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From Barnes & NobleThe Barnes & Noble Review
The latest new PC “form factor” is Microsoft’s Tablet PC, which makes possible an entirely new generation of pen-based, “ink-aware” Windows XP applications. If someone writes them, that is. The first book on Tablet PC development comes straight out of Microsoft’s development group -- and it’s full of code, resources, and guidelines that will be indispensable to anyone who wants to try their hand.
Rob Jarrett and Philip Su start with a look at the sorry history of “pen-based” computing -- and explain why this time just might be different. They share Microsoft’s extensive user research on pen-based computing, encompassing more than 100 separate studies. Then it’s on to an in-depth look at Microsoft’s new SDK, including APIs that expose pen-and-ink features for use in .NET apps; COM equivalents for C/C++ and VB6; and .NET and ActiveX controls for integrating ink into existing software.
You’ll find detailed introductions to tablet input, ink recognition, and especially ink data management. (With the Tablet PC, “ink” is a native data type: The computer won’t automatically try to transform it into text -- even though it’s fairly good at doing so.) The authors conclude with a closer look at ink-enabling your existing Windows applications -- including an honest look at the obstacles. (Surprisingly, implementing Undo is a bear.) There’s also a detailed look at the performance impact of “ink,” and a simple framework for testing it.
If “ink” might add value to your application, you owe it to yourself to explore Building Tablet PC Applications. Bill Camarda
Bill Camarda is a consultant, writer, and web/multimedia content developer. His 15 books include Special Edition Using Word 2000 and Upgrading & Fixing Networks For Dummies®, Second Edition.