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Apr 98 - NewsBits

Volume Number: 14 (1998)
Issue Number: 4
Column Tag: Newsbits


by Jessica Courtney

Stone Design and Caffeine Software Deliver the Enhanced Licenser Kit

Long time NeXTSTEP/OPENSTEP/Rhapsody developers, Stone Design Corp, makers of Create, and Caffeine Software, makers of TIFFany, announced today that their acclaimed Licenser Kit has been updated and improved, and future upgrades of the kit are free, at least until the year 2001.

The Licenser Kit allows developers to quickly add the level of copy-protection security they require, including the following, combinable options for generating restricted usage:

  • Tie license to user name.
  • Tie to host ID (now including Windows 95/NT!)
  • Create floating network licenses.
  • Allow as many users as desired.
  • Have unlimited number of licenses on a network.
  • Add licenses on the fly (cumulative licensing).
  • Automatically unlicense if application is moved or copied.
  • Generate expiring licenses for "full strength" demos.
  • Automatically track the licenses currently in use on the network.
  • Fully customizable through subclassing and interface files.
  • Only you know the encryption code for your apps.
  • Full source for License Generation app included.
  • Royalty free.
  • Free upgrades at least until 1/1/2001.

The Licenser Kit has been in development and testing for over five years by Caffeine Software and Stone Design, and is the choice software protection solution for all the top Rhapsody developers, including Anderson Financial Systems Inc., P&L Systems Ltd., OneStep Solutions Plc., Jenike & Johsanson, Inc., Robert Vasvari, and other not yet publicly disclosed Rhapsody and YellowBox developers.

Added to this release is a network license monitoring system that permits users to see who is using the same application, which is very helpful when all of the licenses are already in use. The people using the licenses and the machines they are using them on are automatically listed in the Licenser Kit panel. Another new feature is the ability for a software house to have licenses generated for one application that can be used in another application, but not vice-versa. This comes in handy when developers offer a "pro" product along with a "companion" application, for example.

The Licenser Kit is available now for Rhapsody Developer Release, Apple YellowBox for Windows, OPENSTEP 4.x, OPENSTEP Enterprise for Windows and NT, and NeXTSTEP. Unlike competing products, The Licenser Kit supports network floating licenses, where a license can be installed on the network and shared by all users, which gives the developers better copy protection control and is extremely end user friendly. The floating licenses are well suited for site licensing. Moreover, the Licenser Kit enables users to purchases an initial number of floating licenses, and later increase this number using the Kit's cumulative license strategy. Of course, expiring (timebomb) licenses can be generated on the fly by the developer for fully functional demonstrations.

ACI Product Line v6.0.5

Less than a year after the release of its major product upgrade, 4th Dimension version 6.0, ACI has engineered a significantly enhanced version for the entire ACI Product Line -- version 6.0.5.

The benefits provided by this maintenance release include improved functionalities and an extremely stable and robust design environment. ACI Product Line version 6.0.5 is proof of ACI's commitment to providing quality development tools to its 7,000-strong developer community. Version 6.0.5 also includes some new features, such as new management of picture field compression, and a new procedure for converting 4D version 3 applications to 4D version 6.

The success of 4th Dimension version 6.0, released in early 1997, can be measured by the large proportion of professional developers who have already upgraded to this new version to build powerful cross-platform applications. Among the highly acclaimed features of 4th Dimension and 4D Server v6 are a built-in Web server, a revamped interface, triggers, stored procedures, a visual, interactive debugger, and an object-based forms editor.

FairCom Releases New Version of c-tree Plus, V6.7A, for Macintosh with Conditional Index Support, Transaction History, Variable Length API

FairCom Corporation announced the latest release of c-tree Plus v6.7A file handler and the FairCom Server for the Macintosh, including support for System 7.X and Mac OS 8.X for both Native PowerPC and 68K. This new release of FairCom's C ISAM database API offers an enhanced variable length API resulting in easier and faster variable length record operations and conditional index support, which provides a means to define complex expressions and use them to filter the entries within an index. Other major features of this release include a transaction history function, which makes it possible to access the audit logs of transaction controlled files.

