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Programming Windows Presentation Foundation [Bargain Price] [Paperback]

Chris Sells , Ian Griffiths
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (60 customer reviews)

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Paperback, Bargain Price, September 19, 2005 --  
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Book Description

September 19, 2005 0596101139

Windows Presentation Foundation (WPF) (formerly known by its code name "Avalon") is a brand-new presentation framework for Windows XP and Windows Vista, the next version of the Windows client operating system. For developers, WPF is a cornucopia of new technologies, including a new graphics engine that supports 3-D graphics, animation, and more; an XML-based markup language (XAML) for declaring the structure of your Windows UI; and a radical new model for controls.

Programming Windows Presentation Foundation, authored by Microsoft Software Legend Chris Sells and WPF guru Ian Griffiths, is the book you need to get up to speed on WPF. By page two, you'll have written your first WPF application, and by the end of Chapter 1, "Hello WPF," you'll have completed a rapid tour of the framework and its major elements. These include the XAML markup language and the mapping of XAML markup to WinFX code; the WPF content model; layout; controls, styles, and templates; graphics and animation; and, finally, deployment.

Programming Windows Presentation Foundation features:

  • Scores of C# and XAML examples that show you what it takes to get a WPF application up and running, from a simple "Hello, Avalon" program to a tic-tac-toe game
  • Insightful discussions of the powerful new programming styles that WPF brings to Windows development, especially its new model for controls
  • A color insert to better illustrate WPF support for 3-D, color, and other graphics effects
  • A tutorial on XAML, the new HTML-like markup language for declaring Windows UI
  • An explanation and comparison of the features that support interoperability with Windows Forms and other Windows legacy applications

The next generation of Windows applications is going to blaze a trail into the unknown. WPF represents the best of the control-based Windows world and the content-based web world; it's an engine just itching to be taken for a spin. Inside, you'll find the keys to the ignition.

Updated samples and change notes for the move from the February CTP to Beta 2 are now available from the example site:​avbook/

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Editorial Reviews

Book Description

Build Rich Windows Interfaces with Windows Presentation Foundation --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

About the Author

Chris Sells is a Program Manager for the Connected Systems Division. He's written several books, including Programming Avalon, Windows Forms Programming in C# and ATL Internals. In his free time, Chris hosts various conferences and makes a pest of himself on Microsoft internal product team discussion lists. More information about Chris, and his various projects, is available at

Ian Griffiths is an independent consultant, developer, speaker, and author. He has written books on the Windows Presentation Foundation, Windows Forms, and Visual Studio. He lives in London but can often be found on various developer mailing lists and newsgroups, where a popular sport is to see who can get him to write the longest email in reply to the shortest possible question. More information about what Ian is up to can be found on his blog at

Product Details

  • Series: Programming
  • Paperback: 448 pages
  • Publisher: O'Reilly Media (September 19, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0596101139
  • ASIN: B005OL9DNK
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6.9 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (60 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,304,613 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
20 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Ignore the 2 and 3 star reviews April 25, 2008
I say to ignore those reviews because they do not refer to this book. This is the second edition published August 28, 2007 with 863 pages. Those reviews are based off of the first edition published nearly two years before (September 12, 2005) and with only 447 pages.

Using Amazon's 'Search inside this book' takes you to the 2005 edition also. That shows only 10 chapters while this edition has 17. Most of the negative comments from the 2 and 3 star reviewers seem to have been resolved.
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21 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Learn To Use WPF & XAML October 21, 2005
Wow things sure have changed since the early days of Windows programming!! The first thing that hits you as you open up '

Programming Windows Presentation Foundation' by Chris Sells and begin to learn how to program Windows for the future is how different things are compared to where they were just a few years ago when MFC was still the norm.

Gone are the confusing syntax of MFC and deciding whether to put things in the Document or View part of your application. Gone is the hard to follow API and gone are the basic graphics and simple controls that you once had!! As I went through this book I was truly astounded at how different programming in Windows will be for Vista... while daunting in HOW different this is from the past, I love that fact that Microsoft has worked to try and simplify things in that each "page" is like an application in itself. Since everything is class-based in .NET, each XAML page has its very own class associated with it that can be used to easy talk and populate the Vista page in question that you are coding.

It's quite clear that with the next generation of Windows, one of the main focus points was the graphical side of things. With WPF, there are a myriad of graphics APIs built in, and it's very easy to create shapes, animations, effects, etc. with a very simple set of code.

This is an important work, important because it is getting a taste of Avalon out to the public very early and will allow programmers to start getting familiar with it right away. The writing style is easy to follow and examples are present throughout to give the reader plenty of opportunity to see the next generation of Windows in all its glory.
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47 of 62 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Very Out Of Date April 27, 2006
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
While Avalon aka Windows Presentation Framework is still in beta, I had hoped that the code examples and references in this book would not be far out of date. I am finding that they are dramatically out of date (writing this review 04/27/2006). This is not to criticize the quality of the book or of the content; it appears to be well written. However, it was written in September 2005, and there has been at least 3 new beta releases of the framework since then. About 1/2 of the examples I have tried will not even compile, or have bad runtime errors.

