Converting legacy screen applications into callable web services or new web user experiences can be very rewarding. What was a difficult-to-use application requiring extensive training can become an automated process or a well-designed set of web pages.
But for a developer, those difficult-to-use screens can also be difficult and very tedious to program. Hundreds of fields, confusing navigation and dozens of function keys can frustrate a developer used to to rapid delivery of functionality.
This is the challenge that Flynet has met with the Inventu Designer Studio which is not a single product but in fact a framework to deliver the functionality of multiple products related to screen integration. Today these include a WCF and ASP.NET Web Services Designer and Wizard as well as a UI Modernization Design and Wizard.
As an Integrated Development Environment, there are many core components that make-up Flynet Studio. These are described in the following sections
This treeview provides management of the Solutions, Projects, Recordings, ScreenGroups and Screens that make-up a developer's view of a screen integration solution set. Through familiar mouse actions, recordings are imported and become one or more screen definitions. From there, more wizards are available to view screen data change maps, defined Field Maps, and more.
Recordings Import Helper
The Recordings Import Helper streamlines the process of importing new recordings to a Flynet Studio project. A recording is read by the program logic and new screens not currently part of the active project are displayed to the developer for fast identification and swiping of recognition areas with the mouse.
The Screen Heatmap and Instance Browser
With support for so many ways to record how users work with screens, a developer may have the same screen across multiple recordings, with multiple uses. The Screen Heatmap display tool shows how the screen is updated by both the users and the system, to help a developer understand the "hot areas" of the screen most impactful and useful for integration purposes. The browse capability lets the user "arrow-through" all instances of a screen rapidly, to see all the ways it is used and sample data
Field Mapping Wizard
Key to productivity for busy screens with potentially hundreds of individual fields, the Field Mapping Wizard boils-down the work to mouse swipes, clicks and updates. With support for multiple screen personalities including multi-row screens, the mapping wizard can make quick work of what is otherwise a very tedious chore. For screens with only a few fields needing to be defined, individual fields can be defined from the Project Explorer with a few clicks or a swipe of the mouse.
Whether with the wizard or the visual mapping view and project explorer screen definitions, the Flynet Studio makes field locations, names and attributes easy to define and manage.
When fields move due to changes on the host application, it is a simple drag-and-drop in the Screen map view to move a field to the new location and the application is then easily updated with a single generation action.
Designer and Wizard Plug-In Support
To enable the extensions and implementation of wizards and the corresponding properties for such defined Studio objects as screens or fields, Flynet Studio has a plug-in architecture that has enabled powerful options for customers. As a result, each item that can be programmed can have an extensive set of individual properties managed by the external wizard or tool.
Navigation Viewer and Navigation Code Generation
Built-in to Inventu Designer Studio is a comprehensive screen navigation function that can analyze all the recordings and determine a shortest path to get from one screen to another. The results of its internal map are available to the developer in a Navigation Viewer that identifies how users moved from one screen to another, and includes the ability to add additional navigation that may not have made it into a recording.
The various wizards that provide application generation facilities utilize the navigation engine to create object-oriented extendable methods that handle all the navigation yet can be tweaked for certain circumstances by a developer.
Help on Everything
Through the plug-in Architecture, even individual properties have an F1 (help) target assigned, so no matter where you are in the Studio you can get help.