Alpha Software Mobile Development Tools:   Alpha Anywhere    |   Alpha TransForm subscribe to our YouTube Channel  Follow Us on LinkedIn  Follow Us on Twitter  Follow Us on Facebook



The Alpha Software Forum Participation Guidelines

The Alpha Software Forum is a free forum created for Alpha Software Developer Community to ask for help, exchange ideas, and share solutions. Alpha Software strives to create an environment where all members of the community can feel safe to participate. In order to ensure the Alpha Software Forum is a place where all feel welcome, forum participants are expected to behave as follows:
  • Be professional in your conduct
  • Be kind to others
  • Be constructive when giving feedback
  • Be open to new ideas and suggestions
  • Stay on topic

Be sure all comments and threads you post are respectful. Posts that contain any of the following content will be considered a violation of your agreement as a member of the Alpha Software Forum Community and will be moderated:
  • Spam.
  • Vulgar language.
  • Quotes from private conversations without permission, including pricing and other sales related discussions.
  • Personal attacks, insults, or subtle put-downs.
  • Harassment, bullying, threatening, mocking, shaming, or deriding anyone.
  • Sexist, racist, homophobic, transphobic, ableist, or otherwise discriminatory jokes and language.
  • Sexually explicit or violent material, links, or language.
  • Pirated, hacked, or copyright-infringing material.
  • Encouraging of others to engage in the above behaviors.

If a thread or post is found to contain any of the content outlined above, a moderator may choose to take one of the following actions:
  • Remove the Post or Thread - the content is removed from the forum.
  • Place the User in Moderation - all posts and new threads must be approved by a moderator before they are posted.
  • Temporarily Ban the User - user is banned from forum for a period of time.
  • Permanently Ban the User - user is permanently banned from the forum.

Moderators may also rename posts and threads if they are too generic or do not property reflect the content.

Moderators may move threads if they have been posted in the incorrect forum.

Threads/Posts questioning specific moderator decisions or actions (such as "why was a user banned?") are not allowed and will be removed.

The owners of Alpha Software Corporation (Forum Owner) reserve the right to remove, edit, move, or close any thread for any reason; or ban any forum member without notice, reason, or explanation.

Community members are encouraged to click the "Report Post" icon in the lower left of a given post if they feel the post is in violation of the rules. This will alert the Moderators to take a look.

Alpha Software Corporation may amend the guidelines from time to time and may also vary the procedures it sets out where appropriate in a particular case. Your agreement to comply with the guidelines will be deemed agreement to any changes to it.

Bonus TIPS for Successful Posting

Try a Search First
It is highly recommended that a Search be done on your topic before posting, as many questions have been answered in prior posts. As with any search engine, the shorter the search term, the more "hits" will be returned, but the more specific the search term is, the greater the relevance of those "hits". Searching for "table" might well return every message on the board while "tablesum" would greatly restrict the number of messages returned.

When you do post
First, make sure you are posting your question in the correct forum. For example, if you post an issue regarding Desktop applications on the Mobile & Browser Applications board , not only will your question not be seen by the appropriate audience, it may also be removed or relocated.

The more detail you provide about your problem or question, the more likely someone is to understand your request and be able to help. A sample database with a minimum of records (and its support files, zipped together) will make it much easier to diagnose issues with your application. Screen shots of error messages are especially helpful.

When explaining how to reproduce your problem, please be as detailed as possible. Describe every step, click-by-click and keypress-by-keypress. Otherwise when others try to duplicate your problem, they may do something slightly different and end up with different results.

A note about attachments
You may only attach one file to each message. Attachment file size is limited to 2MB. If you need to include several files, you may do so by zipping them into a single archive.

If you forgot to attach your files to your post, please do NOT create a new thread. Instead, reply to your original message and attach the file there.

When attaching screen shots, it is best to attach an image file (.BMP, .JPG, .GIF, .PNG, etc.) or a zip file of several images, as opposed to a Word document containing the screen shots. Because Word documents are prone to viruses, many message board users will not open your Word file, therefore limiting their ability to help you.

Similarly, if you are uploading a zipped archive, you should simply create a .ZIP file and not a self-extracting .EXE as many users will not run your EXE file.
See more
See less

Book club???

