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arrive method

For an input field, the method (subroutine) that Toolkit calls before processing the field. For a list, a method (subroutine) that Toolkit calls when highlighting an item.

application container

The outermost window for a Toolkit application. Along with the application title bar (header), frame, menu bar, and footer, the application window owns all windows created for the application, including the application window, the information line, and any toolbars for the application. When the application container is moved or resized, the application window is automatically moved or resized.

application window

The window that owns all Synergy windows and lists created for the application. It is the area below the title bar and menu bar, above the information line, and inside of the outermost window border for the application and any toolbars for the application.



The portion of the display screen between the menu bar and the information line. The screen body will contain all the application’s placed windows.


callback routine

An external routine that, when called, appropriates all processing control, including error processing. The calling program regains control only when the callback routine explicitly abdicates it. Note that callback routines are called asynchronously, which means that they can be called between statements in another routine.


A window’s caption is synonymous with its title. In a Windows environment, the application as a whole also has a caption, which can be modified with E_SECT.

cascading menu

Another name for a submenu. Cascading describes the effect that submenus create on your screen.

change method

The method (subroutine) that Toolkit calls after validating an input field.

child list

A list in a composite window. Child lists can be either ActiveX Toolkit lists or standard Toolkit lists.

child window

A window within a composite window. Child windows can be any type of Toolkit window: an input window, an ActiveX container, another composite window, and so forth.

client area

The visible area within a window. This area does not include scroll bars, the information line, the footer, the title bar (header), or menu bars.

color palette

There are up to 16 combinations of foreground/background color that can be assigned to any Toolkit rendition. The entire set is called a palette, and an individual combination is called a palette code. You can change the colors assigned to a given palette code by setting the WNDC environment variable, or through the U_REND, U_MODREND, or U_EDITREND subroutines.


A window that contains another window or control. For example, a container for a button is the window (e.g., a tab set) that contains the button.


An interactive tool (on Windows) for creating and modifying window scripts.

composite container window

The parent window for a composite window.

composite window

A window that consists of a parent window (a composite container window) and child windows and lists, but functions and appears to the user as a single window.

configuration field

A field you can modify within your program to change operational characteristics of UI Toolkit.


The next field that will be processed in an input set. You can change the context with the I_NEXT subroutine.


data control commands

The commands that affect the position and display of text within text (general) windows and input windows.


A UI Toolkit utility that enables you to look into the windowing environment and evaluate the state of the Toolkit system.


A method used by the list routines to load list data. List items are loaded as needed for display purposes, rather than all at once at the beginning. This can significantly improve the initial performance of processing a large list.


Refers to a menu column or entry that the user cannot currently select. See also enabled.


To send an event to the routine that is appropriate for handling it. Typically, this involves calling a method (subroutine), or returning the event to the parent routine.


The display of a program consists of the menu bar and screen body. It also owns menu column and window placement (although the menu columns and windows themselves belong to the environment).

display area

The part of a window that shows on the screen. It is a subset of the total window area (and can be equal to the total window area). See also view.

display attributes

The attributes of each display cell on the screen can be any combination of reverse video, blinking, highlighted (bold), and underlined.

display length

The maximum number of characters that can be displayed in a field. This includes any formatting characters and the negative sign if negative numbers are allowed for the field.

display rendition

A combination of the display attributes and color of the screen. Each screen cell has its own display rendition.

display screen

The screen layout used by Toolkit. The screen is divided into five sections: header, menu bar, body, information line, and footer.

drag bar

In a Windows environment, if DRAGBAR is specified as ON (using the .BORDER command), the window’s title bar functions also as a drag bar. The user can move such a window by clicking on the window’s title (or caption) bar and, while continuing to press down on the mouse button, dragging the window to a new location within the application.


See dtkmap.ism.


A library that contains the renditions for each defined rendition scheme. Each rendition scheme is stored as a record in dtkrnd.ism. See also rendition scheme.



A programmerdefined subroutine that Toolkit calls when the user selects a menu entry whose internal name is “O_HELP,” if the method was registered with E_METHOD.

empty field

A field that contains absolutely no data (not even blanks for alpha fields or zeros for decimal or implieddecimal fields). An empty field is also a field that has been neither displayed nor entered since it was last initialized. See also full field.


Refers to a menu column or entry that the user is able to select. See also disabled.


A program design philosophy in which a routine is called to perform a specified function, but how it performs that function need not be known to the caller. Private data and methods for the encapsulated routine are not accessible to other routines. Also referred to as “blackbox processing”. See also privatized.


Special optional characters displayed at either end of a scroll bar on a UNIX or OpenVMS system, which may optionally indicate whether or not further progress in that direction is possible.


A possible selection in a menu.


