ImposSiebel Toolbar, About Label

I had a conversation with some Siebel architects not too long ago, and we were talking about Siebel 6. One of the best things about the interface (probably the only thing that was good), was the fact that, when you hovered over any label on the client, it would reveal the actual BC field name in the application status bar.



This was a golden nugget for developers, because instead of going to the applet, viewing the layout, inspecting the control, scrolling down the properties window to get the field name. Siebel 6 provided this information plainly to anyone who cared to look.

The person who designed this functionality was obviously an engineer, and the person who killed the feature in Siebel 7.0 was most likely a marketing person. Siebel professionals who came from the 10 year batch, will remember this feature, and will be happy to know that i've brought this feature back.

This feature is provided for pure nostalgia, but will not have any practical value anymore and I'll explain why soon.

[About Label]

Rather than borrow design cues from a 10 year old interface, i've come up with something a little more modern.

'About Label' provides the developer with detailed information about the label of any form applet inside a floating window, which can be interacted with to show low level BC information.

To invoke this feature, goto any form applet, and pay attention to the labels. When you hover over a suitable label, the background of the label will change color, indicating that this feature is enabled.



Double click on the desired label to call 'About Label'. A dialog will appear showing the following summary information about the field, if it is available.



Calculated fields will not have mapped columns, VBC fields will not have a Table, and System fields will have no definition.

So depending on the kind of field you are inspecting, the following information is displayed.

1. Field Name
2. Column
3. Calculated Value
4. MVL Name
5. Dest Field
6. Dest BC Name
7. Picklist Name
8. Picklist Type Value
9. Table Name

Click on the toggle icon, and the dialog will expand to show the entire list of configured properties for the field.



And finally the field name will be displayed in the status bar for those Siebel 6 hippies who want to do some reminiscing. Give me a Hi-5 in the comments, if you're a hippie.

[Limitations]

1. List applet support
This feature is sorely missing, but it is a tough one, and requires an overhaul of the current design to work, so dont expect it on your radar anytime soon.

2. Popup applet support
This also requires some new design to work, but consider it a weak bleep on your radar.

3. Home pages/SI mode support
SI support is possible with a little tweak and some further testing, but hasnt been enabled. Consider this one a phantom bleep that might appear anytime soon.

4. MVF Column/Table name
'About Label' doesnt show the mapped column/table name for MVF fields. This is a personal annoyance for me, but i dont have a quick solution, so this will be a future enhancement.

[Whats on the horizon?]

Theres still a few features of "Super About View" that i have yet to port over to the ImposSiebel toolbar. The most notable are listed below.

1. About Script

Displays all browser and server script related to the current BC and Applet in an explorer tree. This is useful to inspect the behaviour behind a button, or action on the UI, without going into Tools.

2. About Applet & About BC

Displays low level details about the user properties, and object properties of the Applet and BCs. This is useful to see why fields are read only, or what user properties could contribute to the UI behaviour.

3. 40 second Repository Search

As the feature title suggests, the Impossible Siebel toolbar can scan the repository in roughly 40 seconds, and display a detailed report on the repository reference to any string, field, applet or view definition. Try this with a standard Siebel full repository search, and you'll hang your tools for a few hours!

This will be the last major release for this year, and mostly likely the early part of next year. I must admit, i skipped some corners to get this release out in time, and also deliver the ABS articles. So i will focus on refactoring the code, and creating object wrappers, so its more scalable for future enhancements.

Although this is mostly under the hood enhancements, the foundations will make the above enhancements easier. But to keep you guys/gals happy, i'll provides some nice easter eggs along the way so you dont get bored with all this stability, and scalability nonsense.


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5 comments:

  1. Hi,
    Whenever I run the step "Double click on the desired label to call 'About Label'." I'm getting the following error message:
    "GetFieldInfo: [object Error]"
    Thank you,
    FMC

    ReplyDelete
  2. Dude you really deserve all fivez ;-)
    this is the most far out thing i've seen since that siebel ding was 6 and 6 was 9
    groooovy!
    keep the faith babe.

    ...you wanted hippie comments, now you've got one ;-)

    have a nice day

    @lex

    ReplyDelete
  3. @lex i didnt expect to hear from a real hippie! =)

    @FMC that is a known problem, i'm looking into a fix.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I also get the "GetFieldInfo: [object Error]". Has anyone determined the reason?

    I also get an odd ODBC driver error the first time I click a label in a session. It mentions that the driver is through datadirect and isn't valid outside the ODBC pack. However, that could be just me.

    ReplyDelete