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An Approach to Develop Graphical Widget in Business Applications

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000018998D
Original Publication Date: 2003-Aug-25
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2003-Aug-25
Document File: 3 page(s) / 75K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Abstract

Disclosed is an approach to develop graphical widgets in business applications. Business users create SVG graphics, which are used as templates in the application for defining the widgets and data indicators. Solution developers build a tool to adjust only the visual attributes that are affected by real time data.

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An Approach to Develop Graphical Widget in Business Applications

  Graphical widgets are widely used in business applications. Traditionally, to re-produce the graphics received from business users, IT professionals develop widgets using programming languages like Java, as well as a set of development tools such as WebSphere Studio Application Developer. Although the business users know what kind of graphics they like see in the application, it is very difficult for the business users to create or change the widgets in the applications.

A Scalable Vector Graphics (SVG) image is a set of instructions in XML format to describe how to paint the image. The approach desclosed utilizes the feature to dramatically simplify the development process, as well as improve the flexibility of using SVG widgets in business applications. Here, SVG is used as an extension of programming language, rather than a graphic format such as GIF, JPEG.

As described in Figure 1, business users create SVG graphics using any graphic design tools they are familiar with, for example, the Adobe Illustrator*. The SVG graphics then are used as templates (Figure 2) in applications for defining widgets and data indicators. In the meantime, solution developers define data structure, collect data that need to be displayed in the widget from various sources. In this approach, both the data structure and the data are stored in XML files.

Figure 1. Development process

Figure 2. Template

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Having received the templates from the business user, instead of writing a program to draw the widgets looked like the templates, the developers create transforming mappings to apply data on the templates. Themappings will be used at runtime to change cri...