MBS Xojo / Real Studio Plugins, version 16.4pr2

New in this prerelease of the 16.4 plugins:
  • Fixed ArchiveWriterMBS.WriteHeader function.
  • Updated to DynaPDF
  • Added WVWebViewControlMBS control. Uses WebKit 2 for 64-bit, but fails back to older WebKit for 32-bit.
  • Added memory storage class to store data outside of app memory.
  • Fixed bug where volume reference number is returned wrong and volume size is not detected correctly.
  • Updated LCMS library to version 2.8.
Download: macsw.de/plugin/Prerelease. Or ask us to be added to our shared Dropbox folder.

Xojo Meeting in Atlanta

On Monday we had a nice Xojo developer meeting in Atlanta, Georgia:

Topics included Xojo 2016r2, the ongoing sales, new third party components and of course MBS Plugins.
Thanks everyone for coming and the Palmas for the great mexican food!

LCMS 2.8 released

We just got notice about the release of a new LCMS version:

I am glad to the announce the release 2.8 of the Little CMS open source color engine.

This release has been sponsored by Alien Skin software

Version 2.8 is a featured release. It introduces alpha channel transportation and a new type of plug-in for enhancing performance, among bug fixes and other enhancements. XCode and Visual Studio 2015 are supported in this release.

Many thanks to Alien Skin software and also to all users that have tested this code.

Little CMS intends to be a small-footprint color management engine, with special focus on accuracy and performance. It uses the International Color Consortium standard (ICC), which is the modern standard when regarding to color management.

The ICC specification is widely used and is referred to in many International and other de-facto standards.

For more information, please take a look on:

Main site: littlecms.com
Downloads: littlecms.com/download.html

Best regards,
Marti Maria
The Little CMS project

Thanks to Marti for keeping this project running for years.
As usual we will include the new version of LCMS in the next prerelease of our plugins.

Xojo Meeting in Las Vegas

Yesterday we met with a few Xojo developers in Las Vegas. While I invited 10 people for a meeting, only 2 showed up:

Still we enjoyed a delicious dinner in the FireFly restaurant, a bit off the strip.
This was the first meting since 2 years ago the Xojo developer conference took place in Las Vegas.

PS: Monday we meet in Atlanta.

Tip of the day: AppleScript with Properties to pass file path

Today we discussed on how to best get the file path into an AppleScript. We'd like to pass it as POSIX path and no the old Mac path format. And we prefer to use properties to pass values into the script. The advantage is that we can compile once and run several times with different values. Finally putting values in properties avoids any escaping problems when putting a text into a script directly. So here is the final code:

// we have some FolderItem dim f as FolderItem = SpecialFolder.Desktop.Child("test.key") // and build a script dim lines() as string // here we declare a property for the script: lines.Append "property filePath : """"" // and convert path from posix file path to AppleScript path lines.Append "tell application ""Finder""" lines.Append " set f to filePath as POSIX file" lines.Append "end tell" // and use path for Keynote lines.Append "tell application ""Keynote""" lines.Append " activate" lines.Append " set mydoc to open file f" lines.Append "end tell" // compile the script dim s as String = Join(lines, EndOfLine.Macintosh) dim a as new AppleScriptMBS a.Compile s if a.Lasterror <> 0 then MsgBox str(a.Lasterror)+" "+a.Error.BriefMessage end if // fill the property a.ScriptPropertyValue("filePath") = f.NativePath // run it a.Execute if a.Lasterror <> 0 then MsgBox str(a.Lasterror)+" "+a.Error.BriefMessage end if

Atl Xojo Users Group - Mon, Jul 25th, 2016

Kevin Cully sent the invitation for the next meeting in Atlanta:

Hello Xojo enthusiasts!

Please join us for this Xojo monthly meeting! We promise that you'll learn something new at each meeting!

Who: Everyone interested in developing in Xojo!
What: Monthly Meeting
Where: Las Palmas Mexican Restaurant, 2210 Holly Springs Pkwy, Holly Springs, GA
When: Monday, July 25th, 2015 - 6pm to 9pm
Monkey Bread Software is one of the most prolific creators of plugins for Xojo. Literally hundreds of useful plugins that help you look and work like a pro. Christian Schmitz is coming all the way from Germany to talk all things Xojo, plugins and productivity. We hope that you can join us this next Monday.

We've also got the latest Xojo news, reviews and announcements.

See you there!

