SheerPower® 4GL
-- Beyond BASIC --

Getting Started with SheerPower 4GL Tutorial


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    Getting Started in SheerPower


    A Short Tutorial

    Download SheerPower 4GL

    If you have not yet downloaded and installed SheerPower 4GL, do so NOW.

    Click on the FREE!! Download SheerPower 4GL NOW! link found on the download webpage.

    Follow the instructions on the download webpage to download and install SheerPower 4GL.

    How to Start SheerPower Rapid Development Environment

    To start SheerPower Rapid Development Environment (SPDEV), double click the SheerPower shortcut icon located on your desktop---a circle with a lightning bolt through it.

    Below is an image of what SheerPower Rapid Development looks like when it is running.

    Creating a New Program in SheerPower

    To create a new program in SheerPower Rapid Development Environment, click once on the New icon in the toolbar---a white paper with one corner folded. This will create a new file for you to work in.

    You can also click on File in the SPDEV toolbar and select New from the drop down menu of choices to create a new file.

    The Name New File... dialog box will appear and ask you to name your new file, and to specify the location you want to save it to.

    Type the name of the new program file inside the File name: field. Name this new file Menu.

    The default file type to save a file is .SPSRC. This is a SheerPower source program file. When you click on [Save] the file type extension will automatically be added on to the file name. Clicking on the down arrow will drop down a list of different file types to save your files as.

    Since .SPSRC is already selected as the file type, click on [Save].

    After you click on the [Save] button in the "Name New File..." dialog box, a new window will open within SheerPower Rapid Development Environment. You can now begin to write your new SheerPower program inside this new file window.

    Menu Program Example

    Copy and paste or type the following program into the new menu.spsrc file inside SPDEV.


      do
        line input menu '"calculator" = calc,"DOS prompt" = dos,"exit"': ans$ 
        if  _exit  then  exit do
        select case ans$ 
        case 'CALC' 
          pass 'calc' 
        case 'DOS' 
          pass '$$' 
        end select
      loop
      end
    

    RUN this program by clicking on the Run icon in the SPDEV toolbar---the running man.

    The following menu will appear:

    Click on the word calculator in the menu. The program will run your Windows calculator program.

    Click on DOS prompt in the menu. The program will run the MS DOS Prompt or Command Prompt program.

    Click on exit or the [X] to close the menu. The SP4GL Debug Window will appear. Close it by typing in exit and pressing [Enter], or by clicking on the [X] in the top right corner of the window.

    Saving a Program in SheerPower

    To SAVE your program in SheerPower Rapid Development Environment, click once on the Save icon in the SPDEV toolbar---the floppy disk icon.

    You can also click on File in the SPDEV toolbar and select Save from the drop down menu.

    If you have multiple files open in SheerPower Rapid Development Environment that you wish to save, click on the Save All icon in the SPDEV toolbar---the icon with three floppy discs together.

    Each time you RUN a program file from SPDEV, SheerPower automatically SAVES it.

    Deploying the Menu Program Example

    Note

    Keep Your Valuable Source Code Hidden From Prying Eyes! Optional SheerPower 4GL GOLD Licenses are available.

    Royalty FREE distribution---you can always distribute SheerPower-based applications to others---royalty free! And, you can do so without the optional SheerPower 4GL GOLD License, but you must provide them with the source code to your application.

    In the SPDEV toolbar, click on the DEPLOY icon. This will bring up the Enter License Key dialog box. You can copy and paste your SheerPower 4GL license key information in here. Click on [OK] to proceed with the deployment of the program.

    Note

    You will see the "Enter License Key" dialog box the FIRST TIME you do a DEPLOY when newly running SPDEV. If you restarted SPDEV 5 times in a day, you would see the "Enter License Key" dialog box appear 5 times (providing you deployed each time).

    The Deployment Properties dialog box will appear. You can choose to enter a Password to protect this program file, or any Deployment Text (such as copyright information) to include with the program file.

    Place a check in the box beside Don't show this dialog again if you do not want to be prompted for password and deployment text information each time you click on the deploy icon.

    Note

    If you want to deploy a program with a password, you have to specify a password each time you deploy.

    Click on the [Proceed] button to deploy the program.

    You will now see in the bottom frame of the SPDEV window that deploying the program compiled it. You will also see the number of lines of code, file size, and whether or not it was a clean build or if there were any compile errors.

    Look inside your SheerPower folder (c:\sheerpower is the default location). You will see that a file named menu.sprun has been created.

    This .SPRUN file allows you to distribute applications without the recipients ever being able to see the source code.

    Optional SheerPower 4GL GOLD Licenses Available

    Royalty FREE distribution---you can always distribute SheerPower-based applications to others---royalty free! And, you can do so without the optional SheerPower 4GL GOLD Licenses, but you must provide them with the source code to your application.

    Deploying and Running a Program in SheerPower

    Note

    The SheerPower DEPLOY feature is available by license only.

    Once you have written a program (or a routine within a program), you can DEPLOY it by clicking on the Deploy icon in the toolbar.

    Note

    If you are editing a file in SheerPower Rapid Development Environment that is not a program file, the Deploy and Run icons will be disabled (greyed out).

    Deploying your main source code before you run your program will tell you immediately if there are any compile errors in your code. Any errors will appear inside the bottom window frame of SheerPower Rapid Development Environment. If there are no compile errors, SheerPower will tell you that you have a clean build. The name of your file, the number of lines written, the speed it was compiled at, and the size of the file will also appear inside the SheerPower Rapid Development Environment bottom window frame.


    Build of C:\SheerPower\test.spsrc 
    Lines compiled: 58 (24800/min), code: 1KB 
    Clean build for C:\SheerPower\test.sprun 
    

    SheerPower Deployment of Portable Runnable Applications

    The DEPLOY feature also creates a .SPRUN file---such as test.sprun. SPRUN files are useful in that:

    • All source code is hidden---preserving your intellectual property.
    • A password can be attached to the program---only those that know the password can run the program.
    • SPRUN files are textual---so they can easily be emailed or made available on a web site.

    Deployed applications can include the %COMPILE directive. The %COMPILE directive allows you to enter in up to 100 lines of text inside the .SPRUN file. This text cannot be altered or the application will not run. See Section 3.7.1,%COMPILE for details.

    Running a SheerPower Program

    At any time you can RUN your main source program. To run a program in SheerPower Rapid Development Environment, click on the Run icon in the toolbar---the running man.

    You can also Run a SheerPower program by double-clicking on its name using Windows Explorer. Both SPSRC and SPRUN program files can be run in this way. You can also DRAG-and-DROP either SPSRC or SPRUN program files onto the DESKTOP---then double-click to run the program.

    How to Run a SheerPower Program on Another Computer

    To run a SheerPower program on another computer:

    • Download and install SheerPower 4GL to the other computer.
    • Double-click on either the .SPSRC or .SPRUN file to run the program.

    Note

    As a security feature, SheerPower programs cannot be run if they are inside of any temporary folder.

    This prevents users from accidently running malicious code written in SheerPower that a hacker might place into an email or webpage.


    Copyright 2003-2004 Touch Technologies, Inc. All rights reserved.
    Parts of the SheerPower technology are U.S. patent pending.


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