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Silverlight 4 Unleashed

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Silverlight 4 Unleashed

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  • Copyright 2011
  • Dimensions: 7" x 9-1/8"
  • Edition: 1st
  • eBook (Watermarked)
  • ISBN-10: 0-13-264061-9
  • ISBN-13: 978-0-13-264061-9

Printed entirely in color, with helpful figures and syntax coloring to make code samples appear as they do in Visual Studio and Expression Blend!

Using Silverlight 4, you can build richer and more powerful applications than ever before, and deploy them seamlessly in browsers, on desktop computers, and even on Windows Phone 7. In Silverlight 4 Unleashed, Microsoft Silverlight MVP Laurent Bugnion covers everything you need to do all this, and much more.

The only full-color, example-rich guide to Silverlight 4 for experienced Microsoft developers, Silverlight 4 Unleashed illuminates the entire development process: from installing Silverlight tools to building great user experiences, managing data to optimizing application performance.

You’ll master core Silverlight features such as controls and properties; communicating with web services; efficiently creating data-oriented line-of-business applications; working with external frameworks, and more. Bugnion concludes by showing how to use advanced features such as 3D-like effects and multitouch to deliver an even smoother, richer experience.

  • Install and use Silverlight Tools for Visual Studio
  • Extend Silverlight applications with user and custom controls
  • Group, sort, filter, page, bind, and validate data
  • Take full advantage of the Model-View-ViewModel Pattern in Silverlight
  • Access Web resources and services
  • Control the application’s appearance with resources, styles, templates, and Expression Blend
  • Sketch user experience and build iterative prototypes by easily getting feedback from end users
  • Create data-oriented applications more easily with the WCF RIA Services framework
  • Adapt Silverlight desktop applications for Windows Phone 7
  • Integrate effects and media into your applications
  • Use Unity, MEF, and the MVVM Light Toolkit to write more maintainable, extensible software
  • Optimize performance by reducing download size and memory footprint, and increasing execution speed