MBS Xojo / Real Studio Plugins, version 16.4pr1

New in this prerelease of the 16.4 plugins:
  • Added Raspberry Pi cameras classes.
  • Updated to DynaPDF
  • Fixed a bug for Japanese with Set Variable checking.
  • Improved DynaPDFOptimizeParamsMBS class for newer DynaPDF version.
  • Changed CIImageMBS.RenderPicture methods. If extend of image is infinite, we use the width and height you provide.
  • Fixed bug with ICDeviceBrowserMBS destructor.
  • Added GetStringsFromDataMBS function.
  • Fixed some issues with new Contacts classes.
  • Added new constructors for WindowsListMBS class to list child windows.
Download: macsw.de/plugin/Prerelease. Or ask us to be added to our shared Dropbox folder.

DynaPDF Optimize Command

With the next prerelease of our FileMaker, Xojo and Real Studio plugins we will include DynaPDF and the Optimize command has two big changes: First, it now can now scale down images and reduce the size of PDF files significantly. Second, the license changes and the Optimize command is now included in the Pro license.

For optimize you can specify a few parameters. For each image in the PDF, DynaPDF will check the display resolution of the image. That is not the resolution stored in some metadata with the image, but the actual size the image will be displayed. You can specify the minimum resolution for images to be checked independently for Color, grayscale and 1 bit images. Next you define the resolution you want as maximum for the output images. For example you want to scale down all images with more than 100 dpi and reduce them to maximum 150 dpi. For the filter parameter you can specify the compression you want, e.g. JPEG. Converting images from Flate compression to JPEG with same or lower resolution will of course reduce the file size.

When optimizing PDFs, we can remove private data, invisible paths and create new link names. This further reduces size down and rebuilds the structure of the PDF. While doing the optimize we fix problems in PDF files automatically. Some PDFs which showed error messages when opening in Adobe Reader now open without errors.

Here an example:

The test PDF optimize-before.pdf is created with FileMaker 15 from the product catalog example with a few pictures. Than printed to PDF in FileMaker. Of course you can use whatever test PDFs you like for your own tests. Now we run through and let DynaPDF limit image resolution to 150 dpi. The new PDF optimize-after.pdf is much smaller. From 686 KB down to 89 KB (87% saved).

See yourself:
before vs. after

or when we scale them up at 200%:
before vs. after

We can extract the images and see that FileMaker placed a 816x612 Pixel big JPEG file (optimize-image-before.jpg) there. DynaPDF replaced that with a 206x154 Pixel big (optimize-image-after.jpg). I don't think you see the difference at the target size in the PDF. And 150 dpi is quite good for reading on screen and sending via email. FileMaker probably uses 600 dpi here to make sure it looks good when printing.

If you join FileMaker DevCon in Las Vegas, please visit our booth to try compression on your test PDFs!

Use Raspberry Pi Camera in Xojo

As you may know I have a Raspberry Pi and play with it from time to time. One of my hobby projects got to a state where I can show it to you:

For upcoming 16.4 MBS Xojo plugins, we now have a few classes to work with the camera on a Raspberry Pi. You can query available formats, select one and take pictures. We support both picture objects and directly capturing JPEG data. This way you can request image in right size and compressed and your application doesn't need to do this.
If you like to try, please email me soon.

Tip of day: Gradients with CoreImage Filter

With CoreImage you can easily get nice gradients:
// create gradient filter dim CiGradiantFilter as new CIFilterLinearGradientMBS // set input vector and colors CiGradiantFilter.inputPoint0 = CIVectorMBS.vectorWithXY(800,600) CiGradiantFilter.inputPoint1 = CIVectorMBS.vectorWithXY(0,0) CiGradiantFilter.inputColor0 = CIColorMBS.colorWithRGB(1,1,1) CiGradiantFilter.inputColor1 = CIColorMBS.colorWithRGB(1,0.5,0.3) // get output picture dim r as CIImageMBS = CiGradiantFilter.outputImage // render bitmap Backdrop = r.RenderPicture(800, 600)
With MBS Plugin we provide you over 100 CoreImage classes including CIFilterLinearGradientMBS, CIFilterGaussianGradientMBS, CIFilterRadialGradientMBS and CIFilterSmoothLinearGradientMBS.

Loaded Plugins in Xojo

Did you see the recent addition to the about dialog in Xojo 2016r2?

Now you can see which plugins are loaded. Thanks Xojo Inc.

