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Manipulating elements with transforms

From: Silverlight 5 Essential Training

Video: Manipulating elements with transforms

The Panel Layout system in Silverlight is flexible, and contains many pre-built panels which help arrange our elements. There are certain situations however, that don't lend themselves well to manipulation strictly with panels. Silverlight exposes a transform mechanism which is very useful for additional layout. All transforms in Silverlight happen after the main layout pass. The formal name for this is a Render Transform. The layout pass is when the element and panels determine where to position each element and choose the elements' dimensions.

Manipulating elements with transforms

The Panel Layout system in Silverlight is flexible, and contains many pre-built panels which help arrange our elements. There are certain situations however, that don't lend themselves well to manipulation strictly with panels. Silverlight exposes a transform mechanism which is very useful for additional layout. All transforms in Silverlight happen after the main layout pass. The formal name for this is a Render Transform. The layout pass is when the element and panels determine where to position each element and choose the elements' dimensions.

After the layout pass, Silverlight performs the transforms. The best tool for manipulating transforms is Expression Blend. I'm inside Blend, and I've opened the ManipulateWithTransforms project, and I have also opened this file called TheTransforms.xaml. I am going to press F4 in Blend to hide my toolbars temporarily, so we can see these transforms. I start with a button in its original size, it has not been transformed. Then, I apply Scale Transform which is used for growing or shrinking the size of the object.

The Rotate Transform is obvious. It rotates it around a point. The Translate Transform moves the item left, right, or up, and down. A Skew Transform changes the relationship or the angle in the corners of the object. You can see that the angles are no longer a 90 degree angle. And in the newer versions of Silverlight, we have something called a Composite Transform which combines all of the above. I will press F4 to return my toolbars and then I am going to open Live Demo. In this screen, I have a ListBox, which contains the days of the week.

Those days of the week are contained in these text blocks. I am going to select my ListBox, and I am going to ensure that I have this Selection tool here enabled. If I take my ListBox, and I drag it left or right, that is not performing a transform, that is setting margins. You can see that by looking at this tip that's popped up here. As I move the ListBox left, you can see that, that number gets smaller. If I want to move it using a transform, I need to go to the Transform section of my Properties pane.

The Transform section is near the bottom. I'm going to collapse a few sections here as I go down. Here's the Transform section in the Property pane. I am going to open this section. You can see that there are a number of different kinds of Render Transforms available in here. In the Top section, I have my Translate Transform. I can click here with my mouse, and then hold down my mouse button, and drag to the left, or the right to do a X-coordinate transform. Now, it's subtle, but if you look in the artboard, you will see there's a blue border.

That is the original position, and shape of the object before the transform has been applied. If you select the object, you can only see the current location of it after the transform, plus the original location where it is currently stored during the layout pass. I can do the same thing with these text blocks. I am going to click on the second text block here, the word Tuesday, and then I'm going to translate it off the screen. You often see this effect when you bring something on to the stage. You often see things fly in from the side and then wobble back-and-forth like so.

In Expression Blend, these kinds of animations always use transforms. The rest of the transforms are listed here. It has the Rotate Transform, I can use this Circle area here to change the angle of that text block. Here, I can scale my text block, and I can also skew it. There are also some Projection Transforms available. Here, I can project around the X, Y, or Z axes.

Let me show you the XAML. Here's that TextBlock, here is my PlaneProjection, here is my ListBox, and here's the RenderTransform, and notice how Expression Blend uses the newer CompositeTransform type. Transforms are very useful. If you can't find the Layout panel that suits your needs, chances are that a transform will solve your problem.

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This video is part of

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Silverlight 5 Essential Training

