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Breck Carter
Last modified: November 17, 1998
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Scroll-While-You-Type Program Code

The code for Encapsulated DataWindow Searching has been extended to handle numeric, date, time and DateTime columns as well as strings. Default conversion formats are provided for the new data types, and the object function of_set_string_format() has been provided to let you change the formats. For example, you can let your users type "mm/dd/yy", "yyyy mm dd" or "mmm dd, yyyy" for a date.

To download:
PowerBuilder 4 version:
PowerBuilder 5 version: - includes support for DataWindow data type "long"
PowerBuilder 6.5 version:

A demonstration program is included; here's what it looks like:

Setup is described in the documentation() function contained in the u_sle_find object in uslefind.pbl:


Documentation() Function in U_SLE_Find

	Copyright (C) 1996, 1998 Breck Carter
	For more information see or

u_sle_find - SingleLineEdit for DataWindow find and scroll.

	Scroll-while-you-type facility for searching a DataWindow.

Modification History:
   1998 11 11 BC Data type "long" supported as "numeric".

Basic Setup:

	For example, a DataWindow control called dw_table is associated
	with a DataWindow object that contains a column called "entry".

	A SingleLineEdit control called sle_entry is created using
	this user object. It is enabled by the following statements
	in the event:

		integer li_RC
		li_RC = sle_entry.of_register ( dw_table, "entry" )
		if li_RC <> 1 then
			halt close
		end if

	That's all there is to it; other function calls are optional.

Beeping On Not Found:

	The following call enables beeping when the search string
	is not found; this is the default behaviour:


	The following call disables all beeping:


	If beeping is enabled, the following call enables repeated
	beeping when repeated attempts are made to extend a
	failing match string:


	If beeping is enabled, the following call disables
	repeated beeping so that only one beep is heard when
	a search string is not found even if the user continues
	to type characters; this is the default behaviour:


Case-Sensitive and Case-Insensitive Matching:

	The following call enables case-sensitive (match on case)


	The following call enables case-insensitive searching;
	this is the default behaviour:


Find Next and Find Previous Accelerator Keys:

	By default the plus and minus keys on the numeric keypad
	are the accelerator keys for find next and find previous
	matching rows. The following calls show the default values;
	you can change the accelerator keys by substituting different
	key code values:

		sle_find.of_set_find_next_key ( KeyAdd! )
		sle_find.of_set_find_previous_key ( KeySubtract! )

	The following calls disable find next and find previous:


Clear Find Accelerator Key:

	By default the escape key is the accelerator key for clearing
	the SingleLineEdit contents. The following calls show the default
	values; you can change the accelerator keys by substituting
	different 	key code values:

		sle_find.of_set_clear_find_key ( KeyEscape! )

	The following call disables the clear find accelerator key:


Pass-Through Keys:

	For ease-of-use certain keystrokes are passed on to the
	DataWindow control even though this SingleLineEdit control
	still has focus. This makes it unnecessary for the user to
	tab back and forth to switch between searching (e.g., find
	next) and scrolling (e.g., next page) operations.

Pass-Through Enter Key:

	One common enhancement is to pass Enter key presses to the
	DataWindow; this is enabled by the following statment:

		sle_entry.of_set_enter_processing &
			( KeyEnter!, "pbm_dwnprocessenter" )

	To disable pass-through processing of the Enter key (which
	is the default behaviour), code the following:


Scrolling Accelerator Keys:

	Several other keystrokes are passed through to the DataWindow
	to perform scrolling by page and row. The following calls show
	the default values; 	you can change the accelerator keys by
	substituting different key code values:

		sle_find.of_set_scroll_next_page_key ( KeyPageDown! )
		sle_find.of_set_scroll_next_row_key ( KeyDownArrow! )
		sle_find.of_set_scroll_prior_page_key ( KeyPageUp! )
		sle_find.of_set_scroll_prior_row_key ( KeyUpArrow! )

	The following calls disable the scrolling accelerator keys:


Note on Column Data Types:

	The following formats are used when converting DataWindow column
	data types to string format for comparison purposes:

		            Default            of_set_string_format()
		Data Type   String Format          Call Allowed
		---------   -------------          ------------
		char(nn)    none                        no
		compute     none                        no
		number      none                        yes
		decimal(n)  none                        yes
		date        yyyy mm dd                  yes
		datetime    yyyy mm dd hh:mm:ss.ffffff  yes
		time        hh:mm:ss.ffffff             yes
		timestamp   not supported               n/a

	If the default string format does not agree with the column's
	display format, of_set_string_format may be called to make them agree.
	Here are some examples:

	// Allow keyboard entry of decimal point:
	li_RC = sle_purchase_amount.of_set_string_format ( "0.00" )
	if li_RC <> 1 then
	end if

	// Change the date entry format:
	li_RC = sle_purchase_date.of_set_string_format ( "mmm dd, yyyy" )
	if li_RC <> 1 then
	end if

	// Change the time entry format:
	li_RC = sle_purchase_date.of_set_string_format ( "hh mm" )
	if li_RC <> 1 then
	end if

See also: Encapsulated DataWindow Searching

Breck Carter can be reached by phone at (416) 763-5200 or via email at