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Description

Glimmer is a native-GUI cross-platform desktop development library written in Ruby. Glimmer's main innovation is a JRuby DSL that enables productive and efficient authoring of desktop application user-interfaces while relying on the robust Eclipse SWT library. Glimmer additionally innovates by having built-in scaffolding and data-binding support to greatly facilitate synchronizing the GUI with domain models. As a result, that achieves true decoupling of object oriented components, enabling developers to solve business problems without worrying about GUI concerns, or alternatively drive development GUI-first, and then write clean business models test-first afterwards.

Monthly Downloads: 6,562
Programming language: Ruby
License: MIT License
Tags: GUI     Bindings     Frameworks     Toolkit     Desktop    
Latest version: v2.2.0

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README

Glimmer - DSL Framework for Ruby GUI and More

Gem Version rspec Coverage Status Maintainability Join the chat at https://gitter.im/AndyObtiva/glimmer

Contributors Wanted! (Submit a Glimmer App Sample to Get Started)

(The Original Glimmer Library Handling the World’s Ruby GUI Needs Since 2007. Beware of Imitators!)

Glimmer started out as a GUI Library and grew into a full-fledged DSL Framework with support for multiple GUI DSLs. Glimmer's namesake is referring to the Glimmer of Ruby in Graphical User Interfaces (contrary to popular myth perpetrated by Charles Nutter, Glimmer has nothing to do with the ill-fated Whitney Houston movie, which does not in fact share the same name)

Featured in JRuby Cookbook and Chalmers/Gothenburg University Software Engineering Master's Lecture Material

Glimmer is a DSL (Domain-Specific Language) Framework that consists of two things:

  • DSL Engine: enables building internal DSLs embedded in Ruby (e.g. for GUI, XML, or CSS).
  • Data-Binding Library: enables synchronizing GUI with Model Attributes bidirectionally (now with Shine syntax support in v2).

Glimmer is the cream of the crop when it comes to building DSLs in Ruby:

  • Supports building the tersest most concise domain specific language syntax in Ruby.
  • Maximum readability and maintainability.
  • No extra unnecessary block variables when not needed.
  • DSL Blocks are true Ruby closures that can conveniently leverage variables from the outside and utilize standard Ruby code in and around. Just code in Ruby as usual and be happy! No surprising restrictions or strange uses of instance_exec/eval.
  • DSL syntax is limited to classes that mixin the Glimmer module, so the rest of the code is fully safe from namespace pollution.
  • Multiple DSLs may be mixed together safely to achieve maximum expressability, composability, and productivity.
  • DSLs are fully configurable, so you may activate and deactivate DSLs as per your current needs only.

Start by checking out Glimmer's original GUI DSL, which got extracted into its own gem: Glimmer DSL for SWT

Glimmer supports the following DSLs:

Table of Contents

DSL Engine

Glimmer is fundamentally a DSL Engine that can support any number of DSLs like the official Glimmer DSLs (gems starting with the glimmer-dsl- prefix like glimmer-dsl-swt) or any DSLs for that matter.

Glimmer DSL syntax consists mainly of:

  • keywords (e.g. table for a table widget)
  • style/args (e.g. :multi as in table(:multi) for a multi-line selection table widget)
  • content (e.g. { table_column { text 'Name'} } as in table(:multi) { table_column { text 'Name'} } for a multi-line selection table widget with a table column having header text property 'Name' as content)

The Glimmer DSL Engine's architecture is based on the following Design Patterns and Data Structures:

  • Interpreter Design Pattern: to define interpretable expressions of DSL keywords
  • Chain of Responsibility Design Pattern / Queue Data Structure: to chain expression handlers in order of importance for processing DSL keywords
  • Adapter Design Pattern: to adapt expressions into handlers in a chain of responsibility
  • Stack Data Structure: to handle processing parent/child nesting of DSL keyword expressions in the correct order

Glimmer's use of the Interpreter Design Pattern in processing DSLs is also known as the Virtual Machine Architectural Style. After all, DSL expressions are virtual machine opcodes that process nested keywords stored in a stack. I built Glimmer's original DSL back in 2007 without knowing the Virtual Machine Architectural Style (except perhaps as an esoteric technology powering Java), but stumbled upon it anyways through following the Gang of Four Design Patterns mentioned above, chiefly the Interpreter Design Pattern.

Every keyword in a Glimmer DSL is represented by a DSL expression that is processed by an Expression subclass selected from a chain of expressions (interpreters) pre-configured in a DSL chain of responsibility via Glimmer::DSL::Engine.add_dynamic_expressions(DSLNameModule, expression_names_array).

Expressions are either:

  • Static (subclass of StaticExpression, which is a subclass of Expression): if they represent a single pre-identified keyword (e.g. color or display)
  • Dynamic (subclass of Expression): if they represent keywords calculated on the fly during processing (e.g. an SWT widget like label or a random XML element called folder representing <folder></folder>)

Optionally, expressions can be parent expressions that contain other expressions, and must include the ParentExpression mixin module as such.

