Tuesday, March 06, 2007

My First WPF Foray

Here is a snapshot of my very first WPF application:

From Zach Bonham

Ok...so I didn't have any good ideas for names and wanted something other than 'Untitled'. 'Blue Pearl' is hopefully going to allow me to get my hands dirty again with some code and begin learning WPF, WCF and WF.

It has taken MUCH longer for me to get to this point than I think it should have, but its been a learning experience. I haven't written any decent UI's in years; my 5+ years at Mary Kay have all been server side.

Page navigation works (events from mouse input interacting with tree) and it connects to a SQL Express database for now to retrieve data and display in the grid. Much of the 'look' of the UI will likely change, but the function probably won't unless I take a different direction with the UI altogether.

The history pages ('navigation window') work just like your IE 7.0 browser. Its not 'skinnable' yet;I need to review how that works and I've got several elements in mind to try it on.

Next I'll work on 'double clicking' the grid row and navigating to the page and populating it with selected data. Looks like its going to work much like a query string, or form post; I'll be able to setup a convention for passing whatever structures are needed between page requests.

The pages should be able to also run within a browser with little, or no mods. I lose my nice 'house' application icon when I do this, but otherwise it works like a charm.

They also make it very easy to host HTML content in a Frame. This makes it easy to make a portal or start page hosted within the application. I'm going to play with catching events, e.g. I'm browsing Amazon.com within a Frame I control, can I determine what links are clicked? Can I decorate the page dynamically for certain elements? e.g. add 'Add Item Information' links, etc..

Anyway...bebopping along. I've probably spent a total of about 8 hours on it so far... there's more that I can't remember here, but probably not by too much.

1 comment:

  1. Zach-
    Thanks for posting about your WPF coding...we're interested to hear feedback and look forward to seeing great apps from you.

    -Rob Relyea
    Program Manager, WPF Team