Book Image

Backbase 4 RIA Development

Book Image

Backbase 4 RIA Development

Overview of this book

Backbase is a very powerful and complex JavaScript library, with many user interface components to help make web development easier. It allows the development of Rich Internet Applications (RIA) that run within all major browsers but its powers and complexity mean that the choice of component can be overwhelming. Understanding when and how to use the right component might not always be straightforward. This book makes that easier. This is a practical book that teaches you how to use the Backbase Client Framework effectively, with a complete overview and many examples. A core developer of the framework puts the technologies used into a wider perspective of existing web standards and a seasoned software architect explains why XML-based UI definition produces better web applications. The transparent use of AJAX technologies, for example to submit forms, or to retrieve updates for data grids, can be taken for granted with the Backbase framework. Packed with examples, the book shows you how to get the most from the library of UI components, and then extend the library with its own custom language. With this book in hand, it is easy to enable AJAX within your web application. You will be able to use the Backbase framework effectively, from basic applications to complex, custom-defined UI components. This book contains a complete overview of all the UI libraries available within the Backbase framework and shows examples for each element described. The Backbase framework offers an innovative Tag Definition Language (TDL), which allows developers to create new UI components that can be used as XML elements, in the same way as using the built-in GUI library. Using TDL brings considerable development advantages, and this book explains how. Significant attention is also given to architectural aspects of designing a web-application, showing sample applications using a model-view-controller approach.
Table of Contents (16 chapters)
Backbase 4 RIA Development
About the Authors
About the Reviewers

The Backbase Tag Library

The focus of this chapter is the Backbase Tag Library (BTL). BTL concerns itself with the visible aspect of a web application user interface. For its dynamic behavior, we need JavaScript, or the XML Execution Language and Command Functions tag libraries that we will cover in the next chapter.

When you are developing a user interface, you will find that you are solving the same problems over and over again:

  • Create a layout

  • Show a menu of options

  • Have tabs to structure the space on a page

  • Provide pop ups and tool tips

  • Do form validation

These are just a few examples from a long list. The BTL is a set of UI widgets that can be used out of the box, which are extensible, and should appear the same in all browsers. By using these, you should be able to develop your website faster with a more robust result.

Backbase Tag Library widget overview

There are eight categories of BTL widgets for every aspect of layout and user interaction. If that is not enough, you can extend the BTL...