Additionally, every expression that serves as a top-level entry point into the DSL must mixin TopLevelExpression

Static expressions are optimized in performance since they pre-define methods on the Glimmer module matching the static keywords they represent (e.g. color causes creating a Glimmer#color method for processing color expressions) and completely bypass as a result the Glimmer DSL Engine Chain of Responsibility. That said, they must be avoided if the same keyword might occur multiple times, but with different requirements for arguments, block, and parenthood type.

Every Expression sublcass must specify two methods at least:

  • can_interpret?(parent, keyword, *args, &block): to quickly test if the keyword and arg/block/parent combination qualifies for interpretation by the current Expression or to otherwise delegate to the next expression in the chain of responsibility.
  • interpret(parent, keyword, *args, &block): to go ahead and interpret a DSL expression that qualified for interpretation

StaticExpression sublcasses may skip the can_interpret? method since they include a default implementation for it that matches the name of the keyword from the class name by convention. For example, a color keyword would have a ColorExpression class, so color is inferred automatically from class name and used in deciding whether the class can handle a color keyword or not.

ParentExpression subclasses can optionally override this extra method, which is included by default and simply invokes the parent's passed block to process its children:

  • add_content(parent, keyword, *args, &block)

For example, some parent widgets use their block for other reasons or process their children at very specific times, so they may override that method and disable it, or otherwise call super and do additional work.

Otherwise, all expressions support the around hook method:

  • around(parent, keyword, args, block, &interpret_and_add_content): a hook for executing code around both interpret and add_content. Clients may invoke interpret_and_add_content.call or yield when ready for interpretation. parent, keyword, args, and block are supplied in case they are needed in the around logic.

Example of a dynamic expression:

module Glimmer
  module DSL
    module SWT
      class WidgetExpression < Expression
        include ParentExpression

        EXCLUDED_KEYWORDS = %w[shell display tab_item]

        def can_interpret?(parent, keyword, *args, &block)
          !EXCLUDED_KEYWORDS.include?(keyword) and
            parent.respond_to?(:swt_widget) and
            Glimmer::SWT::WidgetProxy.widget_exists?(keyword)
        end

        def interpret(parent, keyword, *args, &block)
          Glimmer::SWT::WidgetProxy.create(keyword, parent, args)
        end

        def add_content(parent, keyword, *args, &block)
          super
          parent.post_add_content
        end

      end
    end
  end
end

Example of a static expression (does not need can_interpret?):

module Glimmer
  module DSL
    module Opal
      class ColorExpression < StaticExpression
        include TopLevelExpression

        def interpret(parent, keyword, *args, &block)
          Glimmer::SWT::ColorProxy.new(*args)
        end
      end
    end
  end
end

An extra convenience expression module is included called BindExpression. It builds a Glimmer::DataBinding::ModelBinding object for data-binding purposes. Another convenience expression module is ObserveExpression, which enables a one-way observe operation. You may learn more about both by looking at how Glimmer DSL for SWT uses them.

DSL expressions go into the glimmer/dsl/{dsl_name} namespace directory.

Also, every DSL requires a glimmer/dsl/{dsl_name}/dsl.rb file, which configures the DSL into Glimmer via a call to:

Glimmer::DSL::Engine.add_dynamic_expressions(DSLNameModule, expression_names_array)

Expression names are underscored verions of Expression subclass names minus the _expression suffix.

For example, here is an SWT DSL configuration:

require 'glimmer/launcher'
require Glimmer::Launcher.swt_jar_file
require 'glimmer/dsl/engine'
Dir[File.expand_path('../*_expression.rb', __FILE__)].each {|f| require f}

module Glimmer
  module DSL
    module SWT
      Engine.add_dynamic_expressions(
        SWT,
        %w[
          layout
          widget_listener
          combo_selection_data_binding
          checkbox_group_selection_data_binding
          radio_group_selection_data_binding
          list_selection_data_binding
          tree_items_data_binding
          table_items_data_binding
          data_binding
          cursor
          font
          image
          property
          block_property
          widget
          custom_widget
        ]
      )
    end
  end
end

Setup

Follow these steps to author a Glimmer DSL:

  • Add gem 'glimmer', '~> 2.2.0' to Gemfile and run bundle or run gem install glimmer -v2.2.0 and add require 'glimmer'
  • Create glimmer/dsl/[dsl_name]/dsl.rb, which requires and adds all dynamic expressions for the [dsl_name] Glimmer DSL module as per the code shown in the previous section (or Official DSLs as examples)
  • Create glimmer/dsl/[dsl_name]/[expresion_name]_expresion.rb for every [expresion_name] expression needed, whether dynamic or static

Configuration

Glimmer configuration may be done via the Glimmer::Config module.

logger

The Glimmer DSL engine supports logging via a standard STDOUT Ruby Logger configured in the Glimmer::Config.logger config option. It is set to level Logger::ERROR by default. Log level may be adjusted via Glimmer::Config.logger.level just like any other Ruby Logger.

Example:

Glimmer::Config.logger.level = :debug

This results in more verbose debug loggging to STDOUT, which is very helpful in troubleshooting Glimmer DSL syntax when needed.

