Posts Tagged ‘framework’

New home for ATK

June 19th, 2008 by Ivo

Now that my book is finally out I had some time to get a new website out the door.

The ATK Framework, which has been living on Achievo's website for a few years, finally has a home of its own, with a brand new design: The design was created by our house designer Almer Kaasschieter.

There are also some project changes as I haven't had much time for the framework the past year. Peter C. Verhage is taking over release management (he's the one who implemented most of the fancy Ajax stuff, the generate-an-app-from-the-db-schema functionality and much more, so it's in good hands), and Boy Baukema has formed an ATK Documentation Group that is going to deal with the lack of proper documentation.

Also, there are Zend Framework and Code Igniter bridges on their way, and I've heard a rumour someone is working on a Symfony bridge. This way, you can combine the power of those frameworks with the backend strength of ATK.

Introducing the i7 Framework

September 28th, 2007 by Ivo

"Oh no, yet another framework for PHP..."

Admit it: that was what you thought when you read the title, didn't you?

But rest assured, we haven't created a new framework.

But we did launch something.

For 7 years now, we've been working on ATK, and it has found its niche as a framework for developing business applications. Where some frameworks focus on providing components, and other frameworks focus on websites, ATK has more and more focussed on business apps: these internal applications that companies use to run their business. (And also often as an easy-to-build administrative backend to some webapplications).

ATK typically lives on an internal Linux or Windows server in an office or corporate environment.

This year, a specific set of circumstances led to a whole new market for the framework.

The most important in this respect was the release of Zend Core for IBM's System-i. "System i" may be relatively unknown in the PHP community, but it's the new name (they change it every few years) of what was once called the AS400, and if that doesn't ring a bell, it's the big machines that run all these enterprise 'green screen' environments of large retailers, factories etc.

Zend Core basically brings native PHP to the System i world. This means that PHP is now a valid alternative to Java, when modernizing all these enterprise applications, and creating a web frontend for them.

The fun thing is: about 90% of the apps running on System i are business applications. Data management, data flows, workflows, business processes. Things that ATK is good at.

So this provides a great opportunity for the framework.

The operating system running on System-i is called 'i5/OS', so the calculation we did was:

i5 + PHP + ATK = i7

Corny, granted; but giving it a new name (which seems to be relevant in the IBM world) gives us the possibility to make this a separate product range. i7 basically is ATK for i5, with native i5 drivers, and an extensive support package. For some reasons, in the big blue IBM world, 'free software' is considered evil, so we had to add a support package in order to be taken seriously. ;-)

The past 2 days, we have presented "the i7 Framework for System-i" at the System-i Expo in the Netherlands. We did 2 sessions of 50 minutes demonstrating the framework to IT managers, most of which hadn't even heard of PHP yet. And the results are promising. Not only for our little framework, but also for PHP in general.

Info on the i7 framework can be found at Currently in Dutch (because of time pressure before the Expo), but an international version will follow soon.

ATK 6.1 released

August 30th, 2007 by Ivo

I just released ATK 6.1; It contains several new features such as Ajax based dialogs, a new language file (Indonesian), and several bug fixes.

The most important however is that it fixes an XSS vulnerability based on the usage of $_SERVER["PHP_SELF"] that we had overlooked.

It is recommended to upgrade ATK applications to ATK 6.1.

The release can be found on

The changelog is included in the release, and at

ATK6 released

June 12th, 2007 by Ivo

Today it's exactly one year since ATK 5.6 was released. So the new release was long overdue.

It's finally here, along with a new website which has a lot less fuzz, and is more to the point.

The changelog is a whopping 1056 lines. This translates to rougly 300 changes for this release. We might say this is a new generation, which is marked with a new major version number, and a new default layout. And it finally has ajax support (the way you are used to in ATK: add a flag to add autocompletion to a field, add one line of code to make things refresh on the fly). Most of you have been using the nightlies for months now, so this may not be new for you, but many companies are still using 5.6 for their apps.

The new release can be downloaded here.

Given the amount of changes, upgrading might not be trivial. Consult the forum if you need help.

phpthrowdown has started

January 27th, 2007 by Ivo

The phpthrowdown competition has officially started. Our timeslot actually began 4 hours ago, but we started roughly 2 hours ago (just couldn't get myself to get up at 6 am on a saturday :) ).

So far, we've been defining the application we're going to build, been designing a data model, importing our framework into the repository, and we're currently starting the actual coding.

We have a team of five:

  • Almer Kaasschieter, our graphical guru who will design the gui

  • Jasper van der Hulst, our productmanager, who will be coaching us, write docs and oversee the functionality
  • Guido van Biemen, programmer
  • Yury Golovnya, programmer
  • me (Ivo Jansch), also as a programmer

We've decided to create a small application for the automotive industry (to keep track of car models etc.)

I'll try to post updates to our progress as comments to this blog entry.

I would like to thank Elizabeth, who did a great job organizing this, and Bill, who runs the SVN server and has been very helpful so far in getting us started with the repository.

ATK 5.6.0 released

June 12th, 2006 by Ivo

We've just released ATK 5.6.0, the next stable version of the Achievo ATK framework. The new release can be downloaded here.

This release contains over 140 changes and improvements.

Some highlights of the changes since ATK 5.5:

  • 5 new attributes, from a simple attribute for manipulating URLS to a flexible calculator that can add columns containing arbitrary calculations of other attributes, and a generic attribute that can turn any other attribute into an internationalised data field.

  • A new 'shuttle' relation for easy selection of records in many-to-many relationships.
  • 2 new themes, 'macoslike' and 't3skin'. The latter creates a Typo3 4.0 look for ATK, useful for integrating ATK applications into a Typo3 environment.
  • An AJAX based generic data structure search functionality.
  • An atkMessageQueue for relaying messages to the user.
  • Many API enhancements (new methods, new features and new flags)

And many more fixes and improvements. The complete change log can be found on the release notes page.