The "big concepts" are mostly unchanged. However, I cannot recommend this book to anyone. Programmer to programmer, you will be better off reading examples from online sources like and downloading new WPF tools like "Expression". This book will find you confused with broken examples fast. I look forward to an updated version when Avalon solidifies.
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12 of 15 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars No business value April 11, 2007
I learned more on wpf from Microsoft Expression blend tutorials on weblogs than i did in this book.

It will tell you a lot about

1)Layout (manual layout in code/xaml)

2)Graphics (manual graphics in code/xaml)

It will NOT tell you about

1) dynamic data binding

2) how to create an app start to finish using expression and all of the tools available to you for wpf

3) how to validate data

4) how to use the navigation service and pages

5) how to use page functions

6) how to use property bags

And those are just the road blocks i've run into so far and had to research on my own. This book really let me down by not giving me even the slightest hint into the tools i would need to finish a business project!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good overview but details must be obtained elsewhere January 7, 2009
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
A person learning C# programming like me needs a method to gather user input and show results to users; WPF is the obvious choice. This book provides a good overview of WPF and gets you started programming it. However, you will still have to make frequent reference to the Microsoft library documentation for details of the various classes. Also, many of the examples are advanced and presume you are just adding on WPF knowledge to a strong .NET probramming background. This makes the book of limited value to beginners.
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22 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best technical books I've ever read [updated] September 30, 2007
I've read hundreds of technical books; this is one of the best. Period, and without exaggeration.

Sells and Griffiths combine phenomenal insight into the technology with years of practical application and an extraordinary ability to convey highly technical material in a way that is clear, concise and coherent. I wish I knew as much as they, or wrote as well; and that is not false modesty: they are the gold standard.

The second edition builds on the foundations they laid in the first, but goes well beyond. If you bought the first edition do not hesitate to buy the second; it not only updates the material, but adds at least half again as much new information and greatly expands on the insights they have to offer.

There are other books on WPF well worth owning, but this book is absolutely mandatory. If you have only enough money for one, this is the one. If you can't afford this one, then give up Starbucks and start drinking Dunkin'... 'cause you have to have this one.

On a personal note, Ian has tech-reviewed one of my books, and I can personally attest to the depth and breadth and comprehensiveness of his knowledge. He knows whereof he speaks; and I've yet to find a single instance where his understanding was shallow, let alone wrong. He brings a rigor to his writing that is not marred by pedanticism, and together, he and Chris Sells have managed that most difficult of feats: a two-author book that speaks with a single, clear voice that leaves you with few questions.

This is a six-star book; don't hesitate. In fact, stop reading my silly review and buy the book.

[NB: My opinions expressed here are my own and do not reflect those of Microsoft Corporation, O'Reilly Media or any other entity real or fictitious. Your mileage may vary.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Authors rock!!
This is a very nice book on WPF. I love the authors way of explaining with examples. Recommended for both basic and advanced learners of WPF.
Published 14 months ago by Veeresh N.
3.0 out of 5 stars Good reference
Not for the beginner. Programming in C# is a must have. Familiarity with Net concepts helps. Good reference book for the developer.
Published 18 months ago by J.A. Hernandez
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent tutorial book
The book is very comprehansive, and includes the important topics needed.
It tought me more than any tutorial web site i have found.
Published on November 9, 2011 by bengawin
1.0 out of 5 stars waste of money
I agree with many reviewers. Search the web for WPF tutorials/information.

I can only guess why few of the books do a good job explaining a complex subject such as... Read more
Published on November 2, 2009 by Landon M. Kelsey III
5.0 out of 5 stars .NET Developer Group Coban
Es un libro facil de entender. LWPF es una framework de presentacion muy buena y completa. Me gustaria ver este libro en espanol y las ilustraciones en color.

Published on July 18, 2009 by Jose Rolando Guay Paz
2.0 out of 5 stars Out of Date & VERY bad index
If you like using the index in the back of your reference books then this is NOT the book for you. It is shameful how HORRIBLE the index is. Read more
Published on July 9, 2009 by A. SMOLAK
1.0 out of 5 stars Not Recommended
I bought this book with great expectations, but was disappointed. After spending several months trying to become somewhat familiar with WPF, I thought I was ready to delve into the... Read more
Published on March 27, 2009 by Gordon Padwick
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Book - Still one of the better primers on WPF
The book is well organized and very easy to read. It captures both the novice as well as those who have been working in WPF since beta (or is that CTP). Read more
Published on November 3, 2008 by Mathew Upchurch
5.0 out of 5 stars Possibly a "Classic"
A quick background of my skills prior to reading the book so you know where I'm coming from:
- Strong: C++, Win32, 2D UI
- Learning: C#, . Read more
Published on October 20, 2008 by T. Dowdell
5.0 out of 5 stars Sells Sells
I have both WPF books by Chris Anderson and Adam Nathan. I read initial chapters of both of them but never got so excited to continue reading and got astray into LINQ and other... Read more
Published on September 17, 2008 by Akash Aggarwal
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