ModuleStudio 0.7.0 brings a huge number of changes and is based on Eclipse Neon.2 (4.6.2). It requires Java 8, but includes this in the application already so that the tool can be directly launched.
One essential new innovation is the refurbished user interface. This has been dramatically simplified and provides all-new editors. The aim was that ModuleStudio focuses on what actually is needed.
Therefore ModuleStudio 0.7.0 is under the slogan “less is more”:
- Less layers (the DSL now has no additional levels for model/view/controller anymore)
- Less windows (only one main editor than multiple sub editors)
- Less confusion (more straightforward description of applications)
- Less work (through better modeling assistance)
A significant change to the new interface is the entirely overhauled diagram editor which contains many improved functions.
One new feature is that ModuleStudio 0.7.0 now visualises whether entity relations are unidirectional or bidirectional. When creating new relationships the aliases are directly preset in singular or plural forms properly. The screenshot above also shows a new view which allows easier modification of a model’s element properties and provides assistance in the form of help icons. The graphical editor does not contain sub editors anymore, but uses different layers which can be shown and hidden at any time.
Besides the new editor there are many features in ModuleStudio 0.7.0 including a new design, a dialog for editing list entries, useful basic settings, automatic application updates, full screen display, optional automatic saving and much more. It is also now possible to fix errors in the models using quick fixes with regard to validation.
There are also two tabular editors for changing entities and fields as well as variables.
Advanced features include a textual editor which contains enhanced functions like syntax highlighting, folding, content assist and template proposals. Validation errors are directly shown within the textual editor in the form of markers and it is possible to utilise quick fixes.
All editors are automatically synchronised with each other, so that changes are immediately reflected everywhere.
As a bonus, searching in the integrated help now optionally delivers results from zikula.org and zikula.de as well as from the documentation of Symfony, Doctrine and Twig.
In the modeling language a number of changes also happened. Unneeded layers have been removed and many new language elements have been added to support miscellaneous Symfony validations. As an example, upload fields can define various requirements concerning image properties.
The generator primarily supports Zikula 1.4.5+ and Zikula 1.3.5 to 1.3.12. For Zikula 1.4 a whole lot has been done. Specifically the generated modules now support Symfony forms and Twig. Because of backward-compatible support for 1.3, some architectural clean-up operations and optimizations are missing from 1.4 applications however. Therefore, ModuleStudio 0.7.0 is the last version including support for 1.3.x - this is going to be removed soon.
All changes in detail can be checked in the changelog. The documentation further explains all functions in the interface. It is worth your time to examine these documents as this article can only give a brief overview of all new possibilities.