We're currently working in a customer project, implementing some new requirements for MindPlan.

One requirement is already my favorite one: customizable welcome tab images.

The customer did not really like the default MindPlan welcome screen. Maybe the smart MindPlan user was a bit too relaxed:


Image:MindPlan is sexy

The requirement was to have the welcome tab images configurable.

Well, and of course we tested our new feature...

Image:MindPlan is sexy

So, after more than five years of MindPlan development, the product has actually become sexy. :-)

How you can customize your welcome screen
Well, first of all, you need to have a MindPlan 3.2 build version that is equal or greater than 201003172155. That means the download that is officially available today will not work. Now that's a good reason to update when it is available. :-)

After upgrading to the new 3.2 build, you can define a few Notes.ini variables to set your own tab layout.
Here is the format:

$wMPCustomHomeTab_ < nr > =
     < ORIENTATION > , < STRETCHING > , < Z-INDEX > , < IMAGEURL >


For < ORIENTATION > you have the choice between CENTER, EAST, NORTH, NORTHEAST, NORTHWEST, SOUTH, SOUTHEAST, SOUTHWEST, WEST and TILE.

< STRETCHING > tells MindPlan how the image should be scaled: NO_STRETCH, STRETCH, STRETCH_KEEP_RATIO, STRETCH_X and STRETCH_Y.

The < Z-INDEX > is the paint order, which is starting with 0 and the < IMAGEURL > can either be a relative URL (e.g. to use our internal standard images) or an absolute one, both file:// and http:// protocol do work.
< nr > is an index starting with 1.

So here is an example that just displays the standard tab images:

$wMPCustomHomeTab_1=
     NORTHWEST,STRETCH,0,images/systemimages/home/Skyline_33pcnt.png
$wMPCustomHomeTab_2=
     NORTHEAST,NO_STRETCH,3,images/systemimages/home/Logo_60pcnt.png
$wMPCustomHomeTab_3=
     SOUTHEAST,NO_STRETCH,1,images/systemimages/home/Typ_40pcnt.png
$wMPCustomHomeTab_4=
     SOUTHWEST,NO_STRETCH,2,images/systemimages/home/freeyourmind_60pcnt.png


The concept is more powerful/geeky than you might think, because we also added @formula support:

$wMPCustomHomeTab_3=
     formula://_rnd:=@Round(@Random*1);"SOUTHEAST,NO_STRETCH,1,"+
     @If(_rnd=0; "file:///c:/angelina.png";
     "images/systemimages/home/Typ_40pcnt.png")


A calculated image line is ignored if the formula just returns "-".

So by using formulas, you can even calculate the images dynamically and have a surprise each time you start MindPlan. :-)

It's a bit difficult to test the tab image definitions right now. The easiest way to recreate the welcome tab is to go into "File/Preferences", deselect the "show welcome-tab" option, hit "Apply" and then select it again.

Comments (0)
Karsten Lehmann March 18th, 2010 16:30:52

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