TweetFollow Us on Twitter

OpenBase

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

OpenBase

by Gene Backlin

A Solid Database Framework for Rhapsody

Introduction

OpenBase is a solid database framework which will address your data handling requirements for Rhapsody. Like Rhapsody, OpenBase's foundation is with NeXTSTEP. It has evolved through the years to provide a mature environment for stand alone users as well as over distributed networks. For the developer, OpenBase has a rich set of application APIs that incorporate the C and Objective-C languages. Regardless of developers programming background Mac OS or NeXTSTEP/OpenStep, the OpenBase API framework allows quick development of full scale database applications.

Overview

This article will illustrate:

  • Steps to build SimpleTool, an application that queries a "Movie" database, show just how simple is writing an OpenBase database application.
  • Help Desk, an application using OpenBaseAdvancedAPI to address multi-tiered database interaction over local area networks.
  • OpenBase Manager, OpenBase's data management and interactive tool.

SimpleTool

SimpleTool demonstrates interaction with a relational database interaction without using the tedious programming overhead common with databases. Using C or Objective-C is the simplest way to access OpenBase. SimpleTool will retrieve from the database the movies and the revenue from the producing studios. Listing 1 illustrates the OpenBase API framework. A discussion follows.

Listing 1: SimpleTool_main.m

#import <Foundation/Foundation.h>
#import <OpenBaseAPI/OpenBase.h>

int main (int argc, const char *argv[])
{
  NSAutoreleasePool *pool = [[NSAutoreleasePool alloc] init];
  int returnCode;
  OpenBase *connection = ob_newConnection();

  //variables to hold values
  char movieTitle[256];
  char studioName[256];
  long revenue;

  if (!ob_connectToDatabase
    (connection, "Movie", "*", "", "", &returnCode))
    {
    printf("%s\n", ob_connectErrorMessage(connection));
    return -1;
    }

  ob_makeCommand(connection,"select t0.TITLE, t0.REVENUE, 
    t1.NAME from MOVIE t0, STUDIO t1 where 
    t0.STUDIO_ID = t1.STUDIO_ID order by t0.REVENUE DESC");

  if (!ob_executeCommand(connection))
    {
    printf("ERROR - %s\n",ob_serverMessage(connection));
    ob_invalidate(connection);
    return -1;
    }

  ob_bindString(connection, movieTitle);
  ob_bindLong(connection, &revenue);
  ob_bindString(connection, studioName);

  while (ob_nextRow(connection)) 
    {
    printf("%s made $%ld for %s.\n",movieTitle, revenue, 
      studioName);
    }

  ob_invalidate(connection);
  [pool release];
  exit(0);
  return 0;
}

Main begins by establishing a connection to the database, if a connection was not made, print the offending message returned from the connection object and exit. Using the ob_connectToDatabase() function, establish a connection to the database with the database name, hostname, logon id and password. Note the argument "*". The database connection is made directly to the local machine on a standalone computer, but will poll all hosts on a local area network. This is an example of OpenBase's scaleability.

  int returnCode;
  OpenBase *connection = ob_newConnection();
  // ...
  if (!ob_connectToDatabase(connection, "Movie", "*", "", "", 
    &returnCode))
    {
    printf("%s\n", ob_connectErrorMessage(connection));
    return -1;
    }

After a successful connection has been established, the ob_makeCommand() function is used to send SQL statements. The TITLE and REVENUE data columns from the MOVIE table as well as the associated studio NAME from the STUDIO table are retrieved. The SQL statements are now buffered for later execution by the database server.

  ob_makeCommand(connection,"select t0.TITLE, t0.REVENUE,
  t1.NAME from MOVIE t0, STUDIO t1 where t0.STUDIO_ID =
  t1.STUDIO_ID order by t0.REVENUE DESC");

The ob_executeCommand() passes the buffered SQL statements to the database server and returns TRUE for successful and FALSE for failed execution.