Example log:

D, [2017-07-21T19:23:12.587870 #35707] DEBUG -- : method: shell and args: []
D, [2017-07-21T19:23:12.594405 #35707] DEBUG -- : ShellCommandHandler will handle command: shell with arguments []
D, [2017-07-21T19:23:12.844775 #35707] DEBUG -- : method: composite and args: []
D, [2017-07-21T19:23:12.845388 #35707] DEBUG -- : parent is a widget: true
D, [2017-07-21T19:23:12.845833 #35707] DEBUG -- : on listener?: false
D, [2017-07-21T19:23:12.864395 #35707] DEBUG -- : WidgetCommandHandler will handle command: composite with arguments []
D, [2017-07-21T19:23:12.864893 #35707] DEBUG -- : widget styles are: []
D, [2017-07-21T19:23:12.874296 #35707] DEBUG -- : method: list and args: [:multi]
D, [2017-07-21T19:23:12.874969 #35707] DEBUG -- : parent is a widget: true
D, [2017-07-21T19:23:12.875452 #35707] DEBUG -- : on listener?: false
D, [2017-07-21T19:23:12.878434 #35707] DEBUG -- : WidgetCommandHandler will handle command: list with arguments [:multi]
D, [2017-07-21T19:23:12.878798 #35707] DEBUG -- : widget styles are: [:multi]

The logger instance may be replaced with a custom logger via Glimmer::Config.logger = custom_logger

To reset logger to the default instance, you may call Glimmer::Config.reset_logger!

All logging is done lazily via blocks (e.g. logger.debug {message}) to avoid affecting app performance with logging when below the configured logging level threshold.

Glimmer DSL for SWT enhances Glimmer default logging support via the Ruby logging gem, enabling buffered asynchronous logging in a separate thread, thus completely unhindering normal desktop app performance.

loop_max_count

Glimmer has infinite loop detection support. It can detect when an infinite loop is about to occur in method_missing and stops it. It detects potential infinite loops when the same keyword and args repeat more than 100 times, which is unusual in a GUI app.

The max limit can be changed via the Glimmer::Config::loop_max_count=(count) config option.

Infinite loop detection may be disabled altogether if needed by setting Glimmer::Config::loop_max_count to -1

excluded_keyword_checkers

Glimmer permits consumers to exclude keywords from DSL processing by its engine via the excluded_keyword_checkers config option.

To do so, add a proc to it that returns a boolean indicating if a keyword is excluded or not.

Note that this proc runs within the context of the Glimmer object (as in the object mixing in the Glimmer module), so checker can can pretend to run there with its self object assumption.

Example of keywords excluded by glimmer-dsl-swt:

Glimmer::Config.excluded_keyword_checkers << lambda do |method_symbol, *args|
  method = method_symbol.to_s
  result = false
  result ||= method.start_with?('on_swt_') && is_a?(Glimmer::UI::CustomWidget) && respond_to?(method)
  result ||= method == 'dispose' && is_a?(Glimmer::UI::CustomWidget) && respond_to?(method)
  result ||= ['drag_source_proxy', 'drop_target_proxy'].include?(method) && is_a?(Glimmer::UI::CustomWidget)
  result ||= method == 'post_initialize_child'
  result ||= method.end_with?('=')
  result ||= ['finish_edit!', 'search', 'all_tree_items', 'depth_first_search'].include?(method) && is_a?(Glimmer::UI::CustomWidget) && body_root.respond_to?(method)
end

log_excluded_keywords

(default = false)

This just tells Glimmer whether to log excluded keywords or not (at the debug level). It is off by default.

Multi-DSL Support

The Glimmer DSL Engine allows mixing DSLs, which comes in handy when doing things like rendering a desktop GUI DSL browser widget additionally leveraging the HTML DSL and CSS DSL for its content.

DSLs are activated by top-level keywords (expressions denoted as TopLevelExpression). For example, the html keyword activates the Glimmer DSL for XML and the css keyword activates the Glimmer DSL for CSS. Glimmer automatically recognizes top-level keywords in each DSL and activates the DSL accordingly. Once done processing a nested DSL top-level keyword, Glimmer switches back to the prior DSL automatically.

By default, all loaded DSLs (required glimmer DSL gems) are enabled.

For example, this shows "Hello, World!" inside a Glimmer DSL for SWT desktop app browser widget using html and css from Glimmer DSL for XML and Glimmer DSL for CSS:

require 'glimmer-dsl-swt'
require 'glimmer-dsl-xml'
require 'glimmer-dsl-css'

include Glimmer

shell {
  minimum_size 130, 130
  @browser = browser {
    text html {
      head {
        meta(name: "viewport", content: "width=device-width, initial-scale=2.0")
        style {
          css {
            h1 {
              background 'yellow'
            }
          }
        }
      }
      body {
        h1 { "Hello, World!" }
      }
    }
  }
}.open

API methods to enable/disable DSLs:

Glimmer::DSL::Engine.disable_dsl(dsl): disables a particular DSL

Example: Glimmer::DSL::Engine.disable_dsl(:swt)

Glimmer::DSL::Engine.enable_dsl(dsl): enables a particular DSL

Example: Glimmer::DSL::Engine.disable_dsl(:swt)

Glimmer::DSL::Engine.enabled_dsls=(dsls): enables only the specified DSLs, disabling all other loaded DSLs

Example: Glimmer::DSL::Engine.enabled_dsls = [:xml, :css]

Official DSLs

Here, we showcase official Glimmer DSLs; that is gems starting with the glimmer-dsl- prefix.