Xojo 2016 Release 2 Now Available

A new release of Xojo is now available for download! The latest release adds significant new features for iOS and web, along with 150 improvements overall. In addition, this release continues with HiDPI (Retina) support by adding HiDPI for web apps and dramatic improvements for Windows HiDPI.

Xojo for iOS now has significantly improved support for tables, available in the following new capabilities:
  • Row scrolling
  • Row actions
  • Row editing
  • Row re-ordering
  • Custom cells
New iOS controls and features include:
  • Location services
  • Motion data from the accelerometer and gyroscope
  • The PicturePicker control to select pictures from the camera roll, photo library or to let the user take a new picture
  • A Scrollable Area that allows for UI layouts that are larger than the size of a view, making it easy for the user to scroll through all the fields and controls
  • A SharingPane control to allow your apps to share text, URLs and pictures to other registered apps
Xojo 2016 Release 2 also makes it easier to create toolbars with an all-new visual toolbar editor and simplifies app deployment by removing the need for launch images.

Read the complete list of improvements in the release notes. Is your license expired?

PS: Please update MBS Plugin to 16.3 before using Xojo 2016r2 and run into fixed issues.

MBS Xojo / Real Studio plug-ins in version 16.3

NICKENICH, Germany (July 12h, 2016) -- Monkeybread Software releases version 16.3 of the MBS plug-in for Xojo and Real Studio.

The MBS plug-in comprises a collection of several plug-in parts which extend the Xojo (Real Studio) development environment with 2,300 classes featuring over 59,000 documented functions. Our plugins support all three platforms Mac OS X, Windows and Linux with all project types desktop, web and console including 64-bit and ARM targets.

Some of the highlights on the 16.3 update:

Our latest plugins have been updated for Xojo 2016r2. Due to a few little changes in the new Xojo version we had to modify the plugins. Older plugins may not work properly.

For 64-bit applications we added a new Contacts plugin part with a couple of new classes. For new 64-bit applications you may prefer the new classes instead of the older Addressbook classes.

For accessing smartcard readers, we got a set of new functions in our new SmartCard plugin. You can list the readers, detect cards and transmit data to them. This is very low level and requires knowledge about the protocols used with your smart card.

For DynaPDF we improved the difference feature to compare two pages. You can now specify the color tolerance. We added a new optimize parameter class for our optimize command.

Our SQL Plugin got new methods to execute prepared statements multithreaded. That allows you to use them in a Xojo thread and have the work run on a preemptive thread on another CPU core.

For editing word files we now have methods to replace images. PortMidi can now handle unicode device names and initialize on demand.

Finally we updated DynaPDF to version and LibArchive to version 3.2.1.

See release notes for a complete list of changes.

Alternativer Wolf- und Bärenpark Schwarzwald

This week I had the chance to visit the Alternativer Wolf- und Bärenpark Schwarzwald. This is a project to protect wolves and bears here in Germany and they provides a home to eight bears and three wolves. Those bears are freed/rescued from circus and other places where they had a bad live with punishment. Now they can enjoy the rest of their lives in a natural environment there in the black forest. And visits can go and see them.
As those animals are used to humans they can't survive alone in nature.

My visit there was due to the FileMaker training organized by MKV. I gave a short presentation about the MBS FileMaker Plugin and had some time to talk with the trainees.

If you have a chance, please visit the two parks in Worbis and Bad Rippoldsau.

MBS Xojo / Real Studio Plugins, version 16.3pr6

New in this prerelease of the 16.3 plugins:
  • Added WordFileMBS.MediaFile and WordFileMBS.MediaFiles.
  • Added Contacts classes for our Mac 64bit plugin.
  • Fixed bug in DynaPDFMBS.ShowDifference introduced in pr4.
  • Fixed a bug with CFDictionary creation when Xojo reports wrong variant type in 64-bit.
Download: macsw.de/plugin/Prerelease. Or ask us to be added to our shared Dropbox folder.

XDC in 3 months

Just three months left for the 2016 Xojo Developer Conference. If you plan to go, be sure to reserve your flight for a good rate now. And also make a hotel reservation in advance.

XDC will take place in Houston, TX October 5-7, 2016. It features sessions on best practices, special interests and other technical topics, with content for every level of Xojo developer. Educational sessions will cover topics like Xojo iOS, Raspberry Pi, database design, user interface design, debugging techniques, writing secure apps, and much more! Want to know what XDC is like? Watch our highlights video!

Register now!

