From the Editor-in-Chief of PowerBuilder Developer's Journal

Bruce Armstrong

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Latest Articles from Bruce Armstrong
We were going to take over the Onion website, but…   Filed under: PBDJ, PowerBuilder
One of the questions that I’ve been pondering lately is what will become of Windows. Based on the buzz about BYOD (bring your own device), tablets and the like, and the less-than-stellar reception of Windows 8 and Surface (Microsoft’s Windows 8 tablet), you’d think that Windows was on ...
What forums you may ask; the Sybase NNTP forums? No, those are going away. Not on the schedule that was originally proposed (December 1 of 2012), but they will go away soon. Replacing them are the online discussion forums in the PowerBuilder Development Center (PDC), part of the SAP Co...
For the past year plus I've been spending a lot of time working with a web-based BI tool (the development is actually done in a plug-in to Eclipse, but the end users access the results through a browser). The tool reminds me a lot of the DataWindow. You create objects that can either m...
As you probably know, in lieu of a TechWave this year SAP hosted a separate PowerBuilder Developer’s Conference (PBDC) co-located with SAP TechEd 2012 in Las Vegas from October 21–25. There was a separate but co-located event last year as well, but that was an actual TechWave that repr...
Somebody was asking in the Sybase newsgroups “should I make the commitment to PB.NET?” and wanted non-marketing types to respond. I started to respond in the forums, but the eventual length of the response and its applicability to many other people resulted in my responding here. What...
I’m sitting here at yet another user group meeting… perhaps you’ve seen me at one or at TechWave, or perhaps you have seen pictures of me at them on Facebook. I’ve got a laptop propped open where I’m usually working on some pet sample code project. Next to it is my iPad in its case/sta...
I’ve been discussing HTML5 for some time now. In July of 2010, I mentioned that I wasn’t particularly concerned about PowerBuilder supporting HTML5 in the initial PowerBuilder.NET release (12.5) because: “HTML5 is largely still in its infancy, and there appears to be too much opportu...
Read an interesting article about the .NET Developer Association user group in Redmond, Washington. You would think that the user group in Microsoft’s backyard (the meetings are held at Microsoft’s offices) wouldn’t have any problems lining up guest speakers and drawing a crowd. Well, ...
Struggling to get familiar with the new PowerBuilder.NET IDE and the technology it allows you to use (e.g., WPF, REST, WCF and the rest of the alphabet soup)? Then you should run, not walk, over to the free eTutorial series that Sybase just made available for PowerBuilder 12.5: http://...
PowerBuilder 12.5 introduced a number of significant enhancements to web services support, both for creation and consumption. We’re going to look at what those new features provide and how to use them. We’re also going to look at how we can package some of that functionality so that ...
On November 9, Adobe announced in a blog post[1] that it had decided to cease efforts to develop browser plugins for mobile devices to play Flash, indicating that HTML5 was “the best solution for creating and deploying content in the browser across mobile platforms.” In case that sound...
There’s been a lot of discussion since Microsoft’s BUILD conference on the fate of Silverlight. (Something that is an issue for us because Sybase was originally looking at supporting it for web app development in PowerBuilder 15.) Contrary to what a number of the pundits and would-be p...
By the time you read this, PowerBuilder 12.5 should be released. Like several “.5” releases before it (i.e., 6.5, 10.5 and 11.5), this release is a major release with a number of significant new features. We’ll have a number of individual articles in PBDJ that will dive into these new ...
In a previous PBDJ article, we looked at using a third-party control, a ribbon control in particular, in a PowerBuilder WPF target. One of the other “most requested” features people have asked for is the capability to provide docking windows in their PowerBuilder applications. In this ...
As you may be aware, the company I work for does both PowerBuilder and RIA (Flex) application development. We actually create client/server and web-based front ends for the same application. Doing that has really emphasized just how much faster we can do development using PowerBuilder....
I was sort of wondering where application development is headed nowadays. What struck me recently is how long Microsoft has been trying to foster widespread adoption of smartphones and tablet PC devices. They released their first Pocket PC operating system in 2000[1] and the tablet-spe...
If you’re familiar with the Database Binary / Text Large Object column type in PowerBuilder Classic (see Figure 1), you know it’s a way of storing blob data associated with an OLE Automation application (Paint, Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel) and then displaying it as part of a DataWi...
...it tolls for....WPF? That may be the case. In case you haven’t been following, WPF is Windows Presentation Foundation, the next generation method of creating a graphical user interface for Windows-based applications. Why is the bell tolling for it? Well, to explain that, we need to ...
I’ve had a number of requests from people in the last few days wondering how to get up to speed with more recent versions of PowerBuilder. Their requests are often in the form of: “I’ve been using PowerBuilder since version X (a very early release) and we’re currently on version Y (us...