A program state that consists of the current definition of the screen, any terminal settings and processing options, and open channels. When you create (enter) a new environment, UI Toolkit saves the old environment and copies its attributes to the current one. Any change to an environment item supersedes the previous contents.

environment level

Each creation of a new environment. Environments are nested as you go from one to another. A program can have up to 32 environment levels with 16 being the default. An application moves from one environment to another with the E_ENTER subroutine, and leaves an environment level using the E_EXIT subroutine. Upon exit, the current environment is deleted, including all of its local items, and the previous environment is restored. See also shared display.


A programmerdefined subroutine that Toolkit calls when the user selects a menu entry whose internal name begins with “U_” if the method was registered with E_METHOD. It must dispatch the menu entry to the appropriate method. See also dispatch.


An occurrence to which a routine must respond. Events can be usergenerated (for example, by selecting a menu entry) or programdriven (for example, a list needs to load a new item). Events can be dispatched by Toolkit in two ways: (1) They can be returned to the caller for dispatching (for example, menu selections); or (2) They can be dispatched automatically to a specified method.

eventdriven programming

A programming style that allows Toolkit to control your application after you have called a Toolkit subroutine. After the UI Toolkit subroutine has finished its task, it returns control to your program, potentially signaling that an event has occurred that your program must now dispatch. Also known as “eventstyle programming”. See also dispatch and encapsulation.


fatal utility errors

A problem that results in immediate, unconditional termination of your program, unless trapped by the FATAL subroutine.

file stack

A single physical file that contains multiple logical scratch files accessed in a stack manner. Only the most recently opened logical file can be extended, though prior files can be accessed. Logical files contain only fixedlength records. The file stack is managed by the filestack routines (FS_xxx).

filestack level

Identifies a logical file within a file stack.

fixed font

A font in which every character has the same width. Also known as a monospaced font. See also proportional font.


A design for a set of characters, comprised of typeface, point size, width, and spacing. For example, within the Helvetica typeface there are many different fonts: 10point italic, 12point bold, and so forth.

font handle

An identifier associated with a font. Be aware that this identifier is not a memory handle, and, therefore, the font handle’s value can coincidentally be the same as an existing memory handle.

font palette

A group of font entries, each associating a font name with a typeface, point size, and sizing character combination. You can change a font palette entry by explicitly modifying it in a Synergy initialization file, modifying it with Composer, or by calling the %U_WNDFONT function.


An optional trailer for the UI Toolkit screen layout. The footer can be up to four lines long. You can place information into the footer with the E_SECT subroutine.

force buffer

The location to which pending input is copied if the user selects a menu entry (for example, a search function) before pressing RETURN to enter the data. You must use the I_FORCE subroutine to get that data from the force buffer into your program.

full field

A field that contains data. Note that a field can be full of blanks and still be considered full. A full field has been either displayed or entered since its last initialization. See also empty field.


general window

A basic window that is not an input window, selection window, list, or menu column. General windows are usually used to convey information, such as error or information messages. Text windows and Message windows are general windows. See also text window.


Refers to an element that is owned by the entire environment system rather than by a specific environment level. Global elements can be defined or deleted at any environment level, but they are not automatically deleted when exiting an environment. Global elements include Synergy channels, columns, windows, and lists. See also local.



An optional banner for the UI Toolkit screen layout. The header can be up to four lines long. You can place information into the header with the E_SECT subroutine.

hot entry

A routine that is not tied to any particular program and is accessible from anywhere in your application. Hotentry processing is performed by the EHELP_METHOD and EUTILS_METHOD subroutines, which you write yourself but which are called by one of the UI Toolkit general input routines (such as I_INPUT, I_INPFLD, T_EDIT, or T_VIEW).


include file

A file containing data definitions that is included by a routine using the .INCLUDE compiler directive. Also called a definition file.

information line

A single line at the bottom of the screen body (above the footer) that is used by Toolkit to display messages and general information.


When one class of object is derived from another, it may retain characteristics (properties) of its parent class. This is termed inheritance. In Toolkit, fields derived from the Repository inherit all the properties defined therein, but may overload some of them.

input field

A window field associated with a set of characteristics that define how terminal input and display are to occur.

input length

The maximum number of characters that can be entered into an input field.

input set

A list of one or more fields in an input window. An input set defines the default order for processing fields.

input window

A window that can contain text, input fields, and buttons.


key map

A record in the key map file that defines the correspondence between the function keys and other special keys on the user’s keyboard and the functions they perform. A user’s terminal type is stored in the logical DTKTERM (or TERM), which UI Toolkit uses as the key to locate the appropriate record in the key map file. When the window environment is initialized, Toolkit loads the key map defined in DTKTERM (or TERM).

key map file

A file (dtkmap.ism by default) that associates keys (escape sequences) with internal function codes to create shortcuts.

key mapping script file

A file (keymap.ctl by default) that contains function codes for shortcuts for a given environment or terminal type. When you generate a window library, shortcuts defined in the key mapping script file are combined with shortcuts specified with .ENTRY.


