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Archive for March, 2008

It seems that there is some confusion on how to add the Silverlight data controls to your Silverlight 2.0 project.

1. Add reference to System.Windows.Controls.Data.dll.

2. Add an xmlns attribute to your root tag.

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3. Use the DataGrid control in your XAML.

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I ran into some Silverlight install problems on one of my computers.   The Silverlight runtime installed fine. The SDK installer and the modifications to Visual Studio 2008 was where I ran into trouble.

Here are two blog posts that I found useful in solving these problems.

BradleyB
MichaelSync

Error Messages

“Could not load type. Microsoft.VisualStudio.Web.Silverlight.IVsSilverlightService”

“The project type is not supported by this installation”

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.NET 3.5 shipped a few months ago.  There are a number of improvements that apply to WPF applications.  Today I want to talk about the Binding class improvements.

Performance

Some good news on the performance front.   The WPF and ADO.NET team have spent considerable resources improving the data-binding performance.   More details in future posts.

Binding Class

In .NET 3.0 you turn on Validation for a bound element by add in a ExceptionValidationRule to the Binding.ValidationRules property element.  As you can see in the following example the XAML gets a bit wordy.

 

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In .NET 3.5 you can use this simpler property attribute syntax.

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IDataErrorInfo and the Binding class

The data-binding engine in WPF is a suburb first release.   The underlying framework is well designed and very extensible.  Like any first release though there are rough spots.

One issue is with 3.0  is in how data validation is performed.  Most of the time you want your business class to perform the validation.   That way, any client (including UI clients) can use the class and you are ensured consistent validation.  The last thing you want to have is any validation rules in your UI layer.

In 3.5 you can retrieve the error from IDataErrorInfo in your business class.   The simplest XAML you can write for listening to these errors is below.

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A preview version of Expression Blend for designing Silverlight 2 applications is now available.

http://silverlight.net/getstarted/#beta

–Mix08–

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Microsoft is releasing several thousand unit tests for the Silverlight controls.  These will be released under an Open Source license.

-Mix08-

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What if your customers are watching a video on your site and their bandwidth is flaky? For the first five minutes they’ve got a solid high speed connection but then the bandwidth drops drastically.  What happens to the video playback?   Does it stall for a few seconds and then startup again?

Silverlight 2.0 will intelligently switch the video to low bandwidth streams when it detects the drop in speed.  You need to to publish multiple streams of your video on web server to enable this behavior.

–From Mix08–

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Scott Guthrie just announced that the Beta is now available

http://silverlight.net/getstarted/#beta

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