MioFactory, MioToolbox, Desktop Tickers, Alerts and more

I developed MioFactory in 1995 and then exclusively used it during almost 15 years, because it was an extremely efficient way to build Windows app.

MioFactory could generate native Windows apps, but also a very light, non binary file format that could run on any PC installed with MioEngine. It was possble to slide an app into multiple widgets, and to have them work together on the user’s device.

MioFactory was the ideal development tool for HTML based app, as a scripting language, the MioScipt, could add functionality to JavaScript that was too limited otherwise.
After 15 years of improvement, JavaScript became mature enough to allow me to replace MioFactory with a basic HTML container running standard universal web apps.

MioFactory

MioFactory was a powerful software generator requiring basic web programming knowledge. With the help of the templates, the developer could create gadgets or desktop applications in HTML, JavaScript, Flash, and any server side technologies. Anyone who could create a Web page could create a Windows application interacting with web servers – years before PhoneGap and other similar solutions.
MioScript was a key componement, allowing the developer to add features to JavaScript with a low level access to the local computer.

The development environment allows developers to choose a template, manage the application files, edit the code and build the apps. The output files was extremely small (400kb) and easy to distribute over low bandwidth Internet.

Type of applications that could be created with MoiFactory:

  • Desktop Alerts;
  • Desktop News Ticker;
  • Desktop Tools and Gadgets of any kind;
  • RSS Readers;
  • Audio, Video, TV and DVD Players;
  • Electronics / Multimedia Books;
  • Slide shows, animations and full screen games;
  • Robotics and home automation applications;
  • Applications for Windows Media Center;
  • Applications for Ultra-Mobile PC;
  • Applications for Cars PC;

Here are the key features of MioFactory:

  • Application Templates: Create a desktop ticker, a desktop alert, etc. using a template and adapt it to fit your needs.
  • Test your application with a single click.
  • Create light autonomous EXE files (500 kb or more) running on Windows 98 or later.
  • Add an user-friendly installer to your application.
  • The installer installs the application, add shortcuts and values in the registry database. An uninstaller and a repair feature are also installed.
  • Powerful integrated code editor for HTML, JavaScript, MioScript, CSS files and more.
  • HTML, DHTML, JavaScript, Flash, Windows Media Player, and more supported.
  • Your applications can download data from the Internet, show online web pages, stay up-to-date with RSS feed and other XML files, etc.
  • MioScript, a scripting language to accede to hundreds of additional functions: Drawing, local files, registry database, web browser objects, RS232, multiple displays, shortcuts, icon in the system tray, windows and shapes, menus, dialog boxes, etc.
  • Integrated Debugged to help you to find errors in your code.

 

Desktop Alerts

Desktop Alerts was a great, non intrusive way for a website to keep a contact with the customer always active. Desktop Alerts was popular for both BtoB and BtoC. The company could push a message from a powerful web based interface, and could set a call to action. The desktop ticker was used from critical alerts to marketing messages.

The feature list was as follow:

  • Customizable and Brandable
  • Small EXE file (600 to 700 Kb), runs with all versions of windows (98, NT4, 2000, ME, XP, Vista)
  • Low CPU consumption
  • Status Icon with options menu, login Feature
  • Alerts users when an update is available
  • Scans for alerts every minute, 100% Content Delivery

Alerts

  • Scheduled content delivery
  • Supports Expiration Date, repeats alerts at custom interval
  • Send to a group or to all
  • HTML, Pictures, Video, Flash, plays sound at reception
  • Popup or full-screen alerts
  • Optimized Band-Width usage (average 360 Mb/Month/1000 users)

 

Desktop Tickers

Over one million end-users in over 70 countries used this solution, and customers used it to build loyalty, attract new customers and increase traffic to their web sites. The Desktop News Ticker was a downloadable ticker that remained opened in a customer’s desktop, providing an open channel for customizable applications like communications and advertisement.

I built hundreds of those Desktop Tickers for prestigious customers from around the world. I had almost no competition and the desktop ticker was a major tool to attract and keep users for a media company. It was difficult to get traffic on a website and a large percentage of end users was ready to install a desktop ticker displaying a scrolling text message all the day.

First, I created custom desktop tickers to customers. In a second step, developers could download MioFactory and use the Desktop Ticker template to build their own. The Desktop News Ticker was offering amazing flexibility using internet standards HTML, XML, javaScript and RSS. A statistics module option could enable companies to measure the results and impact of the application and react accordingly. Available statistics ranges from conversion rate, number of installations and uninstallations, exposure time and more.

An example is the APTN News Ticker was widely used and praised throughout the newsrooms around the world. The APTN Direct ticker is password protected and is available to APTN Direct clients only

PC Plus News Ticker was displaying on the user’s desktop international news provided by Reuters. Created for a masterclass (issue 222).

 

MioToolbox

MioToolbox was composed of useful tools for all of those who works with pixels.

  • The Color Picker allows you to quickly choose a color and HTML code.
  • The horizontal and vertical Screen Rulers allows you to Know the exact size and position of any element in the screen.
  • The Screen Capture tool allows you to copy a part of the screen to the clipboard or to a file.
  • The Screen Magnifier follow up the mouse to increase your precision.

Thanks to a partnership with VisicomMedia (branded version below), mioToolbox was popular with a million of active users.

ClipFactory

By moving a viewfinder over the screen, the user could capture multiple images and generate a small movie from them. Years before YouTube, it was a nice way to share funny video clips with music: the mio format was light and could be exchanged between users.

MioMotion

Probably one of my favorite creation – this app, built with MioFactory, allows static picture manipulation to generate animated movies.
Using basic image deformation, it was possible with this app to build something looking as a movie from static images.

TagMachine

With TagMachine, build with MioFactory, the user can draw directly over the screen, and send the tag to anyone. When received, the tag is reproduced on the recipient screen.

Mio Nasa TV

Nasa TV, another app built with MioFactory, provides real-time coverage of agency activities and missions as well as resource video to the news media, and educational programming to teachers, students and the general public. Watch Nasa TV with Mio Nasa TV.

RSS Reader

RSS readers was popular, so I built an application template to generate RSS readers with pre-defined feeds.I delivered tens of them to various customers.

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