Thursday, April 24, 2008
PowerBuilder 11.5 will have a number of DataWindow enhancements. Over the next several days I will be posting some screen shots along with descriptions of many of these new features.
I should point out that these enhancements are for Win32 (PowerBuilder native) and .NET Windows Forms applications only. They won't be available in .NET Web Forms applications (sorry!). Eventually these enhancements will be rolled into DataWindow .NET 3.0.
The first enhancement I want to demonstrate is the background image for DataWindows. This new property lets you select a .bmp, .jpg, .gif, .png, .rle, or .wmf file as a background for your DataWindow. I'm using a .jpg file of the Sybase headquarters building in Dublin, California in this example. There are several tile mode options available from "original size" to "fit to width" to "flip xy". There are also several clip properties and a transparency property. Of course all of the properties can be set in the DataWindow painter or programmatically in your code.
Speaking transparency. Notice the state_name column? There is now a text transparency property for columns and labels (computed fields too). In this example I have set the value to 50%. The state_id column's text transparency property value is set to zero (completely opaque).
The background color property for both columns has been set to transparent so you can see the image come through the columns. You can also set a color and then set the transparency property anywhere from 0% to 100% (which gives you the same effect as setting the background color to transparent):
So, lets use this DataWindow in a Drop Down DataWindow column.
Pretty cool! It might be totally impractical and make it more difficult for your users to see the data in the Drop Down DataWindow but it sure looks nice!
In my next entry I will talk about the new gradient properties being added to the DataWindow. The screen shot above gives you a hint as to what you can do with these properties but it barely scratches the surface.