Sample Content

Table of Contents

Foreword xxiii

Introduction 1

1 Three Years of Silverlight 7

Discovering Silverlight 4 7

Learning Silverlight Is Betting on the Future 8

How Can They Be So Fast? 9

How About Compatibility with Older Versions? 9

Cross-Browser and Cross-Platform Compatibility 10

Windows and Macintosh 11

Linux 12

Alternatives to Silverlight 12

In the Web Browser 12

Out of the Browser 13

Legacy Technologies 14

A Short History of Silverlight 15

Silverlight 1.0 16

Silverlight 2 16

Silverlight 3 16

And Silverlight 4 17

Previewing the Future of Silverlight 17

Installing Silverlight 4 as a User 18

Opening a Silverlight 4 Application 19

What to Do If Silverlight Is Not Installed? 19

Exploring Silverlight 4 Demos 19

Deep Zooming the Matterhorn 19

Getting Involved Socially with Sobees 20

Navigating with Bing Maps Streetside and PhotoSynth 21

Visualizing Information with the Pivot Viewer 23

Drawing on the Web with Fantasia 25

How Can You Get Involved? 25

Summary 26

2 Setting Up and Discovering Your Environment 27

Installing Visual Studio 27

Visual Studio 2010 27

Visual Web Developer Express 28

Installing the Silverlight Tools for Visual Studio 28

Verifying the Installation 29

Inspecting the Application 31

Unpacking an XAP File 32

Using the Visual Studio Designer 32

Implementing Hello Silverlight 33

Checking the Properties Editor 34

Adding Some Text 36

Using Design Time Width and Height 39

Saving the Application 40

Installing Expression Blend 40

Creating a New Silverlight Application 40

Opening Hello Silverlight 41

Adding an Effect 42

Creating a Pulse Animation 44

Triggering the Storyboard 45

Testing the Application 46

Summary 47

3 Extending Your Application with Controls 49

Extending XAML 49

Mapping a Prefix to a CLR Namespace 49

Why Is a Prefix Not Always Needed? 52

Adding a Namespace to Any Element 52

Defining Your Own URI and Mapping CLR Namespaces 52

What’s a Control? 53

User Controls 53

Custom Controls 63

Summary 73

4 Investigating Existing Controls 75

Reviewing the Basics 75

Show Me Some Code! 76

Changes in Existing Controls 77

Mouse Wheel Support 77

Localizing for Right-to-Left Languages 77

Getting a Control Template’s Current State 78

Adding SelectedValue and SelectedValuePath 79

Adding Command and CommandParameter 79

Presenting and Editing Text with the RichTextBox 84

Zooming with the Viewbox 85

Opening a ChildWindow 87

Finding More Information 90

Where to Find Additional Controls? 90

Do You Really Need a Control? 90

The Silverlight Toolkit 91

Installing the Silverlight Toolkit 92

Third-Party Providers 101

Summary 102

5 Understanding Dependency Properties 103

Inheriting DependencyObject 104

Threading 104

Accessing a Dependency Property’s Value 105

Using a DependencyObject as Data Item 105

Registering Dependency Properties 108

Defining Metadata 109

Initializing Dependency Objects 111

Understanding Attached Properties 114

Using Attached Properties for Values 114

Registering an Attached Property 115

Using Custom Attached Properties in XAML 118

Implementing an Attached Behavior 118

Building on Attached Behaviors with Blend Behaviors 122

Adding a New Property with Snippets 123

Installing the Snippets for Silverlight 123

Using the Snippets 124

Calculating a Dependency Property’s Value 124

Getting the Property’s Base Value 126

Reading the Local Value 126

Summary 127

6 Working with Data: Binding, Grouping, Sorting, and Filtering 129

Diving into Data Bindings 130

Understanding a Binding’s Elements 130

Understanding the Namescope 132

Setting the Source 133

Refining the Path 136

Flowing in Two Directions 138

Converting the Values 138

Changing the Format 139

Handling Special Cases 141

Property Trigger 142

Validating Input 142

Using the Visual Studio Binding Dialog 146

Using the Expression Blend Binding Dialog 148

Debugging Data Bindings 149

Checking the Output Tab 149

Creating a Test Converter 150

Grouping, Filtering, and Sorting Data 151

Working with the CollectionViewSource 151

Using a PagedCollectionView 154

Binding Directly to the Source 154

Summary 155

7 Understanding the Model-View-ViewModel Pattern 157

About Design Patterns 157

Separating the Concerns 158

Why Is Separation Good? 158

Classic Separation Patterns 158