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Book club???

    Hi all,

    Just curious to know if anyone has any recommended reading on A5, preferably with the emphasis on xBasic.

    btw, in preparation for this tectonic shift to A5, I'm going through some old code (and I stress it was code written a long time ago) but in doing so, I'm occasionally struck with the thought of 'what a dumb way of doing it' - what was i thinking?

    Anyone else have thoughts on comparing/reviewing what they wrote, say 10 years ago, with how they would approach it now? I know it should probably be a separate thread but I think if it was, it would seem a tad pretentious for a newbie here. (hate that word 'newbie')

    Many thanks,


  • #2
    Re: Book club???

    Hi Gary,

    Pretty much the definitive source for that is Dr. Peter Wayne's Xbasic for Everyone.

    It used to be available in a printed version but now all I see is PDF. Dr. Wayne is wicked smart when it comes to Alpha and Xbasic for Everyone has some nice real world examples. Dr. Wayne also covers his recommendations for sound coding practices in Xbasic.

    You might want to take a look at Ira Perlow and Cal Locklin's sites as they both have some GREAT info available and they are also both very respected around here for their prowess with Alpha.

    For reference...

    Ira's site

    Cal's Site

    In particular...just my 2 heed to Ira's recommendations for user defined functions and Cal's advice on naming conventions.

    Cal and Ira both have nice utils for sale as well.



    Added Later....

    what was i thinking?.....Anyone else have thoughts on comparing/reviewing what they wrote, say 10 years ago
    ABSOLUTELY!!! :) I think we have all been there. My code is so much more streamlined now......and now in Alpha I have followed Ira's advice of using UDF's and I have a lot of UDF's that are "modular" in that they can be used in multiple places based on what arguments are passed to them. Much easier to maintain code that way.
    Last edited by jkletrovets; 11-14-2009, 03:08 AM.


    • #3
      Re: Book club???

      Originally posted by GaryRockley View Post
      Anyone else have thoughts on comparing/reviewing what they wrote, say 10 years ago, with how they would approach it now?
      And sometimes it's a LOT less than 10 years ago! Especially when trying something new.


      • #4
        Re: Book club???

        Originally posted by GaryRockley View Post
        Anyone else have thoughts on comparing/reviewing what they wrote, say 10 years ago, with how they would approach it now?
        Just this: Most of my apps were begun 10 or more years ago, tables, sets and coding. If I were starting over on them today, almost everything would be very different, particularly naming conventions, table and set design and a good deal of my coding and ways of accomplishing things. One fear I have is that someday I may have to turn these apps over to someone who knows what they are doing and I'll be very embarrassed (a good reason to die first!). In recent years I have had to send some of that old work to Selwyn for bug finding and fixing and I can just imagine what he and his crew thought of some of it. But guess what? I suspect most developers would say similar things about work they did 10 years ago, or as Cal said, maybe even much less than that. And it's ones of the problems with apps that have a long life span and need continual updates and maintenance: You'd like to re-do the whole thing from scratch but if it is for a client, they certainly are not going to pay for that. So one's crappy work just lives on and on!

        Now, for those wanting to get a better start with Alpha Five, look at Cal's material on naming conventions, look at Peter Wayne's books and especially his articles on simplifying tables and sets and on using memo fields on Then there are lots of good things in the tutorials that come with A5, and finally there is a ton of good advice on this board


        • #5
          Re: Book club???

          Raymond, I recognize myself in your story :), I practice The Forth Methodology and it helps me a lot. There is also a disadvantage, the programming process is slower but the result is better.

          I hear and I forget. I see and I remember. I do and I understand.
          ---- Confusius ----


          • #6
            Re: Book club???

            Version 10 desktop book just released!

            I have been writing books on Alpha Five since Version 4.5. True, my emphasis is not on Xbasic, but I think you'll find them very useful as have many Alpha Five fans.

            We also sell hard copies of Dr. Peter Wayne's Xbasic for Everyone.

            To learn more, go to

            PS - about rewriting applications - who wouldn't? Wish I had the time to start over!
            sigpic Susan Bush, Liberty Manuals Co. Books for Alpha Anywhere mobile, web and desktop.