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Seeing Data: Designing User Interfaces for Database Systems Using .NET

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Seeing Data: Designing User Interfaces for Database Systems Using .NET


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The first comprehensive guide to building successful User Interfaces using the .NET Framework

° User Interface (UI) design is one of the most important parts of application development, yet it is one of the least understood

° Gives detailed, practical information on how to use .NET's UI tools, but also places that in the context of sound UI design theory

° Author is a well-known expert on database design and development


  • Copyright 2005
  • Dimensions: 7" x 9-1/4"
  • Pages: 544
  • Edition: 1st
  • Book
  • ISBN-10: 0-321-20561-8
  • ISBN-13: 978-0-321-20561-2

“Rebecca provides an invaluable resource to help developers focus on a commonly overlooked but vital part of an application—the user experience.”
         —David Sceppa, Program Manager, Microsoft Corporation

“Rebecca Riordan takes UI programming and practices to new heights. She has gone byond simply explaining the theory behind UI programming practices, providing code samples that are practical, well-documented, and can be immediately incorporated into a development project.”
         —Wendy Chun, AVP/Product Development, SunGard Insurance Systems

“Riordan has produced what is THE reference guide on user interface design in .NET. Serious developers and beginners alike will learn both design techniques that can put applications over the top and pitfalls to avoid.”
         —Kelly J. Martens, Manager, Information Systems and Development, JJ Koepsell Company

Build Outstanding User Interfaces with .NET: Principles, Techniques, and Code

Nowadays, users and clients demand exceptionally usable software. But few developers are trained to create high-quality user interfaces, and few .NET books offer much help—until now.

In Seeing Data, Microsoft MVP Rebecca M. Riordan shows how to use .NET’s advanced UI tools to build applications that reflect today’s interface design best practices. She offers visual examples, code, and techniques for every .NET project.

Writing for experienced .NET developers, Riordan introduces core principles of effective interface design—including focus, flow, alignment, proximity, contrast, and consistency. She demonstrates how to architect databases for better usability, and how to build more effective form layouts. Next, she systematically tackles user interaction, showing how to:

  • Help users navigate DataSets, manipulate data, and generate reports
  • Utilize menus, toolbars, buttons, and Help systems
  • Enforce data integrity
  • Simplify installation and customization

Riordan covers essential technical underpinnings ranging from GDI+ Managed Classes to ADO.NET data binding. She presents dozens of Visual Basic .NET examples—all designed for easy, quick reuse, and downloadable from the book’s companion Web site, along with C# equivalents.


Source Code

Download the Source Code Files for Seeing Data: Designing User Interfaces for Database Systems Using .NET

Sample Content

Online Sample Chapter

User Interface Design and the Importance of Color for .NET Database Systems

Downloadable Sample Chapter

Download the Sample Chapter related to this title.

Table of Contents





1. Interface Design.


The Principle of Interface Design.

Graphic Design.

2. .NET Graphic Objects.

GDI+ Primitives.

Pens and Brushes.

Using the Graphics Object.

The ControlPaint Class.

3. Typography.

The Architecture of Type.

Families and Faces and Fonts (oh my).

Using Fonts.

Windows Fonts.

4. Color.

Understanding Color.

Using Color.

Color Models.

Color in the .NET Framework.

5. Images in the .NET Framework.

Using Images.

Images in the .NET Framework.

6. ADO .NET Data Binding.

Binding Control Properties.

Synchronized Binding.


7. Entity Types.

The Entity-Relationship Model.

Simple Entities.

Complex Entities.

Displaying Multiple Entities.

8. Simple Layouts.

Window Basics.

Primary Windows.

Secondary Windows.

9. Complex Layouts.

Complex Form Design.

Panel Structures.

Coordinated Structures.

10. Displaying Forms.

Laying Out Forms.

Anchoring and Docking Controls.

Resizing Forms.

Displaying Forms.


11. Complex Attributes.

Get it Right.

Logical Values.

Date and Time Values.

Binary Objects.

12. Numbers and Text.

Numeric and Monetary Values.

Text Values.

13. List Controls.

Using List Controls.

ListBox and CheckedListBox Controls.

The ComboBox Control.

The DomainUpDown Control.


14. Grid Controls.

Using Grid Controls.

The ListView Control.

The DataGrid Control.


15. Managing Data Display.

Navigating through Data.

Managing Data Entry.

Managing Data Persistence.

16. Command Widgets.

Button Widgets.


Menu Conventions.


17. User Assistance.

Types of User Assistance.

Functional Principles.

Providing Passive Assistance.

Providing Reactive Assistance.

Providing Proactive Assistance.

18. Database Integrity.

Theoretical Foundations.

Implementing Constraints and Rules.

Validation Techniques.

Using the ErrorProvider Control.

19. Sorting, Searching, and Filtering.




20. Reporting.

Designing Reports.

Managing Reports.

Implementing Reports.


21. Interface Architectures.

Architectural Paradigms.

Implementation Architectures.

22. User Customization.

Using Control Panel Settings.

Implementing Customization.

Persisting Application States.

23. Installation.

Windows Conventions.

Visual Studio Setup Projects.




Download the Foreword file related to this title.


Download the Index file related to this title.


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