11.3 Dialog support libraries

This section deals with a number of classes from the library to simplify the creation of dialog windows.

11.3.1 Reporting errors and warnings

Error, and warning and informational messages are raised using the ->report or ->error method defined on all XPCE objects. Basic error and message handling is described in section 10.8. The library library(pce_report) defines the classes reporter and report_dialog.

An example using these classes is in section 11.3.2.

11.3.2 Toolbar support

The library library(toolbar) defines the classes tool_bar, tool_button and tool_status_button to simplify the definition of tool-bars.

tool_bar ->initialise: Client:object*, Orientation:[{horizontal,vertical}]
Create a tool_bar for which the buttons execute actions on Client (see class tool_button for details). By default the buttons are placed left-to-right, but using vertical Orientation they can be stacked top-to-bottom.
tool_bar ->append: Button:tool_button|{gap}
Append a tool-button to the bar or, using the name gap, make a small gap to separate logical groups of buttons.
tool_bar ->activate:
Send ->activate to all member buttons, reflecting whether they are ready to accept commands or `grayed-out'.
tool_button ->initialise:
Define a button for `tool_bar->append'. Action is the action to execute. If this is a plain atom, this method without arguments is invoked on the `tool_bar<-client'. If it is a code object this code is simply executed. Label is the label. Normally for toolbars this will be an image object. Balloon defines the text for the popup-window if the user rests the pointer long enough on the button. It it is a name, this balloon is subject to `name<-label_name' (see section 11.7), otherwise it is passed literally. Finally, if Condition is present it is evaluated by ->activate to determine the activation-state of the button.
tool_button ->activate:
If <-condition is present, evaluate it and send ->active.
tool_button ->active: Active:bool
If @off, deactivate the button and provide visual feedback for this.

A tool_status_button is toggled between depressed state and normal state on each click. If it has an atomic <-action it will send action: @on to the client when going to depressed state and action:@off when returning to normal state. If the <-action is a code object this boolean will for forwarded over the code object. See section 10.2.

11.3.3 Example

The example below uses these classes as well as class menu_bar to arrive at a typical modern application layout.

Figure 20 : Simple application framework
%       Pull in the classes

:- pce_autoload(report_dialog, library(pce_report)).
:- pce_autoload(tool_bar, library(toolbar)).
:- pce_autoload(finder, library(find_file)).
:- pce_global(@finder, new(finder)).

%       Define icons as program resources

resource(printer,       image,  image('16x16/print.xpm')).
resource(floppy,        image,  image('16x16/save.xpm')).

%       Define the application as a subclass of frame.

:- pce_begin_class(myapp, frame,
                   "Frame representing the application").

initialise(MyApp) :->
        send_super(MyApp, initialise, 'My application'),
        send(MyApp, append, new(D, dialog)),
        send(D, pen, 0),
        send(D, gap, size(5, 5)),
        send(D, append, new(menu_bar)),
        send(D, append, new(tool_bar(MyApp))),
        send(MyApp, fill_menu_bar),
        send(MyApp, fill_tool_bar),
        send(new(W, myapp_workspace), below, D),
        send(new(report_dialog), below, W).

fill_menu_bar(F) :->
        get(F, member, dialog, D),
        get(D, member, menu_bar, MB),
        send_list(MB, append,
                  [ new(File, popup(file)),
                    new(_Edit, popup(edit))

        send_list(File, append,
                  [ menu_item(load,
                              message(F, load),
                              end_group := @on),
                              message(F, print))

fill_tool_bar(F) :->
        get(F, member, dialog, D),
        get(D, member, tool_bar, TB),
        send_list(TB, append,
                  [ tool_button(load,
                    gap,                % skip a little
print(MyApp) :->
        "Print the document"::
        send(MyApp, report, progress, 'Printing ...'),
        get(MyApp, member, myapp_workspace, WS),
        send(WS, print),
        send(MyApp, report, progress, done).

load(MyApp) :->
        "Ask a file and load it"::
        get(@finder, file, @on, myp, File),
        get(MyApp, member, myapp_workspace, WS),
        send(WS, load, File).

:- pce_end_class(myapp).

%       dummy class for the work-area of your application

:- pce_begin_class(myapp_workspace, window).

:- pce_end_class(myapp_workspace).