.NET Skinning WPF XAML

DevScovery Redmond Session Files

A couple of weeks ago I presented two sessions at DevScoveryBlend for Developers, and Meeting in the Middle, designer/developer workflow (co-presented with Josh Smith). I’ve posted zip files for both presentations. The zip for the Blend session includes just the presentation itself, which may or may not be helpful. It basically defines a rough outline for the presentation. I’ve given that presentation a few times now, and each time it’s a little bit different, depending on the audience. I try to keep the session as interactive as possible, focusing on areas of the tool that are of interest to the current audience. I actually ended up spending a considerable amount of time discussing the different panels available in WPF, a little low-level for a Blend presentation, but necessary if you don’t have that fundamental knowledge of WPF layout.

Download DevScovery: Introduction to Blend Presentation

The Meeting in the Middle zip file includes the presentation, a demo project, and a Fireworks source file used for layout. This is the third time I’ve done this presentation and the second time I’ve done it with Josh. This time, we worked through the slides, covering core concepts in WPF that enable an effective designer/developer workflow and concluded the presentation by creating a simple XML-bound layout. Josh created the rough, developer-styled layout in Visual Studio, then I stepped in and imported artwork from Fireworks and tweaked the layout in Blend. We made it through without any problems – a miracle considering how many moving pieces there were. We kept the scope of the application extremely small though, so that worked in our favor.

Download DevScovery: Meeting in the Middle Presentation

.NET Skinning Styling WPF XAML

Podder Skinning Competition

Calling all WPF Designers/Developers — Josh just announced the Podder Skinning Competition.

For those of you who’ve been thinking about creating your own custom skin, now you finally have some incentive to do it! Josh and I put in a lot of late nights to release Podder v2 in time for Mix ’08. That was almost two months ago, so I’m sure you’ve already had ideas for new skins that you just haven’t made time for. Well, you have until July to realize your vision – so get to it and impress us all!

.NET General Skinning Styling

NetAdvantage 2006.3 and App Styling

NetAdvantage 2006.3 was released earlier this month with great new features for those of us in the design community. Specifically, we’ve added some really nice touches to AppStylist, mostly revolving around resources. Resource previews are now everywhere resources are used; resources can be selectively imported and exported from library to library, which makes reuse across ISLs much more accessible. The color dialog has been updated to support an eyedropper tool and we’ve also added a Ribbon preview canvas.

We’re already working on updates for the next release, but I’ll have to wait a while longer before I share. Really cool stuff though!

 I was recently demoing AppStyling to existing customers who had yet to use the technology. They were amazed. They were smiling and nodding their heads in approval as I demoed skinning the live running app using AppStylist Runtime support. When you work with this stuff it’s easy to forget how cool it is.

 Check out NetAdvantage AppStylist and the AppStylist New Features page.