Connect With Us

Duncan Kenzie

Duncan
Kenzie

Duncan Kenzie is Chief Knowledge Officer, ExcelSystems Software Development ULC. The company is responsible for the product development and technical support of BCD International's product line, including WebSmart, WebSmart PHP, and Presto. Duncan thoroughly enjoys web development. He began his career with IBM and has been creating solutions for the IBM i marketplace for over 30 years. Duncan has a BA in English Literature from the University of Waterloo, Ontario, and enjoys writing on a variety of subjects. He blogs occasionally at fbloggs.com.

Articles
Do IBM i Programmers Need to Know HTML?
Do Today’s IBM i Programmers Need to Know HTML? 
Investing time in getting familiar with HTML and other web standards makes you more a strategic asset to your company and allows you to take the next step in your professional development. This will open doors for you, advance your skill set, and enable you to future-proof your web applications and your career.
Power Your Web Apps with CSS, JavaScript, and jQuery
Power Your Web Apps with CSS, JavaScript, and jQuery [Power Pack]
In this web development Power Pack, three of our sharpest dev authors show you why, when, and how to power your web applications with three of the most widely used and important web programming tools: CSS, JavaScript, and jQuery.
Dive into jQuery
Dive into jQuery, Part 2: Power Features for Ajax 
Duncan Kenzie examines advanced functionality provided by Ajax, which makes web applications more responsive and helps them work faster. The good news is that jQuery makes using Ajax almost trivial.
Deliver Mobile Apps with IBM i 
IBM i continues to evolve with the latest technologies. In the realm of mobile development, it’s an ideal server for hosting applications that your end users can run on their mobile devices. In these days of BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) corporate cultures, you need to deliver mobile apps that can run on a plethora of different devices with varying capabilities and screen resolutions. So what approach should you take to deliver mobile apps that leverage your IBM i software and hardware assets?
Dive into jQuery
Dive into jQuery, Part 1: A Refresher 
Learn how to use jQuery, a cross-browser JavaScript library that simplifies the client-side scripting of HTML, to build web pages that behave like a desktop application.
Jump-Start Your PHP Productivity with WebSmart 
As PHP continues to gain popularity, new tools and approaches are popping up. Duncan Kenzie introduces you to WebSmart PHP, which eases the code-writing learning curve by separating the UI from the business logic and doing the heavy lifting for you.
Five Modern Technologies to Use in IBM i Web Application Development 
You’ve heard this mantra before—the IBM i is a secure, stable, scalable platform for deploying modern web applications. And it’s true! There are many proven server-side coding tools for writing IBM i-hosted web applications. But in order to produce the most productive and powerful apps you also need to be conversant with the latest client-side technologies.
Using Web Services with RPG
Using Web Services with RPG 
In simple terms, web services are just like traditional RPG program-to-program calls. The only difference is the interface. With web services, you can share and accumulate information from disparate sources in a technology-neutral way. To let you leverage the language skills you already have, this article shows how to use RPG to write web service consumer code.
Extend Web-enabled Screens Beyond the 5250 Datastream with Presto 
IBM i developers and IT staff have been searching for the Holy Grail of application modernization for years now.
Getting Started with PHP Using WebSmart PHP and Zend on Any Platform, Including the Cloud! 
WebSmart PHP is part of the WebSmart family of web development tools focused on building database-driven web applications for the IBM i platform. This article will explain what PHP is, how Zend Server is used on the IBM i platform, and how WebSmart PHP works with both so you can develop and deploy enterprise-quality web applications.
Why Use jQuery to Create Rich IBM i Web Apps? 
Today, state-of-the-art web applications provide rich and varied interactions between the user and the application. Rich Internet Applications (RIAs) have become commonplace on the web and changed users' expectations of what their web browsing experiences are like. You need to consider using RIA (sometimes called Web 2.0) techniques in your own IBM i or multi-platform web applications. When an application provides instant feedback, for example, it improves the user’s productivity. Consider a scenario in which a user types a new password for his or her account. Your application might choose to immediately tell the user if it is weak, medium, or strong, based on the length of the password and use of varying characters, instead of waiting until the user clicks a submit button. You can provide these sorts of interactions with client-side (browser) functionality without ever having to go to the server. Or, using AJAX technology, you might have the browser contact the server to verify information on an ad-hoc basis, returning small parts of a page to the application—the user types a customer name, and their credit rating appears immediately. These scenarios all require client-side programming. In the Paleolithic Era of the Internet (before 2005), most programmers were stuck having to write JavaScript. While the JavaScript language itself is very powerful and expressive, writing it to handle browser-based programming tasks was painful and error prone. Code often suffered from the following problems: Lots of branching and conditions to handle compliance with multiple browsers Error-prone loops that relied on accurate counters Lengthy and complex statements to manipulate the document object model (DOM) Complex and difficult-to-understand AJAX interaction code requiring different implementations for different browsers No easy way to reference elements on a page The tendency for programmers to tightly couple function with presentation, making code brittle