  if (!ob_executeCommand(connection))
    {
    printf("ERROR - %s\n",ob_serverMessage(connection));
    ob_invalidate(connection);
    return -1;
    }

The ob_bindString() and ob_bindLong() functions, bind the resulting data columns from the database, to the receiving program variables. SimpleTool binds the variables movieTitle, revenue and studioName respective to the order of the initial SELECT statement.

  ob_bindString(connection, movieTitle);
  ob_bindLong(connection, &revenue);
  ob_bindString(connection, studioName);

ob_nextRow() increments through the result rows and retrieves the data. FALSE is returned when all data is processed.

  while (ob_nextRow(connection)) 
    {
    printf("%s made $%ld for %s.\n",movieTitle, revenue, 
      studioName);
    }

Main ends with a call to terminate the connection to the database server.

  ob_invalidate(connection);

Help Desk

Help Desk, addresses multi-tiered database requirements by directly connecting to the user interface through the OpenBaseAdvancedAPI as seen in Figure 1.

Figure 1. Help Desk Manager.

Designing the Interface

The Apple supplied tool Interface Builder is used to design the user interface. Information on Interface Builder is detailed at http://devworld.apple.com/techinfo/techdocs/rhapsody/apple.com. See Figure 2 for a screen shot of a connection being performed using Interface Builder.

Figure 2. Making the Interface Builder Object Connection.

Managing the Interface and Database Relationships

Two FormManagers and one ReadTableManager are created. The first FormManager lists customer questions and the other displays who asked the question. The ReadTableManager manages a picklist of information.

  tableManager = [[ReadTableManager alloc] init];
  formManager = [[FormManager alloc] init];
  contactsFormManager = [[FormManager alloc] init];

To set the key attribute and table, each object must be initialized.

  [tableManager setKeyAttribute:@"support._rowid"];
  [tableManager setTableName:@"support"];

  [formManager setKeyAttribute:@"support._rowid"];
  [formManager setTableName:@"support"];

  [contactsFormManager setKeyAttribute:@"contacts._rowid"];
  [contactsFormManager setTableName:@"contacts"];

Connect the interface objects; tableManager, formManager and contactsFormManager to the database.

  [tableManager setConnection:connection];
  [formManager setConnection:connection];
  [contactsFormManager setConnection:connection];

Set specific query ordering. In this example "ASC" is ascending.

  [tableManager setOrderBy:@" ORDER BY
    support.shortQuestion ASC"];

Bind the screen objects to the database columns.

#define FIELD(outlet) [OutletManager newForOutlet:outlet]
#define TEXT(outlet) [OutletTextManager newForOutlet:outlet]
#define POPUP(outlet) [OutletPopUpManager   \
                      newForOutlet:outlet]

[formManager addOutlet:FIELD(shortQuestion) 
      withColumnName:@"support.shortQuestion"];
[formManager addOutlet:FIELD(product) 
      withColumnName:@"support.product"];
[formManager addOutlet:TEXT(textQuestion) 
      withColumnName:@"support.question"];
[formManager addOutlet:TEXT(textAnswer) 
      withColumnName:@"support.answer"];
[formManager addOutlet:FIELD(dateCreated) 
      withColumnName:@"support.dateCreated"];
[formManager addOutlet:POPUP(answered) 
      withColumnName:@"support.answered"];

Set up the Contacts Form to be a target of the FormManager.

[contactsFormManager addOutlet:FIELD(firstname) 
      withColumnName:@"contacts.firstname"];
[contactsFormManager addOutlet:FIELD(lastname) 
      withColumnName:@"contacts.lastname"];
[contactsFormManager addOutlet:FIELD(email) 
      withColumnName:@"contacts.email"];

Add each column to initialize the table.

[tableManager addColumn:@"support.product" 
    title:@"Product"];
[tableManager addColumn:@"support.answered" 
    title:@"Answered"];
[tableManager addColumn:@"support.shortQuestion" 
    title:@"Summary"];

Initialize the windowTableView object, to display the query results.

