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Windows Presentation Foundation Unleashed (WPF) [Paperback]

Adam Nathan
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (77 customer reviews)

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Book Description

December 31, 2006 0672328917 978-0672328916 1


Printed entirely in color, with helpful figures and syntax coloring to make code samples appear as they do in Visual Studio.


Windows Presentation Foundation (WPF) is a key component of the .NET Framework 3.0, giving you the power to create richer and more compelling applications than you dreamed possible. Whether you want to develop traditional user interfaces or integrate 3D graphics, audio/video, animation, dynamic skinning, rich document support, speech recognition, or more, WPF enables you to do so in a seamless, resolution-independent manner. Windows Presentation Foundation Unleashed is the authoritative book that covers it all, in a practical and approachable fashion, authored by .NET guru and Microsoft developer Adam Nathan.


· Covers everything you need to know about Extensible Application Markup Language (XAML)

· Examines the WPF feature areas in incredible depth: controls, layout, resources, data binding, styling, graphics, animation, and more

· Features a chapter on 3D graphics by Daniel Lehenbauer, lead developer responsible for WPF 3D

· Delves into non-mainstream topics: speech, audio/video, documents, bitmap effects, and more

· Shows how to create popular UI elements, such as features introduced in the 2007 Microsoft Office System: Galleries, ScreenTips, custom control layouts, and more

· Demonstrates how to create sophisticated UI mechanisms, such as Visual Studio-like collapsible/dockable panes

· Explains how to develop and deploy all types of applications, including navigation-based applications, applications hosted in a Web browser, and applications with great-looking non-rectangular windows

· Explains how to create first-class custom controls for WPF

· Demonstrates how to create hybrid WPF software that leverages Windows Forms, ActiveX, or other non-WPF technologies

· Explains how to exploit new Windows Vista features in WPF applications


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Windows Presentation Foundation Unleashed (WPF) + Programming WPF + Essential Windows Presentation Foundation (WPF)
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Adam Nathan is a senior software development engineer in Microsoft’s Developer Division. He is the author of the acclaimed .NET and COM: The Complete Interoperability Guide (SAMS, 2002), a coauthor of ASP.NET: Tips, Tutorials, and Code (SAMS, 2001), and a contributor to books such as .NET Framework Standard Library Annotated Reference, Vol. 2 (Addison-Wesley, 2005) and Windows Developer Power Tools (O’Reilly, 2006). Adam regularly speaks at development conferences and to groups within Microsoft about a variety of .NET Framework topics. Having started his career on Microsoft’s Common Language Runtime team in 1999, Adam has been at the core of .NET technologies since the very beginning. Adam is also the  creator of popular tools and websites for .NET developers, such as PINVOKE.NET, CLR SPY (and its Visual Studio add-in), and You can find him online at


Daniel Lehenbauer is the lead software design engineer responsible for the 3D features in Windows Presentation Foundation. Prior to WPF, he worked on multiple graphics and UI technologies, including mobile controls for ASP.NET and Windows Forms. Daniel is active in the WPF community and blogs about 3D graphics using WPF at

Product Details

  • Paperback: 656 pages
  • Publisher: Sams Publishing; 1 edition (December 31, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0672328917
  • ISBN-13: 978-0672328916
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 7.1 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.7 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (77 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #256,017 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
35 of 37 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best WPF Resource March 14, 2007
If, as a software developer, you have spent years looking at the visual promises of Vista, really wanting to dive in and create those next generation, media-rich interfaces, but didn't have a clear indicator of where to begin - now you do. Windows Presentation Foundation Unleashed is your one-stop answer to discovering what WPF is, learning basic and advanced controls, and building WPF applications.

Without a lot of dry history, and in a full-color presentation that makes comprehending what you're reading much more efficient, you are given a very complete coverage of controls, control manipulation, data binding, animation, and other multimedia objects. Throughout the text you are given not only code snippets, but illustrations of what the finished product should resemble, sidebar Tips sections, sidebar Warnings sections, and sidebar "Digging Deeper", really solidifying the information presented not only in the initial component coverage, but the follow-up WFP application development.

Hands down, for adding WPF to your development skills, this is the title you need.
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25 of 26 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Very Good; But beginners be warned May 16, 2009
By Abu H
It's a good buy.

The book as a package is a good reference for WPF. However, absolute beginners will have a difficult time through it, or at least I did. The first few chapters left me with a headache. I persisted and I can say I now have a firm understanding of WPF. Overall its a good buy.

1. Loads and loads of examples.
2. Full color graphics, helps one to quickly grasp the concepts being illustrated.
3. Easy reference. Quite easy to reference

1.Beginners be warned. Just keep reading you will understand later on.
2. The Author pulls things out of the hat and starts using them before explaining what they are. If he had explained them immediately after, it would be okay; but he doesn't, until a few chapters later. The chapter that was supposed to introduce XAML ended up confusing me, only after reading half the book did I grasp the concepts of the XAML chapter.
3.The general use of language, too many brackets, too many references to past and later chapters within the text; it is distracting.

