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InfoQ Homepage News Reveal 1.5 Released, Adding 35 New Features Including Auto-Layout Support

Reveal 1.5 Released, Adding 35 New Features Including Auto-Layout Support

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Itty Bitty apps last week released version 1.5 of their iOS layout debugging app Reveal; which features 35 new features and a refreshed user interface.
Similar to the role played by web inspectors in modern browsers, the Reveal app for Mac allows iOS developers to visualize and debug their app layouts at runtime.  After integrating the Reveal SDK developers can snapshot their app’s view hierarchy whilst it executes on a device or a simulator.  After doing so, properties of individual views can be reviewed and manipulated, with any changes being immediately reflected on the device or simulator.  The ability to review and tweak layouts at runtime dramatically simplifies the process of tweaking app layouts versus the traditional approach of rebuilding and executing apps.
Reveal 1.5 screenshot
Of the 35 features added in this release, developers will be particularly interested in the new Auto Layout support.  Introduced in iOS 6 and XCode 5 Auto Layout is a constraint based layout system designed to simplify the process of creating complex layouts by allowing developers to define relationships between user interface elements.  In practise however, Auto Layout based view hierarchies can be troublesome to debug and tweak.  With Auto Layout support Reveal has aimed to tackle this complexity by introducing the following new features:
  • Constraints are now shown in the outline and canvas.
  • The new layout inspector shows the constraints a view participates with.
  • You can select related views and constraints in the layout inspector by clicking the link icon.
  • Constraints owned by a view are displayed as child elements in the outline.
  • Constraints created by the application are shown with purple icons and those created by the system are blue.
  • Selecting a constraints group in the outline displays all the constraints contained within the group in the canvas.
  • Selecting a view in the outline displays all the constraints the view participates with on the canvas.
  • Auto layout information such as content hugging, compression resistance, intrinsic size, alignment rect and alignment rect insets are displayed in the new layout inspector.
  • You can toggle the visibility of constraints to tailor the amount of information displayed.
The full list of new features and issues addressed in the 1.5 release are available in the release notes.
The minimum system requirements for Reveal 1.5 are a Mac running OS X 10.8.5 or above, as well as an app with a minimum target SDK of iOS 6.1.  However, according to the release notes there is intent to increase the requirements to OS X 10.9.5 and iOS 7.1 in future releases.
Developers wishing to trial Reveal can avail of the month long free trial, available for download on the Reveal website.  Licenses for the software can also be purchased via the website with education licenses available for $59, personal licenses for $89 and commercial licenses for $179.  For additional licensing information refer to the Reveal licensing FAQ

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