(you can skip ahead if you prefer to learn more about the Glimmer DSL Engine or Data-Binding Library first)

Glimmer DSL for SWT (JRuby Desktop Development GUI Framework)

Glimmer DSL for SWT is a native-GUI cross-platform desktop development library written in JRuby, an OS-threaded faster version of Ruby. Glimmer's main innovation is a declarative Ruby DSL that enables productive and efficient authoring of desktop application user-interfaces while relying on the robust Eclipse SWT library. Glimmer DSL for SWT additionally innovates by having built-in data-binding support, which greatly facilitates synchronizing the GUI with domain models, thus achieving true decoupling of object oriented components and enabling developers to solve business problems (test-first) without worrying about GUI concerns, or alternatively drive development GUI-first, and then write clean business models (test-first) afterwards. To get started quickly, Glimmer DSL for SWT offers scaffolding options for Apps, Gems, and Custom Widgets. Glimmer DSL for SWT also includes native-executable packaging support, sorely lacking in other libraries, thus enabling the delivery of desktop apps written in Ruby as truly native DMG/PKG/APP files on the Mac + App Store and MSI/EXE files on Windows.

To get started, visit the Glimmer DSL for SWT project page for instructions on installing the glimmer-dsl-swt gem.

Glimmer DSL for SWT Samples
Hello, World!

[Hello World](images/glimmer-hello-world.png)

Glimmer GUI code (from samples/hello/hello_world.rb):

include Glimmer

shell {
  text "Glimmer"
  label {
    text "Hello, World!"
  }
}.open
Glimmer Tetris

Tetris

Glimmer GUI code (from samples/elaborate/tetris.rb):

# ...
    shell(:no_resize) {
      grid_layout {
        num_columns 2
        make_columns_equal_width false
        margin_width 0
        margin_height 0
        horizontal_spacing 0
      }

      text 'Glimmer Tetris'
      minimum_size 475, 500
      background :gray

      tetris_menu_bar(game: game)

      playfield(game_playfield: game.playfield, playfield_width: playfield_width, playfield_height: playfield_height, block_size: BLOCK_SIZE)

      score_lane(game: game, block_size: BLOCK_SIZE) {
        layout_data(:fill, :fill, true, true)
      }
    }
# ...
Hello, Table!

Hello Table

Glimmer GUI code (from samples/hello/hello_table.rb):

# ...
    shell {
      grid_layout

      text 'Hello, Table!'

      label {
        layout_data :center, :center, true, false

        text 'Baseball Playoff Schedule'
        font height: 30, style: :bold
      }

      combo(:read_only) {
        layout_data :center, :center, true, false
        selection bind(BaseballGame, :playoff_type)
        font height: 16
      }

      table(:editable) { |table_proxy|
        layout_data :fill, :fill, true, true

        table_column {
          text 'Game Date'
          width 150
          sort_property :date # ensure sorting by real date value (not `game_date` string specified in items below)
          editor :date_drop_down, property: :date_time
        }
        table_column {
          text 'Game Time'
          width 150
          sort_property :time # ensure sorting by real time value (not `game_time` string specified in items below)
          editor :time, property: :date_time
        }
        table_column {
          text 'Ballpark'
          width 180
          editor :none
        }
        table_column {
          text 'Home Team'
          width 150
          editor :combo, :read_only # read_only is simply an SWT style passed to combo widget
        }
        table_column {
          text 'Away Team'
          width 150
          editor :combo, :read_only # read_only is simply an SWT style passed to combo widget
        }
        table_column {
          text 'Promotion'
          width 150
          # default text editor is used here
        }

        # Data-bind table items (rows) to a model collection property, specifying column properties ordering per nested model
        items bind(BaseballGame, :schedule), column_properties(:game_date, :game_time, :ballpark, :home_team, :away_team, :promotion)

        # Data-bind table selection
        selection bind(BaseballGame, :selected_game)

        # Default initial sort property
        sort_property :date

        # Sort by these additional properties after handling sort by the column the user clicked
        additional_sort_properties :date, :time, :home_team, :away_team, :ballpark, :promotion

        menu {
          menu_item {
            text 'Book'

            on_widget_selected {
              book_selected_game
            }
          }
        }
      }

      button {
        text 'Book Selected Game'
        layout_data :center, :center, true, false
        font height: 16
        enabled bind(BaseballGame, :selected_game)

        on_widget_selected {
          book_selected_game
        }
      }
    }.open
# ...
Production Desktop Apps Built with Glimmer DSL for SWT

Are We There Yet? - Small Project Tracking App

Are We There Yet? App Screenshot

Math Bowling - Elementary Level Math Game Featuring Bowling Rules

Math Bowling App Screenshot

Garderie Rainbow Daily Agenda - A child nursery daily agenda reporting desktop app

Garderie Rainbow Daily Agenda App Screenshot

Glimmer DSL for Opal (Pure Ruby Web GUI and Auto-Webifier of Desktop Apps)

Glimmer DSL for Opal is an experimental proof-of-concept web GUI adapter for Glimmer desktop apps (i.e. apps built with Glimmer DSL for SWT). It webifies them via Rails, allowing Ruby desktop apps to run on the web via Opal Ruby without changing a line of code. Apps may then be custom-styled for the web with standard CSS.

