Kevin Ragsdale: Visual FoxPro 9.0

And Now You Can Run The App From The Command Window

Update: Links point to the archived versions of the Southwest Fox conference (depending on the year). Click here to visit the current Southwest Fox web site.

What the heck does the title of this post mean?

If you were at Tamar Granor’s Getting Your Head Around Business Objects session at last year’s Southwest Fox conference, you’d know exactly what it means.

If you weren’t at last years conference, Tamar is another reason why you should go this year.

Tamar’s session focused on business objects. She started with explanations of what business objects are, and delved a bit into the history of business objects in Visual FoxPro (think frameworks).

She showed how she used business objects in a real-world application, and followed that with a Sudoku game, built with Visual FoxPro.

We got a brief glance at the UI for the Sudoku game, then Tamar walked us through the classes (object hierarchy) she had built. One of the most interesting parts for me was how she had used collection classes for business objects.

I really wanted to learn more about that, and I must be one of the luckiest people in the world: she’s presenting Collections: Managing Information the Object-Oriented Way at this years conference.

Most of the session was dedicated to building the “engine” for the application, using business objects. After she was done showing the classes, object hierarchy and how she linked the classes together, she said something that really kicked me in the gut – a real “A-HA!” moment for me:

“And now, you can run the app from the Command Window.”

If they gave awards for best quote of the conference, that quote would have won hands-down.

And she was right. The entire game could have been played from the Visual FoxPro Command Window, with no UI. The rest of the session was spent showing us how to connect the business objects (the engine) with the user interface.

I was stunned at the amount I had learned in 75-minutes. Even better, Tamar wrote a detailed 42-page whitepaper and provided the source code for the Sudoku game which she used as the example for the session.

Going to a session by Tamar is like going to a class lecture that you want  to attend. She is professional, informative and entertaining all at once. Which to me is a great combination of skills, and exactly what I look for when I’m selecting sessions to attend.

Early-bird registration ends September 1st. If you haven’t registered for this years conference, stop reading my drivel and go. register. now.