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 data-bound widgets

There are a number of widgets available in the Backbase framework that can use a dataSource to provide the data content for the widget. These are as follows:

  • dataGrid

  • listGrid

  • dataMenu

  • dataTree

  • suggestBox

  • treeGrid

We already described the suggestBox in the previous chapter. The details for the remaining data-bound widgets could fill the rest of this book. Therefore, we made a choice and here we will only discuss the dataGrid and the fieldEditor that is handy when allowing editing of a grid. At the time of writing this book, the dataGrid is still a Release Candidate, as opposed to the listGrid, which has very similar functionality and is fully deployed. Our reason for choosing the dataGrid instead of the listGrid is that the dataGrid is better performing, more powerful, and more flexible. The dataGrid was developed as a replacement for the listGrid.


The dataGrid is a powerful mechanism for displaying tabular data. The dataGrid supports sorting, value formatting...