Glimmer DSL for Opal webifier successfully reuses the entire Glimmer core DSL engine in Opal Ruby inside a web browser, and as such inherits the full range of powerful Glimmer desktop data-binding capabilities for the web.

To get started, visit the Glimmer DSL for Opal project page for instructions on installing the glimmer-dsl-opal gem.

Glimmer DSL for Opal Samples
Hello, Computed!

Add the following require statement to app/assets/javascripts/application.rb

require 'samples/hello/hello_computed'

Or add the Glimmer code directly if you prefer to play around with it:

class HelloComputed
  class Contact
    attr_accessor :first_name, :last_name, :year_of_birth

    def initialize(attribute_map)
      @first_name = attribute_map[:first_name]
      @last_name = attribute_map[:last_name]
      @year_of_birth = attribute_map[:year_of_birth]
    end

    def name
      "#{last_name}, #{first_name}"
    end

    def age
      Time.now.year - year_of_birth.to_i
    rescue
      0
    end
  end
end

class HelloComputed
  include Glimmer

  def initialize
    @contact = Contact.new(
      first_name: 'Barry',
      last_name: 'McKibbin',
      year_of_birth: 1985
    )
  end

  def launch
    shell {
      text 'Hello, Computed!'
      composite {
        grid_layout {
          num_columns 2
          make_columns_equal_width true
          horizontal_spacing 20
          vertical_spacing 10
        }
        label {text 'First &Name: '}
        text {
          text bind(@contact, :first_name)
          layout_data {
            horizontal_alignment :fill
            grab_excess_horizontal_space true
          }
        }
        label {text '&Last Name: '}
        text {
          text bind(@contact, :last_name)
          layout_data {
            horizontal_alignment :fill
            grab_excess_horizontal_space true
          }
        }
        label {text '&Year of Birth: '}
        text {
          text bind(@contact, :year_of_birth)
          layout_data {
            horizontal_alignment :fill
            grab_excess_horizontal_space true
          }
        }
        label {text 'Name: '}
        label {
          text bind(@contact, :name, computed_by: [:first_name, :last_name])
          layout_data {
            horizontal_alignment :fill
            grab_excess_horizontal_space true
          }
        }
        label {text 'Age: '}
        label {
          text bind(@contact, :age, on_write: :to_i, computed_by: [:year_of_birth])
          layout_data {
            horizontal_alignment :fill
            grab_excess_horizontal_space true
          }
        }
      }
    }.open
  end
end

HelloComputed.new.launch

Glimmer app on the desktop (using glimmer-dsl-swt gem):

Glimmer DSL for SWT Hello Computed

Glimmer app on the web (using glimmer-dsl-opal gem):

Start the Rails server:

rails s

Visit http://localhost:3000

You should see "Hello, Computed!"

Glimmer DSL for Opal Hello Computed

Glimmer Calculator

Add the glimmer-cs-calculator gem to Gemfile (without requiring):

gem 'glimmer-cs-calculator', require: false

Add the following require statement to app/assets/javascripts/application.rb

require 'glimmer-cs-calculator/launch'

Sample GUI code (relies on custom widgets command_button, operation_button, and number_button):

# ...
shell {
  minimum_size (OS.mac? ? 320 : (OS.windows? ? 390 : 520)), 240
  image File.join(APP_ROOT, 'package', 'windows', "Glimmer Calculator.ico") if OS.windows?
  text "Glimmer - Calculator"
  grid_layout 4, true
  # Setting styled_text to multi in order for alignment options to activate
  styled_text(:multi, :wrap, :border) {
    text bind(@presenter, :result)
    alignment swt(:right)
    right_margin 5
    font height: 40
    layout_data(:fill, :fill, true, true) {
      horizontal_span 4
    }
    editable false
    caret nil
  }
  command_button('AC')
  operation_button('÷')
  operation_button('×')
  operation_button('−')
  (7..9).each { |number|
    number_button(number)
  }
  operation_button('+', font: @button_font_big, vertical_span: 2)
  (4..6).each { |number|
    number_button(number)
  }
  (1..3).each { |number|
    number_button(number)
  }
  command_button('=', font: @button_font_big, vertical_span: 2)
  number_button(0, horizontal_span: 2)
  operation_button('.')
}
# ...

Glimmer app on the desktop (using the glimmer-dsl-swt gem):

Glimmer Calculator Linux

Glimmer app on the web (using glimmer-dsl-opal gem):

Start the Rails server:

rails s

Visit http://localhost:3000 (or visit: http://glimmer-cs-calculator-server.herokuapp.com)

You should see "Glimmer Calculator"

Glimmer Calculator Opal

Here is an Apple Calculator CSS themed version (with CSS only, no app code changes):

Visit http://glimmer-cs-calculator-server.herokuapp.com/welcomes/apple

You should see "Apple Calculator Theme"

Glimmer Calculator Opal Apple Calculator Theme

Glimmer DSL for XML (& HTML)

Glimmer DSL for XML provides Ruby syntax for building XML (eXtensible Markup Language) documents.