Overall I would advice you to buy the book.
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31 of 34 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best on the subject . January 22, 2007
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Excellent book, very well designed, organized and the colors make a huge difference. This is the best book on WPF I have read (I've read 5 so far). the examples are simple and concise (and they work! which is not always the case with books published so close to the product release). Also, it is amazing how much of WPF this book covers, probably the most extensive coverage of the WPF capabilities. Perfect for intermediate to advanced programmer. Again I was surprised how having color code and illustations made such a difference. A Must have!!
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars No one else talks about much of what is in this book January 17, 2007
I have been developing in WPF for 18 months and wish I had this long ago. There are things in this book that I can't even find in the documentation for WPF. There are a number of subtleties in WPF that Adam usually starts describing with "Some people are surprised to find...". The breakout boxes in the book also deal with some of the subtleties. WPF is a whole new paradigm for Windows programming and it may have a large learning curve, especially for us old C++ Win32ers. This book will help you through, answer many questions and shorten that curve considerably. This paradigm will forever change the way Windows apps are built. I cannot see myself going back except for very specialized reasons. The other WPF books are good and I have them but this book is simply outstanding in its breadth. I cannot recommend enough.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Nova on paper February 12, 2007
My title is such because Adam's book reminds me of nice Nova episodes on PBS. When I first cracked it open, it felt familiar, inviting, ready to tell me a story with a deliberate plot that both inform and deeply satisfy. Mirroring the industry a bit, over the years dev books have gotten thicker and two-toned and with it the ratio of useful knowledge imparted spartan. As if being first to market and being paid by the words per page was all that mattered these days, say like cable news. In other words, very little thought around quality and how well received the knowledge is.

Actually, because it was a SAMS book, I didn't even take it off the shelf the first go-around, but because a colleague praised it, I gave it a 2nd look. SAMS scored big this time, and hopefully the industry will take heed and benefit. With Adam's text, the great art of writing and telling a story, down to finessing the words and imagery so it's just right is back for dev books; we're taken through many around-a-corner, under-the-hood turns, subplots that come together, guided by a masterfully woven storyboard (as it were) that, at the end of each chapter enlightens you with relevance and true insight.

Better yet Unleashed gets the creative/imaginary juices going, really explains why WPF matters, empowering you to just rock with it.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars They don't come better than this January 12, 2007
Adam Nathan's "Windows Presentation Foundation Unleashed" is one of the best treatments on what is a very large subject area that I've read. Adam presents the material in a way that anticipates your questions and will have you itching to get at the keyboard to try some of this out. This is no small trick, there's a huge amount of information in this book - but Adam's depth of experience and enthusiam for the subject is very seductive. What comes across in the text is that Adam has been using this technology "in anger" for some time - which means for a relatively new technology this is as definitive a treatment as you're likely to find at this point.

The we come to the physical presentation of the book. Without a shadow of a doubt this is the book that all subsequent books on user interface and graphics APIs will be compared against. Rather than have half a dozen color pages in the middle the text the whole book is printed in full color. With hindsight it seems so obvious - but serious kudos I think have to go to Adam and SAMS for taking this step. I don't doubt authors who've got WPF books still in writing will be taking a long hard think about their physical presentation of the material.

WPF being such a huge topic I'd recommend reading this book along side Charles Petzold's "Applications = Code + Markup". No one book is ever going to be able to cover the whole WPF in any kind of depth. But between the two of them Adam Nathan and Charles Petzold speak with an authority and enthusiam that makes learning this stuff a please. WPF really is a technology that benefits from differing viewpoints and author backgrounds - and these two books give you a great perspective on the subject.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Decent Reference
This book seemed like it would be a good reference to look back on if I ever needed to "brush up" on WPF, but it doesn't seem like a very good place to start.
Published 11 months ago by DJ
5.0 out of 5 stars Complete Coverage of WPF
I have read a number of books on WPF trying to learn its features and capabilities, and most have left me with a feeling of incompleteness or else so complexly written as to be... Read more
Published on February 9, 2012 by Gil
5.0 out of 5 stars in-depth and IN COLOR
This was one of the first books I read on WPF and gave me good understanding on its inner details. This book also became a stepping stone for all the Silverlight work I did.
Published on September 20, 2011 by Arun Mahendrakar
5.0 out of 5 stars Not the lastest edition, but clever
The overall organization is clever and original even if this book is not the latest version available, and for C# people... and XAML. Read more
Published on May 20, 2011 by Vanderghast
3.0 out of 5 stars Dated Information
I was disappointed that I didn't do my homework on this book before buying. The book is a great book, but the material is dated for anyone looking for the latest on WPF. Read more
Published on April 17, 2011 by Ryan L. Todd
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent
FIRST: I'm not sure if it is spelled out anywhere, but this is a C# book. There are no VB.NET example code. Amazon does sell books specifically for VB.NET, but this one is for C#. Read more
Published on January 13, 2011 by MattAnderson
5.0 out of 5 stars Great introduction to WPF
I have had this book for a couple of month now and it was a great book to get started into WPF. I still use it as reference book along with the 'Programming WPF' book. Read more
Published on July 21, 2010 by jkr
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent!
This book is excellent for those who want to learn the ropes of WPF programming. Very detailed and cleverly organized. Read more
Published on April 14, 2010 by Emmanuel Gomez
5.0 out of 5 stars A Must Read
A friend recommended this book. I told him there had to be a better WPF book, because I've never found a SAMS book that I thought was worth reading. Read more
Published on April 14, 2010 by Martin L. Shoemaker
4.0 out of 5 stars Good For A Start
Originally I bought PRO WPF in C# (MacDonald) and after reading it for 200+ pages felt not able to build at least a skeleton of concepts in my mind, I bought this book thinking... Read more
Published on February 14, 2010 by Fact Pandit
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I'm using it right now. There is a little bit missing, but the author was aware of what was coming and makes comments when appropriate about possible changes.
Oct 21, 2008 by Todd Haehn |  See all 2 posts
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