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Kigs Framework Introduction (8/8) - Data Driven Application

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17 Jun 2020MIT4 min read
A multi purpose, cross-platform, free and Open Source C++ framework. Data Driven Application
This article ends the series. We will see an example on how to create a basic application without modifying the C++ code of the template Data Driven Application.

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Table of Contents


Kigs framework proposes a template for Data Driven Applications. Data Driven Applications allow you to navigate between different screens (called Sequences) using mainly XML and/or Lua files. However, the Kigs framework remains a C++ framework and the development of a complete and complex application will probably require the writing of part of the code in C++.

Here is an example of a more complex Data Driven Application based on the Kigs framework:

Fun with YouTube Data API v3 (Public Data) and Kigs Framework

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Using the Template

See Kigs framework GitHub Getting Started Wiki page for details.

To generate a new Data Driven Application, go to kigs/projects folder and launch (double click) CreateNewDDProject.vbs script. Enter a project name in the dialog box and click OK. Add your project to the CMakeFile.txt, then go to kigs/scripts and launch one of the scripts to generate the desired platform solution.

Overview of a Data Driven Application

A default new Data Driven Application created with the CreateNewDDProject.vbs contains some asset files (data) in kigs/projects/YourProjectName/Android/assets folder. The main files are:

  • AppInit.xml: Contains main window / screen information
  • LaunchScreen.xml: contains the first launched screen (default is a Kigs Logo with fade in/out)
  • Screen_Main.xml: contains the second launched screen (default is a blue screen)

kigs/projects/YourProjectName/Headers folder contains two header files:

  • KigsApplication.h: some defines you generally don't have to edit
  • YourProjectName.h: declaration of the application class

kigs/projects/YourProjectName/Sources folder contains only one file:

  • YourProjectName.cpp: definition of the application class

After adding new files to Headers or Sources folder, use the scripts in kigs/scripts to generate again the desired platform solution.

GlobalConfig File

When the application is launched, a GlobalConfig file is searched and if available, imported. The global config file name is first search for current platform using: GlobalConfig + platform name + .xml.

i.e.,: GlobalConfigWin32.xml, GlobalConfigAndroid.xml ...

If not found, "GlobalConfig.xml" is searched.

This file can be used to create application wide instances. This file is not mandatory. There's no GlobalConfig file in Sample8 example.

AppInit File

AppInit.xml file is mandatory. It is used to initialize Window and RenderingScreen.

Here is the AppInit.xml file used for Sample8:

<?xml version="1.0"?>
<!-- create application window -->
<Inst N="AppWindow" Type="Window">
   <!-- PositionX is from screen left side if positive, centered if -1 
        and from right side if negative ( and not -1 )
	    PositionY is from screen upper side if positive, 
        centered if -1 and from lower side if negative ( and not -1) -->
   <Attr N="PositionX" V="-1"/>
   <Attr N="PositionY" V="-1"/>
   <Attr N="SizeX" V="960"/>
   <Attr N="SizeY" V="600"/>
   <Attr N="FullScreen" V="false"/>
   <Attr N="Mouse Cursor" V="true"/>
   <!-- create rendering screen ( <=> rendering surface ) -->
   <Inst N="theRenderingScreen" Type="RenderingScreen">
      <Attr N="SizeX" V="0">
         <!-- retrieve Window size X -->
         <Modifier Type="CoreItemOperatorModifier" V="#..->SizeX#"/>
      <Attr N="SizeY" V="0">
         <!-- retrieve Window size Y -->
         <Modifier Type="CoreItemOperatorModifier" V="#..->SizeY#"/>
      <!-- virtual screen size if 1280*800 -->
      <Attr N="DesignSizeX" V="1280"/>
      <Attr N="DesignSizeY" V="800"/>
      <Attr N="BitsPerZ" V="32"/>
      <Attr N="Brightness" V="0"/>
      <Attr N="BackDropColor" V="{0.0,0.0,0.0}"/>
      <Attr N="VSync" V="true"/>
   <!-- initialize localizations -->
   <Attr T="string" N="LocalizationInitFile" V="InitLoc.json" Dyn="true"/>

Some options can be set through dynamic attributes on Window instance:


<Attr T="string" N="FirstSequenceFile" V="FirstSequence.xml" Dyn="true"/>

XML File containing the first sequence to launch (default is "LaunchScreen.xml").


Bundle file can be used to indicate the path of a file using its name (not detailed here).

<Attr T="string" N="BundleFileName" V="files.bundle" Dyn="true"/>


File used to init FilePathManager (not detailed here).

<Attr T="string" N="FilePathManagerInitFile" V="FilePathManager.json" Dyn="true"/>


Initialization file for localization manager (not detailed here, but Sample8 manages some localizations).

<Attr T="string" N="LocalizationInitFile" V="Localization.json" Dyn="true"/>


Load given package file (not detailed here).

<Attr T="string" N="PackageFileName" V="package.kpkg" Dyn="true"/>


Sequences can be seen as different sections of the application. A video game application for example, can have a splash screen, then an introduction, then a menu screen giving access to a parameter screen, the game itself and a credit screen. Each of those will be a sequence (or several sequences) in a Kigs Data Driven application.

