There is still a little bit of time left to sign up for the SOLARUG April online meeting. I'll be discussing Web Widgets with Web Edition. You'll learn how to make that little clock on the SOLARUG site, plus I have another surprise widget in store... a Twitter scroller.
Orlando, USA, 24th and 25th Mai 2012: Real World is the biggest Real Studio meeting in the world. Three awesome days with probably more than 100 Real Studio developers to learn new things, exchange ideas and meet the people you only know from lists or forums. More than 85 attendees from 13 countries.
I want to tell you the story I had the last days with JSON classes:
We started with a need to use JSON for talking to a server. We were happy to see JSONItem class in Real Studio, but we soon realized it has problems. First it did not preserve the text encoding. All the strings we got back had no text encoding set. Well we eventually worked around that, but later we discovered that the JSONItem class is very very slow. We really didn't want to wait 10 seconds for a big JSON to be parsed. So we checked for alternatives. As the client uses both Einhugur and MBS plugins, we have also JSONNode from Einhugur and JSONMBS from MBS Plugins available. A little speed test for parsing shows that the plugins do the 10 second job in less than 0.1 seconds. The Einhugur class was a little bit faster then mine, so we tried JSONNode. But it turns out that JSONNode doesn't return strings with text encodings, too.
So finally we came to JSONMBS class. Our class is a little bit lower level as you get nodes for arrays or dictionaries which you don't see that way with the other classes. But well, our JSONMBS class has decent speed and handles encodings better. Still we need to call the unescape function manually to removes escapes.
So finally we have a solution and our parse method implemented with 3 different classes. Good if we have to switch again later
Today I created two shared folders on my dropbox account: MBS Real Studio Plugins and MBS Filemaker Plugins.
I'll put in the future new plugins there and if you like I can subscribe/invite you for this. And don't change the folders!
Dropbox is a nice way to sync files. Still I'd love to have a few advanced features. Like following a folder. So people can subscribe without asking me and see the folder with readonly access.
That would be nice to provide downloads in general, especially if the folder would be available over the web for public download.
One of my users asked what the difference between the plugin CURL functions and the new insert from URL Script step is. Well, basically the insert URL script step can do a specific thing which is getting data from an URL and putting it into a media field. If you just need this, you are fine, but if you need a little different feature, you should check our plugin. Like if you need some proxy settings or pass a cookie or some advanced credentials. Also if you use SSL, you should try the plugin as it can verify the peer using a certificate. Encrypting the data without making sure there is no attacker listening doesn't make much sense. Finally you may want to show progress while download and allow the user to cancel?
Our feature comparison:
Insert URL Script Step
MBS Filemaker Plugin
FTP and FTPS Protocols
Download & Upload
HTTP and HTTP Protocols
Download & Upload
Download & Upload
Verify Certificate and Host for SSL connections
SFTP Protocol (File Transfer over SSH)
FTP Directory Listings
Authentication (username/password for FTP/HTTP)
only within URL
Reuse same connection
Read/Write Data to file/variable
Fill and send forms
Use custom timeouts
Speed limit / statistics
Show progress and cancel download
In our tests a ftp download using login/password worked with the insert URL script. Even ftp directory listings seem to work. Of course for advanced operations like renaming your file after upload or deleting a file, you need the plugin. Also if you want to follow redirects or you need to send special headers including cookie string.
Please don't hesitate to comment or inform us about things we forgot.
as you may have seen, we uploaded Tree Size 3.1 and Logintime in menubar 1.1. Both updated for being Intel Mac apps so they run on Snow Leopard and Lion. Also we added little improvements recently. In the Login time app you can click the time to switch between login time and duration.
As the Real Studio projects are included, you can learn from us on how to make such applications. You need Real Studio 2011r4 with current MBS plugins.
Today we added a class for NSDatePicker, so you can now show date and time pickers in your Cocoa/Carbon app with our CocoaControlMBS control:
Please try the demo project in next plugins. You can set/get times and set various properties.
Tuesday, April 17, 2012 is the deadline to file taxes in the U.S., so to provide you with a little relief, Real Studio Developer Magazine is having a special one-day sale. On that day all orders over $25 are 20% off!
We're keeping this simple, with no gimmicks or absurd limitations. The 20% discount is valid for all our products: printed books, subscriptions, back issues, CDs, even subscription renewals! But this coupon is only good on April 17, 2012, so hurry to take advantage of our huge Tax Day Relief sale!
I had a client asking for more functions for NSTextViewMBS class. So with next plugins, we'll have a couple of new methods there including most important an insertText method. You can add normal strings, but also NSAttributedStringMBS object. This means you can read some file with data (RTF, Word Document, HTML, etc.) and insert it in some existing text. And of course you can create NSMutableAttributedStringMBS on the fly and set attributes. Also with new text storage access on the text view, you can set or get the text with attributes from the textview.
You can use our NSTextViewMBS class for both: Pimp an existing TextArea object in a Real Studio cocoa target or use the CocoaControlMBS control to add it to a Carbon or Cocoa window. So please check next plugins
Based on our experiences so far, your MBS plugin for FileMaker is head and shoulders above the other web/URL plugins we've used. We've found the other web plugins extremely time-consuming to use, and they seem to fail on complex sites with lots of cookies and sessions and such to track, even when we took the time to carefully reverse-engineer everything that the site was trying to do. In our current project, while we previously had things working well with another plugin, the website suddenly changed to a more complex model and we tried for many hours to get it working again, without success.
