MBS Xojo Conference Update

About four weeks left until we start our MBS Xojo Developer Conference in Andernach, Germany.

Currently we have over 40 people from 13 countries:

🇩🇪, 🇳🇱, 🇬🇧, 🇺🇸, 🇫🇷, 🇨🇭, 🇪🇸, 🇨🇦, 🇵🇱, 🇦🇹, 🇩🇰, 🇸🇪 & 🇧🇪

Xojo 2024r1

Since the new Xojo version just launched, we will probably get an update on this in the Xojo keynote by Geoff Perlman. Then we look forward on the upcoming releases later this year and what is coming there.

The conference is your chance to directly talk to Javier, Riccardo and Geoff about the Xojo development. Ask Javier about the PDF classes, the new barcode scanning classes and pop overs. Then ask all your web framework questions to Riccardo.

Training day

We have a few tickets left for the training day. Please join to learn how to build an application in Xojo.

We combine the targets desktop, web and mobile to build a bigger solution. This may be a web app to act as a service for providing data to a Desktop, an iOS and an Android application.


15th birthday of MBS SQL Plugin

Our MBS SQL Plugin turns 15 years old today.

Over the years we got requests for alternative database plugin classes for use with Xojo (formerly REALbasic). In 2009 a client requested a native plugin for Microsoft SQL Server, so we started writing a SQL Plugin and got a deal with SQLAPI to use this C++ library as the base of the plugin. Over the years, we contributed lots of changes and bug fixes and helped funding adding CubeSQL and SQL Anywhere support to SQLAPI.

As of today, we support CubeSQL, Centura SQLBase, DB2, DuckDB, Firebird, Informix, InterBase, MariaDB, Microsoft Access, Microsoft SQL Server, MySQL, ODBC, Oracle Database Server, PostgreSQL, SQL Anywhere, SQLite, SQLCipher and Sybase. Well received features include using named parameters for prepared statements, full unicode support, threaded connect & execution, bulk row transfer, streaming blob values, and offering database specific options for advanced features. And recently we got even edit/update support for RecordSet and newer RowSet classes. Yes RowSet is supported!

You can use our plugin with one of two interfaces and even mix them. SQLConnectionMBS is our native interface for using all the nice features and works in Xojo Lite. This includes SQLCommandMBS class for doing both statement preparation and handling the result set. With SQLDatabaseMBS class, we have a database subclass, which makes transition easier for existing Xojo developers and use PreparedStatement interface and RecordSet class.

If you check the release notes for this plugin, you find that we recently we added SQLiteFunctionMBS class so you can define your own custom functions for SQLite when using it in our plugin as well as Xojo's SQLiteDatabase class.

If you like to try the plugin, please check the website. Watch SQL Plugin presentation and read Xojo Developer Magazine article in issue 14.1.

See also

Xojo license changes

With Xojo 2024r1 or newer, everyone can build Xojo desktop and console applications for Linux without a license. Basically this part of Xojo can be used for free. Only if you do Web applications on Linux, you'd need the paid license.

The bigger change for everyone with a Lite license is that you now save your project in text format. This enables the use of version control systems like GIT with Xojo projects. Previously this needed a Xojo Pro license. We hope more Xojo developers will use text projects and use GIT, even if they are developing alone, so they can track their own changes. (more)

Using DynaPDF parser to find characters

Please check out the DynaPDFParserMBS class in MBS Xojo DynaPDF Plugin. This class allows you to:

  • Parse a page
  • Extract text
  • Find text
  • Replace text
  • Find characters
  • Delete text
  • Write changes back to page
  • You can limit the search to a part of the page or the whole page and use various options like whether the text search is case insensitive.

    Today we want to show you how you can identify the exact position of any character in a PDF. Like this picture where we show all characters with a box, even for mirrored or rotated text:


    MBS Xojo Conference Update

    Just five weeks until the conference starts. We look forward to an intense week and meeting you all.

    MBS Xojo Conference Plugin 25th to 26th April 2024 and Training day 24th April 2024 in Andernach, Germany.

    Xojo Inc. recently promoted the conference in a blog post: Only 48 Days Until Monkeybread Software’s Xojo Conference. Thanks for the help!

    Picture of the sky bar.


    We reminded the speakers to start preparing their presentation. Doing a presentation is much easier if you divide it into several steps with a week of distance. Outline what you like to show, prepare slides, maybe an example project to show and refine week by week, so you can show something great.

    It is still time to contact us if you have something to show. We look for a replacement sessions we can schedule if a speaker needs to cancel their presentation.

    Or short presentations to fill 10 minutes if needed. Like if you can show a cool project, an add-on or some Xojo tips & tricks.


    News from the MBS Xojo Plugins Version 24.1

    In this article I want to introduce you the new functionalities from the MBS Xojo Plugins in version 24.1.


    Let's start with the new SQLiteFunctionMBS class. With this class you can now create your own functions for SQLite. We explain how this works in our blog article Did you know that you can load extensions in SQLite?

    Since we added a path property to InternalSQLiteLibraryMBS module, we can even load our plugin as extension for using custom functions in SQLiteDatabase class, too.


    Get started with HIDAPI classes in Xojo

    If you have an USB device with HID protocol, you can easily use it from your Xojo application. Please check out the HIDAPIDeviceMBS class for macOS, Windows and Linux. With the recent 24.1 plugins, we upgraded the classes to work even better.

    You may start with enumerating of available devices. This should find all the HID devices connected to your computer like various keyboards, mice, joysticks or whatever you connect. For Linux, you may need to use chmod with sudo to grant permissions to all applications to connect to the devices. On macOS and Windows, you may just freely connect to your device as long as no standard driver grabbed it.

    Let's enumerate the devices and look for ours:

    Dim DevicePath As String // find our device Const VendorID = 1234 Const ProductID = 2345 Dim d As HIDAPIDeviceInfoMBS = HIDAPIDeviceMBS.Enumerate While d <> Nil // go thru all enumerated devices System.DebugLog d.Path+", "+d.ManufacturerString+", "+d.ProductString+", "+d.InterfaceNumber.ToString If d.VendorID = VendorID and d.ProductID = ProductID Then // found it DevicePath = d.Path Exit End If d = d.NextDevice Wend

    MonkeyBread Software Releases the MBS Xojo Plugins in version 24.1

    Nickenich, Germany - (March 12th, 2024) -- Monkeybread Software today is pleased to announce MBS Xojo Plugins 24.1 for macOS, Linux and Windows, the latest update to their product that is easily the most powerful plugin collection currently available for Xojo. MBS Xojo Plugins have been updated and now includes over 3000 classes and 81,000 documented features, and the versatile plugins have gained more new functions:

    In our SQL Plugin we have the SQLiteFunctionMBS class to define custom functions for use in SQLite with our plugin. Since we added a path property to InternalSQLiteLibraryMBS module, we can even load our plugin as extension for using custom functions in SQLiteDatabase class, too. Our unicode extension for SQLite got updated for Xojo 2022r4.

    Beside our NSSpeechSynthesizer class for speech synthesization we added lower level AVSpeechSynthesizerMBS and related classes for macOS and iOS. If you like to check network availability on macOS and iOS, please check the new NWPathMonitorMBS class.

    Our OverlayMBS class allows you to show custom windows and define the content with a picture including transparency and without the usual OS widgets. We rewrote the mouse handling to allow you to move them by background. You can decide to implement mouse events or have the control ignore mouse events altogether.

    We rewrote our HIDAPI classes and added a new BusType property to the HIDAPIDeviceInfoMBS class. We added DeviceInfo and GetReportDescriptor functions to HIDAPIDeviceMBS class. We enabled logging for LibUSB on Linux to help finding issues.

    To support touch events better on macOS, we upgraded our NSTouchMBS class with new properties. The CanvasGesturesMBS class got events to report touch events and NSEventMBS class can report the touches.

    The parser in DynaPDF got upgraded to report current selection text and report all 4 coordinates for the text, useful for rotated text.

    The linux libraries in our plugins are optimized for size and lost over 33 MB in total.

    Our CURLEmailMBS class can send attachment only emails without text and we added methods in EKEventStoreMBS class to better ask for permissions for events. We added character count and string value to NSCharacterSetMBS class for debugging, the MidiThruConnectionMBS class got a find() function, the SCNViewMBS class can request a preferred rendering API or a low power device, the NSProcessInfoPowerStateDidChangeNotification can report a power state change in NSProcessInfoMBS class and we added willShowContextualMenu and didCloseContextualMenu events to 34 controls.

    Finally we updated DynaPDF to version, HIDAPI to 0.14 and SQLite to version 3.45.1.

    See release notes for a complete list of changes.

    MBS Xojo Plugins, version 24.1pr6

    New in this prerelease of the 24.1 plugins:
    • Reduced size of Win plugin a little bit by optimizing stub code for macOS/Linux.
    • Improved linking of linux libraries to do more stripping of unused code to save 33 MB in total.
    • Removed UniMotionMBS module.
    Download: monkeybreadsoftware.de/xojo/download/plugin/Prerelease/ or from DropBox.
    Or ask us to be added to our shared DropBox folder.

    You can subscribe to our Xojo mailing list to get notified for new pre-release and release versions.

    DynaPDF Licenses and ZUGFeRD invoices

    If you plan to do ZUGFeRD or Fracture-X invoices in FileMaker or Xojo, you may sooner or later see our DynaPDF offering. Our MBS FileMaker Plugin and the MBS Xojo DynaPDF Plugin help reading and writing the XML data in the PDF document. We also have XML functions to help building or parsing the XML document. And DynaPDF can help to make a correct PDF/A document for the output and optionally sign it digitally with a certificate.

    Read embedded XML

    To read a PDF, you need DynaPDF Lite or higher. Once you opened a PDF document for import, you can check access embedded files.

    With the Lite version you can import from multipel documents to merge them together. Or extract images or text from the document to analyze them.


    Comparison in Xojo: is vs equals

    In Xojo you have two ways to compare objects. You can use equals operators or the is operator. Let us show you when to use "is" instead of equals "=".

    The "is" keyword will compare the internal reference value, the pointer to the memory used for the object. This avoids calling any compare operator and is usually faster. If there is no compare operator, the same compare code as for = runs.

    If you use the equals sign (or <, <=, >, >= or <>), Xojo will decide whether to call the operator_compare method on the class, if it offers one. But even if the class has such an operator, a compare to a hard coded nil will just do the pointer comparison. Be aware that Xojo looks on the type of variable you use. If you use object for a variable type, the operator isn't called.

    When the second object to compare is a variable (or property or function result), the code is different. It first compares whether the first object is nil. If it is not nil, you get a call of the Operator_Compare method if it exists. If it is nil, the second object is. If you ever write an Operator_Compare yourself, please be aware that the other object may be nil.


    xDev Magazine 22.2 Issue

    The March/April (22.2) issue of xDev Magazine is now available. Here's a quick preview of what's inside:

    Vision of the Future? by Marc Zeedar
    Apple's Vision Pro is finally here and Marc has thoughts. Lots and lots of thoughts!

    Design Patterns Part 3 by Marc Zeedar
    Our design pattern series continues with the Factory pattern, which helps you produce new objects.

    Rasp Pi Electronic Fun Part 6 by Eugene Dakin
    Eugene shows how to use your Raspberry Pi to control a motor.

    Hybrid Android Apps by Tim Dietrich
    Tim explores the line between fully-native apps and Web apps by introducing a hybrid model that uses Web technologies to make the app more cross-platform.

    Opinion: DMA and Apple by Marc Zeedar
    The European Union's new law to control big tech is going into effect this month and Apple's "compliance" is controversial.

    Plus: Topics such as how to use the Static keyword in Xojo, finding the location of your device, AI, procrastination, and more!

    MBS Xojo Plugins, version 24.1pr5

    New in this prerelease of the 24.1 plugins:
    • Fixed an edge case with Replace in JSONMBS where it didn't catch all spots.
    • Fixed problem with Substitute with too small output buffer.
    • Improved CURLEmailMBS class to allow the creation of attachment only emails.
    • Enabled logging for LibUSB on Linux.
    • Updated DynaPDF to version
    • Added SelText property for DynaPDFParserMBS class to query found text.
    • Added SelBBox2 method for DynaPDFParserMBS class to query all 4 points of current text box.
    • Changed StringValue in NSCharacterSetMBS class to property, so we see it in the debugger.
    • Added CharacterCount property for NSCharacterSetMBS class for debugging.
    • Improved NSTokenFieldControlMBS by to work better with our custom cell class.
    • Added SetPrintBacktraceAndAbortHandler method to SignalHandlerMBS class.
    Download: monkeybreadsoftware.de/xojo/download/plugin/Prerelease/ or from DropBox.
    Or ask us to be added to our shared DropBox folder.

    You can subscribe to our Xojo mailing list to get notified for new pre-release and release versions.

    The biggest plugin in space...


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