An ORDA Cheat Sheet

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.

I was surprised where the largest optimizations came from. Certainly moving to ORDA increased the speed of these methods to a degree, but it was after I refactored the code that the idea for the real speed increase came to me. Why? Because using objects and collections with dot notation made the code simpler to read, giving me the opportunity to think about it in new and different ways.

With new tools comes a learning curve and collections and entity selections are no different. To help me make sense of all the new functions, I created a couple of cheat sheets. I keep them next to my computer and use them often as I work with ORDA-related code to ensure I’m doing things in the most efficient way.  Feel free to download the Entity Selection Cheat Sheet and the Collection Cheat Sheet and put them next to your computer as well.

While it takes time to learn to use ORDA in 4D, doing so has already paid back large dividends for me and I look forward to further improvements that are now possible thanks of ORDA.

Cannon Smith
Cannon has spent the last several years developing a commercial cattle feedlot application and is currently getting a similar application for the ranching industry going. Living in rural southern Alberta, Canada, where he grew up, Cannon has been a 4D developer since version 6.5 and remains an active member of the 4D community. You can find other tools for the community on his website .