See key mapping script file.



The spacing between lines of text.

leave method

For an input field, the method (subroutine) that Toolkit calls after processing the field. For a list, the method (subroutine) that Toolkit calls when it is preparing to change which item is highlighted.

linked list

A list of records in a logical file within a file stack. Linked lists are maintained with the linkedlist routines (LL_xxx). Records can be inserted or deleted at any point, and the ordering of logically adjacent records can be interchanged. First, last, previous, next, and previously marked records can be retrieved.


A set of data and windows managed by the listprocessing routines (L_xxx) to maintain a visible list of items. List items are loaded on demand. New items can be inserted at any point, and existing items can be deleted. Adjacent items can be interchanged. The list pointer can be positioned up or down one item, one page of items, to the top or bottom of the list or of the current page. The horizontal display area can be modified, and is automatically tied to the display area of the list’s input window. Searching for a specific alphanumeric string is also supported. See also list class and null list.

list class

A set of specifications for creation of a list. These include default placement, number of visible items, headers, footers, whether or not the list may be null, and other options. You can define list classes in scripts and store them in window libraries (with the .LISTCLASS command) or you can create them at runtime (with the L_CREATE subroutine).

load method

The method (subroutine) that the UI Toolkit’s listprocessing routine calls when it needs to load items in a list.


Refers to an element owned by the defining environment level. Only the defining environment level can delete a local element. Local items include channels, columns, and windows. All local columns and windows are deleted and all local channels are purged when an environment level is exited. See also global.


A way to associate Synergy channels and window IDs with the internal control structures of Toolkit. All channels and windows are automatically logged if they are opened or loaded with a Toolkit subroutine. If a program creates, loads or restores a window without using the U_LDWND, M_LDCOL, or I_LDINP subroutine, the window ID must be logged into the utility system by the U_LOGWND subroutine. When the window is logged, it is marked as global or local. If it is local, the current environment is the defining environment level.

logical file

A set of fixedlength records grouped together and maintained in a file stack. A logical file is associated with a single level.



The number of spaces from the left and right edge of the window that will not be occupied by text.


A menu consists of menu columns associated with the menu bar.

menu bar

A oneline bar across the screen that lists the menu columns available to the current environment level. The menu bar follows the optional header and is part of the display screen. See also processmenu key.

menu column

A window that contains entries which a user can select. There are two kinds of menu columns: primary and submenu. A primary menu column is a dropdown list of selections from the menu bar. A submenu column is a dropdown list of selections adjacent to a primary menu entry or another submenu entry. Both types of menu columns are defined in a script file and are generated either by the Script or Proto programs, or at runtime. The terms “menu column” and “column” are used interchangeably. See also entry, Script, Proto.


A subroutine or function that you can write, but that is called by Toolkit. There are event methods (arrive methods, leave methods, etc.), composite window processing methods, environment methods, and so forth.


A term used in Windows environments to describe functions, routines, or applications that suspend all other processing until that function (routine or application) is done processing. Applicationmodal means that other processes within that application are unavailable until the modal process is complete; however, the user can use alt+tab or click on another application to move and do processing within other applications.


nonwindow data

In list processing, the data buffer containing additional information that you don’t want to display in the list. Nonwindow data can be supplemental data that needs to be stored and retrieved for each list item. Although this data may duplicate input window data, it will be stored and retrieved in the format passed to the list processor, whereas the input window data is stored and retrieved as displayed.

null list

A list with no items loaded into it, or a list that has had its last item deleted. You can prohibit null lists in a list class. See also list class.

numeric fields

A d (decimal) or i (integer) input field.


occluded window

A window that is covered, in whole or in part, by another window. No terminal input can be performed within the covered area of the window. All other processing of the windows remains unaffected by the occlusion.


Redefining the properties or methods for an object. In Toolkit, the properties of fields derived from the Repository can be redefined, or overloaded, in the script file (or by IB_FIELD or I_FLDMOD). The general help method supplied by UI Toolkit (TKP_HELP) can be overloaded by registering your own version with E_METHOD.


point size

The height of characters in a font. A point equals 1/72 of an inch.

pristine state

The initial state of the input window display data and the associated data field upon creation of a list (in other words, as passed to L_CREATE). This state is recreated each time the list processor requests load of an item, and is useful for loading initial values (prompts, static data).


Reserved for the private use of a graphic control and unavailable for public use by the calling routines.

processmenu key

The key or key sequence that the user presses to activate a menu. This key is a toggle that also deactivates the menu. As Toolkit is distributed, the processmenu key is alt on Windows and ctrl+p on all other systems.

proportional font

A font in which different characters have different widths. See also fixed font.