Within the context of desktop development, Glimmer DSL for XML is useful in providing XML data for the SWT Browser widget.

XML DSL

Simply start with html keyword and add HTML inside its block using Glimmer DSL syntax. Once done, you may call to_s, to_xml, or to_html to get the formatted HTML output.

Here are all the Glimmer XML DSL top-level keywords:

  • html
  • tag: enables custom tag creation for exceptional cases by passing tag name as '_name' attribute
  • name_space: enables namespacing html tags

Element properties are typically passed as a key/value hash (e.g. section(id: 'main', class: 'accordion')) . However, for properties like "selected" or "checked", you must leave value nil or otherwise pass in front of the hash (e.g. input(:checked, type: 'checkbox') )

Example (basic HTML):

@xml = html {
  head {
    meta(name: "viewport", content: "width=device-width, initial-scale=2.0")
  }
  body {
    h1 { "Hello, World!" }
  }
}
puts @xml

Output:

<html><head><meta name="viewport" content="width=device-width, initial-scale=2.0" /></head><body><h1>Hello, World!</h1></body></html>

Glimmer DSL for CSS

Glimmer DSL for CSS provides Ruby syntax for building CSS (Cascading Style Sheets).

Within the context of Glimmer app development, Glimmer DSL for CSS is useful in providing CSS for the SWT Browser widget.

CSS DSL

Simply start with css keyword and add stylesheet rule sets inside its block using Glimmer DSL syntax. Once done, you may call to_s or to_css to get the formatted CSS output.

css is the only top-level keyword in the Glimmer CSS DSL

Selectors may be specified by s keyword or HTML element keyword directly (e.g. body) Rule property values may be specified by pv keyword or underscored property name directly (e.g. font_size)

Example:

@css = css {
  body {
    font_size '1.1em'
    pv 'background', 'white'
  }

  s('body > h1') {
    background_color :red
    pv 'font-size', '2em'
  }
}
puts @css

Output:

body{font-size:1.1em;background:white}body > h1{background-color:red;font-size:2em}

Glimmer DSL for Tk (MRI Ruby Desktop Development GUI Library)

Tcl/Tk has evolved into a practical desktop GUI toolkit due to gaining truely native looking widgets on Mac, Windows, and Linux in Tk version 8.5.

Additionally, Ruby 3.0 Ractor (formerly known as Guilds) supports truly parallel multi-threading, making both MRI and Tk finally viable for support in Glimmer (Ruby Desktop Development GUI Library) as an alternative to JRuby on SWT.

The trade-off is that while SWT provides a plethora of high quality reusable widgets for the Enterprise (such as Nebula), Tk enables very fast app startup time and a small memory footprint via MRI Ruby.

Glimmer DSL for Tk aims to provide a DSL similar to the Glimmer DSL for SWT to enable more productive desktop development in Ruby with:

  • Declarative DSL syntax that visually maps to the GUI widget hierarchy
  • Convention over configuration via smart defaults and automation of low-level details
  • Requiring the least amount of syntax possible to build GUI
  • Bidirectional Data-Binding to declaratively wire and automatically synchronize GUI with Business Models
  • Custom Widget support
  • Scaffolding for new custom widgets, apps, and gems
  • Native-Executable packaging on Mac, Windows, and Linux

To get started, visit the Glimmer DSL for Tk project page for instructions on installing the glimmer-dsl-tk gem.

Glimmer DSL for Tk Samples
Hello, World!

Glimmer code (from samples/hello/hello_world.rb):

include Glimmer

root {
  label {
    text 'Hello, World!'
  }
}.open

Run (with the glimmer-dsl-tk gem installed):

ruby -r glimmer-dsl-tk -e "require '../samples/hello/hello_world.rb'"

Glimmer app:

glimmer dsl tk screenshot sample hello world

Hello, Tab!

Glimmer code (from samples/hello/hello_tab.rb):

include Glimmer

root {
  title 'Hello, Tab!'

  notebook {
    frame(text: 'English') {
      label {
        text 'Hello, World!'
      }
    }

    frame(text: 'French') {
      label {
        text 'Bonjour, Univers!'
      }
    }
  }
}.open

Run (with the glimmer-dsl-tk gem installed):

ruby -r glimmer-dsl-tk -e "require '../samples/hello/hello_tab.rb'"

Glimmer app:

glimmer dsl tk screenshot sample hello tab English glimmer dsl tk screenshot sample hello tab French

Hello, Combo!

Glimmer code (from samples/hello/hello_combo.rb):

# ... more code precedes
root {
  title 'Hello, Combo!'

  combobox { |proxy|
    state 'readonly'
    text bind(person, :country)
  }

  button { |proxy|
    text "Reset Selection"
    command {
      person.reset_country
    }
  }
}.open
# ... more code follows

Run (with the glimmer-dsl-tk gem installed):

ruby -r glimmer-dsl-tk -e "require '../samples/hello/hello_combo.rb'"

Glimmer app:

glimmer dsl tk screenshot sample hello combo glimmer dsl tk screenshot sample hello combo dropdown

Glimmer DSL for LibUI (Prerequisite-Free Ruby Desktop Development GUI Library)

Glimmer DSL for LibUI is a prerequisite-free Ruby desktop development GUI library. No need to pre-install any prerequisites. Just install the gem and have platform-independent native GUI that just works!

