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Two weeks with Xojo 2020r1


About two weeks ago Xojo Inc. released their Xojo update. It got a lot of attention for the Web 2.0 feature. Between all the complains about r1 coming end of August and Web 2.0 not being finished to what people expected, there are a few good things for desktop developers, but first the Web target:

Over the years I heard a lot of speeches about managing expectations. And I wished Xojo Inc. would have managed expectations better and called the current shipping Web 2.0 support a developer preview. And of course had a spring release with bug fixes and a few features earlier in 2020. For us all web development stays with Xojo 2019 and will move to Web 2.0 probably next year in spring when a few more releases add the urgently needed functionality. Xojo Inc. already announced they will do additions like an improved WebCanvas and some more events for mouse & keyboard. We'll see what will ship later this year.

For desktop there are important fixes and changes and you don't want to miss those. Moving to WebKit 2 for HTMLViewer with new JavaScript integration is a big move. Our plugin adds more via WKWebViewMBS class. More important may be the framework bugs in that release. And if you ignore API 2 and all the deprecation warnings, you may enjoy the speed improvements in the IDE and use the new release happy to write your desktop apps.

Tip: When you start a new project, create it in Xojo 2019 and then open it in 2020r1. If the project has 2019 in the header as creation version, then auto complete will show API 1 methods and you can enjoy using msgbox and other familiar commands.

As plugin developer the release has brought developers to update their licenses. There is a notable surge in sales for updates and even new licenses for our Xojo plugins! We welcome the new developers in the Xojo world. Great to see people moving from older versions to the current to try the new features.

As Apple switches to Apple Silicon, their own ARM CPUs, we expect Xojo to soon support that with a new checkbox in the compiler options. And then more developers may want to renew theirs licenses with Xojo to move to a newer Xojo version and support their clients for the new platform. Our plugins already are compiled for Apple Silicon here and Xojo can be the tool to port your app with the click of a checkbox to add universal support. And much later, Xojo may still support Intel as target once Xcode will no longer do that in a few years.

We build all plugins for Linux ARM 64-bit here and would love to see such a target added to Xojo. But that may not be high on the priority list. By making sure things build with multiple compilers (llvm, gcc and Visual Studio), we keep finding bugs as different compilers have warnings for different problems.

Please try 2020r1 for desktop/console projects, play with Web 2.0 and report any issue you see. For Web projects stay with Xojo 2019 in production and move to Web 2 later when a future Xojo release adds missing items. For desktop projects, you may check what changes may be needed going from older to current version, maybe use a few #if XojoVersion >= 2020 then in the code to use newer API where needed.
14 09 20 - 10:23