One of my favourite data visualization tools is the heatmap, or treemap.
There’s a new one out there for Silverlight.
More info here.
Secondlight, turning anything into an interface.
So what does this mean? It means a doctor can use a sheet of paper to dynamically 'cut through' a 3D MRI, or you could even scoop up windows on a surface computer and then interact with them on this lightweight display without altering the original Surface image.
Accessing external data feeds with Silverlight 2.0
Along with this difference is the ability to access data. ASP.NET applications can use the HttpWebRequest or call a web service not located on the same server. Since Silverlight runs on the client, it is a potential security risk to access data from a server where the XAP did not originate. SO, the introduction (it’s a standard practice for Flash) of the client access policy. Briefly, create a file named clientaccesspolicy.xml with the xml content below, and your service/data is ready to be consumed by Silverlight.
Master-Details datagrid with a twist.
In my previous post on this blog, I showed how to display an extra field of data in the adorner layer, instead of putting it into a XamDataGrid cell. Since writing that post, I have spent the entire weekend blissfully working on and expanding that core concept. I managed to extract all of the plumbing code that hosts an editor in the adorner layer into a reusable class. I also vastly enhanced and thoroughly tested this functionality. In this blog post, I am proud to present the fruit of my labor: a new behavior for XamDataGrid called ‘DisplayAdorningEditors’.
Doing mockups or wireframes? Great napkin-style idea tool in Balsamiq.
Improve your Usability
Explore Different Designs in Minutes
Get to Agreement Early
with a tool everyone can use
Cut down spec-writing time
Spend your time coding, not churning
Use it with your clients
Let them help you bring their vision to life
Integrated in the way you work
Web, Desktop or Web Office
I am a firm believer that code generation tools will one day make most software development projects obsolete, or at least force developers to start developing code generation tools. :)
Here’s a Silverlight/WPF code generation tool.
XAML Power Toys is a Visual Studio 2008 SP1 Multi-AppDomain Add-In that empowers WPF & Silverlight developers while working in the XAML editor. Its Line of Business form generation tools, Grid tools, DataGrid and ListView generation really shorten the XAML page layout time.
It’s accessed through commands in the XAML editor context menu and the Solution Explorer item context menu.
XAML Power Toys generates .NET 3.5 SP1 WPF compliant XAML and Silverlight RC0 compliant XAML.
Silverlight and WPF - Sharing Library Projects
One thing that I got asked a couple of times down at REMIX UK was the question of;
How come I can't reference a regular .NET library from a Silverlight project?
The Business Intelligence Update - September 2008
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*** extended through September 30, 2008
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Online Demo: Geospatial Business Intelligence
- by integrating Virtual Earth and PerformancePoint
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How does it all stack up?
6 part Seminar Series, sponsored by Inetium & Microsoft
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Syncing audio with storyboard animations in Silverlight 2 Beta 2
You've seen complex animations created with Flash... e-cards, cartoons, et al. Bear in mind we're not talking about video but animations, where vector-based objects are manipulated using timelines and keyframes. I haven't worked in Flash since the MX days but I remember having the ability to associate sounds with specific keyframes.
I asked a Silverlight Discussion group how this could be achieved in Silverlight 2 Beta 2. It seems there's no built-in mechanism to support it at this time, but all hope is not lost. Eric Stollnitz posited the idea, "What if you set up a DependencyProperty and animated that in your storyboard?" Hmmm... it sounded just crazy enough to work.
Update on My Illustrator Plug-In and Flash to XAML Conversion Tool
Just over three years ago, in July, 2005, I released the first version of my Adobe Illustrator to Avalon/XAML Export Plug-In. The plug-in started off as a weekend project, and it’s since become quite popular. The plug-in is included in most WPF and Silverlight books, and it’s fun to see it referenced when I’m thumbing through new releases at Borders or Barnes & Noble. I hadn’t been watching the download stats, so I checked tonight and was surprised to see that it’s been downloaded over 75,000 times (actually a bit more, but the stats aren’t complete). Even if I only counted the most recent release, that would make it a top download on CodePlex. That’s pretty cool.
The Dems are in the MS camp with Silverlight for their video feeds.
Plus, in a first for a political convention, Silverlight, Microsoft's platform for interactive Web applications and HD video, in conjunction with the Level 3 Communications network, will bring live, gavel-to-gavel convention video coverage of the highest quality to a worldwide audience via the DNCC's Web site at DemConvention.com.