A menudriven program that creates windows from a script file, displays them on the screen, and stores them in a window library.

pseudo array

A singledimension array of type a, d, d., i1, i2, i4, i8, p, or p. (for example, 10a5).


quickselect character

A single character that accesses a menu, column entry, or selection window item. The default quickselect character is the first nonblank character of each entry. Quickselect characters are not case sensitive and can be defined in the menu column or selection window script file.


ratio of current to maximum

The relationship between what is currently displayed in a window and the total possible.

redraw key

The key or key sequence that the user presses to redraw the screen. As Toolkit is distributed, the redraw key sequence is ctrl+r.

rendition file

See dtkrnd.ism.

rendition scheme

A record in dtkrnd.ism that defines the display attributes and colors for your screen. Each rendition scheme has a unique name that UI Toolkit uses as the key to locate the appropriate record in dtkrnd.ism. See also dtkrnd.ism and working rendition scheme.


Where data definitions are stored.


The application that orders and defines your data structures, files, and attributes.


A main routine, subroutine, or function.



A utility that converts and moves field information from existing script files into the Repository.


A program that creates windows or columns from a script file and saves them in a window library. See also window libraries.

script file

A standard text file that contains special commands for building windows.

scroll bar

A onedimensional window that is used to represent progress or regress by moving an indicator from one end of the window to the other. Scroll bars can optionally contain endpoints, which may indicate whether or not further progress in the given direction is possible. See also endpoints.

selection entry/field/item

The item selected from a list or menu. The terms “selection entry,” “selection field,” and “selection item” are all synonymous.

selection window

A window with a choice of one or more items that can be selected (usually with arrow keys).

shared display

A display that is accessible by more than one environment level. Any changes made to the display in one environment level are reflected in all other environment levels that share that display. See also environment level.


A key or key sequence that is associated with a specific menu entry. It provides a quick way to access a menu item, bypassing the standard menu entry selection method.

Shortcuts, except for arrow keys, can be processed at any time when the program is requesting input. During menu processing, the arrow keys are disabled as shortcuts and are used to move between menu and column entries.

On Windows, some keys are privatized by certain controls (input fields, lists, and so forth), and are thus not available as shortcuts when those controls are being processed. See also privatized.

sizing character

A single character that determines the cell size within a visual object for the purposes of positioning. For example, when you specify the sizing character to be “W”, the cell size is significantly wider than with a sizing character of “i”. Additionally, the sizing character is case sensitive, so a lowercase “w” sizing character produces a smaller cell size than an uppercase “W” sizing character.

state flags

Flags marking the state of the environment. These flags can be set using the E_STATE subroutine.

storage size

The size of the data area for a field (in bytes).


Defines the relative positions of fields within a data area (for example, a record). Structures for input fields can be drawn from the Repository or defined in a window script or with the IB_STRUCTURE subroutine.

submenu column

See menu column.

Synergy UI Toolkit Control Panel

A program (synctl.dbr) that enables you to customize many aspects of Toolkit, including message text, renditions, and keymapping.


tab set

A group of related windows, rendered in the metaphor of tabbed file folders. The tab set processing functions in UI Toolkit enable you to associate input windows or lists with the “tabs” of a tabbed dialog. Specific input window or list processing is handled using a method that you register with Toolkit.

text entry

An entry in a window library that contains only compressed text.

text field

A multielement alpha field that contains editable text.

text window

A special window that contains variablelength, editable text. The user can change the “view” of a text window by scrolling through it with a viewcontrol menu column. See also general window.


A file that contains runtime modifiable fields that affect the operational characteristics of Toolkit.


A variablesize rectangle containing buttons, which are selected by clicking the mouse on the button face. The toolbar functions enable you to create and manipulate an application window toolbar. Toolbars provide an alternative method for invoking functions within an application; they are used as extensions to or replacements for the menu bar.


A file used by Toolkit and your routines. It contains general definitions and is a required include file for programs that use the UI Toolkit subroutines. Do not modify tools.def.

true/false flags

A numeric value passed or returned to the routine. If the flag is zero (0), it is false. If the flag is any value other than zero, it is true.


A design for a set of characters which defines the shape of each character. For example, Helvetica and Times Roman are typefaces. The two general categories of typeface are serif and sans serif.


user data set

A onedimensional alpha array that is associated with a window (rather than your program) and is maintained within the window data area by the window system. Its parameters and contents are completely defined by you. The data is not displayed.



The portion of a text or input window that is visible to the user. See also display area.

view length

A setting that determines the width of a field.


window field

A portion of a window defined by row, column, length, and contents; and whose contents are visible.

window libraries

A Synergy ISAM file with a specific format. Windows are saved to and restored from window libraries by Toolkit.

working rendition scheme

The scheme stored with a blank key in a rendition file. It is used as the default scheme when a scheme is not specified in one of the rendition subroutine calls. See also rendition scheme.