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Creating Vista Gadgets: Using HTML, CSS and JavaScript with Examples in RSS, Ajax, ActiveX (COM) and SilverLight
     

Creating Vista Gadgets: Using HTML, CSS and JavaScript with Examples in RSS, Ajax, ActiveX (COM) and SilverLight

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by Rajesh Lal
 

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A one-stop resource for each aspect of designing and developing Sidebar gadgets, perfect for anyone who wants to create killer gadgets
  • Explores one of the super cool features new to Windows Vista -- the Sidebar
  • It is a one-stop resource for each aspect of designing and developing Sidebar gadgets, perfect for anyone who wants to create killer

Overview


A one-stop resource for each aspect of designing and developing Sidebar gadgets, perfect for anyone who wants to create killer gadgets

  • Explores one of the super cool features new to Windows Vista -- the Sidebar
  • It is a one-stop resource for each aspect of designing and developing Sidebar gadgets, perfect for anyone who wants to create killer gadgets
  • Includes complete design instructions for four never-before-seen gadgets

Windows Vista Sidebar is a panel located on the desktop of a PC where gadgets can be placed for easy access and reference. These gadgets are small, single-purpose applications, such as clocks, calendars, games, RSS notifiers, search tools, stock tickers, etc, that reside on the Windows desktop and on the Windows Sidebar. The book will be a tutorial to design and develop a gadget. It will provide ready-to-use samples using .NET, XML, CSS and AJAX. After reading the book, a web developer/designer will be confident enough to start developing gadgets for Windows Vista Sidebar. The beginner portion of the book shows an overview of the subject with the design pattern, the architecture and implementation details. The later sections will have solid examples for instant results. In short, the book will tell how to do everything with Sidebar Gadgets using solid, unique examples. Brief outline: " Brief background on Gadgets " Define architecture, design consideration and implementation to give a clear view to the developer " Step by step, create a useful Gadget sample "My Blogs" " Elaborate the architecture design constraint and implementation details for the sample " Detail the standard practices " Recheck the gadget created for standard practices " Improvise and Improve with compare and contrast " Add advanced samples with .NET, AJAX and XHTML.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780672329685
Publisher:
Sams
Publication date:
05/13/2008
Pages:
341
Product dimensions:
6.80(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.90(d)

Read an Excerpt

IntroductionIntroduction

With the broadest ever worldwide release of a PC operating system, in 2007 Windows Vista opened the door to an era of gadget development. Gadgets, which reside on the Windows Vista Sidebar, are small, lightweight, and can be very useful applications. The Sidebar is a brand new platform for innovation and it gives users a unique way to interact with information.

This book is for people who want to create feature-rich and professional-looking Vista Sidebar gadgets. It's a guide for designers, developers, and anyone else who has a basic knowledge of HTML, CSS, and JavaScript and wants to leverage this new and innovative platform. It's for anyone who wants to create a gadget for his company, or for a programmer with a great idea to implement on a Sidebar gadget platform, or even for a hobbyist programmer, who wants to try his hand on a gadget platform. This book is intended to give you ideas for what you can do with this new platform and how you can do it. What's in the Book

This book starts with a brief background on gadgets, and then gives a broad and clear view of the architecture of gadget development. Gadget design considerations are an important part of this book and they go side by side with almost all the chapters that deal with gadget development. Once you've read up on the concept and scope of gadget development, the book helps you create a gadget called MyBlog. During this process the text elaborates on the architecture, design constraints, and implementation details for the gadget and then details some standard practices applicable to all gadget development. The last section deals with moreadvanced gadget examples that utilize .NET,

This book is divided into three broad sections. Section 1: The Foundation

The four chapters in this first section give a thorough background of Sidebar gadgets. The section explains the types of gadgets, the architecture, and the technology behind the gadget development. The "Approach to Design" chapter helps you know the difference between a merely good-looking gadget and a one that is professional, rich, and worth the space it takes up on the user's desktop. The last chapter discusses the revenue model of the gadget: what you need to know to sell your gadgets.Section 2: Developing a Gadget

This section walks you through the standard development process of a gadget. It details the creation of the basic MyBlog Gadget, which makes use of an RSS/Atom feed. It also goes through best practices with the user interface, design guidelines, and common assumptions. The later chapters improve on the basic gadget based on standard practices and also deal with deploying and distributing a gadget.Section 3: Advanced Samples

The section deals with advanced samples. You will be able to create advanced gadgets such as a Site Statistics Gadget, a Radio Gadget, and a YouTube Video Gadget. All the samples follow standard patterns, making it easier to switch between the features and functionality you want, when you want. You will also learn how to use ActiveX COM for creating a utility gadget with a sample .Net Most Recent Used (MRU) Gadget. The final chapter shows you how to create a gadget with Microsoft Silverlight. You will also see how, in just a few minutes, to create a Sidebar gadget with Microsoft Popfly.

If you are a relatively new gadget developer, I would suggest you to start with the first section. If you have basic background knowledge of gadgets and you just want to start with the step-by-step practical approach to gadget development, you can directly start with the second section, "Developing a Gadget." The third section, "Advanced Samples," is for people who have developed a gadget and want to go beyond the basics of gadget development. Each chapter in the third section is actually an advanced sample dealing with a particular type of gadget in a scenario of its own.Special Features and Notations

This book is meant to be a definite, precise, and concrete guide for gadget development. By pruning redundant information and filtering and highlighting the information that is more crucial, we have tried to make it as comprehensive as possible. This book includes various features and conventions that help you get the most out of the book.

HTML, CSS, and JavaScript code blocks will be shown as follows:

<HTML>Code in HTML, CSS, and JavaScript</HTML>

Sample single code lines will look like this:

Statement one;Statement two;

Other comments will also show up in the code with two backslashes

// Comment one// Comment two

The book also uses the following boxes for important information:

***

Note - A Note includes extra information to broaden your understanding of a topic.

***
***

Tip - A Tip provides alternative, shortcuts, or insider information of the topic being discussed.

***
***

Caution - A Caution warns you of potential traps and pitfalls.

***
Supporting Website

The book has a supporting website where you can download all the codes and gadgets. The website also has blogs I have written on Sidebar gadgets and some of my personal views on gadget development. You are invited to check that site and contact me personally. You will also find errata and most updated information there.

Visit http://www.innovatewithgadgets.com

© Copyright Pearson Education. All rights reserved.

Meet the Author

Rajesh Lal is an author, technology evangelist, and solutions engineer specializing in web technologies. He has received numerous awards for his articles on Windows Vista and Sidebar Gadgets and is a frequent contributor to Windows Vista Magazine and Code Project website. With over a decade of experience in the IT industry, Rajesh enjoys taking an objective and pragmatic approach to developing applications using Microsoft technology. He has a master’s degree in computer science and holds both MCSD and MCAD titles. To visit his Vista Gadget blog, go to www.innovatewithgadgets.com.

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Creating Vista Gadgets: Using HTML, CSS and JavaScript with Examples in RSS, Ajax, ActiveX (COM) and SilverLight 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 5 reviews.
Anonymous 7 months ago
Dis buk is wondeful
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is very easy to understand, I finished the whole book in 2 days. and man Do I know vista gadgets, You bet .
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is the only book you will ever need to create vista gadgets. The book is loaded with samples