LibUI is a thin Ruby wrapper around libui, a relatively new C GUI library that renders native controls on every platform (similar to SWT, but without the heavy weight of the Java Virtual Machine).

The main trade-off in using Glimmer DSL for LibUI as opposed to Glimmer DSL for SWT or Glimmer DSL for Tk is the fact that SWT and Tk are more mature than mid-alpha libui as GUI toolkits. Still, if there is only a need to build a small simple application, Glimmer DSL for LibUI could be a good convenient choice due to having zero prerequisites beyond the dependencies included in the Ruby gem. Also, just like Glimmer DSL for Tk, its apps start instantly and have a small memory footprint. LibUI is a promising new GUI toolkit that might prove quite worthy in the future.

Glimmer DSL for LibUI aims to provide a DSL similar to the Glimmer DSL for SWT to enable more productive desktop development in Ruby with:

  • Declarative DSL syntax that visually maps to the GUI widget hierarchy
  • Convention over configuration via smart defaults and automation of low-level details
  • Requiring the least amount of syntax possible to build GUI
  • Bidirectional Data-Binding to declaratively wire and automatically synchronize GUI with Business Models
  • Custom Widget support
  • Scaffolding for new custom widgets, apps, and gems
  • Native-Executable packaging on Mac, Windows, and Linux
Glimmer DSL for LibUI Samples
Hello, World!
require 'glimmer-dsl-libui'

include Glimmer

window('hello world').show

Mac

glimmer-dsl-libui-mac-basic-window.png

Linux

glimmer-dsl-libui-linux-basic-window.png

Basic Button
require 'glimmer-dsl-libui'

include Glimmer

window('hello world', 300, 200) { |w|
  button('Button') {
    on_clicked do
      msg_box(w, 'Information', 'You clicked the button')
    end
  }

  on_closing do
    puts 'Bye Bye'
  end
}.show

Mac

glimmer-dsl-libui-mac-basic-button.png glimmer-dsl-libui-mac-basic-button-msg-box.png

Linux

glimmer-dsl-libui-linux-basic-button.png glimmer-dsl-libui-linux-basic-button-msg-box.png

Control Gallery
require 'glimmer-dsl-libui'

include Glimmer

menu('File') {
  menu_item('Open') {
    on_clicked do
      file = open_file(MAIN_WINDOW)
      puts file unless file.nil?
    end
  }

  menu_item('Save') {
    on_clicked do
      file = save_file(MAIN_WINDOW)
      puts file unless file.nil?
    end
  }

  quit_menu_item {
    on_clicked do
      puts 'Bye Bye'
    end
  }

  preferences_menu_item # Can optionally contain an on_clicked listener
}

menu('Edit') {
  check_menu_item('Checkable Item_')
  separator_menu_item
  menu_item('Disabled Item_') {
    enabled false
  }
}

menu('Help') {
  menu_item('Help')

  about_menu_item # Can optionally contain an on_clicked listener
}

MAIN_WINDOW = window('Control Gallery', 600, 500) {
  margined true

  on_closing do
    puts 'Bye Bye'
  end

  vertical_box {
    horizontal_box {
      group('Basic Controls') {
        vertical_box {
          button('Button') {
            stretchy false

            on_clicked do
              msg_box(MAIN_WINDOW, 'Information', 'You clicked the button')
            end
          }

          checkbox('Checkbox') {
            stretchy false

            on_toggled do |c|
              checked = c.checked == 1
              MAIN_WINDOW.title = "Checkbox is #{checked}"
              c.text = "I am the checkbox (#{checked})"
            end
          }

          label('Label') { stretchy false }

          horizontal_separator { stretchy false }

          date_picker { stretchy false }

          time_picker { stretchy false }

          date_time_picker { stretchy false }

          font_button { stretchy false }

          color_button { stretchy false }
        }
      }

      vertical_box {
        group('Numbers') {
          stretchy false

          vertical_box {
            spinbox(0, 100) {
              stretchy false
              value 42

              on_changed do |s|
                puts "New Spinbox value: #{s.value}"
              end
            }

            slider(0, 100) {
              stretchy false

              on_changed do |s|
                v = s.value
                puts "New Slider value: #{v}"
                @progress_bar.value = v
              end
            }

            @progress_bar = progress_bar { stretchy false }
          }
        }

        group('Lists') {
          stretchy false

          vertical_box {
            combobox {
              stretchy false
              items 'combobox Item 1', 'combobox Item 2', 'combobox Item 3' # also accepts a single array argument

              on_selected do |c|
                puts "New combobox selection: #{c.selected}"
              end
            }

            editable_combobox {
              stretchy false
              items 'Editable Item 1', 'Editable Item 2', 'Editable Item 3' # also accepts a single array argument
            }

            radio_buttons {
              items 'Radio Button 1', 'Radio Button 2', 'Radio Button 3' # also accepts a single array argument
            }
          }
        }

        tab {
          tab_item('Page 1') {
            horizontal_box {
              entry {
                text 'Please enter your feelings'

                on_changed do |e|
                  puts "Current textbox data: '#{e.text}'"
                end
              }
            }
          }

          tab_item('Page 2') {
            horizontal_box
          }

          tab_item('Page 3') {
            horizontal_box
          }
        }
      }
    }
  }
}