History of MVVM 159

Developing Expression Blend 160

Presentation Model for WPF and Silverlight 160

Architecture of MVVM 160

Translating to Silverlight 161

Two Kinds of View-models 162

Binding the View to the View-model 163

Understanding the Data Context 163

Inheriting the Data Context 164

Binding to the View 164

Building a Sample Application 168

The Model’s Interface 168

Building a CustomerViewModel 170

Calling the Service in the MainViewModel 172

Binding to Results 174

Testing the Application 177

Bridging the Separation 178

Implementing a ViewModelBase Class 178

Using Commands 180

Sending Messages 183

Using an MVVM Framework 184

What Could Be Better? 184

Summary 184

8 Using Data Controls 187

Filtering and Paging with the PagedCollectionView 188

Preparing the Sample 188

Building the PagedCollectionView 190

Filtering Data 192

Paging Through Data 194

Optimizing Data Handling 195

Implementing Custom Sorting 195

Adding a DataPager Control 196

Customizing the Display 197

Validating Data Input 197

Using Interface-Based Validation 198

Validating with Data Annotations 201

Validating Before or After the Data Is Set 203

Validating on the Client and on the Server 203

Reviewing the DataGrid 204

Using the DataGrid with Automatic Columns 204

Choosing Between DataGrid and ListBox 208

Editing Data in the DataForm 208

Adding a Description 210

Validating the Input 211

Committing Changes Manually 211

Defining Fields Manually 212

Getting More Information 213

Making a Simple Property Editor 213

Summary 214

9 Connecting to the Web 215

Getting Information from Cross-Domain Servers 216

Checking Whether a Policy File Exists 216

Working Around Cross-Domain Restrictions 217

Placing Simple Calls 218

Informing the User 218

Learning with a Sample 219

Downloading Strings 219

Detecting Errors, Checking the Result 223

Opening a Resource for Reading 224

Uploading a String 225

Opening a Resource for Writing 227

Accessing Headers 231

Sending Complex Messages 231

Posting a File to the Server with HttpWebRequest 231

Discovering the New Networking Stack 234

Using the Client HTTP Stack 235

Using Other HTTP Methods 236

Using the CookieContainer 236

Handling Responses 237

Handling XML Responses 238

Handling JSON Responses 238

Communicating with WCF 239

Setting Up a Service 239

Connecting the Client Application 241

Updating the Code on the Server 244

Publishing the Service 244

Summary 245

10 Creating Resources, Styles, and Templates 247

Working with Resources in XAML 248

Using Local Resources 248

Merging Dictionaries 249

From the Same Assembly 250

From a Different Assembly 251

Resolving Resources 254

Working with Resources in Blend 256

Merging a Resource Dictionary 256

Creating New Resources 257

Selecting a Resource for a Property 257

Using the Resources Panel 257

Cleaning Up Unused Resources 259

Using the Pistachio Tool 259

Styling a Control 260

Using Implicit Styles 261

Creating a Hierarchy of Styles 263

Creating a New Style in Blend 264

Templating a Control 265

Copying a Template in Blend 265

Creating a Custom Easing Function 269

Making a Control in Blend 270

Applying a Theme 271

Summary 272

11 Mastering Expression Blend 273

What Is Blend, Exactly? 274

Working as a Tool for Integrators 274

Editing XAML Markup 274

When Should You Use User Controls? 274

Making an Application Blend 275

Why Is Some Code Not Executed? 275

Why Does Some Code Fail? 275

Detecting the Cause of an Exception 276

Isolating Code in Design Mode 278

Creating Design Time Data in Blend 280

Understanding the Design-Time Data Context 288

Using Blend Behaviors 289

Behavior, Trigger, or Action? 292

Adding a Blend Behavior in Code 293

Creating a New Blend Behavior 293

Finding More Information 300

Summary 300

12 Sketching User Experience 301

Sketching as a Discovery Process 301

Using Sketching and Wireframing Tools 302

Other Kinds of Sketching 303

Discovering SketchFlow 304

Creating a New SketchFlow Application 305

Checking the Panels 305

Creating and Connecting Screens 305

Building the UI 308

Creating a Component Screen 309

Using Sketch Controls 310

Exploring the Sketch Controls 313

Creating States and Transitions 318

Building an Animation 321

Deploying the SketchFlow Application 323