Why Use jQuery to Create Rich IBM i Web Apps? 
Today, state-of-the-art web applications provide rich and varied interactions between the user and the application. Rich Internet Applications (RIAs) have become commonplace on the web and changed users' expectations of what their web browsing experiences are like. You need to consider using RIA (sometimes called Web 2.0) techniques in your own IBM i or multi-platform web applications. When an application provides instant feedback, for example, it improves the user’s productivity. Consider a scenario in which a user types a new password for his or her account. Your application might choose to immediately tell the user if it is weak, medium, or strong, based on the length of the password and use of varying characters, instead of waiting until the user clicks a submit button. You can provide these sorts of interactions with client-side (browser) functionality without ever having to go to the server. Or, using AJAX technology, you might have the browser contact the server to verify information on an ad-hoc basis, returning small parts of a page to the application—the user types a customer name, and their credit rating appears immediately. These scenarios all require client-side programming. In the Paleolithic Era of the Internet (before 2005), most programmers were stuck having to write JavaScript. While the JavaScript language itself is very powerful and expressive, writing it to handle browser-based programming tasks was painful and error prone. Code often suffered from the following problems: Lots of branching and conditions to handle compliance with multiple browsers Error-prone loops that relied on accurate counters Lengthy and complex statements to manipulate the document object model (DOM) Complex and difficult-to-understand AJAX interaction code requiring different implementations for different browsers No easy way to reference elements on a page The tendency for programmers to tightly couple function with presentation, making code brittle
Why Web-Enabled Screens Need to Look and Function Like Standard Web Applications 
Most web-enabling solutions do provide modern looking screens that are more accepted by users, easier to access, and easier to deploy. However, these are often not strong enough reasons for you to purchase web-enabling software. To build a stronger business case, web-enabled screens need to make users more productive, reduce training costs, and provide new functionality.
Why Web-Enabled Screens Need to Look and Function Like Standard Web Applications 
Most web-enabling solutions do provide modern looking screens that are more accepted by users, easier to access, and easier to deploy. However, these are often not strong enough reasons for you to purchase web-enabling software. To build a stronger business case, web-enabled screens need to make users more productive, reduce training costs, and provide new functionality.
Proven Approaches to Give Your IBM i Applications a Rich Web Interface 
There has been a lot hype recently about the new add-on product to RPG, Rational Open Access: RPG Edition (RPG OA), that provides 'open access' to your IBM i applications. The truth is, both RPG and the IBM i have been 'open' for many years. For example, the IBM i provides exactly the same APIs for writing to/reading from web browsers as Unix, Linux, AIX, or Windows systems. RPG programmers have been creating sophisticated web applications using these APIs for many years with RPG, tools like CGIDEV2 or solutions provided by vendors such as ourselves (BCD). Another approach taken by many IBM i shops to get to the web is to use screen scrapers or next generation web-enablement technologies. With both of these approaches IBM i programmers are trying to accomplish two objectives: They want to provide a rich web user interface while leveraging as much as their RPG code and skills as possible.??BCD offers proven solutions for web application development and for next generation web-enablement. BCD has been exploiting IBM i APIs and technology for over 10 years to provide true, native IBM i web applications with WebSmart ILE. In addition, we have a proven instant web-enablement solution with Presto.  Presto takes all your 5250 screens--whether system screens, RPG, Cobol, CL, Menus, and the like--and presents them in a web browser, running Web 2.0 technology. With WebSmart ILE and Presto you have a complete path for modernizing your IBM i applications--you can instantly web-enable existing apps, or create new native web applications easily, or do both. Presto - Instant, Native Web GUI for RPG and Beyond  Everyone wants a web interface for their IBM i applications and screens and the fastest way to get there is to web enable them. Presto lets you instantly give your users the native GUI they want for all your existing and future IBM i screens. It is not constrained to RPG screens, but will work with any screen--system screens such as WRKSPLF, RPG, Cobol, CL, menu a
iPro Forums

Get answers to questions, share tips, and engage with the iPro Community in our Forums.

From the Blogs
Application Modernization Redbook Unleashed
Mar 27, 2014
blog

Application Modernization Redbook Unleashed  

The Application Modernization Redbook draft version has been released! Tim Rowe has the details....More
Free-Form RPG Transformation, Part 2
Mar 19, 2014
blog

Free-Form RPG Transformation, Part 2  

Tim Rowe continues his series on ISV tools for free-form RPG with a look at Linoma Software's free-format transformation tool, RPG Toolbox....More

Sponsored Introduction Continue on to (or wait seconds) ×