New Life of Agile Toolkit

by Romans, 2 July 2014

Things have been busy in preparation for 4.3 but we are finally here. If you haven't got 4.3, do not hesitate to download and try it. The framework has received huge amount of improvements and tweaks, but there are some huge changes in eco-system around the framework:

Documentation

I am happy to announce that Agile Toolkit 4.3 is 100% documented. All the documentation have been pulled together and organized. Available Online:

http://book.agiletoolkit.org/

I have now used a Sphinx-doc and documentation is written in RST format. It also includes all class and method definition and descriptions. The documentation sources are available through GitHub if you are willing to contribute or translate.

Developer Sandbox

When you download Agile Toolkit 4.3, it comes along with Developer Sandbox. This is a PHP-based environment written using PHP and Agile Toolkit which will assist you with some fundamental tasks in your development:

  • Setting up your new Agile Toolkit project on your local computer
  • Configuring your local project such as setting MySQL access password
  • Installing add-ons and configuring those add-ons
  • Deploying your Web App to a Web Hosting Service (Cloud Deploy)

This sandbox a part of development process - like an IDE, it will not upload itself to your production server.

Open Source and Commercial

Agile Toolkit framework comes as an Share-Alike license. Agile Toolkit has always been free for Open Source and personal projects but had a yearly license plan if you didn't want to share your source code.

After a lot of thought I have changed licensing terms significantly:

  • OpenSource PHP Projects are still free.
  • Instead of charging $130 a year it's now a much more affordable $10 per month, which you can cancel anytime.
  • Agile Toolkit will remind you to set up a subscription, when necessary.
  • As before - you only need license while you are developing your project. Cancel when you are done.
  • You can work on up to 5 closed-source projects simultaniously with single license.
  • Enterprise licenses available.
  • And the best news: You get complimentary Web Hosting!

Agile CSS - Responsive Web Framework

I have seriously considered adopting BootStrap, but my designer (mayack) has convinced me that there is a lot of room for improvement. Half a year later - we have developed our own fully-featured CSS framework: Agile CSS:

  • Can be used by anyone - even without CSS / Web Design skills.
  • Responsive for as mobiles, tablets and desktops.
  • Component based - share widgets between projects.
  • Very easy to theme and configure.
  • Supports a varietty of responsive layouts.
  • Written with a very clever LESS code.
  • Works in all modern desktop and mobile browsers (sorry IE8)
  • CSS only. No JavaScript.
  • Does not depend on PHP - use with absolutely any framework.
  • Comes with a modern jQuery UI CSS theme.
  • Compatible with Angular JS, jQuery or MooTools.
  • Will be released under permissive license - free for commercial, closed-source and enterprise projects.

The CSS frameowork does not depend on Agile Toolkit, but Agile Toolkit bundles and uses it. When you migrate your Agile Toolkit project to 4.3 it will automatically take advantage of a new markup. We release Agile CSS as a separate project when it is stable enough.

Loads of goodies in Agile Toolkit PHP

The 4.3 branch have received tons of new improvements and additions. Some of the notable ones are:

  • Improvements to Forms and submission handling, much simpler syntax.
  • Entirely new validation engine.
  • New and 3x faster Template Engine.
  • Support for Generic REST APIs in your models.
  • New Application classes for RESTful Server and Admin backend.
  • Much better icon and CSS component support throughot views.
  • New Data Source support for Models - much simpler to extend.
  • Support for customizable Layouts.
  • Many improvements to CRUD class to enable customization.
  • Breadcrumb and Multi-Level menu support.
  • Hierarchical models built-in.
  • Model data caching and support for MongoDB, Session, Memcached.
  • Authentication improvements.
  • Improvements to everything else.

If you are looking for a full list of new framework features, you can find them on this page .

If you haven't tried Agile Toolkt 4.3 yet, here is what you need:

  • Working PHP 5.3+ binary on your computer. (Linux/OSX already have it. Just type "php -v")
  • A free user account on agiletoolkit.org.
  • Download Agile Toolkit 4.3 and start hacking.