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DriveWorks Pro 21
Specification Macro Consistency

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Specification Macro Consistency

Introduction

Prior to DriveWorks 21, when DriveWorks Live was busy processing an update to a form in a Specification, it would show an overlay to prevent the user interacting with the form until it was done.

Because this could create a brief flash of the overlay for quick updates, the overlay would only be shown after a half-second delay.

However, in implementations with a lot of 3D, or calls to the network, this could still result in undesirable flashing of the overlay.

In DriveWorks 21, with significant improvements to the forms technology, and the sharing of that technology between both the web and the desktop, we made the decision to remove the overlay.

While we received positive feedback about the improved user experience, we also received feedback that the overlay was important, for example, to prevent users from clicking on macro buttons at the wrong time.

What's new in DriveWorks 21 SP1

To address this requirement, we've introduced a new concept to DriveWorks 21 SP1 - Macro Consistency, which is set on the Start Node of each Specification Macro.

All existing and new macros are assumed to require full consistency, and if there are any enabled macro buttons on a form, which refer to a macro which requires full consistency, then DriveWorks will re-enable the overlay for that form, with the same half-second delay as previously.

However, the overlay didn't protect against accidentally multiple-clicking a macro button before the overlay had a chance to display.

DriveWorks 21 SP1 adds some additional protections to prevent this.

These protections are enabled for any macro button referring to a macro which requires full consistency.

The effect of these protections is that DriveWorks will not run the referenced macro if it is already busy with an update, for example, if the macro button was already clicked, or if the form is still being updated and hasn't finished before the macro button was clicked.

When this happens, and if the reporting level is "Normal" or higher, then DriveWorks will write a warning to the Specification Report saying that it has not run the macro.

If consistency doesn't particularly matter, for example, on a macro button that just increments an angle of rotation on a 3D Preview, then the consistency can be relaxed by setting the consistency of the macro to None.

This should only be done if it really doesn't matter whether the user has the absolute latest version of the form when they click on the macro button, and to prevent the overlay from showing, then all of the enabled macro buttons on the form must reference macros whose consistency is set to None.

If you've got feedback on this feature, we would love to hear from you over at suggest@driveworks.co.uk.