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My notes from First Look at Using Expression Blend with Silverlight 2

February 29, 2008

I won’t do this after every Scott Guthrie post, but I received thankful comments on My notes from the First Look at Silverlight 2, that I thought I would share again.

In his latest post First Look at Using Expression Blend with Silverlight 2, Scott walks through the features of Blend that will help you build Silverlight 2 applications.

  • The basis of this article, along with the release of Beta 1 of Silverlight 2 we are shipping tool support including an Expression Blend 2.5 March preview.
  • Blend and VS2008 share the same solution/project file format
  • Very useful split view in Blend includes WYSIWYG designer and XAML source view editor.  You can click on an element in the design view and it will move to the node in the source view.
  • Reflecting the platform update you now get more many assets to choose from.  If I remember correctly in Expression 2 for Silverlight 1.0 support you had a Canvas, Rectangle, Ellipse and a Path.
  • As a design feature, I really like the guidelines and positioning markers in Blend.
  • Scott’s tip on managing the Blend interface shows off its flexibility.  +1 for vector UIs and WPF.
  • Another cool design feature, the visual way you can define the Grid properties.   Allows the designer to reign in the power of the Grid.
  • Personal Favorite: Nice, this one was new to me.  I’ve known how to create rounded Rectangles, but Scott shows off how to create a rounded Border which is then wrapped around a Textbox to create a rounded Textbox.
  • Design time preview for Silverlight 2 applications in VS2008.
  • Make sure to read the part about WPF style Databinding. 

    “INotifyPropertyChanged?”
    “Yes, yes you did.”

  • And surprise, Expression Blend understands Databinding and DataTemplates!
  • Redefining Control templates feels like magic.  Scott even dips into the Parts Model a bit with the Button template.
  • Another cool designer feature, Drag and drop styles onto controls to apply them.

 

Yes, yes you did.

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