[tableManager setTableView:windowTableView];

Establishing Database Relationships

The formManager will display related details when a selection is made in the tableManager. To accomplish this, a target relationship must be made between the tableManager and formManager.

[tableManager addTarget:formManager
    withValue:@"support._rowid"];

The contactsFormManager displays the contacts through the contacts_id key.

[formManager addOutlet:contactsFormManager
    withColumnName:@"support.contacts_id"];

The formManager sets the SQL "WHERE" constraints as well as subqueries.

[tableManager fetchData:[formManager whereConstraints]];

Insulation from Direct SQL

OpenBase's OpenBaseAdvancedAPI, completely insulates you from SQL commands like SEARCH, RESET, SAVE and DELETE, by the following methods.

- (void)findAction:sender
{
  [tableManager fetchData:[formManager whereConstraints]];
}

- (void)resetAction:sender
{
  [tableManager resetAction:self];
}

- (void)saveAction:sender
{
  [formManager saveChanges];
}

- (void)deleteAction:sender
{
  [tableManager deleteAction:self];
}

The OpenBase Manager

In addition to the developer API frameworks, OpenBase like Rhapsody, designed graphical tools to simplify tasks. OpenBase Manager simplifies the following:

  • Managing Database servers across local area networks
  • Viewing Databases
  • Editing Database schemas
  • Managing Database security

OpenBase Interactive Database Toolset

The following screen shots display OpenBase's rich set of tools.

Figure 3. OpenBase Database Manager.

Figure 4. User Administration.

Figure 5. Permission Administration.

Figure 6. Database Table Administration.

User Comments

Sirius Connections, a leading provider of internet services for the San Francisco area, uses OpenBase for billing and maintaining historical records on 15,000 customers. "Our whole operation is built on OpenBase technology, " says Andreas Glocker, CEO of Sirius Connections, "Automating our business on OpenBase has made all the difference. It has given us the competitive advantage."

"One of our programmers wrote a system using the OpenBase API in less than a day. Doing the same thing using Oracle OCI's took more than three," says Kevin Ford, President of ComputerActive located in Ontario Canada, "OpenBase demonstrates a level of quality and robustness rarely seen in the software world."

Robert L. Peek, founder of the Peek Financial Group, says, "We have adopted OpenBase as an enterprise wide solution for our firm. We have found it to be an industrial strength database with excellent support."

Contact Information

OpenBase supports ODBC for Mac OS and Windows and has a native JDBC driver. For further information about OpenBase and how you can get a FREE single-user runtime, you can contact:

OpenBase International, Ltd
58 Greenfield Road
Francestown, NH 03043
Tel: 603-547-8404 -- Fax: 603-547-2423
e-mail: info@openbase.com
internet: http://www.openbase.com


Gene Backlin, gbacklin@MariZack.com, has been programming since 1978, and is owner and principal consultant of MariZack Consulting, formed in 1991 with one purpose -- to help. He has been helping clients such as IBM, McDonnell Douglas, Waste Management Inc., the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, AT&T, Ameritech, Discover Card, Rockwell International, Bank of America and Nations Bank. He also helps local universities in the area of education and is author of the book "Developing NeXTSTEP Applications" ISBN 0-672-30658-1 published by SAM's Publishing.

 

Community Search:
MacTech Search:

