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XBasic news and views

XBasic news and view are added periodically below, newest at the top and working back.   Submit yours.

#####   2000/06/10 : new release of Linux and Windows XBasic - v6.0022   #####
New releases of Linux XBasic and Windows XBasic were uploaded today.  See "help, new" for details.

#####   2000/05/28 : new release of Linux and Windows XBasic - v6.0012   #####
New releases of Linux XBasic and Windows XBasic were uploaded today.  See "help, new" for details.

#####   2000/01/21 : XBasic is open-source - v6.0001   #####
Linux XBasic and Windows XBasic are now open-source, subject to the GPL and LGPL that assures all subsequent enhancement will also be open-source.  But applications can be developed with XBasic without revealing their source-code because the XBasic libraries they link to are subject to LGPL.

#####   1999/11/11 : XBasic has a new look - v5.0015   #####
The XBasic main window has been "modernized" - it now looks a little more like a "brand-X" environment.  The anewlook.x sample program included with the distribution creates and demonstrates the new window.  You can load and run anewlook.x in XBasic, and maybe develop better icons for inclusion in future versions.  Select Help + New in the XBasic main menu and read more about recent changes and new samples.

#####   1999/08/21 : XgrGrabPoint() was broken - is now fixed  #####
The XgrGrabPoint() function in the GraphicsDesigner function library was always returning 0,0,0,0 in the red,green,blue,color arguments.  That is now fixed in the upload of version 5.0009 on 1999/08/21.

#####   1999/08/10 : XBasic internet/network/sockets function library enabled  #####
The XBasic "xin" internet/network/sockets function library was accidentally disabled in recent uploads.  The 1999/08/10 upload of version 5.0008 fixes that - the main window title-bar displays the verision.

#####   1999/06/10 : XBasic contest - a new look for XBasic  #####
A few people told me the main XBasic IDE window looks, well, "dated".  Well a new XBasic programmer sent me a message saying "Hey, I just tried out XBasic's built-in GuiDesigner and for practice I made a new main window for XBasic.  Why don't you have a contest, see who makes the coolest one, and glue it onto XBasic. Here's my entry."

Well, I know a good suggestion when I hear one.  See the XBasic projects page for details and check out her radically cool design.  Hey, did you know XBasic could look so good?  But you can do better - right?  The program that creates this window is named anewlook.x, and is in XBasic release v5.0005 and higher.  Note:  the title bar of the XBasic main window displays the version of XBasic you have.  All those spiffy little 20x20 pixel images you see on her design are henceforth in directory \xb\xxx for your convenience.  The gal who submitted this design/program and dreamed up this contest said you can start with her program unless you want to start from scratch.  You decide.  Also, those modern-looking "flat buttons" are just standard old XuiPushButton grids, but XuiPushButton grids did not recognize "flat button style" (style=2) until the v5.0005 release.

The winner of the contest will have their work become the new look of XBasic, because I will glue the winning GUI onto XBasic and it will become the new look of XBasic.  Now don't go adding buttons for a bunch of features that don't exist, because I don't have time to rewrite XBasic right now!  But hot buttons and cool ways to do things already supported by XBasic are okay.  The winner will be acknowledged as the creator of the new look of XBasic --- in the newsgroups and somewhere in XBasic and its documentation.  And if anyone wants to offer real prizes - so the winner gets fame AND fortune - well that's okay too.   Apology to Linux XBasic programmers - until I get Linux on my new computer, your pushbuttons don't know how to look like "flat buttons".  But set style=2 on your XuiPushButton grids in the Appearance window and they'll look and act like "flat buttons" as soon as I can build a new Linux XBasic.  So you can compete too!   Anyone who hasn't downloaded XBasic v5.0005 or higher can do so from the XBasic freeware page.

#####   1999/06/05 : XBasic documentation in HTML - on web!  #####
Thanks from all to the anonymous XBasic programmer who converted the XBasic documentation into HTML.  Wow!  You can now view the XBasic documentation on the web!   Soon I'll remove the McWord documents from the XBasic freeware distribution and replace them with these system independent HTML documents.  I'll keep the existing Word documents around and will email to people them with paper fetishes on request.

IMPORTANT NOTE:  As our anonymous hero says, the XBasic documentation is now "living documentation" that the entire XBasic community should fix, improve, enhance and extend.  I agree completely.  Go for it.  And if you're not as shy as our hero, we'll credit you for new sections you write and we add.  Just do it!

Incidentally, the preferred HTML editor is FrontPage98, not because it's best, but because these pages have been edited and saved with FrontPage98.  Since every HTML editor changes the organization and format of the tags when it saves HTML documents, it is much more difficult for me to find your changes when you save with some other HTML editor.   Why?  Because I "windiff" the HTML to expose the changes and when the format is radically altered, it marks the whole file as changed.  So if you can, FrontPage it.  The next best alternative is to make the changes directly in HTML with a simple text editor.

Suggestions are welcome.   Report your ideas to improve the documentation to maxreason@maxreason.com.  If you're willing and able to manage the living XBasic documentation project, please volunteer.

#####  1999/06/03 : XBasic for Linux works!  #####
Thanks to Dale Maggee who installed the Linux implementation of XBasic on his Linux system - to see if Linux XBasic still works "four+ years later".  I haven't had Linux since I got a new computer and sold my older ones, and the Linux I developed and tested Linux XBasic on was 4+ years old and from Caldera.  Dale Maggee has Red Hat Linux 5.1, so three cheers for the Linux developers for keeping Linux back-compatible for 4+ years.

Many people were anxious to have Linux XBasic, but backed off when they learned it had not been tested on newer releases of Linux.  So the following report from Dale Maggee may give you sufficient confidence to download and try Linux XBasic.  Send me your reports too.

You can now download XBasic for Linux from the XBasic freeware page.

The following is the report I received from Dale Maggee.  Best wishes to all Linux fans.  Enjoy.

#####   1999/06/03 : message from Dale Maggee  #####
SUCCESS!!!  It worked!!!

It was easy too.  I was logged in as root (didn't try it as any other user).   All I did was use UNZIP to extract the files (they have the directory structure so you must extract to the / (root) directory).

All the files extracted into the /usr/xb directory except the executable, which extracted into /usr/bin).  XBasic didn't work in Linux console mode, but once I ran XBasic under XWindows - it just worked!  I don't know enough about XBasic to tell if it worked completely bug free, but the same stuff as in Windoze95 came up.  I loaded a demo prog and ran it - It worked quite nicely.

About my Linux installation:
Pentium 133, 24 Megs RAM, 6.4Gb HDD
   5 Gb Win95 FAT32 (/dev/hda1)
   1 Gb Linux ext2 (/dev/hda5)
   125 Mb Linux swap (/dev/hda6)
Dual Booting with LILO on ext2 partition.
Red Hat Linux 5.1 (basically a fresh install - I'm too scared to touch settings in Linux!)

So XBasic works with Redhat 5.1!!!  Spread the word!  And thanks for writing such a cool prog!

#####  1999/05/15 : download GIF-to-BMP and BMP-to-GIF functions  #####
You can now download XBasic source code that converts GIF format images to BMP format and vice versa.  Not every GIF capability is supported, but the code does convert a large majority of GIF images okay.  Download and more information is on the XBasic projects page.

#####  older news to be moved to the page - someday  #####