App Designer - Pointer update issue

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Gwendal Marrec
Gwendal Marrec on 5 May 2022
Answered: ryugasen on 25 Aug 2022
I am working on an App Designer app.
I have coded the function below. It is supposed to change the pointer to watch if it is an arrow or to arrow if it is a watch.
methods (Access = public)
function pointer_change(app)
if app.UIFigure.Pointer == 'arrow'
set(app.UIFigure, 'pointer', 'watch');
set(app.UIFigure, 'pointer', 'arrow');
All my callbacks look like this :
function callback1(app, event)
%some code that takes a long time to run so I need to change the cursor
%to indicate that matlab is busy running
When I change the pointer from 'watch' to 'arrow' (which corresponds to the second call of pointer_change), the pointer is not updated until I move the mouse, as if the drawnow statement was not executed. As soon as I move the mouse, the pointer becomes an arrow.
Does anyone know why ?
Many thanks,
Geoff Hayes
Geoff Hayes on 15 Aug 2022
@Gwendal Marrec - could you attach a simplified version of your GUI that exhibits this behaviour?

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Answers (3)

Veronica Taurino
Veronica Taurino on 10 May 2022
I have the same problem. The pointer does not change until I move the cursor. I am working in the app designer, each callback has something like:
function callback1(app, event)
set(app.UIFigure, 'Pointer','watch')
% do stuff...
set(app.UIFigure, 'Pointer','arrow')
Gwendal Marrec
Gwendal Marrec on 11 May 2022
Edited: Gwendal Marrec on 11 May 2022
Your sample code works well for me. Really intriguing.
I'm on Windows 10 20H2.

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ryugasen on 25 Aug 2022
I was having the same issue with only one situation, and upon looking on your example, I think I found the culprit. It's related to opening a file (I have a pointer change at two different callback functions, it works perfectly in one where it does a calculation, while in the one that loads an excel file through readmatrix it doesn't work until I move the cursor).
Interestingly, I found that if the app is maximised, it works perfectly regardless. I suspect it has something to do with the window of the app becoming out of focus when you go and load a file (and only upon the moving the mouse does Windows realise the app is still the window of focus). If the app is maximising, I guess Windows always treats it as the focus.
So yeah, the solution is to keep the app maximised, or if someone with more tech knowledge knows how to keep the app in focus even while Windows browses and opens a different file in the background, then that would be the best solution

Gwendal Marrec
Gwendal Marrec on 13 Jun 2022
Up. I've tried a couple of things but none of them worked out. Whenever I call another function to handle the pointer change, it never returns to 'arrow' until I move the mouse.


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