Simple sequence can only be defined by a UI2DLayer. Here is the default splash screen:

<?xml version="1.0"?>
<Inst N="UILayer" T="UI2DLayer">
   <Attr N="SizeY" V="800"/>
   <Attr N="SizeX" V="1280"/>
   <Attr N="Priority" V="0"/>
   <Attr N="RenderingScreen" V="RenderingScreen:theRenderingScreen"/>
   <Inst N="Interface" T="UIItem">
      <Attr N="SizeY" V="800"/>
      <Attr N="SizeX" V="1280"/>
      <Attr N="Opacity" V="0.0"/>
      <Attr N="Dock" V="{0.500000,0.50000}"/>
      <Attr N="Anchor" V="{0.500000,0.50000}"/>
      <Inst N="Logo" T="UIImage">
         <Attr N="Texture" V="Logo.png"/>
         <Attr N="SizeY" V="800"/>
         <Attr N="SizeX" V="1280"/>
         <Attr N="Priority" V="50"/>
         <Attr N="Dock" V="{0.500000,0.50000}"/>
         <Attr N="Anchor" V="{0.500000,0.50000}"/>
         <Attr N="KeepRatio" V="false"/>
   <Inst N="FadeIn_Launcher" T="CoreSequenceLauncher">
      <Attr N="StartOnFirstUpdate" V="true"/>
      <Attr N="Sequence">
            { "Wait" : [  0.1 ] },
            { "Notification" :  [ 0 , "StackSequence", "Screen_Main.xml" ] }

More complex sequences are generally defined as DataDrivenSequence.

A DataDrivenSequence can have several UI2DLayer and/or Scene3D children, and manage transition between sequences.

Here is a Sample8 first sequence (after splash screen) Screen_Main.xml.


DataDrivenTransition can be added to DataDrivenSequence to determine transition effect when going from one sequence to another.

Here is a simple "fade to black the previous sequence, then fade from black to the current sequence transition":

<Inst N="transition" T="DataDrivenTransition">
   <Attr N="PreviousAnim">
      { "SetValue1D" : [0.0,0.0,"Show" ]}
   <Attr N="NextAnim">
      { "SetValue1D" : [0.0,0.0,"Show" ]},
      { "Wait" : [  0.5 ] },
      { "SetValue1D" : [0.0,1.0,"Show" ]},
      { "Notification" :  [ 0 , "InitScreen" ] }

Sample8 Data Driven Application

The Sample8 Data Driven Application C++ code is exactly the same as the template Data Driven Application. Everything is done in XML / JSON / Lua files in the assets folder.

After splash screen, the first sequence is composed of a 3D scene and a UI2DLayer with some buttons.

Sample 8 first sequence snapshot

A node with an attached spot light is animated:

<Ref P="Node3D:Light" DontAddAsSon="true">
   <!-- Ask this Node3D to be "pivot" controlled --> 
   <Upgrd N="PivotUp"/>
   <!-- the pivot is set in global coordinates --> 
   <Attr N="IsGlobal" V="true"/>
   <!-- around z axis --> 
   <Attr N="PivotAxis" V="{0.000000,0.000000,1.000000}"/>
   <!-- animate pivot angle with an infinite loop --> 
   <Inst Name="animateLightPos" Type="CoreSequenceLauncher">
      <Attr N="Sequence"><![CDATA[
         {"Linear1D":[4,0,6.28,"Angle"]} ]}
      <!-- animation sequence starts directly -->
      <Attr N="StartOnFirstUpdate" V="true" />

A second sequence can be launched by pressing localized "Next" button:

Sample 8 second sequence snapshot

Kigs Tools Embedded Inspector and Editor

When compiled in Debug or ReleaseTools mode, an embedded instance inspector / editor is available by pressing CTRL + F1 keys.

Sample 8 kigs tools

You can inspect all CoreModifiable instances in the application, search them using the Hierarchy / Filter text input.

For example, go to the online Sample8 version, press CTRL+F1, then in the Filter input type "button", then click on "camup_btn" in the list and look at all the button attributes in the "Attributes" window. You can then play with the size, position, color... of the button.

Find all the sample code from this wiki section in Sample8 project (browse the code).

Already Published in this Series

  1. Kigs Framework Introduction (1/8) - Overview
  2. Kigs Framework Introduction (2/8) - CoreModifiable
  3. Kigs Framework Introduction (3/8) - Attributes
  4. Kigs Framework Introduction (4/8) - Methods
  5. Kigs Framework Introduction (5/8) - CoreItem
  6. Kigs Framework Introduction (6/8) - Signal, Slot, Notification
  7. Kigs Framework Introduction (7/8) - Lua Binding
  8. Kigs Framework Introduction (8/8) - Data Driven Application


  • 17th June, 2020: Initial version


This article, along with any associated source code and files, is licensed under The MIT License


About the Author

Stephane Capo
Chief Technology Officer NEXT-BIM
France France
CTO of NEXT-BIM, I also supervise and participate in the development of Kigs framework.

Comments and Discussions

QuestionEnglish Pin
Member 1486610717-Jun-20 13:34
MemberMember 1486610717-Jun-20 13:34 
AnswerRe: English Pin
Stephane Capo24-Jun-20 0:32
MemberStephane Capo24-Jun-20 0:32 
QuestionEnglish Pin
Member 1486610717-Jun-20 13:34
MemberMember 1486610717-Jun-20 13:34 

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