Richard (Rik) Brooks

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Top Stories by Richard (Rik) Brooks

One of the most useful custom objects that I've ever written is my master_detail object. It holds a prominent place in my toolkit. This article will take you through the steps of how to write one and in the process de-mystify the object. First we want something that looks like Figure 1. Selecting a row in the top DataWindow will display the details in the bottom. I'm sure that you've seen this kind of DataWindow and you've probably written many of them. The key here is not to tell you how to write this but how to simplify every one that you will write in the future. For our example I will again use the example database that came with PowerBuilder. To build the control I first need to create a new custom object. I click on File-New in the menu or just hit Ctrl-N and I get the dialog in Figure 1. I've circled what you need to click on to make it easy for you. Once y... (more)

DataWindow Sorting with Column Headers

This article describes how to create a grid presentation window that allows sorting by clicking on the column header. To begin we need to create a grid DataWindow. I'm selecting just a few columns from the employee table. Here is my sql for the DataWindow in Figure 1. Once we have created it I get the DataWindow painter shown in Figure 2. There are several changes that we need to make. Let's change the status column so it's no longer a set of radio buttons. This is a read-only screen so let's remove the status and add a computed field. To do this let's remove the Status column ... (more)

Automating Formats and Edit Styles

I'm considering changing my emphasis in my column. Since speaking with some people at Sybase I am convinced that PowerBuilder is poised for a mighty comeback. The fact is that still today PowerBuilder is by far the most productive development tool available. It eclipses all the rest. An experienced PowerBuilder programmer is demonstrably more productive and can finish tasks faster than C# or even VB.NET. So why is .NET used by more companies? Mine would just be a guess and in fact, the answer is irrelevant. I'm here to tell you that Sybase is making an obvious push to regain some... (more)

The PostOpen Event – Why It Is So Important

Normally I try to write applications on the DataWindow or Appeon but every now and then I get a question that makes me sit back and say, "Huh?" In this case the question concerns the PostOpen event. I've seen that event named different things: ue_post_open, postOpen, post_open, ue_postOpen, etc. It has, as far as I can see, always had post and open in the name of the event. Further, just about every framework that I've ever seen has had that event in the base window. The question that I was asked was, "Why is that event there?" The programmer wanted to know why there was code in t... (more)

A Look at Appeon Mobile

The following article is an excerpt from Rik's upcoming book, ‘Mobile Application Development using PowerBuilder and Appeon' I am here to tell you it's true. You can write iPad applications in PowerBuilder. I'm sure that you are waiting for the other shoe to drop but ladies and gentlemen, there is no other shoe. It is simply the truth. You can write iPad applications in PowerBuilder. Those of you who have iPads, have you ever seen an MDI application running on an iPad? No? Neither had I. That is until I took a PowerBuilder application and, using Appeon, deployed to my iPad and ra... (more)