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Helping PowerBuilder developers create visually appealing user interfaces

Brad Wery

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Top Stories by Brad Wery

When the beta for PB.NET (PowerBuilder 12) started I was pretty excited to get my hands on it. This version comes with a whole new IDE and with it many new features. As a result, we now get to take advantage of things like better intellisense, script navigation functions, and a WPF editor for better UI design and development. Most important was the promise of being able to use the .NET Framework to its nearly full potential. What I want to do with this article is walk you through the source code of an application I built; an application that uses some parts of .NET (see Figure 1). Its main purpose is to take a list of image files and scale their dimensions down based on a percentage of the original size. This will essentially reduce their size, allowing you to upload them to your favorite photo sharing site much quicker. In addition to scaling the images this solut... (more)

A PowerBuilder Challenge

PowerBuilder contains so many features and capabilities that it's hard to fully understand and learn all of them when you're caught up in the "daily grind." A good way to deal with this is to create a skill-developing challenge. In most cases, I try to do something that I figure can't be done in PowerBuilder. My latest challenge was to create an XP style listbar similar to the one in the Windows XP Control Panel (see Figure 1). I think it's a sharp-looking control that provides an efficient way to navigate an application. Could it be done in PowerBuilder? With enough time and cr... (more)

Dockable Windows in PowerBuilder

If you've read any of my past articles, you know that I love a good challenge, a challenge that really gets me thinking and ultimately ends up teaching me something. One thing I always wanted to do was create dockable windows using pure PowerScript. I held off from doing this for some time because of the almost overwhelming complexity that was inherent with this type of control. Seeing as this would be the perfect test of my skills, I motivated myself to do it. The first thing I had to do before I started was investigate an existing control so that I could record proper behavior... (more)

PBDJ Feature: Take Control of Your GUI

One of the biggest complaints I hear about PowerBuilder is how the applications developed with it end up looking old and outdated. PowerBuilder allows developers to create complicated, robust, and efficient business applications. What it doesn't do is offer an effective presentation. Sometimes lackluster presentation can hurt an application's marketability. Unfortunate as it is, the look of the application is what gives users their first impression. An old-looking application just won't impress. What to Do About It... The first option would be to get your hands on some third-party... (more)

PowerBuilder UI Designer

PBDJ Feature Story PowerToTheBuilder.com is a PowerBuilder developer's source for free, open source, high-quality user interface controls. Using any number of the controls available can provide your application with an instant facelift. Integration is easy and becomes less complicated based on the knowledge you have of your own application. Inherently, PowerBuilder doesn't provide designer support for custom visual controls. The PB UI Controls therefore must be tested by first calling its exposed functions, then running your application. This causes several problems. First you ... (more)