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Olanrewaju Olakunle
Olanrewaju Olakunle

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Building a Cross-Platform eBook App in SCADE

This tutorial aims at introducing mobile developers to developing a cross-platform e-reader app solely using Swift and SCADE.

The user interface of the eBook is inviting, and accessing it is quite simple. On the home page, it shows you four categories of books to make a selection from. Its navigation bar at the bottom also allows for an easy transition from one page to another. Users can also search for books and check out their overviews offline before proceeding to read the books online within the app.

Most importantly, in this tutorial, we will detail the step-by-step method of building this eBook app with SCADE. This is an excellent attempt to start with if you're new to SCADE development.

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  1. Download and install SCADE on your machine. You can find SCADE's latest version here
  2. Learn how to create a SCADE project from scratch and give it any name of your choice.

In the event that you are absolutely uninitiated with the framework, click here to install SCADE on your computer using the official documentation, and click here to learn how to create your first project.

Getting Started

Place the images in this link into the Assets folder of your newly created project.

Additionally, create a folder named managers inside the project's root folder to hold all the necessary resources, including the classes (Book class, Genre class, and CategoryManager) and API callers that are required to complete the app's development.

Step One: Let´s build our manager folder

Now, create the following three files inside the managers folder:

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Make sure to create the Genre class, Book class and TrendingBookResponse struct with each of them with their much-needed inheritance inside the Book.swift file.

Check this link in the project folder to see the full code of the code snippet given below:

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The next thing is to connect our Book class model to the API callers in the ApiCaller.swift file to generate data for each of our four book categories (such as Adventurous Books, Fantasy Books, Horror Books, and Health Books) and searched books.

View the full code for the provided code snippet:

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Create inside the CategoryManager.swift file a CatalogManager class to house the loadDataAsync and fetchGenre methods that we'll use in loading our books images and connect book categories data to our main view ( respectively.

Check out the full code for the code snippet provided below.

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Lastly, in this step, all the necessary methods we want for easy back-and-forth navigations of various pages of our app project are created inside the Navigation.swift file.

Check out the complete code of the Navigation.swift file's code sample supplied below:

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Step Two: Design the Launch Screen

Create another folder named login inside the root folder of the project. The login folder is where we are going to be putting the newly created login page:

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We'll configure the login page inside the start.swift file to be the first screen visible to the users when the application's launched.

We designed the login page to display a logo sitting centrally on an orange background, while some data for the next pages are being fetched:

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Next is to write the logic that will make this page work. Inside the file, we created the postDisplayActions() method to help users automatically navigate to the main page from the login page whenever the app is launched.

That's not all, to make postDisplayActions() method effective, we ensured that it's called inside the show() method and not inside the load()method:

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Step Three: Build the Main Page

Let’s build our main page. The main page is divided into three rows. The first row is occupied by the heroImage and it works by randomly displaying the images of all books in each book category at a time.

This heroImage is given a 300 height. The ctrlListBookCatalog in the second row is a List-Control designed to accommodate all our four book categories. The toolBar, set to the far end of the page, is set to help users navigate to the Search page and More page:

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Below you have the MainPageAdapter class that binds data from the model to the ctrlListBookCatalog and heroImage.

We also have to initialize the items property of the ctrlListBookCatalog with data from every book category method declared inside the MainPageAdapter class so that all the visual controls defined inside the ctrlListBookCatalog element, via the elementProvider object, can display data assigned to them in the way they are configured.

heroImage is defined inside the showRandomBook() method to depend on the random image data assigned to selectedBook variable from randomBooks array. Finally, we have to call the showRandomBook() method inside the onEnter() method so that heroImage can change to a different book image anytime a user enters the main page.

Check out the complete code for the code snippet provided below:

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Step Four: Let's work on the Book's Pages

Once more, we'll create a new folder called book pages inside the project's root folder. This newly created folder will have a subset of folders that includes the bookDetail page, bookWebview page, and search page. Then, we'll create a page each into these subsets and call it,, and respectively:

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4a. Design and define the Logic for

The is designed into a navigationBar, listBookDetails, viewBookDescription:

  1. the navigationBar contains a backButton and a detailsLabel
  2. listBookDetails is set up to retain vital information about a book, including the book's cover image, title, author, page count, read-book button, etc.
  3. viewBookDescription is intended to only hold each book's overview and description labels
  4. Three toolBarItems created inside the toolBar allow users to go to the search page, the More page, or return to the main page.

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We declared a book named variable of the type Book class inside the BookDetailPageAdapter class in the file. The show() method uses the book variable as a medium to pass data to all the needed properties on the However, if we don't downcast the data parameter of the show() method as an object of the Book model and also assign it to the data parameter of, these properties won't display their respective assigned values on the

View the full code for the provided code snippet:

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4b. Set up the and provide its logic

Only two rows make up the, which contains the navigationBar and webView controls:

  1. The navigationBar, which contains a doneButton, titleLabel and a reloadButton, occupies the first row
  2. The doneButton is for returning to the books' detail page while the reloadButton is for reloading the webpage of a book
  3. The webView control holds the second. We'll be using this webView to load our books webpages whenever a user clicks on the readBookButton on the

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As we did for the file, we will also use the show() method inside the file. This simply means we'll need to connect the webView control to books' webpage data inside the show() method in order to successfully load the webpages of our books inside our app when a user clicks the readBookButton on the

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4c. Establish the's layout and logic.

The is divided into four rows, with the horizontalTextboxView in the first row, the searchLabelTitle in the second, the ctrlListBooks in the third, and the toolBar in the fourth, respectively:

  1. The horizontalTextboxView houses the textbox control that listens to text changes when typing text into the keyboard to search for a particular book.
  2. The ctrlListBooks loads all books in every category before it then loads the results of the related searched book in the textbox
  3. The toolBarItems generated inside the toolBar enable users to return to the main page as well as access the More page

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We are going to use the elementProvider object to access and assign values to all the listed elements inside the ctrlListBooks. That's not all, there is also a need to initialize the items property of the ctrlListBooks with the results of all the books categories API data so that we can have a list of all our books categories on the ctrlListBooks of the during launch time.

Secondly, we also need to call the onTextChanged() method on the textbox control on the so as to listen and use its textbox.text to fetch searched book results from the getBook() method and add the results to the items property of the ctrlListBooks.

Check out the full code for the code snippet shown below:

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Now you can run the app and enjoy the newly built eBook app using SCADE! This is just a little bit of what you can do with SCADE.

The full source code of this tutorial can be found here.

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