ReorderableListBox re-revisited

This now actually reorders the list.  I’d originally intended the consumer to handle the reordering of the items but I’ve tried to get the control to reorder internally; to be honest it’s a bit of a hack as you never know what type of list is going to be bound to the listbox.  I’ve create an ArrayList called internalList and do the reordering in that, reassigning it to the ListBox’s ItemsSource at the end.

Known Issues:
If you click on an item and then click/drag the same item what you are dragging around is actually the item after the one you’d expect.  It’s fine if you click/drag a new selection though; I’ll try and work that one out tonight.

Jim posted a comment asking if I had the source code for my ReorderableListBox sample.  The answer was no, now it is yes.  I’ve rewritten it against the RTM release of WPF, it still uses bits from Marcelo’s DragDropAdorner so thanks again to him.

You can get it from here.

The usual caveats apply, if you use it or modify it please keep the copyright notice with it and stick my blog address somewhere in your app.  If it doesn’t work don’t come running to me because it only took a couple of 4 hours 🙂

Have fun!


2nd production WPF application ever…

About 5 or 6 people have now pointed out to me that Tim Sneath has featured the Regatta Manager as his #7 Great WPF application.  I am truly flattered by his kind words, but more importantly am honored to have had the opportunity to work with him and the others involved in publicizing the Skandia Cowes Week software.

I think however I was most shocked by the fact that the Regatta Manager was only the 2nd application to go into a production environment that made use of WPF.  Whilst surprising I suppose it is understandable; I was in the fortunate position to be in control of the entire develop process, had a fixed deadline of the end of July and made the call that the advantages of using WPF more than outweighed any issues that might arise from using beta software.  Making that call resulted in a fantastic piece of software, as Tim says, that we could really is a testament to the quality of WPF.

IRhetoric – Karsten Januszewski : Announcing Expression Blend Beta 2 and Expression Design Beta 1

Woot.  Go download them!

On Blend and MSDN

Who’s seen these slides before?

I’d think anyone that’s been to a Microsoft presentation featuring WPF would have.  I’ve seen it at least 5 times in the last year or so.

So why am I sticking them on my blog?  Well look at them, what are they saying? I think they are meant to represent the journey from the creation of an ‘old school’ UI – where the designer is given carte blanche and the developer makes do with approximation because there just isn’t enough time – to the future of UI where developer and designer work in unison, using common project files and tools that are interoperable.

I personally think this is an excellent idea and I’ve had the privilege of being part of a team where the designers, UX guys and developers working so closely and so well together were the sole reason the project was completed on time and was as great a product as it was.  I think that Microsoft getting the whole ‘software lifecycle’ thing is great too and that the ‘designer <-> XAML <-> developer’ paradigm is just an extension of the Visual Studio 2005/Team Suite/Team Foundation Server concept that they’ve been heavily pushing for the last year or so.

This is why, during the geek dinner, whilst I was talking to Jon Harris and Phillip Stears about Microsoft’s decision not to include the Expression suite in any of the MSDN subscription packages, I was a little taken aback.  The decision kind of makes sense when you think that MSDN is meant for developers and the Expression suite is about designers, but given what I’ve just said, and having looked again at the slide deck above it really, really, doesn’t.

As anyone who has done a large project using WPF will tell you; as a developer you cannot make do with just Visual Studio and ‘Cider’.  The tool just isn’t mature enough yet, and even when it’s released (around August) I still don’t think it will cut it for anything sizeable.  I firmly believe that just as designers will need Expression Design (or Photoshop or Fireworks) alongside Expression Blend to do their best job, developers will need Expression Blend alongside Visual Studio so they can do their best job. 

Basically what I’m saying is that Expression Blend is essential to WPF development and if to get it there’s an extra $400 per head on top of the already expensive MSDN subscription costs, well, it’s going to put a lot of small businesses off.

The simple fact of the matter is that to ensure the wider uptake of WPF as a serious development technology the Expression suite somehow needs to be ‘blended’ into MSDN.

Posted in IT, WPF. 3 Comments »

Vista Track – Session 1 : Presentation Advances in the .NET Framework Version 3.0

The first session started with the video of the Regatta Manager from Skandia Cowes Week 2006 that I can’t stop talking about! Whilst not the final version, it was still very cool to see it on the big screen.

The actual session was an excellently presented introduction to WPF by Mark Johnston. He went over most of the basics in a demo that many will have seen before, but nonetheless covered everything you need to see to be impressed by the technology which I think is the major motivation for this event.

The session ended by Rich Griffin from Conchango talking about the work he’s been doing with the Telegraph and Daily Mail.



First off, a screenshot (an old one I admit and not the one on the left)  of my app was shown in Sanjay Parthasarathy‘s keynote so I’m seriously impressived!

The keynote was the usual inspirational stuff of a Microsoft VP who’s passionate about developers and the new technologies in Vista, .NET 3.0 & Office 2007, but more than that it was an affirmation of what we’ve all been doing for the past 2 years or more. Sanjay referred to it as ‘Generation User’.

WPF on MSDN Wiki

I blogged a while back about the lack of .NET 3.0 content on the MSDN Wiki.  Now Rob Relyea notes that now you can.

Posted in IT, WPF. 2 Comments »