XDC Pricing:
Advanced Registration:
till August 22, 2016: $899

Late Registration:
August 23 - Conference: $999

XDC will take place at the lovely boutique Hotel Derek in the Galleria area of Houston. It's right in the middle of two airports, giving you plenty of options (and time) to find a great flight! We have negotiated a hotel room rate of $164 a night. Rooms can be reserved here.

If you have any questions about XDC, feel free to email Dana Brown.

National BKeeney...er...Bikini Day

We just got notice that Bob Keeney is running a sale today:

July 5th is National BKeeney…er…Bikini Day. In celebration we’re offering all of our products at 30% off for the next 48 hours. Apply the coupon BIKINI in our online store to receive the discount on the following products:

ARGen : Our utility for creating ActiveRecord classes for use with Xojo. Make the IDE work for you when developing your Xojo database applications.

BKS Spell Check Plugin : Easily add spell checking to your Xojo applications with our Mac and Windows plugin that can either use the System dictionary or use a Hunspell dictionary.

Calendar Classes : Add Day, Week, and Month views to your Xojo applications.

BKeeney Shorts Professional : Create and render reports in your Xojo desktop and web applications. Renders to screen, printer, HTML, CSV, and PDF formats.

Formatted Text Control : A TextArea replacement that allows inline pictures, hyperlinks, and much more.

FTC and Spell Checker Plugin: Get the FTC control with the spell checker.

Simple Help Editor : Making help systems stinks. This utility helps make it easy.

Styled HTML Field : Export from a StyledText field to HTML. Handy if you’re going to add HTML to emails sent from Xojo applications.

Task Timer 5  (Mac and Windows): If you aren’t tracking your time you’re missing out on a key metric on how well you estimate and where you spend more of your time.

Xojo Trainer  (Download and Flash versions): Learn Xojo (offline) from Xojo professionals with over 15 years of Xojo development experience.

Visit our online store  to see all our products or visit any of the product pages to get more information on them.

As I know a lot of people use his tools, you can use this sale to get them all!  PS: The offer expired.

xDev Magazine Issue 14.4

The July/August 2016 (14.4) issue of xDev Magazine is now available. Here's a quick preview of what's inside:
  • Spring in Koblenz, Germany by Richard DukeDid you miss the 2016 MBS Xojo Conference in Germany this spring? Have no fear: Richard reports on what happened and shares lots of photos.
  • NSTabula Rasa by Ulrich BogunXojo's Listbox control is easy to use, but has some limitations. Mac OS X's NSTableView is more powerful, and with Ulrich's guiding hand, not so intimidating.
  • Multiprocessing Part 4 by Markus WinterIn this segment, Markus explains methods on getting the number of cores of a Windows system.
  • Age of Acceptance by Marc ZeedarHave you noticed how more average users seem to accept software bugs as "normal?" Marc warns that this attitude is a slippery slope for developers.
  • Tracking Health Disorders, Part 2 by J.C. CruzJose continues his health tracking project, this time adding the complexity of recording symptom data.
Plus: Craig gets into Big Data, Scott looks at a logging module for Xojo, Marc writes about randomness, Paul explores HiDPI, and more!

MBS Xojo / Real Studio Plugins, version 16.3pr5

New in this prerelease of the 16.3 plugins:
  • Fixed PortMidiDeviceInfoMBS Name property to correctly handle special characters on Mac.
  • Fixed RemoteControlMBS.MacTextForKeyCode for 64-bit.
  • Fixed a bug on Mac with FileListMBS.TrueItem. (from 16.2)
  • The HASP Plugin can now load haspms32.dll optionally if near app.
  • Added Picture.CloneMBS variant with new mask.
  • Fixed a bug with cloning pictures with mask.
Download: macsw.de/plugin/Prerelease. Or ask us to be added to our shared Dropbox folder.

SQLite 3.13 with ICU

Recently a client asked for support of ICU in the MBS SQL plugin.
There is just a little problem. ICU libraries are 20 MB in size and including them for all platforms would increase SQL Plugin size for about 120 MB in size!
But you can use our SQL Plugin with an external SQLite library. Simply download the source code and built a copy with ICU enabled.

For your convenience I just built a copy of the SQLite library for Mac using the ICU library coming with OS X:

Download: SQLite3Mac.zip

To check whether it is working, you can for example do a "SELECT upper('ä')" and see if you get back ä (non working) or Ä (working). You can try lower, like and regexp, too.
The biggest plugin in space...


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