106 video lessons · 5539 viewers

Walt Ritscher
Author

 
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  1. 1m 41s
    1. Welcome
      53s
    2. Using the exercise files
      48s
  2. 35m 0s
    1. Overview of Silverlight
      3m 29s
    2. Setting up a developer computer
      2m 46s
    3. Installing the Silverlight Toolkit
      2m 21s
    4. Exploring the toolkit samples
      2m 35s
    5. Using Visual Studio 2010 to create a Silverlight project
      5m 10s
    6. Using Expression Blend to create a Silverlight project
      3m 13s
    7. Getting to know the Visual Studio interface
      8m 15s
    8. Working in the Expression Blend interface
      7m 11s
  3. 29m 46s
    1. Understanding the Visual Studio project structure
      3m 38s
    2. Creating a Silverlight page
      3m 17s
    3. Compiling your first application
      5m 0s
    4. Using other assemblies in an application
      5m 45s
    5. Deploying a Silverlight application
      3m 43s
    6. Understanding the startup process for an application
      3m 13s
    7. Understanding how users get Silverlight on their computers
      5m 10s
  4. 16m 59s
    1. Exploring the relationship between XAML and .NET
      3m 57s
    2. Using C#
      7m 16s
    3. Exploring the code-behind file
      5m 46s
  5. 43m 22s
    1. Working with XAML elements and Property attributes
      4m 56s
    2. Investigating XAML namespaces
      7m 31s
    3. Converting XAML properties with TypeConverters
      5m 1s
    4. Working with Property elements
      4m 24s
    5. Assigning runtime data with XAML markup extensions
      4m 21s
    6. Digging into the dependency property system
      6m 12s
    7. Creating a custom dependency property
      4m 42s
    8. Understanding attached properties
      6m 15s
  6. 9m 35s
    1. Debugging your code
      5m 17s
    2. Special Silverlight debugging techniques
      4m 18s
  7. 36m 0s
    1. Understanding layout
      4m 55s
    2. Using DockPanel and WrapPanel
      4m 2s
    3. Exploring sophisticated layouts with the Grid
      6m 40s
    4. Absolute positioning with the Canvas panel
      5m 20s
    5. Scrolling content with the ScrollViewer
      3m 28s
    6. Adjusting content alignment, margins, and sizing
      5m 6s
    7. Using the TabControl
      2m 17s
    8. Manipulating elements with transforms
      4m 12s
  8. 20m 32s
    1. Painting the user interface (UI) with SolidColorBrush
      6m 7s
    2. Getting colorful with gradient brushes
      3m 15s
    3. Decorating elements with ImageBrush
      4m 56s
    4. Creating effects with VideoBrush
      6m 14s
  9. 25m 42s
    1. Understanding routed events
      3m 12s
    2. Wiring up event handlers in Silverlight
      6m 4s
    3. Understanding event bubbling
      4m 39s
    4. Exploring mouse events
      7m 43s
    5. Exploring keyboard events
      4m 4s
  10. 32m 31s
    1. Displaying text on the screen
      3m 24s
    2. Gathering text input from the user
      5m 30s
    3. Showing complex text with RichTextBox
      6m 7s
    4. Understanding text overflow and text linking
      3m 14s
    5. Searching content with the AutoComplete type-ahead control
      6m 45s
    6. Using and embedding Silverlight fonts
      7m 31s
  11. 26m 47s
    1. Understanding content controls
      5m 7s
    2. Understanding button controls
      6m 16s
    3. Using the BusyIndicator
      4m 40s
    4. Showing tooltips
      4m 34s
    5. Changing content size with ViewBox
      1m 39s
    6. Exploring more controls
      4m 31s
  12. 55m 36s
    1. Connecting elements with binding
      9m 54s
    2. Using business data in a binding
      9m 21s
    3. Listing data with ItemsControls
      6m 39s
    4. Digging into the DataGrid
      8m 28s
    5. Using the DataForm
      3m 49s
    6. Storing data on the client
      7m 10s
    7. Debugging XAML bindings
      5m 41s
    8. Charting data
      4m 34s
  13. 24m 36s
    1. Creating an Out-of-Browser (OOB) application
      6m 16s
    2. Controlling aspects of an OOB application
      2m 49s
    3. Alerting the user with notification windows
      7m 13s
    4. Hosting HTML content in Silverlight applications
      8m 18s
  14. 30m 2s
    1. Exploring Silverlight trust levels
      3m 51s
    2. Creating an elevated trust application
      5m 57s
    3. Reaping the benefits of XAP signing
      6m 5s
    4. Making cross-domain calls
      5m 1s
    5. Getting started with COM Interop using the Speech API
      4m 21s
    6. Using COM Interop to interact with Microsoft Office
      4m 47s
  15. 16m 33s
    1. Showing child windows
      3m 48s
    2. Using a child window as a dialog window
      5m 7s
    3. Creating native windows
      2m 53s
    4. Maximizing a window with full screen mode
      4m 45s
  16. 13m 20s
    1. Dynamically loading UI content with user controls
      4m 46s
    2. Using the Navigation Framework
      8m 34s
  17. 9m 28s
    1. Using resource files
      3m 53s
    2. Using images in an application
      5m 35s
  18. 16m 32s
    1. Playing audio
      4m 27s
    2. Playing sound effects
      5m 4s
    3. Viewing video content with MediaElement
      4m 58s
    4. Changing video playback speed with TrickPlay
      2m 3s
  19. 14m 40s
    1. Capturing video with a web camera
      4m 16s
    2. Working with a microphone
      3m 47s
    3. Creating print output
      6m 37s
  20. 22m 35s
    1. Understanding Silverlight animations
      4m 35s
    2. Creating animations
      7m 52s
    3. Controlling animations
      4m 18s
    4. Simulating physics with animation easings
      5m 50s
  21. 27m 47s
    1. Placing XAML resources within a FrameworkElement
      6m 47s
    2. Centralizing settings in styles
      4m 8s
    3. Creating an alternate control UI with ControlTemplates
      6m 29s
    4. Dressing up your data with DataTemplates
      4m 33s
    5. Explaining the VisualStateManager: a simple way to manage control states
      5m 50s
  22. 10m 55s
    1. Handling global errors in a Silverlight application
      5m 46s
    2. Showing an application loading screen
      5m 9s
  23. 10m 48s
    1. Integrating with XNA
      7m 40s
    2. Exploring data analysis with PivotViewer
      3m 8s
  24. 1m 6s
    1. Goodbye
      1m 6s

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