Power of objects and dot notation

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With 4D v17 R5, we showed you how easy it is to manipulate an object to retrieve the attributes of a file or folder. Things have gotten even easier thanks to object notation! In this blog post, we’re providing you an HDI with a user interface to manage files and folders. This isn’t new in 4D since you could do it with classic 4D commands, but now you can do it easier and with fewer lines of code!


Another way of coding: Object notation

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Objects are great, everyone says so. Beside their wonderful flexibility, they are unbelievably fast. You can search through millions of records in just a fraction of a second. 4D v16 even allows to order by object attributes, and to do calculations such as Sum or Average.

With 4D v16 R4, the 4D language has been drastically enhanced to make the usage of objects much more comfortable – with the support of the object notation. Fast, flexible, efficient and now elegant!


Get ready for Object Notation

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You are looking forward to start coding with Object Notation? For sure, Object Notation will make your life easier as a developer. But before activating it in your existing application, you should make sure that your code is ready.

The new Object Notation syntax introduces some restraints as 4D language now considers the three following characters as reserved symbols: “ . ”, “ [ ” and “ ] ” (i.e. dot, opening and closing brackets).

As a consequence, once you have activated the Object Notation in your database, it is no longer allowed to use these symbols in variable names, method names, table names, or field names. And of course it is the same for your existing code!

So it is important to check that your application does not contain these symbols before activating this feature. But don’t worry the MSC can do it for you!

Guest Post

An ORDA Cheat Sheet

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Blog post by guest author Cannon Smith, a 4D developer from southern Alberta, Canada: 

The introduction of collections and entities has dramatically changed the landscape in 4D, giving developers new ways to map business rules to code. Just recently I refactored several thousand lines of code that were central to the business rules of our application, resulting in a significant speed improvement (5xs faster) which our users are very happy about. This refactoring was largely about moving from old code constructs to objects, collections, and ORDA.


Dates inside objects!

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Objects are great! Their flexibility, combined with speed and elegance, make them a first choice for most developers. Using dates inside objects is now easier and more intuitive. From now on, dates can be set as datesand not strings inside objects!


4D V16 R6 Beta starts today!

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We are pleased to announce the launch of beta testing for 4D v16 R6! This release is loaded with enhancements and new features that you won’t want to miss!

Let’s take a look and discover what’s new in the 4D v16 R6 Beta:


  • Improvements to the 4D language and new emerging concepts – so you can write better code … faster
  • Increased security of 4D Web Server so you can have better rankings on web security audit tests
  • Pictures in absolute position with 4D Write Pro – so you can have even more control
  • Ability to convert existing 4D View documents to 4D View Pro – so you can upgrade easier