I have the test library setup now for Brahama, the GPU wrapper for Microsoft Accelerator. It looks fast. Really fast. And the ability to mix GPU & CPU execution is a killer feature. Match this up with an Nvidia Tesla and you have one kickass computer.
But does it play Flight Simulator?
Sorted 4096 Vector4s on the GPU in 0.1739 seconds, average time for each iteration was 0.0000
Validating sort results: Error
Array was set up in 0.0004 seconds
Sorted 4096 Vector4s on the CPU in 1.1536 seconds, average time for each iteration was 0.0003
I hope the focus stays on Brahma, the GPU-executing class wrapper. Do I want to get rid of WPF and keep XAML? No, I just want to see some more examples of Brahma with real-world Cuda-like samples.
How about some Silverlight integration too?
For a long time, I’ve been writing about how messed up Xaml is because of WPF-interdependency, and how Microsoft should have decoupled the Xaml bits from WPF, etc (Some of these rants were on my old blog). Well, I finally decided to do something about it, and I’m writing a XAML-like library that loads, and writes markup using its own XomlLoader and XomlWriter. At this point I’m calling the markup eXtensible Object Markup Language (I know that the Workflow Foundations’ designer files have that extension…) because that’s what its meant to be. It is also aimed to run on the .NET Framework, Mono and the .NET CF.
Using Xoml, you will be able to data-bind, forward reference, resource reference, write markup-extensions and more. I will be putting this project up for download shortly, look out for more news on it.
C$ (CBucks). Another CPU to GPU calculation engine.
This about sums it up.
C$ language, while concentrating on solving computationally intensive problems, also aims at solving system problems and easing integration of high-performance code into user-friendly applications, which becomes crucial as parallelism becomes widely available even on commodity PCs. In order to solve system problems, one needs object-oriented programming support in the language. For high-performance programming, however, one needs some means of parallelization. As the language is supposed to be highly portable, no assumptions can be made about the underlying architecture (GPU, SMP etc.). Therefore, some kind of array programming seems a good choice here.
C$ Project Home Page
The aim of this project is creating a unified language and system for seamless parallel programming on modern GPU's and CPU's. In future, it is planned to be extended to other processors.
FaceOut - Rich Internet Sales Dashboard
Infragistics' faceOut is an interactive demonstration of our NetAdvantage for Silverlight preview controls. Using our chart, gauge, and enhanced scroll panel, we've created a salesperson dashboard to illustrate how you can build a richer experience on the Web for a real, line-of-business scenario. We've taken this concept a step farther by creating an enterprise mashup using representative enterprise sales data along with Windows Live Maps and the Live Contacts schema to show how you can integrate your corporate data with services provided on the internet to bring you a business-driven mashup experience.
This would be useful for queuing systems and quote-tracking systems, among other things. Not sure if it supports Silverlight, but definitely .NET.
Based on the AJAX-Comet paradigm, it streams real-time data to any Web browser, without installing anything on the client. Both HTML and Flex applications can receive live data from Lightstreamer, as well as traditional thick clients. See below for a quick example.
This project includes a Silverlight wrapper Web Part that can be used in SharePoint 2007 (MOSS) or WSS 3.0 to expose Silverlight content.
The goal of this project is to create a generic web part that has custom properties that provide flexibility for embedding different Silverlight applications in SharePoint sites.
The SilverPart Web Part was created with the intention of allowing the integration of Silverlight and SharePoint technologies in order to create full RIA applications.
Test support for Silverlight
At MIX we released source code to the controls, unit tests, and we including a unit test framework that runs in the web browser using Silverlight on the Mac and PC. The Microsoft.Silverlight.Testing framework is simple, easy-to-use, and will give developers yet another way to increase their productivity and application quality.
In today’s post we’ll take our working chat interface from Scott’s last tutorial, improve its testability, and add some simple tests. At the end we’ll have a set of cross-platform, cross-browser tests that can run everywhere
One example of WPF databinding.
When announce any major project I always provide an "as a training tool" section to explain how the project can be used for personal training. NetFXHarmonics DevServer is built using .NET 3.5 and relies heavily on LINQ and WCF with a WPF interface. In terms of LINQ, you can find many examples of how to use both query expression syntax and extension method syntax. When people first learn LINQ, they think that LINQ is an O/R mapper. Well, it's not (and probably shouldn't be usef for that in enterprise applications! there is only one enterprise class O/R mapper: LLBLGen Pro). LINQ allows Language INtegrated Query in both C# and VB. So, in DevServer, you will see heavy reliable on LINQ to search List<> objects and transform LINQ database entities to WCF DTOs.
