FireMonkey 2 Under The Hood Changes: Properties

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There is another change in FireMonkey 2 in RAD Studio XE3 which does not show up on the What's New page, but which pays dividends in terms of performance, usability and extensibility: Refining component properties.

The FireMonkey team has performed a comprehensive audit of all the component properties to re-examine whether each property should be published or not, whether the property's default value is appropriate and whether it is published at the appropriate level of the component hierarchy tree. The result of this audit was a lot of little changes throughout the FireMonkey framework.

When a component property is published (that is, is appears in a published section of a class declaration), then the property will appear in the form designer's Object Inspector at design-time. It also means that the value of the property can also be stored in the form file (.fmx file).

In RAD Studio XE3, many properties have been unpublished because their values were not relevant to the component and were not used by the component. By unpublishing these properties, it means that forms load more quickly because the runtime does not have to spend time reading and setting these property values. It also means that the Object Inspector is not littered with irrelevant properties, so the components are easier to use at design time.

For properties which remain published, the team has made sure that the properties are generally not published in base classes. This means that developers and technology partners which make custom components can precisely determine the properties which should be published in their custom subclasses.

This refinement helps FireMonkey become a more mature, more usable framework for cross-platform development.


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