>Seasons Greetings

>My colleagues and I at Revelation UK would like to wish you all a very happy and safe festive holiday and a joyous and prosperous new year.

The office will be closed on the 25th and 26th December and then again on the 1st January. The days in between will be covered by a reduced number of staff (yes – I am taking a holiday) so please be sure to use support@revsoft.co.uk for any technical issues and sales@revsoft.co.uk for any sales an licensing related matters. These two email addresses will be monitored throughout the holiday period.

OI9.0 Controlling the Development Tools

As the count down to the version 9.0 release continues, attentions are turning to the best ways to deploy applications based on the new Network User license. This new license sees both technical and commercial changes and on the technical side this means dealing with deployments based on a development engine. Something that will be new for many Revelation clients who currently deploy using the locked down runtime license/engine.

The ‘Controlling Development Tools’ white paper is designed to get people thinking about their options when it comes to deploying an application to end users from version 9.0 onwards. Whilst it does not explore all of the options available to OpenInsight developers, it does cover some of the easier, non-code driven options. The paper can be downloaded by clicking the link above.

>OI – Did you know?

>Over recent months several OpenInsight VARs in the EMEA region have asked me for a list of entities that can be removed from deployed systems. Until an application review following the recent RUG in London, such a list did not exist. However, following some hastily scribbled notes at that meeting I am pleased to make available an ‘unofficial guide’ to what can ‘usually’ be removed from both runtime and developer license based deployments.

The document can be downloaded by clicking here.

>Version 9.0 and the blog

>As I prepare for the imminent OpenInsight 9.0 release, my attention within the blog is moving towards version 9.0 topics and I plan to tackle them in bite sized chunks, punctuated by the usual news items. I have already begun work on:

  • A paper to help reduce the size of your application’s footprint
  • A paper that brings together all of the 7.x, 8.x and 9.0 readme files
  • An updated paper on locking down the new Network User deployment license
  • An examples application, written entirely in 9.0 under Vista
  • An unofficial paper to help configure OECGI2 and use WebOI on a Vista machine running IIS7 (currently needing some testers)

I’m then also hoping to go on to take a look at the Bravo Dashboard, individual cell control in the Edit Table along with other Edit Table enhancements, the brand new System Editor and OIPI.net – including enabling users to enter data into a .pdf document before printing it.

What else would you like covered?

OpenInsight 9.0 is the most exciting release yet and, along with Revelation’s White Papers, Quick Start Guides and Tutorials, I hope to help all OpenInsight developers take advantage of the new features provided in OpenInsight version 9.0.

Watch this space… and please don’t forget to use the labels in the blog to bring similar categorised topics together, for example OI9.0, Vista, etc.

>OI – Did you know?

>Within ARev32 and CTO there are subroutines that interface with the OpenInsight Presentation Server. This allows for the use of OpenInsight GUI items in your existing legacy applications.

This routine opens up an OpenInsight MSG window on your ARev32 or CTO form.
For example:
call CTO_MSG(“Hello World”)

This routine displays an OpenInsight PopUp window on your ARev32 or CTO form.
For example:

This routine calls any OpenInsight subroutine that requires running within an event context.
For Example:
call CTO_GUI_SUBROUTINE(‘START.WINDOW’,’ORMAIN32′) will call Report Builder.

call CTO_GUI_SUBROUTINE(“RUN_REPORT”,””,”LIST 10 VOC F1 F2 F3″) will run an Rlist statement.

>Very useful SENL from Sprezzatura

>I’ve recently had a few conversations with people about what is involved with undertaking ARev32 conversions and also using the Universal Driver Heavy (UDH). Sprezzatura recently published an SENL (directly linked in the title above) that covers a ‘real-world’ ARev32 conversion, an insightful article with regards to understanding the UDH better and they also announced their latest giveaway – S/SMTP.

I would urge all OpenInsight developers, anyone running a legacy ARev system and Revelation users needing a strong disaster recovery solution to take a look at this latest edition and register to receive future editions.

>OpenInsight 9.0 EMEA price list is now available.

>The licensing for OpenInsight version 9.0 is much simpler than in previous versions and it now sees the Universal Driver 4.5 bundled as part of the new ‘Network User License’ from the outset. In addition, the Sierra Bravo Dashboard functionality is included with all of the Network User licenses.

