UK Tech Days

Microsoft UK Tech days (day 4)

by Peter Daukintis

tech days

The cinema screen used for the presentations at the Fulham Vue Cinema.

This was the client-based tech day:

Windows 7

The Windows 7 Code Pack provides a managed wrapper around the COM-based interfaces provided for many of the Windows 7 differentiating client application features. These include jump lists, file dialogs, sensor APIs Direct3D, linguistic services, etc. Sensor support in Windows 7, such as .NET 4.0 location APIs, light sensors, etc.

WPF 4.0

Another great presentation from Ian Griffiths on WPF 4.0 and supporting features in VS2010. VS2010 has improved data-binding, better intellisense and an improved designer. The new features include a User Interface for styles and resources, a user interface for editing data-binding and drag and drop support for the data sources window.

It is also possible to get ViewModel data-binding support from within VS2010 using the xaml namespace in the following way:

d:DataContext=”{d:DesignInstance vm:myViewModel}”

where d is the xamlnamespace and vm is the namespace with your view model in. This will then allow the data-binding to be wired up via the new user interface elements. This is pretty cool and should decrease the chances of making mistakes when setting up the bindings manually.

  • Text rendering now provides much more control for the developer and the trade-offs between clarity and fidelity can be carefully selected in the code.
  • More things are offloaded to the GPU – although no details are available on what??
  • Pixel Shader 3.0 support
  • Bitmap caching support
  • Animation easing support (from Silverlight)
  • Layout rounding
  • Windows 7 features have been added – multi-touch support, Windows 7 dialogs, jump lists via xaml.
  • Run text items can now be data-bound (didn’t work in 3.5)
  • Dynamic objects can be data-bound (support for c# dynamic keyword)
  • Input Binding (keypress, mousedown, etc) now works.
  • Datagrid, calendar, date picker now all built-in controls.
  • Now includes Visual State Manager (from Silverlight). WPF strategy of using triggers, although very flexible considered less designer-friendly.

WPF XAML parsing has been improved and the internals are now more visible. Also, there is now one parser that is used by the various clients; blend, visual studio, etc – this was not the case previously!

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