Sencha Touch, ExtJS, Cmd where is it all going?
I'm a developer who has been using Sencha (ExtJs) for about 5 years now, and it was always a very good software until you made it a complete "Sencha" package. I'm wondering where are you going with all that and what are your guide lines? I'm also very frustrated cause my company bought sencha complete on my persuasion and now I see that it is still an uncompleted product.
Some of my problems/observations during last couple of months:
1. You release software with outdated documentation:
- sencha create jsb - does not exist any more and there is no guide on how to do it with Cmd 3.0
There is no documentation on how to compile Sencha Touch app or at least I didn't find it, somehow browsing around forums I found it
- sencha package <configFile.json> -this command does not work, someone commented on it long ago you still haven't fixed it
3. I tried to persuade a client to build his mobile app on sencha touch platform and to native compile it for all of the platforms by telling him that this will greatly lower his cost.
Then I tried to create test app to show it to my client, I needed to use drag'n'drop then I realized that:
4. you have Ext.util.Droppable but it's not working, it's simply not implemented, then I created needed components on my own and lost 2 days to do it, after that I compiled my app to find that:
5. one simple app has 6MB, and after some tries and fails I succeeded in native compiling of production build, and this is not documented anywhere and I don't even know if this is the proper way, but I think that app with size of 6MB is not the way.
6. After native compile and pushing installing my app to android device I found that loading screen is not shown (did not even try to find out why), this does not happen on debug app only on production build, but this is something that is your out of the box code, I didn't mess with this.
7. Some minor problems of different render on device than on desktop browser
I've worked with 3.x versions of ExtJS and I was very satisfied. Then I persuaded my company to upgrade to 4.0 when it was available. That was a mistake cause we had to:
1. make all our company users use FF until 4.1 comes that fixes speed issues. And after 4.1 came it still is not fast in IE but it is usable, I don't need to tell you how problematic is to change company policy of browser usage
2. We had some problems with some bugs, using our premium support we submitted those bugs only to come with a "This bug has already been submitted and will be fixed in next release" but some of those bugs are still there after 6 months and also once we had a reply: "This bug comes up only 2 out of 10 tries so it's not a issue", or something like that. Try to explain to my superior why every day 25 out of 120 of our company employees step on this bug.
3. You published Sencha Cmd 3 which does not have a sencha create jsb command and thus broke our deployment procedure. I tried to upgrade from 4.0.7 to 4.1.2 and everything works fine except deployment, we simply did not make our components the compass and sass way cause that was not available in 4.0. So my question is how can you make such a big step from 4.0 to 4.1, why is there no documentation on these new steps, why do we need to use one more tool and learn one more thing (compass and sass)? Why is compass so much better, until now I had a simple css file I loaded in my index.html file, that css file had my custom css rules and custom components css rules.
4. In new cmd and production app build you take index.php or index.html or whatever and use that as a starting point and even change that file so that includes production files. Well some people don't use index.php or index.html and are using dynamical templating engine and front controller, so trying to compile through a file is a fail cause it cannot be done. sencha create jsb was a much cleaner way cause you could create it through a domain URL or a file.
Sencha Eclipse plugin
I don't event want to start on how this is a half finished product.
My general questions is how come you make such big steps in minor releases, how come you publish unfinished products when you know that you product is being used in an enterprise environment?
Why do you fail to update documentation when you push your big changes?
Are you aware that when you used ExtJS 3.x you just wrote .js files and included them in your index.html file and everything was working fast, now we have to install sencha cmd, rubby, compass, <br>use command prompt to create files (controllers, models, views), edit app.json, build.xml, package.json files. While I'm a fan of ExtJS MVC structure this forcing of yours to use many tools made development actually slower.
1. Create .js
2. include in index.html
3. put some custom css wherever you want
4. use debug or production extjs fil
and that is it
1. Install sencha cmd
2. Install rubby
3. Install compass
4. Create project using cmd
5. Create files using cmd
6. Create custom css files for every custom component
7. Edit app.json to inlcude custom css and images
8. Use cmd to create production app (if you have front controller in your site forget about this)
9. Pray to the God that it doesn't fail and publish this
How is this faster than ExtJS 3.x?
And after all that pray to the God that 4.1 doesn't get upgraded to 4.2 cause you will need to install python, perl, smalltalk and maybe pascal.
Only good thing is that I succeeded using sencha cmd 2.0 in 4.1.2 environment and I am still able to compile the app old way. And I think I will stick with this.
I am worried about ExtJS too
I am a professonial ExtJS developer and make my money with developing with this framework. I have the Sencha Complete package and pay good money for this. But I have already 2 occasions where I had to downgrade my software to the GPL version 4.0.7 (from 4.1.2), because of bugs in the commercial higher releases. It is for me not understandable that the commercial later releases of ExtJS are having flaws that 4.0.7 doesn't have. And regarding support I agree that Sencha is taking things not very serious. I have also reported a bug that was not in 4.0.7, but is in 4.1.2. As a remark I got that it was not clear if the bug would be solved in 4.1.3.
Come on, how can you release a newer version, only available to commercial developers and have bugs in it, that the GPL version doesn't have? Why am I paying suppport, to only hear that bugs might not be solved. I am a great admirer of ExtJS, but please take it serious. I have projects, with budgets over 15.000 Euro and therefor I am really relying on good ExtJS releases. That is what I pay for, I hope.
I have a few big projects still running build with ExtJS 3. And I must say they are running flawless and fast.
ExtJS 4 is slower than version 3, but nevertheless I would never build another project again in version 3, simply because I don't want to keep the knowledge updated for 2 versions of the framework.
Please Sencha, keep ExtJS the best framework for frontend Ajax development up to date and don't put all your cards on the mobile Touch. There are still enough customers out there that don't have their employees fiddling around with tablets. Some developers are earning their bread with it. Don't underestimate that.
Seriously Irked and Worried
I'm moving this into her own thread.