A Line in the Sand: Part 3 – A New Line

You remember last time I posted a code article I mentioned I was careful about biting off more than I could chew?



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A Line in the Sand: Part 2 – Weapons of Choice

Now I’ve drawn the line, it’s time to clearly define what tools I’m going to use to accomplish the task.

First up, I should point out that there are some key goals for this project:

  • It needs to be achievable – there’s no point going in all gung-ho and biting off more than I can chew so I’ll be sticking to languages I know already, but will use new frameworks and API’s to get the job done.
  • I’d like it to be a mobile app first – I may move on to creating a desktop version later.
  • Given that I don’t know enough Objective-C or Java to create native iOS or Android apps, I’ll be sticking to web based tech….for now.

Having thought about it for a couple of days and done a little research into each of the potential technologies I could use, this is how I think it will pan out:

Primary Framework: Angular.js

There’s interest in using this framework in my day job and it’s something I’ve had my eye on for a while. It’s also JS based which means I don’t have to learn a new language from scratch.

Secondary Framework: Ionic

In wanting to keep this mobile for now, I was looking for a framework that was specifically built with mobile in mind. Ionic seems to fir the bill perfectly and it’s optimised for Angular.js

Primary API: ebay

Clearly if I want to create a client that lists your ebay watch list, I have no choice here 😀

With this high level stuff in place, next time we will look at drawing up some basic wireframes.


A Line in The Sand: Part 1 – The Line

I made a conscious decision this week to try some new coding tech. In the few days since making that decision I’ve been wrestling with what form this “new tech” will take and I think I’ve come up with something…



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Book Review: Backbone.js Blueprints

Backbone Blueprints


I was initially a little worried – chapter 1 starts by throwing you in at the deep end with some server side code to set up the infrastructure for the first example app – a blog and commenting system. I need not have worried…



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Custom ExtJS Grid Flag Component

Last time I wrote about ExtJS I was highlighting how our ExtJS theme helped make our grids engaging, intuitive and useful. This time I’m going to pick out an element of that article and show you how you can create your own “flag column”. This is a little “flair” that sits top right of a column to denote some attribute you can chose. In the last article we were using it to show records that had been marked as “favourites” or been “flagged” for review:


Grid rows





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How Our ExtJS Theme Helps Make Our Grids Rock

Many people who see the platform I’m helping create at Engage Software have commented positively on how different it looks to all the other software they have to use in their daily jobs. I therefore thought it would be nice to occasionally highlight certain areas of the platform that are achieved using ExtJS to show off what can be done with the right mix of components and a killer theme. Our ExtJS theme was conceived way before Neptune ever existed and has continued to evolve and improve.

In this article we’re going to take a little look at grids. More specifically we’re looking just at the rows in those grids – as that’s where most of the action happens! For now we’ll take a very high level view and in future articles I’ll reveal a little about how you can get some similar results.

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Calling ExtJS Controller Methods From Outside the ExtJS Namespace

Last time we looked at how we can use ExtJS 4.x’s MVC architecture to gain all the benefits of clean and well organises code base without having to use a full “single page app” viewport style methodology.

As you may remember, this can come in handy in your web application if you’re not using the ExtJS framework exclusively or if you’re just opting for a more traditional build with ExtJS providing supporting components to enhance your HTML.

This time we’re going to take a very quick look at one of the problems you may encounter when you have a set up like this; how to call an ExtJS controller method from not only another controller but even from outside the ExtJS namespace entirely.

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Using ExtJS MVC Architecture Without Viewports

Why would you want to do this? Well, if you’re working on a project that’s not 100% ExtJS from top to bottom, it’s likely you’re using ExtJS along side other frameworks and cherry picking the best features as you need them. For example, at my current job, we use ExtJS for grids, forms, some data bound components we’ve built out ourselves and of course the accompanying stores that stick it all together but we don’t use ExtJS to provide a “single page app” in what may be considered the usual ExtJS MVC approach when using 4.x+.

So I decided to just give it a go and see what happened. After all, worse case scenario is I lose a little time working on a mini experiment that goes nowhere but teaches me at least something.

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