Tuesday, July 28, 2009

The state of Orbeon Forms, Part 5

Bookshelf Form

Here is a summary of the Orbeon Forms developments for June/July 2009:

1. Form Builder and Form Runner

  • Documentation. The Form Builder user documentation is now available in English and in French.

  • Proxying with PHP. We just addressed an issue with PHP-based proxies (e.g. TYPO3), where checkboxes wouldn't work in noscript mode.

2. XForms engine improvements

  • Large page JavaScript initialization (performance). We implemented two optimizations (here and here) on the client-side.

  • Type annotations. XForms type annotations are now optionally available to XPath 2.0 expressions.

  • Calendar view. You now have properties to control the calendar two-month and navigator views independently.

  • FusionCharts component. We have a new XBL component you can uase to easily embed FusionCharts in your forms.

  • Accordion menu events. The accordion menu now supports new events so you can dynamically open and close accordion "drawers".

  • Funny value update bug. We fixed a bug where updates to form fields were ignored. This was a corner case but it still feels good!

3. Submissions

  • Targetref attribute. We implemented XForms the 1.1 xforms:submission targetref attribute for instance subtree replacement.

  • Instance cache (performance). Orbeon Forms now support cacheable read-write external XForms instances (it already supported read-only ones). It also supports caching with POST and PUT.

  • HTTP state. Orbeon Forms has now better control on how server-side HTTP connections (e.g. xforms:submission) handle state.

  • Asynchronous submissions. We now have improved support for XForms 1.1 asynchronous submissions.

4. IT

  • GitHub. The Orbeon Forms source has just migrated to github! Please do not use the old CVS repository anymore.

  • TeamCity. Our nightly build system now uses TeamCity. It pushes the nightly builds to the same place as before.

5. Misc

  • XPL engine memory improvements. The pipeline engine now frees temporary memory earlier than before with tees and p:for-each.

  • Themes. We now have easy per-application themes! Just put the theme stylesheet under an app's folder and it will be picked up.

  • Building with Java 6. Unit tests now pass with Java 6. There were some issues related to the ordering of items in maps.

  • eXist upgrade. We upgraded to eXist 1.2.6.

  • IE6/7 tip. How to deal with IE6/7 bug where overflow:hidden is ineffective when containing a position:relative.

  • XForms 1.1 status. W3C Forms Working Group just requested advancement of XForms 1.1 to W3C Proposed Recommendation.

  • XForms future features. Preliminary list of extensions we would like to see standardized in a future version of XForms.

That's it for today. Enjoy!