April 2018

Fun and games with mXrap

If you were wondering what a bored Xman does in their free time, this might give you an indication….. You should know by now that mXrap is very flexible and apps can be developed to perform a very wide range of functions. If you were doubting that, this might change your mind 🙂 Ever played the puzzle game known as 2048? Well now there is an mXrap version! The mXrap version has buttons for each of the four moves (up, down, left, right) which controls the game board in the 3D view. If 2048 is not your cup of tea, how about a spot of backgammon?  This is two player and each player rolls the dice and selects where to go from the list of possible moves. Both of these games were built using the beta version of mXrap so we can’t send them to you just yet. Once the Beta version is stable we’ll upload the games to mXsync for you to play around with. It will be good motivation for you to learn mXsync :).

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What’s the difference between updating the mXrap software and updating the root folder?

Some things you see in mXrap are properties of the software, while other things are properties of the root folder. We often use the software Excel as an analogy. Excel has many built-in capabilities with endless possibilities for creating specific calculations.  The software has powerful capabilities, but without a user constructing the spreadsheet, the power and value are not fully utilised. An Excel user can set up a spreadsheet which, with the required inputs, will provide you with results.  This user can then provide you with that spreadsheet, which you can then use to perform the same calculations with other inputs. mXrap is like the software Excel that provides the basic tools and the applications are like spreadsheets that can be used to perform specific tasks.  Anybody with enough understanding of the software can build their own app which can be shared with others. For example, when you make a chart in Excel, the ‘add chart function’ is a property of Excel. What’s in the chart, what’s on each axis, what colour are the lines, etc are properties of the spreadsheet. mXrap is the same; there is an ‘Add Chart’ function. Every chart in mXrap uses the same tool, but the application configures what’s actually displayed in the chart. mXrap software level changes are things that affect the ‘Add Chart’ function itself. For example, the current mXrap charts only plot data on four axes; top, bottom, left and right. If we were to add more possible axes, like a secondary left axis, this would require a change to the software. It isn’t related to the root folder. Another example is the image capturing tool. This is a feature of every chart, 3D view and table at the software level. If you want an updated Hazard Assessment application, this is like getting an updated spreadsheet. The root folder is essentially a library of data and applications, like a folder full of different spreadsheets and their associated data. To summarise, if it seems like its a common feature across many areas in mXrap, its probably a property of the mXrap software. If it seems to be something related to a specific app or chart, etc, it’s probably a setting in the root folder. Updating the mXrap software is easy, just download the installer from the website. Updating the root folder is what we use mXsync for and it’s actually more complicated to manage the root folder than the software; a bit like trying to manage a lot of interconnected spreadsheets. We normally rely on sites to request root updates. If you read about a feature on the blog or watch a training video that seems different to your current version. You probably need a root update. It’s a fairly quick process, we just need a brief connection with TeamViewer/Webex or GoTo Meeting to perform the update. Contact us at our support email address.

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