Silverlight mashup with Digg.
Scott Guthrie has a great eight part series titled First Look at Silverlight 2 where he walks you through building a Silverlight 2 sample app from scratch. The walkthrough highlights almost all of the key features of Silverlight 2 Beta 1. The walkthrough is so comprehensive that I have been using a slightly modified version of it for my Silverlight 2 presentations. Since I am a big fan of seeing vs. reading, I asked Scott if it would be ok if I turned his written walkthrough into a video walkthrough delivered as a Channel 9 screencast.
Online Conversion from PDF or AI to SVG With FreeSVG
Before Inkscape added PDF and AI import, I used to use the FreeSVG service at freesvg.texterity.com. It's really simple - upload a PDF, get e-mailed an SVG file
Check this out - http://www.microsoft.com/biztalk/capabilities/reader/ interactive and all. Scroll/Zoom + click on a section where the help and various MSDN articles come up - fantastic....shame my blog isn't silverlight capable....yet :)
Wow, this is far better now with SL2! no more tips and tricks.
alert("call me from Silverlight 2");
I was about a year too early the first time. Here's crack #2 at getting a working datagrid in Silverlight. Still disconnected though... it uses a web service and no direct SQL client.
At MIX 2008 we shipped the first preview of the Silverlight DataGrid and a preview of it in WPF was also shown. Now that it is out there people want to know how to use it. If you are one of those people, then you have come to the right place. Here's a quick guide on how to get up and running with a Silverlight DataGrid.
And more from the comments about getting connections to SQL and Silverlight.
Last month, we built an internal demo which pulled Key Performance Indicators into a Messenger-style Vista gadget from Analysis Services, using web services and ADOMD. Silverlight 1.1 displayed the "bling" with bouncing graphs and spinning video cubes.
A datagrid will be even more helpful for data geeks like me, though it is probably a better idea to leave Silverlight to its unstructured, creative self.
A little bit of everything here.
The next-generation Web experience is here. On this site, we’ll help you to visualize the possibilities that new technologies bring to your business, understand how incorporating these technologies will improve your customers’ experience, and to immerse yourself in the enabling technologies. Want to see how the use of ASP.NET AJAX can take a site from a functional one to a destination? Interested in walking through the construction of a Gadget? It’s all available for you on this page. Take what you need, or dive in to it all. Oh, and be sure to visit again – more is always on the way.
158MB of goodness.
We had such a blast at MIX08! I hope you had a great time too. I had a session on Friday called XAML-Ready Design Agency with Expression Blend. I feel very happy for meeting all the folks that were able to join us during the session. I have published all the assets for my session including the DeepZoom “slide deck” we used during the session (I decided I wouldn’t use PowerPoint anymore, just DeepZoom ). I’m also including my source Expression Design file to my slides. Feel free to re-use, just add a note mentioning the source - Arturo Toledo | ux.artu.tv
I was reviewing the www.visitmix.com site yesterday night and I discovered all the videos for entire event are already published there! All these videos represent an amazing source of training and information. I personally learned Silverlight 1 by watching the MIX07 sessions. Now with the MIX08 you literally have days of recorded video with amazing content, technical, creative and even on Design theory with the UX track.
More goodies for XAML artists.
A Linux, Windows & OSX vector graphics editor (SVG format) featuring transparency, gradients, node editing, pattern fills, PNG export, and more. Aiming for capabilities similar to Illustrator, CorelDraw, Visio, etc.
We are pleased to present a technology preview of Deep Zoom Composer, a tool to allow the preparation of images for use with the Deep Zoom feature currently being previewed in Silverlight 2 Beta 1. The new Deep Zoom technology in Silverlight allows users to see images on the Web like they never have before. The smooth in-place zooming and panning that Deep Zoom allows is a true advancement and raises the bar on what image viewing should be. High resolution images need to be prepared for use with Deep Zoom and this tool allows the user to create Deep Zoom composition files that control the zooming experience and then export all the necessary files for deployment with Silverlight 2.
Plus a howto on the article below for configuring Sharepoint & Silverlight.
There were a number of questions on the blog or per email regarding the configuration of the web.config in a SharePoint IIS Web app in order for the Silverlight BluePrint samples to work. Not that much though and that is of course a good sign. As I understand from it, many people are up-and-running with the samples.