Running the Prototype 323

Giving Feedback 324

Importing and Managing User Feedback 325

Importing and Exporting 325

Importing from Photoshop and Illustrator 326

Importing from PowerPoint 326

Exporting to Word 326

Integrating and Collaborating 327

Integrating into SharePoint 327

Integrating into Team Foundation Server 327

Summary 328

13 Creating Line-of-Business Applications 329

Preparing the Server-Side 331

Prerequisites 332

Preparing the Server-Side Application 332

Creating the Silverlight Client 333

Bringing the Client and the Server Together 334

Adding a Domain Service 334

Inspecting the Domain Service Class 335

Inspecting the Metadata 336

Creating a New Server-Side Query 336

Working with the Visual Designer 338

Understanding the DomainDataSource 339

Calling a Query with Parameter 339

Sorting the Data 341

Adding a Pager 341

Refactoring the Application to MVVM 342

Adding a View-model 342

Adapting the XAML Markup 345

Customizing the Columns 346

Localizing the User Interface 347

Adding a RelayCommand Class 348

Executing the CRUD Operations in Code 348

Displaying Messages from the View-model 351

Deleting an Order 354

Validating the Values 357

Filtering the Data 360

Showing Feedback While Processing 362

Sharing Code 363

Summary 363

14 Enhancing Line-of-Business Applications and Running Out of the Browser 365

Enhancing LOB Applications 365

Adding Paging 365

Showing Errors 369

Reconciling Data 371

Copying and Pasting Rows 373

Printing 373

Taking Silverlight Out of the Browser 382

Setting Up the Application 383

Uninstalling the Application 384

Debugging the OOB Application 385

Looking Under the Hood 386

Changing the Settings 387

Updating the Application 391

Installing from the Code 393

Saving Files 395

Working Offline 398

Summary 399

15 Developing Navigation Applications and Silverlight for Windows Phone 7 401

Navigating with Silverlight 401

Should You Always Use a Navigation Application? 404

Creating a New Navigation Application 404

Accessing Navigation Information 412

Providing Custom Navigation 413

Adding Navigation to a Non-Navigation Application 414

Developing with Silverlight for Windows Phone 7 415

Getting Hardware 416

Targeting a Specific Audience 416

Developing for Windows Phone 7 416

Developing for a Uniform Hardware Platform 417

Designing for the Phone 418

Installing the Tools 419

Selling Your Applications 420

Building Compatible Applications for the Desktop and the Phone 420

Continuing the Exploration 432

Summary 432

16 Using Effects and Recording Media 435

Creating Effects with Pixel Shaders 435

Writing, Finding, and Compiling Shader Files 436

Creating and Modifying Shaders with Shazzam 437

Integrating Shaders in the Application 438

Adding Properties and Animating Shaders 440

Using Shaders for Transitions in the VSM 443

Accessing the Webcam and the Microphone 443

Getting the List of Devices 444

Enabling Access 448

Displaying the Video Output 448

Detecting Whether Other Applications Use the Device 449

Capturing Audio 450

Converting to a WAV File 450

Creating a Sink 450

Using the SaveFileDialog 452

Using the Sink and Adding Commands 454

Wiring the Commands 456

Testing Audio Recording 457

Writing to a Bitmap 457

Saving the Picture to a PNG File 459

Manipulating Pixels 460

Extending WriteableBitmap 462

Using the Open File Dialog 464

Learning About News in Media 465

Summary 466

17 New Transforms, Right Click, HTML Browser, WebBrowserBrush, and Isolated Storage 467

Transforming Elements in a Projection 467

Setting Additional Properties 469

Using a Matrix3DProjection 470

Animating the PlaneProjection 470

Composing Transforms 472

Handling the Right-Click Event 473

Handling a Routed Event 473

Displaying a Context Menu 476

Hosting an HTML Browser (Out-of-the-Browser Only) 478

Understanding the Limitations 479

Building a Simple Web Browser 480

Loading HTML Content from Memory 484

Invoking JavaScript 485

Writing and Reading in the Isolated Storage 485

Saving to the Isolated Storage 485

Reading from the Isolated Storage 492

Deleting Files 495

Using the IsolatedStorageSettings 496

Trusting the Isolated Storage or Not 499

Painting with HTML 499

Summary 501

18 Drag and Drop, Full Screen, Clipboard, COM Interop, Duplex Polling, Notification Windows, and Splash Screens 503