Software Updates via MacUpdate

ExpanDrive 4.3.2 - Access cloud storage...
ExpanDrive builds cloud storage in every application, acts just like a USB drive plugged into your Mac. With ExpanDrive, you can securely access any remote file server directly from the Finder or... Read more
RapidWeaver 6.0.8 - Create template-base...
RapidWeaver is a next-generation Web design application to help you easily create professional-looking Web sites in minutes. No knowledge of complex code is required, RapidWeaver will take care of... Read more
Artlantis Studio 5.1.2.7 - 3D rendering...
Artlantis Studio is a unique and ideal tool for performing very high resolution rendering easily and in real time. The new FastRadiosity engine now lets you compute images in radiosity-even in... Read more
MacUpdate Desktop 6.0.5 - Search and ins...
MacUpdate Desktop 6 brings seamless 1-click installs and version updates to your Mac. With a free MacUpdate account and MacUpdate Desktop 6, Mac users can now install almost any Mac app on macupdate.... Read more
BitTorrent Sync 2.0.82 - Sync files secu...
BitTorrent Sync allows you to sync unlimited files between your own devices, or share a folder with friends and family to automatically sync anything. File transfers are encrypted. Your information... Read more
Google Drive 1.20 - File backup and shar...
Google Drive is a place where you can create, share, collaborate, and keep all of your stuff. Whether you're working with a friend on a joint research project, planning a wedding with your fiancé, or... Read more
Simon 4.0.3 - Monitor changes and crashe...
Simon monitors websites and alerts you of crashes and changes. Select pages to monitor, choose your alert options, and customize your settings. Simon does the rest. Keep a watchful eye on your... Read more
Vitamin-R 2.23 - Personal productivity t...
Vitamin-R creates the optimal conditions for your brain to work at its best by structuring your work into short bursts of distraction-free, highly focused activity alternating with opportunities for... Read more
iDefrag 5.0.0 - Disk defragmentation and...
iDefrag helps defragment and optimize your disk for improved performance. Features include: Supports HFS and HFS+ (Mac OS Extended). Supports case sensitive and journaled filesystems. Supports... Read more
PCalc 4.2 - Full-featured scientific cal...
PCalc is a full-featured, scriptable scientific calculator with support for hexadecimal, octal, and binary calculations, as well as an RPN mode, programmable functions, and an extensive set of unit... Read more

Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment A...
Warner Bros. has some exciting games coming down the pipe! | Read more »
GDC 2015 – Star Trek Timelines will Prob...
GDC 2015 – Star Trek Timelines will Probably Make Your Inner Trekkie Squeal With Glee Posted by Rob Rich on March 4th, 2015 [ permalink ] Any popular fictional universe has its fair share of fan fiction – where belo | Read more »
Protect Yourself from an Onslaught of Ca...
Surprise Attack Games has announced a Cat-astrophic new physics puzzler called Fort Meow! In the game, a young girl named Nia finds her grandfather’s journal which triggers an all mighty feline attack! Why do the cats want the journal? Who knows,... | Read more »
GDC 2015 – Jelly Reef will be Game Oven’...
GDC 2015 – Jelly Reef will be Game Oven’s Last Hurrah, and it Seems like a Good Note to Go Out on Posted by Rob Rich on March 4th, 2015 [ permalink ] It’s sad knowing that Game Oven ( | Read more »
daWindci Deluxe Review
daWindci Deluxe Review By Campbell Bird on March 4th, 2015 Our Rating: :: BLUSTERY PUZZLESUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad This updated puzzle game offers some creative gameplay and new mechanics, but still suffers from... | Read more »
Dungeon Hunter 5 Coming on March 12
Gameloft has excitedly announced that Dungeon Hunter 5 is on its way! Once again, you will adventure across the land of Valenthia exploring dungeons and fighting monsters. The game will have a new asynchronous multiplayer mode called Strongholds... | Read more »
GDC 2015 – The Sandbox 2 is Coming, and...
GDC 2015 – The Sandbox 2 is Coming, and Now it has Textures! | Read more »
Warner Bros. Interactive Announces Mort...
Mortal Kombat X, by Warner Bros. and NetherRealm Studios, will be a a free-to-play fighting/card-battle Mortal Kombat game. The game promises card collecting, multiplayer team combat, classic characters such as Scorpion, Sub-Zero and Raiden, and the... | Read more »
GDC 2015 – Piloteer is Whitaker Trebella...
GDC 2015 – Piloteer is Whitaker Trebella’s Latest Project, and it’s Definitely Something DIfferent Posted by Rob Rich on March 3rd, 2015 [ permalink ] You know | Read more »
PangoLand Review
PangoLand Review By Amy Solomon on March 3rd, 2015 Our Rating: :: COME VISIT PANGO AND FRIENDSUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad PangoLand is an open-ended world full of familiar characters, bright colors and interactive... | Read more »

