Friday, September 24, 2004

Trip Report

WARNING: This blog entry was imported from my old blog on (which used different blogging software), so formatting and links may not be correct.

Okay this is not going to be a trip report, just thought I'd record some random
impressions from the week here in France.
We've been meeting various customers and component integrators. In Toulouse we
had an open demo of Creator and a number of people have blogged on it:
(I'll blog some more on my discussion with Sylvain separately.)

It was a pretty wide-ranging demo; we showed data binding, writing a custom validator,
importing a web service, dynamic navigation, value binding, and more. A couple of things didn't work at first and required some
live debugging - luckily less pressure than
last time .
We had imported a live web service to obtain news headlines from the internet and
wanted to show it in a browser, but we were doing this from behind a firewall, and had
to get the event handler running in the app server to connect to the web service using
a proxy. In earlier versions of Rave this required inserting a code clip in the backing
file to initialize the proxy properties, so Octavian and I were searching all over for
the clip and even went to the App Server administration tool to find the settings - but
turns out it's no longer needed. When we simply imported the web service from the Add Web
Service dialog, we could check the checkbox to use a proxy, and from there it was all
automatic. Sigh. Luckily we discovered this while
Craig was answering a Struts question :)
The second failure happened when I had dropped a Formatted Label component on a page,
without realizing it. (Octavian had selected the label component when demonstrating the context
sensitive help). At runtime the page failed to deploy because that particular component
requires arguments to be set. Luckily again the problem became apparent when checking the

We hadn't planned the demo; we just winged each feature on the fly, so it wasn't as
canned as it should be -- but that's the point I just wanted to make -- demos like these
shouldn't really be canned; it's important to actually see real problems like this happening
in demos because tracking down bugs are a real part of a developers life.

I've done demos on other people laptops. Demoing on French keyboards is a pretty
interesting experience. I press "A" and a "Q" shows up on the screen etc. Takes a while
getting used to. Keyboards can be switched to English layout, which worked better, as long
as I didn't look at the keys!

Finally, I just thought I'd note that some initial notes for integrating JSF components
with Creator are

now available.

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