That the video hosted on Microsoft Research's World Wide Telescope site is hosted with a Flash media player.
Can't somebody on the Silverlight team help them out a bit?
The WorldWide Telescope (WWT) is a rich visualization environment that functions as a virtual telescope, bringing together imagery from the best ground and space telescopes in the world for a seamless, guided exploration of the universe.
Sounds impressive though... can't wait to see it.
The best part about it. The dedication.
A. Microsoft Research is dedicating WorldWide Telescope to the memory of Jim Gray and is releasing WWT as a free resource to the astronomy and education communities with the hope that it will inspire and empower people to explore and understand the universe as never before.
The British Library's Turning The Pages project is currently featuring 5 treasures from across the United Kingdom. In addition to the Windows Vista version (specifically a WPF browser app a.k.a. XBAP) of the app, there's now a new Silverlight version for broader browser and platform reach.
A SharePoint Silverlight Web Part which displays SharePoint Documents and Pictures in a rich Silverlight flow control.
See SharePoint Silverlight Browser in action Silverlight Browser Video or read more on Ian's Blog
- Rich Silverlight user interface
- Change background colour etc.
- Silverlight 1.1 Alpha(September Refresh)
- Customise which Documents and Images are displayed
- Filter by Current Site
- Filter by Sub-Sites
- Filter by Site Collection
- Filter by Content Type
- Filter by File Extension
- Filter by individual SharePoint lists
Server: Windows SharePoint Services 3.0 (WSS 3.0)
Client: Microsoft Silverlight 1.1 Alpha September Refresh.
SharePoint Silverlight Browser supports both Microsoft SharePoint Services 3.0 (WSS 3.0) and Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007 (MOSS 2007).
Good intro to 3 technologies vying for attention.
Crash Course in Next-Gen RIA: AIR, Silverlight, and JavaFX
Get a hands-on introduction to the newest RIA technologies from Adobe, Microsoft, and Sun by building demo applications using AIR (Flex), Silverlight (CLR), and JavaFX.
If you want to convert your images into vector graphics for use in Silverlight, here is step 1.
Another Visio to XAML converter...
Some times ago, I developped a svg to xaml converter based on SharpVector library. I mainly use this tool for working on silverlight projects. It reads svg input convert it to xaml and can manipulate xaml objects. (Replace rectangle geometries with Rectangle, set canvas as a bounding box of inner elements, remove default values,...).
After reading this post, I've just plug my convert library and here are the results :
I'm currently studying for the Visio exam 70-545. It will be interesting to see where this "Visio to Silverlight" conversion tool leads us.
This opens up a whole new world for Silverlight and WPF developers.
Think of the possibilities of converting network diagrams/flow charts/etc to add to Silverlight and WPF apps.
It'll be nice to avoid the old “convert to EPS, load in Illustrator, then export to XAML“ workflow.
Someday someone will port this to Silverlight...
The Microsoft Treemap control requires your XML to be formatted in a particular way in order to successfully parse and render the data. An example of this XML is seen in the following code:
<Node Text="Americas" SizeMetric="50" ColorMetric="-40.1" ToolTip="Americas">
<Node Text="USA" SizeMetric="100" ColorMetric="0" ToolTip="USA">
<Node Text="Texas" SizeMetric="20" ColorMetric="40" ToolTip="Texas">
<Node Text="California" SizeMetric="60" ColorMetric="0" ToolTip="California">
<Node Text="Canada" SizeMetric="20" ColorMetric="200" ToolTip="Canada">
<Node Text="Europe" SizeMetric="25" ColorMetric="100" ToolTip="Europe">
Interesting story on Silverlight & the future of the web.
This all happened before in the land before the web
This story is a story about Silverlight, and how what you are about to see with Silverlight, happened already.
Saving ink in silverlight 1.0
In the TabletPC SDKs and in WPF it's very easy to take an ink image and save it to an image format - BMP, JPG, etc.
Then came Silverlight and the InkPresenter and naturally I wanted to do the same. But it wasn't so easy.
Silverlight itself isn't bogged down with that functionality. So you first need to get the XAML representation of the Ink and send it to a service where either the TabletPC SDK or the WPF APIs are available. Even then you are not home free because the Silverlight ink is not quite the same as either of the other two. So you then need to extract data from the XAML representation of the Silverlight ink and create a new object for whichever API you choose.
Ok so where can I get one of these for under $50?
