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  • Blog Post: Dynamically binding the expression type in the property grid

    Previously, I demonstrated how to use an ExpressionTextBox in a custom property editor . In this followup post, I will show how to dynamically bind the ExpressionType of the ExpressionTextBox to the type of the argument of the custom activity. We don’t provide a type converter for this out of the box...
  • Blog Post: Using an ExpressionTextBox in a custom property editor

    I have fielded a couple of questions from customers and also a forum post asking how to get the binding correct for the ExpressionTextBox correct in the property grid (well Eric fielded that one with some help on our side, thanks Eric!). For the record here are the details and an explanation. WPF provides...
  • Blog Post: Hostable editor keyboard shortcuts

    In my previous post about keyboard shortcuts , I promised a summary of the hostable editor shortcuts. I waited on purpose until after the RC build to make this post. There were a couple of reasons for holding off: we changed the way WF designer shortcuts were scoped, and a bunch of shortcuts were broken...
  • Blog Post: About type coercion

    The hosted compiler does something called type coercion. It converts one type to another type using the widening and narrowing conversions specified by the big VB compiler. On the whole, this is very useful functionality. It allows you to strongly type your arguments but still set your Int16 variable...
  • Blog Post: End-to-end expression editing feature deck

    Hi, today I gave a talk to our support team about the expression editing feature. Since this is all public facing information, I thought I would post the deck. Some of this information is old hat to regular readers of this blog (especially the overview and programmability bits, which I ported straight...
  • Blog Post: Enter and Tab key handling in the ExpressionTextBox

    The Enter and Tab keys work a bit differently in the ExpressionTextBox than in the big VB IDE. In the big IDE, Enter and Tab always insert their associated characters. If the IntelliSense completion list is up, Enter selects the item and inserts a new line. We noticed that big IDE behavior does not always...
  • Blog Post: ExpressionTextBox – works on Activity properties too!

    So Matt Winkler read my previous post and said hey, what about properties of type Activity<foo>, can’t they be bound to ExpressionTextBoxes too? Snap, I had forgotten about that case. The answer is actually yes, because VisualBasicValue and VisualBasicReference derive from Activity, expressions...
  • Blog Post: ExpressionTextBox – for arguments only (well mostly)

    [12/19 edit: ExpressionTextBox is not strictly for arguments only, see the exception here ] In a previous post I alluded to the fact that you should be able to bind an ExpressionTextBox to a CLR property. My hazy memory was that this was done at one point in time by omitting the ArgumentToExpressionConverter...
  • Blog Post: Using untyped arguments in an ExpressionTextBox

    The ExpressionTextBox sample code in the SDK works just fine in beta 2. The sample demonstrates the use of an ExpressionTextBox in a custom activity designer. In the sample, I implemented a simple MultiAssign activity, which assigns two values to two variables. In the example, I used untyped InArguments...
  • Blog Post: ExpressionTextBox 101

    The ExpressionTextBox is the basic building block for editing expressions in custom activity designers. If you’re writing a custom activity designer that uses expressions, you’ll use this control. This post is meant to provide an overview for custom activity designer developers. I’m just going to annotate...
  • Blog Post: Expression editing mechanics

    This is what happens when you edit an expression in Visual Studio. To simplify things, pretend you started with a blank expression. Here’s what goes on behind the scenes: When you click on an ExpressionTextBox , an instance of the hostable editor is created. As you type, you will notice two things: You...
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