Summary, roadmap and wish list


ActiveWidgets is a cross-browser client-side framework for building GUI widgets, which includes

- core JS-to-HTML classes
- Gecko-to-IE emulation layer (including XML processing)
- GUI building blocks (templates)
- generic JS- and XML-based data models
- basic widgets set (widget = templates + data models)
- visual styles (skins)

The most difficult part in DHTML development is probably achieving an acceptable performance when page content is generated by a client-side script. ActiveWidgets tries to separate visual templates from data content (models) in such a way that makes possible selective and efficient generation of HTML markup (i.e. minimize the number and complexity of run-time objects, request only the necessary data, render only visible part etc.). Another key feature of ActiveWidgets is a high degree of code re-use. The target is to produce basic widgets package in under 100k size.

The basic widgets include

- list/tree box/dropdown/combo
- command/checkbox/radio buttons
- tabs
- list/tree grid
- toolbars/menu
- richtext (?)

Server-side integration

At this moment ActiveWidgets is a client-side framework only. It includes core classes for building flexible data model objects either XML- or JavaScript-based. However no work regarding complex server-side data retrieval or design-time integration is currently planned. Any contributions, examples or just suggestions in this area are very much welcome.


ActiveWidgets Grid 1.0 – alpha now, beta end 2003, release Q1 2004
ActiveWidgets Basic Widgets 1.0 – alpha Q1 2004, beta Q2 2004, release Q3 2004

Grid 1.0 wish list

Documentation :-(
- Core API classes reference (Nov03)
- Grid integration tutorial + examples (Dec03)
- Basic data models API reference (Nov/Dec03)
- Basic templates API reference (Jan04)
- Templates markup and CSS reference (Feb/Mar04)

- Set width/height of row/column headers (css done, js method Nov03)
- Re-arrange column order (from script – done, by end-user – no)

Selection model
- Keyboard navigation (Nov03)
- Single row (done)
- Multiple rows (yes, Nov03)
- Single cell (yes, Nov03)

- Generic client-side (done)

- XML data models (Nov03)
- partial (paged) data retrieval (???)

Basic Widgets 1.0 wish list

Most of the listed widgets already exist in some form. So the early version of the basic widgets may appear quite soon, but the cleanup and documentation will likely take 3-6 months. So please send your requirements/suggestions, it’s just the right time.
Alex (ActiveWidgets)
October 31,
Here's my wish list.

A footer for the grid.

Expandable data within the grid. For example I am showing user names and addresses. I want to be able to show a plus sign next to a name and when the user clicks that, expand to show the users address in the same cell below the name. So it would look something like this:

+Chadd Whistler | some data | some data
+Alex Net | some data | some data
-Expanded Name | some data | some data
1234 Main St. | |
Your City, Your State | |

For another widget I really need a combo box as you would see on a fat C++ application. One where you can type anything into a text box, or click a button and see a drop-down list of valid values. This is similar to an HTML <select> except that with HTML you can only type the first letter of a value in the list, you can't type into the field as if it was a text field. Of course the widget would then have to validate the value you typed against the values in the list and provide an alert if it didn't find a match, etc.

Are you going to start charging for the grid or are you just doing this out of the kindness of your heart?

Chadd Whistler
February 26,
Field picker (allow user to display/hide fields)
Allow user to change fields order
February 26,
Thank you for the suggestions, makes a lot of sense. My current priority is to release version 1.0 of the grid (no new functionality, some bug fixes and documentation). Hopefully this will happen quite soon. After that I will focus on the enhanced version of the grid and a set of generic controls (like tabs, combo etc.).

And the grid will be available under both GPL and commercial license.
Alex (ActiveWidgets)
February 26,
Auto-expanding column (meaning a column that will expand to fill the available space. This would be the equivalent of <col width="*">)
February 28,
I have searched for formulas like a spreadsheet but no one seems to have even posted a question about it yet. I am thinking of trying to extend the grid to support formulas. Has anyone else even mentioned this? I need the grid to resummarize a particular column bc it is a running balance.
JT Moree
September 15,
Auto text warp if the column width is fixed and text is too long...
September 15,
-Forum search by Themes.
-Patches to apply , and the allready solved :
which one is core included?
which one is needed in actual version? (for next one)
-usefull functions by themes too -- sort, templates, etc...

Thanks for a wonderfull product, Alex
September 20,

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