The Development Center supports the creation and design of applications that are organized with the Zim application model described above. That is, every application has a main application window from which other parts of the application can be started. Each of these other windows is designed to carry out a specific function. For example, one window can be designed to enable viewing and editing of Customer information, a second window can be designed to view or edit Order information, and a third window can be designed to produce a report of product sales so far this year. Each window is called an application component. DC provides generators that can create windows (or application components) of various types or classes. See About Application Design in DC for a list of generators supplied with DC. In addition, the application design facilities of DC are completely open, enabling anyone to create new generators that can be accessed from within the Development Center.
As described above, application components are usually associated with a window. However, there are cases where this might not be the case. For example, at some point in an application, you can produce a report by clicking on a menu item. Several designs are possible:
- The report is run and printed immediately. No window appears.
- A window appears enabling the user to select a “viewer” (i.e. a program to be used to view the report output) and then run the report.