Disabling design view in Visual Studios

Posted on

For those that missed my blog earlier today, I am going through the Victor Gaudioso’s book on Blend 2, and one of the first things he has you do is create your application, not in blend, but in Visual Studios.  He makes quite a few valid points why he does it this way – the theme around these points centers around cleanliness of the markup and code – of which I can thoroughly identify with.  My greatest pet-peeve about coming into projects in the middle is that most things that I encounter are done half-*ss and sloppy instead of being done cleanly, properly, and legibly.  The typical user won’t see the code, but for those who will have to come in after the initial work is done, doing things correctly the first time, saves a company in the long run.

So before I get myself into even more of a rant on that note, I’ll stop myself and just say that I concur with Victor.  Cleaner is better.

The next thing he has you do is create the specific type of WPF application, move it to a c: directory folder (c:/ ?  Why?! ) and then goes into removing the design view by having you “Open with…” the document and open it in XML view.

… Why?

The easier way which allows you to retain the nice color distinctions which are by default – and in many cases, turned off when viewing in XML view – is to just click the little “-” button right above the designer.  Now, I’ll take it a step further and move the design view to nest below my code view, and then minimize, which just gives the ability to view if you click on the design tab.

Why go through the “open with”, which takes away a tiny level of functionality?  It may be tiny – miniscule, in fact, but I like that functionality, dangit!

So I’m skipping his step here.  For those who are interested in following me along on my trip through this book, I’d recommend that you just minimize the design view and have the code-view take up the screen.

*throws hands up*

Posted on

Creating a UI – not sure if this is how others do it, but the way I work is to have the overal base set on 1 page.  Give it the look and feel that it needs in the end or at least on a very basic level.

“This goes here, its about this size, it needs to have an element that is this size next to something like this with this radius, with this type of a menu to the side.  Oh, need the the little arrow thing indicating a drop-down.  etc.”

There’s more to it, like the orientation of how its put together – is it going to expand downward when “adding” a new item?  Ok, then stack panel, is it sticking here no matter what?  How is that button going to look when its hovered over, active, or inactive?

All of these thing are the beginnings of something more… whole.  Once they’re together at least in a rudimentary sort of form, custom controlling the… (insert word of choice) out of it until there’s almost othing left on the original screen.

From there – its detailed creation time.  Inactive, mouse-over, and active alike.  Personally, I like to also make these things “work” – as in, opening Visual Studios and getting the custom control to behave when running my mouse over it and clicking.

Makes it so that when I present it to the client, it may not actually… transmit, record, and display data, but at least the UI is somewhat interactive.

Problems come in though – Hitting F5 from Blend to run the program and if the tiniest thing is off, it either won’t load or… it will but –  *growls*

One might say that there is a very very nice use of “white space”.