Price Scanner via MacPrices.net

iPad: A More Positive Outlook – The ‘Book Mys...
It’s good to hear someone saying positive things about the iPad. I’ve been trying to bend my mind around how Apple’s tablet could have gone from zero to bestselling personal computing device on the... Read more
Mac Pros on sale for up to $279 off MSRP
Amazon has Mac Pros in stock and on sale for up to $279 off MSRP. Shipping is free: - 4-Core Mac Pro: $2725.87, $273 off MSRP (9%) - 6-Core Mac Pro: $3719.99, $279 off MSRP (7%) Read more
Sale! 13-inch Retina MacBook Pros for up to $...
B&H Photo has 13″ Retina MacBook Pros on sale for up to $205 off MSRP. Shipping is free, and B&H charges NY sales tax only: - 13″ 2.6GHz/128GB Retina MacBook Pro: $1219.99 save $80 - 13″ 2.... Read more
Another Tranche Of IBM MobileFirst For iOS Ap...
IBM has announced the next expansion phase for  its IBM MobileFirst for iOS portfolio, with a troika of new apps to address key priorities for the Banking and Financial Services, Airline and Retail... Read more
Sale! 15-inch Retina MacBook Pros for up to $...
B&H Photo has the new 2014 15″ Retina MacBook Pros on sale for up to $250 off MSRP for a limited time. Shipping is free, and B&H charges NY sales tax only: - 15″ 2.2GHz Retina MacBook Pro: $... Read more
WaterField Designs Introduces the Minimalist...
With Apple Pay gaining popularity, Android Pay coming in May 2015, and loyalty cards and receipts that can be accessed from smartphones, San Francisco’s WaterField Designs observes that it may be... Read more
Sale! 15-inch 2.2GHz Retina MacBook Pro for $...
 Best Buy has the 15″ 2.2GHz Retina MacBook Pro on sale for $1774.99 $1799.99, or $225 off MSRP. Choose free home shipping or free local store pickup (if available). Price valid for online orders... Read more
13-inch 2.5GHz MacBook Pro (refurbished) avai...
The Apple Store has Apple Certified Refurbished 13″ 2.5GHz MacBook Pros available for $170 off the cost of new models. Apple’s one-year warranty is standard, and shipping is free: - 13″ 2.5GHz... Read more
13-inch 2.5GHz MacBook Pro on sale for $100 o...
B&H Photo has the 13″ 2.5GHz MacBook Pro on sale for $999.99 including free shipping plus NY sales tax only. Their price is $100 off MSRP. Read more
27-inch 3.5GHz 5K iMac in stock today and on...
 B&H Photo has the 27″ 3.5GHz 5K iMac in stock today and on sale for $2299 including free shipping plus NY sales tax only. Their price is $200 off MSRP, and it’s the lowest price available for... Read more

Jobs Board

*Apple* Retail - Multiple Positions (US) - A...
Sales Specialist - Retail Customer Service and Sales Transform Apple Store visitors into loyal Apple customers. When customers enter the store, you're also the Read more
*Apple* Solutions Consultant - Retail Sales...
**Job Summary** As an Apple Solutions Consultant (ASC) you are the link between our customers and our products. Your role is to drive the Apple business in a retail Read more
Position Opening at *Apple* - Apple (United...
…Summary** As a Specialist, you help create the energy and excitement around Apple products, providing the right solutions and getting products into customers' hands. You Read more
Position Opening at *Apple* - Apple (United...
**Job Summary** The Apple Store is a retail environment like no other - uniquely focused on delivering amazing customer experiences. As an Expert, you introduce people Read more
*Apple* Solutions Consultant - Retail Sales...
**Job Summary** As an Apple Solutions Consultant (ASC) you are the link between our customers and our products. Your role is to drive the Apple business in a retail Read more
All contents are Copyright 1984-2011 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.