The line-up also includes brand new Enterprise packages reflecting the needs of our larger clients. These licenses now have Universal Drivers and or the Universal Driver Heavy bundled, along with WebOI and multi-user ODBC driver licenses.

The Single User Runtime is still available as a marketing tool and package & pricing options for version 8.0.7 and earlier remain largely unchanged at the present time.

The 9.0 price list will not be published to the revsoft.co.uk web site, but it is available on request. Simply drop me a line and I’ll send you the list in .pdf format. I will also call you to make sure that you understand everything.

As always though, I would urge you to call me and discuss any quote or end-user requirements so that we can ensure that all of the options are considered and the right pricing goes on your quotation.

>Bitten by Vista big time – Grrrrrrr

>Don’t get caught out by a Vista trap that I have fallen head-long into.

As many of you will now know, I have been writing a new examples application to coincide with the OpenInsight version 9.0 release. This application has been completely written using my Vista Home Premium machine.

Now, not being overly technical, I usually opt for defaults when installing software – it usually helps when I get myself into a mess as the support guys know where to find things. Anyway, choosing default options on this occasion has left me with something of a headache – mainly because I had planned to give my application to WORKS subscribers and most of you will have wisely stayed with Windows XP.

The issue is that Vista has a lovely new font called Segoe and I understand that Microsoft have set this as the default font for Vista. In turn, my OpenInsight installation picked this up as the chosen default font when creating a new application. I only noticed this when I dropped the application onto a colleague’s XP machine to show them how nice it looked. Needless to say, it looked awful as the XP default font on that machine was wider than Segoe and caused the text on my buttons and labels run off the controls.

Not to worry I thought. Sprezzatura have a friend in Microsoft and I’ll check that it is OK for me to include the Segoe font with my application – problem solved. But Oh no – It is covered under license and you can not freely distribute it. So my options are:

  1. License the font for each user.
  2. Get the user to upgrade to Vista, buy one of the Windows Live packages or Office 2007 (all of which I understand have the new font (but do your own homework before buying)).
  3. Change the font on every window and resize the controls as applicable.
  4. Only support Vista with my application.

Needless to say, as my application is primarily for demo purposes on my machine, I’ll be choosing option 4 for the moment.

BUT be warned. If you are planning a move to Vista, make sure that you use a common font such as Arial when designing and building your applications.

My advice – stick with XP Pro for the moment!!!

>OI – Did you know?

>The OInsight.ini file, found under your Windows folder contains a wealth of information about last window sizes and lots of other things. However, two features that I find most useful are the ability to add my own buttons to display on the Application Manager and to turn on and off OpenInsight tool buttons as needed.

For example, my oinsight.ini file contains the entries noted below. The first entry defining which buttons I want to show and in what order – very useful for your choice of System Editor. The following lines are used to define two buttons, one for ARev32 and the other for S/List.

SideBarCustom_Text=AREV32 Interface,

NOTE: The two astrixes (**) signify lines that are broken in the posting but should be one long line in the Oinsight.ini file. They should be removed when entring these lines into your oinsight.ini file.

>OpenInsight and .net

>Several of you have recently asked me about interacting with .net controls, most noteably since OIPI.net (part of OpenInsight version 9.0) was announced and featured at the recent RUG.

I have recently been working on a brand new examples application that will also help to manage my photograph collection (more on that coming soon). Mike Ruane recently called me to share a really kewl feature that they have built for one of their client’s application – it’s now partly in my examples application.

Win Win Solution’s client manages a cemetery somewhere in the USA. Employing a large number of people whose first language is not English was causing some communication issues when needing to maintain a specific grave. Their OpenInsight based application now maintains an image of the grave in the database. However, that’s not the clever part. The digital camera has a GPS add-on, which captures the GPS position of the grave, well really the GPS position of the camera when the picture is taken. This is then used in the application to map exactly where the grave can be found – yes the cemetery’s are huge – and the employee has an image of the memorial or grave stone to confirm that they have the right one.

My examples application does not go quite that far, but Mike has let me have the .net wrapper which exposes the .jpg file header information and displays it in an edit table in my app. Please drop me an email if you wish to explore this further.

With this example, OIPI.net and other .net technologies being written for OI, support for exploiting the .net framework and third party components is looking really good.

Does anyone out there have any OpenInsight interacting with .net success stories to share? Click on comments below to add them to this thread.