MAIN_WINDOW.show

Mac

glimmer-dsl-libui-mac-control-gallery.png

Linux

glimmer-dsl-libui-linux-control-gallery.png

Basic Table
require 'glimmer-dsl-libui'

include Glimmer

data = [
  %w[cat meow],
  %w[dog woof],
  %w[chicken cock-a-doodle-doo],
  %w[hourse neigh],
  %w[cow moo]
]

window('Animal sounds', 300, 200) {
  horizontal_box {
    table {
      text_column('Animal')
      text_column('Description')

      cell_rows data
    }
  }

  on_closing do
    puts 'Bye Bye'
  end
}.show

Mac

glimmer-dsl-libui-mac-basic-table.png

Linux

glimmer-dsl-libui-linux-basic-table.png

Data-Binding Library

Data-Binding enables mapping GUI properties (like text and color) to Model attributes (like name and age) for bidirectional or unidirectional synchronization and conversion as needed.

Glimmer enhances observed models automatically (including array operations like <<, delete, and reject!) on first observation. As such, you get automatic observable support, including nested and computed observations. No need to change your model code to data-bind it to the view or add repetitive boilerplate modules. View data-binding is truly decoupled from model logic by being able to observe any model attribute (Ruby attribute reader/writer combo or Ruby attribute reader alone for read-only data-binding when needed)

This relies mainly on the Observer Design Pattern and the MVP (Model-View-Presenter) Architectural Pattern (a variation on MVC)

These are the main classes concerning data-binding:

  • Glimmer::DataBinding::Observer: Provides general observer support including unique registration and deregistration for cleanup and prevention of memory leaks. Main methods concerned are: call, register (alias: observe), and unregister (alias: unobserve or deregister)
  • Glimmer::DataBinding::Observable: General super-module for all observables. Main methods concerned are: add_observer and remove_observer
  • Glimmer::DataBinding::ObservableModel: Mixin module for any observable model with observable attributes. In addition to Observable methods, it has a notify_observers method to be called when changes occur. It automatically enhances all attribute setters (ending with =) to notify observers on changes. Also, it automatically handles observing array attributes using ObservableArray appropriately so they would notify observers upon array mutation changes.
  • Glimmer::DataBinding::ObservableArray: Mixin module for any observable array collection that automatically handles notifying observers upon performing array mutation operations (e.g. push, select!, or delete)
  • Glimmer::DataBinding::ObservableHash: Mixin module for any observable hash that automatically handles notifying observers upon performing array mutation operation (e.g. hash[key]=value)
  • Glimmer::DataBinding::ModelBinding: a higher-level abstraction that relies on all the other observer/observable classes to support basic data-binding, nested data-binding, and computed data-binding
  • Glimmer::DataBinding::Shine: enables highly intuitive and visually expressive syntax to perform bidirectional (two-way) data-binding with <=> and unidirectional (one-way) data-binding with <=

You may learn more from Data-Binding and Observer usage in Glimmer DSL for SWT

Glimmer Process

[Glimmer Process](PROCESS.md) is the lightweight software development process used for building Glimmer libraries and Glimmer apps, which goes beyond Agile, rendering all Agile processes obsolete. [Glimmer Process](PROCESS.md) is simply made up of 7 guidelines to pick and choose as necessary until software development needs are satisfied.

Learn more by reading the [GPG](PROCESS.md) (Glimmer Process Guidelines)

Resources

Help

Issues

You may submit issues on GitHub.

Click here to submit an issue.

Chat

If you need live help, try to Join the chat at https://gitter.im/AndyObtiva/glimmer

Feature Suggestions

These features have been suggested. You might see them in a future version of Glimmer. You are welcome to contribute more feature suggestions.

glimmer-dsl-swt/TODO.md

Glimmer DSL Engine specific tasks are at:

[TODO.md](TODO.md)

Change Log

glimmer-dsl-swt/CHANGELOG.md

[CHANGELOG.md](CHANGELOG.md)

Contributing

Contributors Wanted!

If you would like to contribute to Glimmer, please study up on Glimmer and SWT, run all Glimmer samples, and build a small sample app (perhaps from this TODO list) to add to glimmer-dsl-swt Hello or Elaborate samples via a Pull Request. Once done, contact me on Chat.

You may apply for contributing to any of these Glimmer DSL gems whether you prefer to focus on the desktop or web:

[CONTRIBUTING.md](CONTRIBUTING.md)

Contributors

Click here to view contributor commits.

Hire Me

If your company would like to invest fulltime in further development of the Glimmer open-source project, hire me.

License

[MIT](LICENSE.txt)

Copyright (c) 2007-2021 - Andy Maleh.

--

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*Note that all licence references and agreements mentioned in the Glimmer README section above are relevant to that project's source code only.