Delay's Blog is the blog of David Anson, a Microsoft developer who works with C#, XAML, HTML, and Azure.
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I'm a believer in the power of LayoutTransform - so much so that I wrote a control to graft this capability onto Silverlight 2 (which natively supports only the slightly less practical RenderTransform). I've posted extensively about what my LayoutTransformControl project is and how it works - you can read more via the following links: Motivation and introduction for Beta 1, Significant enhancements and update for Beta 2, Update for RTW, Fixes for two edge case bugs, Usefulness on WPF. I've been happy with how this project has gone and have gotten lots of good feedback from customers who are successfully making use of LayoutTransformControl in their own applications. So, yeah, I'm a fan... :)
That said, I haven't pushed to include this control in the Silverlight Toolkit - I figured things would sort themselves out if and when the need for LayoutTransform functionality became sufficiently compelling. As it happens, we saw this need arise for Silverlight Charting a few months ago, and the December 08 release of Charting includes a private (internal) copy of this control (we weren't prepared to officially expose it at the time). More recently, the issue came up again in the context of a different Toolkit control and in this case using a private implementation isn't practical.
Nobody really had time on the schedule to "productize" LayoutTransformControl, but it was becoming clear that our inability to take advantage of LayoutTransform functionality was limiting our ability to develop flexible controls. So I dedicated some time to making LayoutTransform an official part of the Toolkit and am happy to say that we're tentatively planning to include it in the next release of the Silverlight Toolkit under the name LayoutTransformer.
For a variety of reasons, I did this work in a private area of our source control tree. At some point I realized that by starting from the same Visual Studio solution/projects I'd already shared on my blog, I'd made it easy to give everyone a sneak peak of LayoutTransformer and benefit from some pre-release feedback. :) That said, if LayoutTransformer were simply a renamed LayoutTransformControl, I probably wouldn't bother - but there's an internal change of some significance that I would love to get early feedback on from folks who are already making use of LayoutTransformControl. To the extent that I've tested things, LayoutTransformer behaves the same as LayoutTransformControl - but if anyone finds otherwise, I'd definitely like to understand why!
And as long as I'm publishing new bits, I thought it would be nice to include two new projects in the solution: a Silverlight-based testing project and a WPF-based one. These two test projects share the same source code, run cross-platform (just like LayoutTransformer), and get nearly complete code coverage from various flavors of 26 test cases. Even better, when the tests are run on WPF, they validate all scenarios against WPF's built-in LayoutTransform, too - thereby ensuring that LayoutTransformer matches the real LayoutTransform (for all the test scenarios, at least)!
I hope you like the new bits and would love to hear from anyone who tries LayoutTransformer out in their own project(s). Good or bad, your feedback is very much appreciated!
[Click here to download the LayoutTransformer source code, samples, and test projects.]
Aside: I'll be the first to admit that "LayoutTransformer" isn't exactly my favorite name in the whole world - mostly because it always makes me think of other things. But all the other proposed names were rejected for valid reasons (ex: inconsistency with the platform, potential confusion, etc.). LayoutTransformer simply outlasted its competition and got the most votes when I put the issue to the team. Fortunately, it happens to be the shortest of the proposed names - and that helps me feel a little better! :)
Base class Control -> ContentControl
Removed Child property and handlers; supplanted by Content property
Transform property -> LayoutTransform
TransformUpdated method -> ApplyLayoutTransform
Create MatrixTransform in code instead of Template
Added TemplatePartAttributes ("TransformRoot"/Grid, "Presenter"/ContentPresenter)
Moved template to generic.xaml
Removed unnecessary #if for template definition