But with the MBS plugin's "WebView" components, we got our solution up and running again in less than a day. The MBS WebView model is absolutely brilliant: let FileMaker's WebViewer object do the heavy background lifting with cookies and sessions, etc, and just concentrate on controlling the WebViewer with the input that a user would normally give to a browser. The result was that it took us significantly less time to code this solution than with the previous plugins that we've used, and the resulting scripts are far more straightforward.
Thank you for the MBS FileMaker plugin and also for your super-quick work on the custom function that we needed; if not for MBS, we'd still be beating our heads on a brick wall trying to get our solution working.
John DeMillion Chester County Intermediate Unit United States
Review from Steve Thomas
the web viewer in filemaker has a great deal of power. Unfortunately, it was not given a voice of its own when the folks at filemaker built and brought it to life. The conversational one sidedness can make things a bit lonely. It turns out that there is a voice in the webviewer. in fact, there's a LOUD voice. Monkeybread's mbs plug in for filemaker is all that is needed to turn it on. Just be warned...uv been throwing rocks into a giant pool of calm water for some time. That calm water may just start throwing rocks at you. TheShortVersion: once u go from being limited to the oneway pushing of filemaker data > webviewer and living with mere "data display", to real 2way communication the likes of what can be accomplished when u can fire scripting from elements inside the web viewer, ur solutions will transform.
- steve thomas
Review from Simon Gerads
The MBS FileMaker Plug-in is a must have for all FileMaker developers. It is a Plug-in with many different solutions and each one of them works great. The power of all functions is amazing and the support is by far the best I have ever had. A question is answered in less the 24 hours and if thats not good enough. A sample is created by Christian to demonstrated the function.
I use the MBS FileMaker Plug-In almost everyday and the great thing is - it just works.
Keep up the great work and all the good ideas. Thanks a lot for your amazing Plug-In is by far the best.
Our filemaker documentation moved to new domain mbsplugins.eu which makes it possible that you can google for it in a few weeks (once it's indexed) and use "site:mbsplugins.eu" to search only the documentation. (like we have for Real Studio)
For this blog, we added a side bar for latest comments. I hope it's useful and you leave a comment from time to time...
The Real Studio meeting in London was great. Accounting is done and everything is paid. For your information: The event costed a little over 3000 Euro with a result of 500 Euro deficit which is our sponsoring subvention.
The Filemaker meeting yesterday in Bern was great. A nice round table, 6 people in total and I showed a few of my plugin features.
Did someone try the new VLC plugin for Real Studio? I got no feedback so far!
Our VLC plugin will be available soon with the next prerelease.
I updated it to VLC 2.0.1 and improved examples.
Also we are preparing some documentation for it.
Should be a nice easter present for Real Studio users
First version will simply give you access to the VLC API. You can play video with it and it's working nice on Mac and Windows. Linux probably, too, but I didn't try so far. Later we may add more convenience functions and maybe a video player control instead of using a Canvas.
As I just had a client asking for an example with Listbox's CellBackgroundPaint event. You can use this event to draw pictures in background as well as in each cell, like on this picture:
In order to draw a full picture in the listbox, simply draw portions of it in different cells.
And to draw custom picture in one cell or color background, simply use graphics class commands to do so in the same event. This is very powerful. You can color cells and draw them with round edges or other fancy things to give them a very unique look.
Download project here: ListboxCellBackgroundPaintExample.zip
This morning Filemaker 12 was released. A little surprise. Didn't expect it by now. But well, the plugin seems to work fine. This new version adds better Drag & Drop on Mac, so you won't need our plugin for accepting file drops on a media field. But still you can use our plugins if you want to accept drops with emails, text, url or image data. All the things that are not files.
On the server, they move to 64 bit and we'll have to rework the plugin to support that new 64 bit mode. I'll have to wait for details on this from Filemaker.
So far our WebViewer, Dialog, CURL, GraphicsMagick and other plugin functions seem to work just fine. I tested more than 50 examples so far.
What doesn't work, seems to be the function to hide scrollbars on a Filemaker window. But maybe with new functions of formatting windows, this is no longer needed?
If you see a problem with current plugins, please email us. We'll test more and probably make the 2.7 plugin release with all changes for Filemaker 12 ready in the next weeks.
Real World 2012, the Real Studio User's Conference
Real World, which will take place next month, is the biggest Real Studio event of the year! At the 2012 event you can attend informative educational sessions, network with your peers and gain industry insight all while enjoying the magic of Disney. Real World will take place May 24-25, 2012 in Orlando, Florida, one of the top recreational and conference destinations in the world! Real World will be hosted at the Royal Plaza, which boasts excellent amenities, including a beautiful pool area with poolside bar, spa, restaurant and lounge, and is conveniently located on the Walt Disney World property and is walking distance from Downtown Disney. Hotel rooms for Real World attendees will be charged at a negotiated rate of 99USD per night!
We already have over 85 people signed up from 13 countries, so reserve your spot today! Register now!
This conference will be jam-packed with important information about Real Studio and unique opportunities to network with your peers. At Real World you will have the opportunity to chat one-on-one with Real Studio engineers and put a face with a name you know from the NUG or Forums. You can also stop by our third party table and hear about what's new from our featured third party developers!
We would like to thank the Real World 2012 Sponsors: