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News from the MBS Xojo Plugins Version 24.2

In this article I want to introduce you the new functionalities from the MBS Xojo Plugins in version 24.2.

XL

For MBS Xojo Plugins 24.2 we include new XL classes to create conditional formatting in an Excel file created in code. While you can always load an existing document with conditional formatting or diagrams and just fill the cells with data, we now can create the rules for conditional formatting in code. Our blog article explains exactly how this works: Conditional Formatting in Excel exports from Xojo. Just take a look and try it out.

See XLConditionalFormatMBS and XLConditionalFormattingMBS classes.


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MonkeyBread Software Releases the MBS Xojo Plugins in version 24.2

Nickenich, Germany - (May 14th, 2024) -- Monkeybread Software today is pleased to announce MBS Xojo Plugins 24.2 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 82,000 documented features, and the versatile plugins have gained more new functions:

We upgraded our JSONMBS class with the Merge method to merge two JSON blocks or arrays. This allows to easily merge two arrays of JSON data for example.

The XL Plugin can now create conditional formatting in code. Use the XAddConditionalFormat function to define the format to apply and use AddConditionalFormatting to define the rules to use. This could be a simple comparison or include a calculation in Excel to determinate whether the formatting should be applied. The new LibXL version can better handle SVG, so we updated our GetPicture function.

When you build your iOS app, then you can enjoy our new printing class for iOS: UIPrintPaperMBS, UIPrintInteractionControllerMBS, UIPrintInfoMBS, UIPrinterPickerControllerMBS and UIPrinterMBS. Use UIPrinterPickerControllerMBS class to pick a printer and then use UIPrintInteractionControllerMBS class to print with or without dialog. A point of sale application can print receipts without a dialog to the right printer selected by code.

Our MongoDB classes got improved with new functions to execute custom commands with Command functions in MongoClientMBS and MongoDatabaseMBS classes. If you expect a result, please use CommandQuery function instead and loop over the returned documents. You can set the app name in the MongoURIMBS class to be reported to the server on connecting and query the credentials used.

Our CURLSMBS class can now pick the SSL backend. By default we use OpenSSL, but you can switch to SecureTransport on macOS or SecureChannel on Windows using SetSSLBackend method in CURLSSSLBackendMBS class, if you prefer the local SSL engines. We include the newer Apple IDN implementation for CURL, which we contributed to the project recently.

For iOS we have MFMailComposeViewControllerMBS and MFMessageComposeViewControllerMBS classes, so the user can get a dialog to compose either an email or a text message. You can pre-populate the dialog with text, subject and attachments. The user then modifies and sends the message.

The NSPathControlItemMBS class allows to customize entries for the NSPathControlMBS control, the WindowsDisplayMBS class got new logical size properties and you use the Flatten method in GMImageMBS class to remove the alpha channel of an image.

You can create thumbnails asynchronously on macOS using the QLThumbnailGeneratorMBS class, the NWPathMonitorMBS class got a current property for the current path, use the isFlipped event in the NSViewControlMBS control to define whether coordinate system is vertically mirrored and we got new array utility functions.

Finally we updated CURL to version 8.7.1, DynaPDF to 4.0.87.250, LibXL to 4.3.0, SQLAPI to 5.3.1, SQLite to 3.45.3 and Xcode to version 15.3.

See release notes for a complete list of changes.

Xojo May Sale

Xojo Inc. announced a sale for the next few days:

Save 20% on All Xojo Licenses & Extras

Right now through Thursday, May 16th save 20% on All Xojo Licenses!

New Licenses? Yes! Save 20% on New Licenses!
Renewals? Yes! Save 20% on all Renewals!
What about Upgrades? Yes! Save 20% on all Upgrades!

Plus, save 20% on the entire Xojo Extras store. Find plugins, resources, classes and more to help you with all your projects!

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MBS Xojo Conference Recap

Outside picture of the hotel showing the front door and lift. We had a great conference in Andernach. Great to meet with all the people back in Germany after 5 years of a break.

Location

When you fly in, instead of taking the subway to the city next to the airport, you take a train, maybe switch to another train and you make it to Andernach. If you come by car, your GPS will show you the way. By picking the smaller city, we get much more value from the hotels, restaurants and sights for our money. The city itself glances with history and buildings from the medieval and roman ruins. Add to that the nice parks and the initiative with the editable city with plenty of public vegetable and fruit gardens. Finally for us, organizing something just 6 km away from home is much easier than anything far away.

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MBS Xojo Plugins, version 24.2pr5

New in this prerelease of the 24.2 plugins:
  • Added Flatten method to GMImageMBS class to remove alpha channel from image.
  • Build CURLSMBS class with openssl, SecureChannel for Windows and SecureTransport for macOS, so you can decide which one to use.
  • Added deprecation marks to CURLNMBS and related classes.
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.


Preemptive vs. cooperative threads in Xojo

When Xojo adds preemptive threading in one of the next releases, a few people will jump into this and play with it. But you need to understand when to use preemptive and when cooperative threads are better. As far as we know, you can switch this anytime by setting a property to basically opt-out the thread from the cooperative thread scheduler and run the thread preemptive.

On demand switching

A chance where to switch explicitly to the preemptive thread is when calling a lengthly functions like for example JSON parsing. Let's show a bit of pseudo-code:

Sub TestJSON() // some JSON you got a text Var Text As String = ... // switch to preemptive Thread.Current.Type = Thread.Types.Preemptive // now parse without blocking main thread Dim json As New JSONItem(Text) // and maybe switch back Thread.Current.Type = Thread.Types.Cooperative // do something with JSON End Sub
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Picking picture on macOS

When your application needs a picture, you may offer the user to pick a picture from the photo library. With the PHPickerViewControllerMBS class in our MBS Xojo iOS Plugin, you can let the user pick a picture from his/her photo library. And with the controller the user doesn't need to grant permission to the photo library.

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xDev Magazine 22.3 Issue

The May/June (22.3) issue of xDev Magazine is now available. Here's a quick preview of what's inside:

London Paris Germany by Marc Zeedar
Since he was flying over ten hours to Europe anyway, Marc went early and ate his way through London and Paris.

The 2024 MBS Xojo Conference by Marc Zeedar
As in-person conferences wane, Marc had to go to Andernach, Germany, and he’s glad he did. Experience what it was like, what he learned, and what he saw. Plus, a geyser!

Design Patterns Part 4 by Marc Zeedar
Our design pattern series continues with the Facade pattern, which is a class to simplify a complex API.

Rasp Pi Electronic Fun Part 7 by Eugene Dakin
Eugene shows how to use your Raspberry Pi to control a motor.

Transactional Email Services by Tim Dietrich
Learn about transactional email services, the problems that they solve, and how to send email via Twilio SendGrid.

Plus: Topics such as how to use ChatGPT in your Xojo projects, the scoop on Scope, using Phidgets, an interview with Xojo developer Jeremie Leroy, and more!

Cross platform code in Xojo

At the training day before our Xojo conference, we showed how to make a little REST web API with a Xojo web project and provide data to desktop, console, iOS and Android applications. And all use very similar and almost identical code.

There are little differences like iOS has tables with sections and cell data objects while android uses value and detail texts for the rows. But we were impressed on how much is so similar. Let us show you the similarities and differences.

Open database

Let's start with opening a database in a web project. For the sample, we use the example database coming with the EddiesElectronics project, but you can use whatever SQLite database you like or connect to a database server.

In the web project, we add code in the Opening event:

EventHandler Sub Opening(args() As String) Var file As New FolderItem("/Users/cs/Training/EddiesElectronics.sqlite", folderitem.PathModes.Native) db = New SQLiteDatabase db.DatabaseFile = file db.Connect End EventHandler
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MBS Xojo Plugins, version 24.2pr4

New in this prerelease of the 24.2 plugins: 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.


MBS Xojo Conference starts

Today we have the Xojo training day for our beginners and intermediates. Plenty of seats available.
Like to join? Just come here!



Everyone else is invited to check out Andernach city and later join our welcome reception in the Sky Restaurant.
For live updates, please watch the Xojo forum.

MBS Xojo Conference Update

Outside picture of the hotel showing the front door and lift.

Just one week left until the conference starts. Spring arrived in Andernach and the city looks beautiful with all the flowers in parks and gardens.

You can still sign-up and join our conference and/or training day.

Currently we have over 40 people from 14 countries:

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

Seems like cancellations (please get well soon!) and last minute registrations balance out.

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Recent additions to the CURL project from me

The CURL project is a well run open source project and includes a command line tool (curl), a library for C/C++ application developers to use (libcurl) and various smaller utilities like trurl, a command line tool for URL parsing and manipulation. Since this is all publicly hosted on curls.se and github.com/curl, everyone can take a look there and contribute.

Everyone can download the current source code and build their own version of the command line tools, add the library to their product like we do for our plugins and modify them as needed. Yes, if you like, you could customize it and make your own version.

From time to time you may have made changes on your copies, which you would like to push back to the project. This could be:

  • fixing a typo in the documentation or source code
  • adding an option to build process
  • adding a new feature
  • port the project to build with a different compiler or on a new operation system
  • fix a bug or improve something
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Send text message in iOS Xojo App

You can use our new MFMessageComposeViewControllerMBS class in MBS Xojo iOS Plugin to let the user send a text message. A dialog pops up with prefilled text and attachments, so the user can edit the message and then send it using their messages account, either using SMS or iMessage.

To handle the result, please either subclass the MFMessageComposeViewControllerMBS class and implement the didFinishWithResult event. Or you use addHandler to add the event and use a method in your current screen. You get result integer, which you can compare to the constants MailComposeResultCancelled for user cancelled, MailComposeResultSent for when message is sent, MailComposeResultSaved for the message being saved for sending later or MailComposeResultFailed if it failed like being offline.

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MBS Xojo Plugins, version 24.2pr3

New in this prerelease of the 24.2 plugins:
  • Improved WebView2ControlMBS to pick temp folder for user data folder if you don't set userDataFolder property.
  • Updated DynaPDF to version 4.0.87.250.
  • Updated SQLAPI to version 5.3.1.
  • Updated SQLite to version 3.45.3.
  • Improved PhidgetMBS classes to prevent crashes with disconnected devices.
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.


Conditional Formatting in Excel exports from Xojo

For MBS Xojo XL Plugin in version 24.2 we include new XL classes to create conditional formatting in an Excel file created in code. While you can always load an existing document with conditional formatting or diagrams and just fill the cells with data, we now can create the rules for conditional formatting in a script. Let us show you four examples from our example file.

Please check the XLConditionalFormatMBS and XLConditionalFormattingMBS classes. The first defines the format to apply and the second one defines the rules.

Highlighting cells that begin With the given Text

This example defines a conditional format with a bold font. The conditional formatting is applied for the cells in the range B3:B11 to highlight all cells that begin with 'a'. The AddRule function allows you to define rules with various conditions like to highlight empty cells, duplicate or unique values, values starting or ending with a value or by an expression.

Dim cFormat As XLConditionalFormatMBS = book.addConditionalFormat() cFormat.Font.bold = true Dim cf As XLConditionalFormattingMBS = sheet.addConditionalFormatting() cf.addRange(2, 10, 1, 1) cf.addRule(cf.FormatTypeBeginWith, cFormat, "a")
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Send email message in iOS Xojo App

You can use our new MFMailComposeViewControllerMBS class in MBS Xojo iOS Plugin to let the user send an email message. A dialog pops up with prefilled text and attachments, so the user can edit the message and then send it using their mail account.

To handle the result, please either subclass the MFMailComposeViewControllerMBS class and implement the didFinishWithResult event. Or you use addHandler to add the event and use a method in your current screen. You get result integer, which you can compare to the constants MessageComposeResultCancelled for user cancelled, MessageComposeResultSent for when message is sent or MessageComposeResultFailed if it failed like being offline.

(more)

MBS Xojo Plugins, version 24.2pr2

New in this prerelease of the 24.2 plugins:
  • Improved WindowsDisplayMBS class to better query per screen DPI values.
  • Added LogX, LogHeight, LogWidth and LogY properties to WindowsDisplayMBS class.
  • Added touchesMatchingPhase, coalescedTouchesForTouch and predictedTouchesForTouch methods to NSEventMBS class.
  • Added LogScaleFactor property to WindowsDisplayMBS class.
  • Added PictureTypeSVG constant for XLBookMBS class.
  • Fixed an issue with copy constructor in WindowsDeviceInformationPairingMBS class not retaining the device object.
  • Added Close method to WindowsDeviceInformationPairingMBS class to explicitly close it.
  • Removed a few deprecated methods in CWInterfaceMBS class, which Apple removed and so they stopped working years ago.
  • Added respondsToSelector to CanvasGesturesMBS class, so the system can query which events you implemented.
  • Improved PhidgetMBS classes to prevent crashes with disconnected devices.
  • Improved MFMessageComposeViewControllerMBS and MFMailComposeViewControllerMBS class to better dismiss and provide dismissed event.
  • Fixed a problem with translate method in Graphics class when used with DynaPDF.
  • Added NextPage(width, height) support for graphics class in DynaPDF.
  • Added handling of MiterLimit property for using graphics class in DynaPDF.
  • Updated LibXL to version 4.3.0.
  • Added keepAllSheets parameter for LoadPartially methods in XLBookMBS 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.


