls that may be of immediate use to FoxPro developers - ctToolbar (Full XP styling Toolbar and menus), ctListBar (similar to Emerson Reed's Themed Controls in VFPX), ctDays (a scheduling style control similar to Outlook), and ctContact (an enhanced list control)


DBI Technologies Inc. | VFP 9.0 SEDNA Components

Great tools for Developers

Over on Rhonda Tipton's Weekly Link Post 10 « Rhonda for October 7th, she pointed to a post by Steven Smith about Nice products for developers.

While the post has a lot of details about VS 2005 and the like, it pointed to a little tool called SlickRun from Bayden Systems. I had previously tried JetStart which gives more of a "Windows Vista" look to the Start menu but found it lacking.

SlickRun takes a different approach putting up a little window in the lower right corner of your desktop (image shown below) but click it and type in a "magic word" and it will start whatever you want to use. Since you control what you want to call things, you can create basic words like "vfp9" or "vfp8" or project-specific words like "clientx" if you want to start up a project in a particular directory. It also includes a quick little jot note function (accessible by the WinKey+J). If you don't want it to appear on your window, you can also hide i…

Someone forgot the VFP splash screen?

Kind of funky - after installing SP2, I was hit with two issues:

One was more serious - my apps wouldn't run with the runtime, or at least the runtimes that were in the Shared/VFP folder. When I moved them to my app directory, they worked fine. Go figure.

The second was a head-scratcher. Now, I know Microsoft isn't putting more resources into VFP development and I know the team worked really hard on getting SP2 completed with everything. But is there any reason why they couldn't have properly cleaned up the splash screen? Here is what comes up when you first start FoxPro:


UPDATE: Yag has identified that they missed the file. Expect a refresh soon.

Looks like someone edited a bitmap file with MS Paint. On that topic, anyone know how to change the splash screen that is within the EXE?

I remember with older versions of Windows, it was simply a file that was attached to the end of the EXE.


VFP SP2 Released

David Stevenson noted it at 1 this morning - but I saw it on ProFox from Michael Hawksworth. Service Pack 2 for VFP has been released. Interesting to note that XSource hasn't been included for this release but will be coming later - my guess would be as part of the entire Sedna download but who knows...I can now look forward to upgrading all my systems. As David notes, don't install this over previous betas but only over the live system.

Direct link is here.
The Fix list is here.
Congrats to the Fox team for getting this release out.

I wish there had been a little more in the letter from Milind, seeing as this will be the last EXE of VFP from Microsoft but for the community and end-users, this is a great step. Now, (as Mike Feltman noted on the FoxShow) there is ONE static, stable version of the product - no more "wait for the next SP" as we hear from so many other items.

What we do with it now is in our hands...


Visual FoxPro - Letter from the Editor

Another reason to go to Oz...

If Craig keeps this up, I think I just need to move down there...yes, granted Nick is from Canada - but it seems there's really no end to some of the great stuff coming out of and into Australia these days...especially for Fox developers.

Drag and drop is one of those things that many developers overlook and don't feel can make a major difference in their application and yet once it's been implemented, it totally changes the way the application feels and works to end users. Great topic.


Craig Bailey on Microsoft: VFP: Sydney VFP special event 17 Oct 2007

Mind42 - MindJet should get worried

I don't know if MindManager is behind Mind42.com (updated - they're not) but one of the things I've been after is a web version of Mind-Manager.

Mind42 (as in For Two) from IRIAN Solutions (I think from Germany) does this and it's a beautiful implementation - similar to Geni's geneaology approach.

It's got some nice basic icons - a VERY easy to use interface and wow! The Collaboration totally rocks and to make matters worse for other Mind Mapping tools, it imports and exports Mind42, FreeMind and Mind Manager files.

I had created a fairly advanced MindMap in Mind Manager and was able to open it without a single problem with Mind42. However, it was unable to open my map that had linked submaps in it.

Some things I didn't like: the direction is always left to right - I can't go down or around or so it looked like. You can do this by adding multiple nodes but it wasn't completely intuitive.

I also had some trouble selecting the nodes correctly every time b…

Mint Rocks - can't wait for international support

I heard the hype at Demo (or was it Crunch40) and even though I have mostly Canadian accounts, I did set up an account for my US banking.
Mint is totally awesome. I've been looking for this from my own banks for years.

Only American Express currently provides notifications of pending transactions and balance updates but Mint consolidates all accounts into one and provides the same notifications but also one big web site.

I don't know if Microsoft has improved Money at all - I've skipped their last few international updates since they screwed up my initial files - but Mint has definitely set a higher bar.

Solution to being able to use ItemTips smartly in Listboxes.

A few months ago, I posted a problem on the Foxite forum about a problem with FoxPro listboxes and ItemTips.

ItemTips, for those who weren't aware, is a property that when turned on, will show the entire item text when there isn't sufficient space in the width of a listbox.

The problem arises however if you are using two (or more) columns with the listbox and the total width of the list is sufficient but the first column doesn't.

Example
x = createobject("Form")
x.addobject("listbox","listbox")
x.listbox.columncount = 2
x.listbox.columnwidths = "125,50"
x.listbox.additem("This is my long item in my listbox")
x.listbox.additem("This is my longer item in my list")
x.listbox.additem("This is my short item")
x.listbox.visible = .t.
x.listbox.itemtips = .t.
x.listbox.width = 200
x.show()

If you move your mouse over the first item, you will see the tip.
If you move your mouse over the second item, you won't - because the …

FoxPro: not dead but alive and kicking

ComputerWorld Canada had this article (registration required) from Rafael Ruffulo on products that were killed by their manufacturers but continue to live on. (Of course, XP gets mentioned based on regular news - I still have clients running 2000) but I was interviewed (as was Mike Yearwood) . IDC seems to look at it as a case of investment by programmers to make a product successful and that's why it has built up a great community around it.

I wish the article had a "expected life time" or "future outlook" piece aside from the obit - because some tools are definitely destined to fade away as the hardware architecture changes but others will continue to live on , especially if the host OS stays around for quite some time.


Departmental and End User Computing > Help Desk and End-User Support > Dead techs still roam IT's living world