ISE Eiffel 4.2: A different Perspective 
Author Message
 ISE Eiffel 4.2: A different Perspective

Hi there:

There have been many interesting comments, centering on its development
system user interface, about why ISE Eiffel is not as popular as it
should be.  While there is great validity to many of these comments, I
believe that the primary reason for ISE Eiffels  level of acceptance is
not its development systems user interface, but in its inconvenient
(sometimes non-existent) access to important resources in the "outside
world."

Consider my situation. I will be soon starting a long-term individual
development project which will require many user interface dialogs and,
perhaps, some real time graphics. Currently, the method of creating
dialogs through ISE Eiffel is somewhat painful, since you need to
coordinate all of these: resource editor, resource bench, application
ids, resource files, dialog classes. In many other development systems
this "bookkeeping" is performed by a GUI editor. Furthermore my
real-time graphics may require access to Microsofts DirectX which, if I
am not mistaken, is only available through COM. Thus, as of today, it is
not available through ISE Eiffel (To be fair, ISE is rapidly adding
access to COM. It is not clear, however, if this access will include
DirectX capabilities.)

While I admit that the ISE development environment is an unusual mix of
some extraordinary features (the worlds best browsing tools) and
surpassing weaknesses (an under-powered editor, a few missing debugging
features, a few funny looking dialogs), I would still use this
environment in a second if it allowed me to use Eiffel instead of C++ or
Visual Basic or Java. Thus, in my case, it is the lack of convenient
access to outside capabilities which may dictate my choice of
development system, not a few annoying warts in the current development
environment.

Jeffrey W. Stulin



Fri, 08 Sep 2000 03:00:00 GMT  
 ISE Eiffel 4.2: A different Perspective

Jeffrey W. Stulin wrote (among other things):

Quote:
> Consider my situation. I will be soon starting a long-term individual
> development project which will require many user interface dialogs and,
> perhaps, some real time graphics. Currently, the method of creating
> dialogs through ISE Eiffel is somewhat painful, since you need to
> coordinate all of these: resource editor, resource bench, application
> id?s, resource files, dialog classes.

This used to be true on Windows but isn't any more.
We have released the latest version of the EiffelBuild
GUI application builder (see
http://www.eiffel.com/products/build.html)
on both Windows and other platforms, as part of
ISE EIffel 4.2.

EiffelBuild applies to the GUI part the same principles
of seamlessness that are characteristic of the rest
of the environment, in particular EiffelBench and
EiffelCase. EiffelBuild differs from ordinary GUI
builders in that it enables users to build the
application, not just the interface.

EiffelBuild 4.2 still has a few rough edges; in particular,
it does not yet cover the whole gamut of Windows controls
(that is being corrected). But it is definitely there and
can be used to build production applications; this has
already been done by customers in the short time since 4.2
was released.

For Windows-specific applications the Eiffel Resource Bench,
which integrates into an Eiffel system the output of
market-standard GUI builders such as Microsoft's  Developer's
Studio or the Borland resource editor (see
http://www.eiffel.com/products/resource-bench/)
is available. Although, as Jeff points out, it
assumes the use of several separate tools (Eiffel and
some C++ GUI builder), it remains a viable short-term
alternative.

Interactive GUI application building used to be the weakest
component of our offering. We have the base technology in
place to reverse this situation completely, and make GUI
building the most attractive part of the Eiffel approach.
To say that we have reached that goal today would be inaccurate.
But we are moving very quickly towards it, and the basic
tools for building GUI applications are available and
productive today.

--
Bertrand Meyer, ISE Inc.
ISE Building, 2nd floor, 270 Storke Road, Goleta CA 93117

http://www.eiffel.com



Fri, 08 Sep 2000 03:00:00 GMT  
 ISE Eiffel 4.2: A different Perspective



Quote:

> Consider my situation. I will be soon starting a long-term individual
> development project which will require many user interface dialogs and,
> perhaps, some real time graphics. Currently, the method of creating
> dialogs through ISE Eiffel is somewhat painful, since you need to
> coordinate all of these: resource editor, resource bench, application
> ids, resource files, dialog classes. In many other development systems
> this "bookkeeping" is performed by a GUI editor ......

What about EiffelBuild, have you tried it?
Quote:
> Jeffrey W. Stulin




Sat, 09 Sep 2000 03:00:00 GMT  
 ISE Eiffel 4.2: A different Perspective

I am happy to hear that ISE is moving to have an excellent GUI builder for
Windows (any time frame Bertrand?). I have, in the past, examined previous
versions of EiffelBuild under Windows. The last time I looked at EiffelBuild
was about one year ago. EiffelBuild is based on many appealing ideas, however
the version I examined suffered from these problems:

1) It was unstable (the documentation indicated that it was an early
release).
2) It's widget set was extremely limited.
3) A key element of the EiffelBuild method is access to a library of prebuilt
command objects. The library of command objects supplied with the version of
EiffelBuild I examined was insufficient for useful GUI programming.
4) EiffelBuild is based on Vision, not WEL. Thus, it does not meet Windows
user interface standards, misses many standard Windows GUI elements, and
requires the overhead of Vision which increases the size of the executable
and vastly increases finalization time.
5) EiffelBuild associates commands with GUI objects in an object oriented
fashion. In the EiffelBuild interface, unfortunately, this method of this
association required the concurrent opening of many  windows which becomes
unmanageable unless the developer has an enormous video screen (which I
don't!).

While I was impressed by the ideas behind EiffelBuild I determined that at
the time the current version was inappropriate for my purposes.

If there is an enhanced version of EiffelBuild for Windows, I would be
interested in evaluating it. I see no indication of such a new version on
ISE's web site.

Jeffrey W. Stulin

Bertrand Meyer wrote (among other things):

Quote:
> This used to be true on Windows but isn't any more.
> We have released the latest version of the EiffelBuild
> GUI application builder on both Windows and other platforms
> as part of ISE EIffel 4.2.

> Interactive GUI application building used to be the weakest
> component of our offering. We have the base technology in
> place to reverse this situation completely, and make GUI
> building the most attractive part of the Eiffel approach.
> To say that we have reached that goal today would be inaccurate.
> But we are moving very quickly towards it, and the basic
> tools for building GUI applications are available and
> productive today.



Sat, 09 Sep 2000 03:00:00 GMT  
 
 [ 4 post ] 

 Relevant Pages 

1. ISE Eiffel 4.2 output, Windows NT

2. ISE Eiffel 4.2

3. ISE Eiffel 4.2 Compilation

4. New platforms for ISE Eiffel 4.2

5. Installing ISE Eiffel 4.2

6. ISE Eiffel 4.2 available for downloading (Windows)

7. ISE Eiffel 4.2 available for downloading (Linux)

8. ISE Eiffel 4.2: major new release

9. Beta test of ISE Eiffel 4.2

10. Oberon/F: Different Perspectives, Different Needs

11. Conversion ALDEC Foundation to Webpack ISE 4.2 and later

12. ISE 4.2 and CVS

 

 
Powered by phpBB® Forum Software