The new release of c-tree Plus also provides conditional index support, which allows indices to be defined at the data content level rather than at just the field level. Dynamic index (select/omit) filtering can be performed on c-tree Plus index files by using a powerful expression parser/analyzer. Complex expressions are defined and evaluated at run time to control index entries, resulting in smaller, highly efficient indices groomed to a developer's precise needs. The conditional index support is available in all seven c-tree Plus operational modes.

The transaction history function allows for the accessing of the audit logs of transaction controlled files. This enables the programmer to scrutinize the changes performed on each unit of information at a very detailed level. One such use of this technology has been to track the changes made to a manufactured device as it proceeds through an automated fabrication factory. The exact individual history of each manufactured device can be determined from the transaction log files.

Additional features of version 6.7 of c-tree Plus include: ISAM access enhancements, batch performance, system configuration function and transaction processing enhancements; new extended performance monitor; and file path control.

FairCom created Access Manager for Digital Research in 1979 and released its first true application development tool, the original c-tree file handler, that same year. Today c-tree Plus is running in over 100 CPU/OS environments in more than 98 countries worldwide. FairCom Macintosh implementations are utilized by such noted organizations as: McGraw-Hill, Follett Software Company, Great Plains Software and Phone Directories. Corporations like Computer Associates and Sharp Corporation have embedded FairCom's c-tree Plus within vertical market products and licensed its Server technology for OEM uses

QuickCRC 1.1 Object-Oriented Software Design Tool

Excel Software is shipping QuickCRC 1.1 for Macintosh and Windows 95/NT. QuickCRC is a design tool for discovering objects and related information for an object-oriented software development project. It automates the CRC card concept of identifying classes, responsibilities and collaborations between objects. Design scenarios involving a group of communicating objects can be identified and simulated. New features in this release include a contents view, inheritance graph and full text import and export of design information.

QuickCRC uses a diagram workspace for creating card and scenario objects. A card represents the properties of a class including its name, description, superclasses, subclasses, attributes, responsibilities and collaborating objects. A scenario represents a design mechanism defined as a series of steps involving communicating objects. Scenarios can reference cards or other scenarios. Cards and scenarios can also reference external agents defined by the designer to identify system and user interfaces. As information is entered or changed for a card or scenario object, it is instantly synchronized throughout the model.

Separate diagrams partition a model into subject areas. The contents view allows a designer to navigate between diagrams shown as folder icons that can be opened or closed. From the contents view, a card or scenario can be dragged between diagrams or double-clicked to edit its properties. This makes it easy to locate and modify information as the model grows.

The inheritance graph concisely illustrates the class inheritance structure of the model. It gets generated from information on the CRC cards regardless of how the cards are physically arranged or partitioned between diagrams. Several inheritance graphs can be active for different root classes in the CRC model to focus attention on different parts of a large design. The properties of a card can be viewed or edited by double-clicking its name on the inheritance graph.

The List Diagrams command generates a text representation of the information in a CRC model in a syntactically simple format. This information can be transferred to other applications or used to generate a new CRC model with the Import Diagrams command. Design models can be exported or imported to Excel Software's MacA&D and WinA&D software engineering tools for detailed design or code generation. Likewise, Excel Software's reengineering tools can be used to generate QuickCRC design models from existing code.

AAA+ Software Ships Joy Release 1.08 for OPENSTEP, Rhapsody and Windows

AAA+ Software announces release 1.08 of Joy Explorer and Joy Developer, the company's developer productivity and rapid application development tools. Joy applications run on Windows 95/NT, Apple Rhapsody, and OPENSTEP/MachOS. No porting or compiling is required.

Release 1.08 offers enhancements including:

  • Joy graphical application inspector integrated into Joy command window.
  • Joy Developer's "Save Nib as App" now creates stand-alone applications for use on any deployment platform.
  • Linking Joy into non-Joy applications made easier

Joy Explorer is the ideal tool for exploring the Yellow Box frameworks. Developers can create small utilities by using just Rhapsody's Joy-enhanced Interface Builder application. No other development tools are required. These utilities will run in Interface Builder's Test Interface mode.

Joy Developer provides full functionality for developing sophisticated applications. There is no need to re-compile, re-link and re-establish test scenarios to explore new ideas. Using the "Save Nib as App" feature, users can turn graphical user interfaces created in Interface Builder into standalone applications that run on any OPENSTEP or Yellow Box platform.


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