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ATK 6.2 released
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 31, 2008 11:21 pm 

Joined: Wed May 25, 2005 8:17 am
Posts: 209
I'm proud to announce the 6.2 release of ATK. With this new release we dropped support for PHP 4 and have switched license to LGPL. The new license makes ATK more friendly for inclusion in both open and closed source products.

This is the first release of ATK in approximately 1 year time (ATK 6.1 was released on the 30th of August 2007). With this release maintainership has been handed over from Ivo to Peter. Ivo did a great job the past 7 years, and I want to thank him for all his hard work. He will be focusing on some of ATK's lesser strengths, like the documentation, and will keep actively evangelizing ATK. In the next few months you will hopefully see the first results of this new focus arrive in the form of better documentation. Talking about documentation, have you seen our new online API docs?

Starting today we will also be focusing on releasing more often. Development on ATK is more active then ever, but unfortunately this isn't always visible to the outside world. You can ofcourse always download the latest nightly build or checkout ATK from it's (new) SVN repository, but then you can never be 100% sure if the version you download is stable or not. We are now committed to releasing a new major version of ATK at least every 3 months and minor bug fix releases, when necessary, in between.

But enough with all the boring stuff, let's look at some of the highlights in this new release.

A new caching API has been added to ATK which makes it easy to add caching functionality to your code. The API offers several back-ends like for example APC, Memcache and Zend Platform but also works with simple files on disk. The code can be made unaware of the exact back-end used which makes it easy to switch to a different back-end without having to change any of your code.

Data Grid
This release of ATK introduces a new component called the atkDataGrid. It replaces the atkRecordList component and offers the following main improvements:
- Ajax updates; searching, pagination etc. are all handled using Ajax requests. This makes it possible to include more than one grid on the same page and makes the grid more suitable for embedding in complex forms.
- Improved API; including a grid inside your own custom action / attributes only requires a few lines of code. The new API also allows for more customization and extensibility.

This release introduces a new frameless theme called Stillblue which extends the Steelblue theme with frameless support. Stillblue will be the default theme for ATK as of this release, however Steelblue will still be supported because both themes have their own advantages. Other themes should still work, however we will be moving them to a separate repository or module after this release and will discontinue active support.

Meta Node
The meta node has gotten some great improvements. First of all we introduced a caching layer which makes sure that meta nodes are just as fast as regular nodes. As a bonus meta nodes are now easier to debug because there is real code generated for you which you can step through with a debugger or simply have a look at to get a better insight. Secondly the atkMetaPolicy now has been given support for setting things like default values and the overall detection of attribute types, relationship columns, nodes etc. has been improved drastically.

This is only the tip of the iceberg, for a complete list of all changes please have a look at the change log for this release.

The release can be downloaded at


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