Controlling the gICAPI web component in programs

Controlling the gICAPI-based web components with ON ACTION

Once a WEBCOMPONENT field is defined in the form file with the COMPONENTTYPE attribute pointing to an HTML content file, it can be used as a regular edit field in program dialogs. The data of the gICAPI web component is transmitted with the field value, and usually needs to be serialized and deserialized (typically in JSON), when the data is not a simple scalar value.

When the web component field value is changed in the program, the onData() method of the gICAPI object is fired, and you can parse the serialized string in your JavaScript.

In order to detect web component value changes in the program, you need to combine the gICAPI.SetData() and gICAPI.Action() methods, to transmit the value and to fire an action, that will be handled by an ON ACTION block.

The ON CHANGE trigger is not executed automatically for gICAPI-based web components, just by using gICAPI.SetData().

This example serializes and deserializes a dynamic array using the JSON format:
INPUT BY NAME mywc, ...
   ON ACTION set_wc_values -- Bound to form button
      LET mywc = util.JSON.stringify( data_array )

   ON ACTION wc_data_changed -- Triggered by gICAPI.Action()
      CALL util.JSON.parse( mywc, data_array )

All data will be transmitted through the abstract user interface protocol. Transmitting a lot of data will not be efficient and is likely to slow down your application.

Controlling the gICAPI-based web components with properties

Use the PROPERTIES attribute in the form specification, to define the configuration of the field.

When a property of the web component is modified, the onProperty() method of the gICAPI object in the JavaScript will be invoked with the list of properties in JSON notation.

Note that the complete property set will be passed, even if a single property is modified.

Controlling gICAPI-based web components with front calls

The web component can be manipulated with specific front calls. The web component-specific front calls are provided in the "webcomponent" front call module.

Use the front call only for specific needs: With desktop and web front ends, a front call implies a network roundtrip and abstract user interface update that may cause unwanted delays. Prefer using gICAPI interface triggers such as onData / onProperty instead.

The front call can be used for general purposes. It takes as parameters the name of the form field, a JavaScript function to call, and optional parameters to be passed to the specified JavaScript function. The JavaScript function must be implemented in the HTML content of the gICAPI web component field. The front call returns the result of the JavaScript function.

CALL ui.Interface.frontCall("webcomponent", "call",
     ["formonly.mychart", "eval", "document.title"],
     [title] )

The getTitle function is another useful webcomponent front call that can get the title of the HTML document of the web component:

CALL ui.Interface.frontCall("webcomponent", "getTitle",
     ["formonly.url_field"], [info] )

Some providers return key information in the title of the HTML document.