MBS Xojo Conference Update

Just two weeks until the conference starts. Spring arrived in Andernach and the city looks beautiful with all the flowers in parks and gardens.

You can still sign-up and join our conference and/or training day.

Currently we have over 40 people from 14 countries:

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

Picture of the sky bar.

Dinner on Tuesday

If you arrive early and you join the Tuesday dinner, please meet in front of the hotel with other attendees at 18 o'clock.

We then walk over to Villa am Rhein, the hotel on the other side of the street to go to their restaurant.

The address is Konrad-Adenauer-Allee 3. Our hotel has house number 8. Walking distance is less than 100 meter.

(more)

LibXL 4.3.0 has been released

We are glad to inform you that the new LibXL version 4.3.0 is available now.

What's new in the version 4.3.0:

  • added the possibility to remove all VBA code and macros from xlsm and xlsb files
  • added the possibility to remove all printer settings from xlsx, xlsm and xlsb files
  • added the possibility to set an active cell for splitted sheets (xlsx)
  • added keepAllSheets flag for the partial loading methods, if it's true, all sheets are saved back with Book::save() method, but only one specified sheet is available for processing, thus LibXL can save more memory. It works only for xlsx files, LibXL ignores this flag for xls files
  • added the multi-level sorting for AutoFilter::addSort() and Sheet::applyFilter() (xlsx)
  • added the updating/moving existing tables with Sheet::insertRow() and Sheet::removeRow() methods (xlsx)
  • improved SVG support
  • fixed a bug with adding a hyperlink after setting a picture, the output xlsx file was unreadable by Excel
  • fixed a bug with incorrect return values in Sheet::rowHeight() and Sheet::rowHeightPx() for non-standard DPI settings for some xlsx files
  • fixed Sheet::setPrintAread(), Sheet::setPrintRepeatRows(), Sheet::setPrintRepeatCols() for working with Japanese/Chinese sheet names
  • fixed a bug with reading some values in double quotes in the Sheet::readFormula() (xlsx)
  • fixed a bug with a workbook overwriting dialog message in Excel when an existing sheet is copied in xlsx file
  • fixed a bug with reading some cells after using functions which changes sheet's size (xlsx)
  • fixed a bug with reading tables in some xlsx files
  • fixed some bugs with partial loading/saving some workbooks in the Book::loadSheet() and Book::save() methods (xlsx)
  • fixed a bug with using non UTF-8 character encodings on Linux and Mac
  • fixed a bug with reading some data from a partially loaded workbook (xlsx)

New methods:

  • Book::removeVBA()
  • Book::removePrinterSettings()

The LibXL library can be used with MBS Plugins in Xojo and FileMaker. Updated plugins will be available soon. As usual we add the new functions soon. If you need help or want to try the new version early, let me know.


Older blog entries:

2024-04-09 Print dialogs for iOS in Xojo
2024-04-08 CURL Up 2024
2024-04-08 MBS Xojo ChartDirector Plugin Birthday
2024-04-04 MBS Xojo Conference Update
2024-04-03 Use DynaPDF to create a PDF in PDF/X standard for printing
2024-04-02 MBS Xojo Plugins, version 24.2pr1
2024-04-01 Company's 24th Birthday
2024-03-28 MBS Xojo Conference Update
2024-03-27 15th birthday of MBS SQL Plugin
2024-03-27 Xojo license changes
2024-03-22 Using DynaPDF parser to find characters
2024-03-21 MBS Xojo Conference Update
2024-03-20 News from the MBS Xojo Plugins Version 24.1
2024-03-18 Get started with HIDAPI classes in Xojo
2024-03-12 MonkeyBread Software Releases the MBS Xojo Plugins in version 24.1
2024-03-07 MBS Xojo Plugins, version 24.1pr6
2024-03-06 DynaPDF Licenses and ZUGFeRD invoices
2024-03-04 Comparison in Xojo: is vs equals
2024-03-02 xDev Magazine 22.2 Issue
2024-03-01 MBS Xojo Plugins, version 24.1pr5

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