Saturday, February 27, 2010

Amazing Toolchain DXF

The scenario: Given we have a simple Logo, just a circle, as a dxf-File so called Drawing Interchange Format. So what is actually nessesary to fill the circle with dark blue and get is as png, svg, pdf.
Normally, one think the solution is simple just give me Visio and I import this stuff as CAD-Drawing use the fill-button and click export to the severall format. BUT it is definetly not so easy.
Although Visio supports fill out, it did actual not work at all. So I tried first to export it to a high resolution jpeg and tried to fill it out in Paint but he we got the problem of antialiasing stuff. So the edges blur out, this does look dirty and uncool. Next I exported out of visio a svg file, open it in firefox, manually set the fill style for the svg path and try to reimport it to powerpoint (tool of my choice for presentation). But as we all know Microsoft does not like SVG at all (although they are active member in the community, I still hope for svg support in IE), Powerpoint was not able to import the svg. A friend of mine imported the svg in KeyNode and export it as ppt. Now I was successful on opening the ppt with powerpoint and now I could export all my wished format from Powerpoint.
Additional I have to mention that a tried to search some free tools to edit dxf files directly, the only stuff I found is an pure french Java editor, which is in no way useable at all.

What a amatzing toolchain just to handle an dxf-file. If you got advise for me please comment.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Extreme BP Work Today

Just end up on working with Eclipse EMF and Eclipse JFace wizards. What a pain!!

Especially the construction of an Eclipse wizards is more difficult than I estimated. It just catches exceptions without any feedback, just from time to time a “Event Loopback” occurs which is easy to track. Additionally all the magic SWT style number are weird. So, you can just instantiate a new Composite with
new Composite(parent, SWT.V_Scroll);
and get a Composite with a vertival scrollbar. Sounds cool, isn’t it. But if you try to add several other composites as children of the scrollable, there is no scrolling at all. I just try to get it working.
In addition, there is no possibility to remove pages from a wizard, I temporally just monkey patch it, but I asked myself, if one should really only use constant pages, and just modify the contained composites. Another issue was the complete unchangeable order of pages, so I just added a public arraylist and redirect all accesses to the private pages of the supertype.
According EMF, it really do not fit in my mind, why one cannot inherit from data types. Especially EMF specific interfaces, which I think should be supported or at least been modeled in the Ecore model itself , are not available to inherit from.
Some nice idea for EMF would be an code synchronization plugin, which will kust update the models, if one change the parameter type of a method or just add a new attribute. Because the development process suffers from the frequent switch between code and model, just for keeping the model up to date.

Today, I just get an insight into the upcoming UML stencilset for the Oryx Editor (Oryx Project). It look great, nearly all concepts of UML get supported, but it was an hard manual matching against the UML meta model. Let’s think about a way to parse xmi meta models to stencilsets and vice versa, would be a powerful concept. I will just go on research on this topic.