I’ve written a number of articles in the past on using .NET components, both visual and non-visual, from a PowerBuilder “Classic” (i.e., Win32) application. Until now, all of them involved using a .NET component that was either provided in the .NET Framework or created using Visual Stu...
If you’ve been following Sybase’s announcements concerning their plans for future versions of PowerBuilder, you’ll know that they are planning for PowerBuilder 15 to be able to generate a Silverlight application and are looking at having it generate applications based on HTML5 as well....
The PowerBuilder 12.1 maintenance release is now available. For people who believe that you should never use the .0 release of any product, the maintenance release means they should feel comfortable using PowerBuilder 12 now. However, there are several good reasons other than that to g...
When Sybase originally released PowerBuilder 10.0, one of the new features they added with that version was the PowerDesigner plug-in. There had been a number of IDE “add-in” third-party products for PowerBuilder before (e.g, SmartPaste, SmartJump), but this was the first time that Syb...
One of the things that PowerBuilder developers have been asking for years is the ability to include state-of-the-art graphic elements in their applications. With the advent of WPF Targets in PowerBuilder.NET 12.0, that capability has finally arrived. You can do quite a bit with the n...
Sybase is currently in the middle of the most aggressive marketing program that I’ve seen for PowerBuilder in recent history. If you’ve been following my blog (and if you haven’t you should) you’ll know that Sybase recently ran a four-page ad in Visual Studio magazine promoting the rel...
The 2010 survey is currently in process and the results of the 2009 survey are in. Several months ago we looked at the comments attached to the 2008 results, and I’d like to take a look at the comments on the 2009 results to see how things have changed. One big difference is that this...
PowerBuilder 12 has been released. The new version represents a huge leap forward as far as support for .Net development, particularly reflected by the introduction of a new .Net IDE based on the Visual Studio Isolated Shell. That doesn’t mean that people who aren’t doing .Net developm...
If you’ve been following the product direction for PowerBuilder for the last few releases, and particularly with respect to the upcoming PowerBuilder 12, you know that PowerBuilder is evolving into a .NET development tool. As PowerBuilder developers, you’ll also know that the key stren...
One of the indications of how well a product is doing is how well the ecosystem surrounding it is doing. For a software product that can be determined by a number of things, including how active user groups are and whether the number of third-party products that work with it are increa...
One of the main issues that PowerBuilder and PowerBuilder developers have been facing for the last few years is the lack of mind share for the product. All that seems to have changed with Sybase’s announcement of the beta of PowerBuilder 12.0. Articles on the release appeared in a larg...
John Strano came to Los Angeles on part of the PowerBuilder 12.0 ISUG road show. If you have an opportunity to attend one in your area, run by either John or Dave Fish, they’re well worth attending. John demonstrated some impressive new features of the new version of PowerBuilder, incl...
You may not be aware of this, but Microsoft now provides a rather powerful charting control free of charge as an add-in for .NET 3.5. It’s available for download at http://xrl.us/ben3pm. Because it supports 35 different chart types (see Figure 1), it can add significant new charting ca...
PowerBuilder fans have been sharing code with one another since...well at least since the beginning days of CompuServe in the early 1990s. When PowerBuilder users gathered in just a single section in a general interest programming forum, we had an associated file library section, and w...
The PowerBuilder 12.0 beta has officially started (http://response.sybase.com/forms/WW09JULPB12beta1). It’s pretty hard to overstate the magnitude of the changes that are taking place within PowerBuilder for this version. As a result, it’s more important than ever for as many people as...
Back in 2002, Sybase announced their four-phase approach toward adding .NET support to PowerBuilder. Phase 1 was the implementation of web services in PB9 and Phase 2 was the release of DataWindow.NET, which was packaged with PB 10. Phases 3 and 4 were the more significant phases. In P...
In the previous articles in this series, we looked at FDCC changes (part 1) and GUI enhancements (part 2) in PowerBuilder 11.5. In this article, we’ll be looking at the enhancements that were added to PowerBuilder 11.5 that are specifically related to .NET targets. The one thing we won...
There’s been a lot of discussion among the .NET folks recently about the magnitude of the changes that are being introduced in the Windows Workflow Foundation (WF) in .NET 4.0. See, for example, “Windows Workflow Changes Direction” by Kathleen Dollard. It’s just another anecdote that b...
This is the second part of an ongoing series about the new features that were added in PowerBuilder 11.5. In the first part, we looked at the Federal Desktop Core Configuration (FDCC) and the impact it had on developers. In this part, we’re going to look at a number of the improvements...
First, I should explain what I’m referring to. Sybase recently announced that the format of TechWave will be significantly different in 2009 than it has been for the last 10 years.