Dragging and Dropping 503

Dragging Files on the Silverlight Application 504

Drag-and-Drop Restrictions 505

Working in Full Screen 507

Getting Keyboard Support in Full-Screen Mode

(Elevated Permissions) 507

Using Full Screen on a Monitor While Working on Another 509

Copying to and from the Clipboard 510

Working with COM (Elevated Permissions) 512

Understanding the Restrictions 512

Communicating with Microsoft Office 512

Communicating over Duplex Polling 519

Implementing the Server-Side Service 519

Unregistering a Client 524

Configuring the Service 524

Implementing the Client 525

Unsubscribing and Resubscribing 528

Testing the Application 529

Displaying Notification Windows 530

Understanding the Restrictions 530

Adding a Notification Window 531

Queuing Notification Windows 533

Interacting with the Main Window 533

Creating a Custom Splash Screen 534

Summary 537

19 Authentication, Event to Command Binding, Random Animations, Multitouch, Local Communication, and Bing Maps Control 539

Logging In with Authentication 539

Creating a New Website 540

Adding and Managing Users 541

Configuring the Authentication Web Service 542

Checking the Access 544

Adding References to the Services 544

Implementing the Client 545

Binding an Event to a Command 547

Executing a Command When a TextBox Loses Focus 548

Building Random Animations 554

Creating the Base Animation in Blend 554

Randomizing the Animation 555

Implementing Multitouch in Silverlight 557

Getting the Right Computer 558

Investigating Existing Elements 559

Using Multitouch Libraries 560

Scaling, Rotating, and Translating 560

Implementing a Multitouch Application 561

Using Multitouch in Windows Phone 7 Applications 563

Finding More Information 563

Enabling Local Communication 563

Understanding the Restrictions 564

Building a Receiver 564

Building a Sender 565

Testing the Application 567

Mapping with the Bing Maps Control 567

Adding the Map 568

Getting Location Information and Marking It 569

Getting More Information 571

Summary 571

20 Building Extensible and Maintainable Applications 573

Inverting Dependencies with Unity 573

Refactoring to Smaller and Simpler Classes 575

Setting Up the Services 578

Calling the Setup Method and Wiring Up 582

Discovering More About Unity 583

Composing an Application with MEF 583

Exporting and Importing 584

Downloading on Demand 594

What About Prism? 603

Using an MVVM Framework 604

Discovering the Components 604

Sending Messages 604

Summary 607

21 Optimizing Performance 609

Improving the XAP Download Time 609

Loading Content on Demand 611

Caching Common Assemblies 615

Virtualizing the User Interface 616

Virtualizing the ItemsControl 617

Unvirtualizing the ListBox 619

Simplifying the DataTemplate 619

Creating Items in Batches 620

Working in Threads 621

Accelerating the User Interface 624

Enabling Hardware Acceleration in the Browser 624

Enabling Hardware Acceleration Out of the Browser 628

Accelerating with Care 629

Accelerating in the Windows Phone 7 630

Using a Code Profiler 630

Avoiding Memory Leaks 631

Saving an Object on the Stack or the Heap 631

Collecting Garbage and Leaking Memory 632

Living a Shorter Life 635

Unregistering Event Handlers 635

Disposing Objects 637

Using Weak References 637

Finding a Leak 638

Summary 639

22 Advanced Development Techniques 641

Using New C# and NET Features 641

Using Modern Programming Syntax 641

Creating Extension Methods 645

Consuming Dynamic Objects 646

Using Named/Optional Parameters 646

Localizing Applications 647

Adding a Resource File 647

Making an Application Localizable 648

Using Tools 651

Downloading Resource Applications on Demand 652

Encrypting and Decrypting 652

Understanding the Encryption/Decryption Mechanism 652

Multithreading 653

What Is a Thread? 653

Using the ThreadPool 654

Dispatching Back to the UI Thread 657

Creating and Using a BackgroundWorker 660

Locking Critical Resources 663

Enhancing Multithreaded Code 666

Unit Testing the Application 667

Installing a Unit Test Framework 668

Adding Functionality with TDD 668

Using Code Coverage 673

Unit Testing Windows Phone 7 Applications 673

Summary 674

Conclusion 675

Index 677


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