QWv3 – Dev blog 4

It’s been a while since the last update. Since then I’ve had a hard drive crash that put me out of commission for a few days but a new SSD, a reinstall of Windows 10 and some hard drive data jiggling and I’m back to it.

In the last update I spoke about the popups and the problems they had. I’ve now stopped using the JavaFX Popup for popups and instead just use a standard VBox. I’ve had some issues with sizing but they are mostly fixed now. It looks exactly the same as the first popup so I won’t trouble you with an image.

Getting on with features

I’ve moved onto the “Find your Projects” feature, that makes use of notifications which are now just about done.

I’ve half finished the import a file via drag-n-drop feature. So when you drag a .docx file over the All Projects window the following panel will be shown.

Sorry about the size, I’m using “Snip & Sketch” in Windows 10 and it doesn’t seem to think that you want to capture a complete window, grr.

At present dropping the file doesn’t do anything because I haven’t done the Import wizard yet.

The startup splashscreen is now done and I’ve added a nice fade out animation when the startup is complete. I’m going to be looking to add movement and animations where appropriate throughout the interface.

Finally, the create a new project popup is done, see below. I’ve added new standard components for selecting a file or directory and for collecting a password.

Backgrounds

An important feature within QW is the ability to change the background on certain panels. This is currently available in full screen mode, the all projects panel and the Idea Board. You can select a colour, a built in image or add your own image. This is such an integral feature for QW that I’ve made it a core feature for any panel. This will mean that you’ll be able to select a background for each asset you have, if you so desire.

I’ve also reworked the image/colour selector somewhat, it now looks like this:

The images are held in their own accordion and in contrast to the old selector there are controls for adding new images and reverting to the default background on the headers rather than clicking on a swatch.

If you click on the title of the Images header the images disappear you can see the colours (or you can scroll down to them).

Clicking on the plus icon in the Colors header you will then see the following popup:

Now these are core components that will be used in various places which is why I’ve spent so long on them. I tried using the built in JavaFX ColorPicker but it’s overly complicated and hideous to look at and use. I’m puzzled as to why developers believe that every color picker has to look like something out of Photoshop. Most people want to pick a colour not mess around with 15 different controls that have little meaning to anyone other than an image expert. The sliders and entry boxes in the colour selector work in real time, so changing a value will change the panel background colour so you can fiddle until you get the exact shade you’re looking for. Clicking “Use Color” will lock in your selection and add it to the list of colours in the selector so it can be reused in other contexts.

A pseudo class is added to the panel when a colour or image is selected, this allows css designers to modify the look. Here’s an example of a background.

One thing I’ve noticed is that the image rendering and image performance is much better in JavaFX, images look crisper there seems to be full hardware support.

Scrolling

To my surprise JavaFX has no way to scroll a Node into view within a scroll pane. This is such a useful feature but there is no standard method of doing so. This is a feature I know I’ll need to use many times in QW so I’ve had to create a “scrollIntoView” method myself. It took a little while but it’s now done and for any JavaFX developers out there who need that kind of behaviour, you can find it here. I won’t bore you with it here.

So things are moving on apace. Now that a lot of the basic components are present I can move things over more easily.

4 thoughts on “QWv3 – Dev blog 4

  1. alucardnoir

    Since you’re working at the Projects window right now, do you think you could add a folder or group option that allowed us to group multiple projects under one banner? You know, to allow us to group books in a trilogy, or books revolving around the same world or character together.

    1. It’s a feature I considered in the past but never got around to. I have a few components to put in place then I’ll have a look at implementing it. I also need to decide on how to do drag-n-drop before going ahead with it as well.

      1. alucardnoir

        You could use a CTRL+LMB to select multiple project and a RMB to give us a context menu with a “Group Selected” option.

        …though, that wouldn’t be the most intuitive of interfaces.

      2. Sorry I forgot to respond to this. It will work in a similar to Project Statuses, you just set the category and it will be added to a section with that category name.

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