The MK140 FM Magnet/Scribbler is a portable device that functions like an electronic note pad with Windows SideShow capability. It combines the convenience of sticky notes with wireless access to Windows Vista. It can be easily attached to a refrigerator or wherever it is needed for maximum convenience.
They also have a Sideshow e-Reader and a Blackberry-style wireless chatting tool under development
You'll need this for a wiimote whiteboard.
World's smallest, brightest Infrared Keychain Flashlights & IR Illuminators! Used by members of the Secret Service, these special-purpose Photons produce a powerful infrared beam invisible to the naked eye. Ideal for use with infrared night vision equipment and IR-sensitive video cameras.
This code is probably kinda stale (it's from last Oct) but sounds like what I was looking for awhile back.
Here's an example building a data driven site using Silverlight, AJAX and Astoria (Astoria uses the Entity Framework so that's there too).
Added 10/15/2007 Download
One application of a 3D mouse or a wiimote is in the healthcare industry, by simulating interactions with different tools, like a hammer.
The Wii Tools
Two tools, a reflex hammer and an ophthalmoscope were developed to interact with the virtual patient. Interaction with these devices is very intuitive using the wiimote.
To strike with the hammer, simply swing as though striking. You must swing hard enough that it would result in an actual strike, otherwise, it will just touch. The wiimote vibrates when a strike occurs.
I wonder if this will work with Life and Death, the game? Time to get the scalpel out, and remember to turn the gas on.
So I just picked up a bluetooth adapter to test out the wiimote on the PC. A bit awkward but it really does work!
Next... get it going with some FPS games... and flight simulator... and touchscreen-enable my laptop.
There are 42 pages of scripts & counting. The Google Earth one is worth checking out.
Alright, I recently got my wiimote up and working with my PC (Windows only.. no linux yet)
the main reason I wanted it was to play point blank in mame with friends.. much to my dismay, there was no half decent script to do that!
Time to hit Active Surplus to get some IR LEDs... or maybe I'll just cough up the $20 for the sensor bar.
My question, was it named after Alessandro Volta, the guy who electrified frogs legs?
Volta sounds interesting. Tier-targeting without reprogramming your apps.
Adam Kinney and co held a training day at Microsoft's campus in Redmond to help people get started and answer some fundamental questions about what the technology could do. The great news from us that don't live in the Pacific Northwest is they recorded all of the audio and video for the day and put it online.
It includes the following:
- An Introduction to Silverlight - Mithun Dhar
- Getting Started Programming Silverlight - Jesse Liberty
- Workflow of Silverlight with Expression and Visual Studio - Arturo Toledo
- Silverlight XAML - Laurence Moroney
- A Development Story - Adam Kinney
- Media, Markers and More - Ernie Booth
- Popfly and Silverlight - Adam Nathan
- Silverlight in the Future - Ernie Booth
Since there is no go-live license planned for 1.1 code, it's DOA for anyone not using it for academic purposes. Looks like we will be waiting a few more months for 2.0 to go beta.
Yes this has nothing to do with Silverlight. But who wouldn't want to put a lightshow timed to music in their living room?
I finished this a bit later than I wanted to, but a brand new version of my Light Sequencer application and article is now available at Coding4Fun. You may recall my previous article on creating a musical light show for the holidays. If not, here's the video showing the output:
This stuff is just getting started...
Each player puts on their wireless "sensor bar" and switches it on, and they pick up their connected wiimote. Then they press "Run" on the script. Then it will warn you that you have 10 seconds before the game will start. So run and get into position.
After the 5 seconds your weapon will start to charge up. When your weapon is charging it will beep five times then make a sound and vibrate which indicates that it is ready. Also the LEDs will come on one at a time while it is charging.
The lights on your weapon will be on when your weapon is charged and ready to fire. You can also check whether you are player 1 or player 2 by holding the A button. Or you can check player 1's score by holding the 1 button, or you can check player 2's score by holding the 2 button. It stops counting once it gets to 10.
You can shoot with the B button. The default maximum firing rate is five rounds per second, but you can change that at the top of the script. It will make a sound and vibrate when you shoot. If you hit the opponent then their remote will make a loud noise and power down for 7 seconds. Their weapon will beep very quietly while it charges up again. They can't shoot during that time, and they can't be shot again either.
The score will also be shown in the debug box on the screen, if you don't want to check it with the 1 or 2 button.
Not sure if I already posted this... but it's worth a look for combining with the Nintendo wii controller for VR applications.
Kit3D is a 3D graphics engine for creating 3D content in Microsoft silverlight.