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Applications = Code + Markup: A Guide to the Microsoft Windows Presentation Foundation (Developer Reference) Hardcover – September 13, 2006
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From the Publisher
Key Book Benefits:
- Delivers UI information in digestible chapters (often fewer than five pages) with plentiful code samples
- Provides the classic Petzold Windows UI treatment, adapted for the capabilities of WPF, Windows Vista, and the latest hardware
- Features information about both XAML (difficult but sometimes richer) and C# (familiar, powerful) development for WPF
About the Author
Charles Petzold has been writing about programming for Windows-based operating systems for 24 years. A Microsoft MVP for Client Application Development and a Windows Pioneer Award winner, Petzold is author of the classic Programming Windows, currently in its fifth edition and one of the best-known programming books of all time; the widely acclaimed Code: The Hidden Language of Computer Hardware and Software; and more than a dozen other books.
Top customer reviews
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This is not a book one reads in the living room. Like "The C Programming Language" and Petzold's other books, this is an extended tutorial to be read while sitting at the computer. That's why there are no screen shots in the book: they're on your monitor because that's where you are when you're reading it, at least during the initial reading.
One need only look at the disagreement among reviewers of this book to realize that it's a very different book from the endless mediocre titles offered by computer book publishers. Readers with a long background in software are also likely to realize that the variance in ratings almost certainly occurs because readers approach it with different backgrounds and different expectations.
Any of Petzold's books takes time to go through. That's simply a requirement of a book which teaches by incremental learning through example. Petzold is a very good writer and his explanations are clear, but demonstrating fine distinctions frequently means a topic must be developed at length. My opinion is that most people will take months to fully absorb this book and, therefore, this is not the book you want if your boss just gave you a WPF project and wants to see something on the monitor by the end of next week. There are other books that can help you do that much more quickly but those books, at least the ones I've looked at, will not bring you to the level of expertise that this one will.
This book will not be suitable for someone whose background consists of applications whose interface can be constructed by dropping controls on forms - a Petzold book is not intended for that kind of audience. For those who need to learn something quickly about WPF, Adam Nathan's book is quick reading: I went through a third of it in a couple of weeks before switching to Petzold's book. Although I haven't looked at them, someone under severe time pressure might want to check the instruction videos on Microsoft's web site to see if they can be useful.
The bottom line, for me, is this: WPF is a complex subject with a lot of detail and with architectural concepts very different from traditional GUI frameworks. It can easily overwhelm someone trying to learn it, even someone with decades of experience. It takes an enormous amount of intelligence to be able to take such a subject and break it down into incremental steps to make it understandable the way Petzold has done here. If you need a deep understanding of WPF and you are willing to spend the time that this book requires, this is the one you should get.
This is my very favorite. I read it early when it first came out.
The code examples are awesome.
The fact that this book introduces the topic using lots of code only (no XAML) examples turned out to be more of a plus than I ever imagined. Here's why: Microsoft now has a functional programming (FP) language called F#. F# doesn't yet have any GUI designers for WPF. I had a choice: I could use a mixed language approach using C# projects to create XAML, and F# projects for "engine" type code. Or, I could do everything in pure code using F# alone. I opted for the latter, and I'm glad I did.
The code-centric background I got in WPF from this book prepared me well for this. I found that I could do things in pure code combined with FP techniques that I couldn't do using a XAML + code approach. For instance, when you create WPF widgets in code, you can see all kinds of other code elements through scope (without needing annotations within XAML, and other mechanisms). You can also leverage this (to some extent) in C# by using lambdas, since lambdas can see parental scope (thus obviating the need to pass parameters).
As a result of this, I find that I can be much more productive and succinct using a code only approach: it seems much easier, faster, and more natural to me.
When it comes to decoupling a GUI from "code behind" (a la the MVVM pattern), perhaps binding isn't the only way. Perhaps ADTs (abstract data structures) are another approach that can be leveraged (and FP languages offer greater abilities to create ADTs than conventional languages do).
In addition, I find that Charles really "gets it". He deeply understands the subject matter and can impart it to readers.
For these reasons this book is my favorite WPF book. It's also the most useful, the most helpful, and the most interesting WPF book in my tool chest.
Has anyone else seen this problem? I also see the same thing on the PC reader as well. I've emailed the author, but have not heard back yet.
I've now gone through the first 3 chapters in the book, and I must say I do like Petzold's style of writing. I have another WPF book which goes into a lot of theory from the start. I'm a nuts and bolts kind of person, so having code examples first with explanations is the best way for me to learn. Once I'm comfortable with the technology, then I can go into the theory deeper. I think Petzold strikes a good balance.
There has been a lot of criticism about no pictures in the book. This doesn't really bother me, since Petzold has said he wants the reader to go through and try the examples. Why fill up excess pages with images you can see on your computer monitor if you run the program?
So overall a good book, but the bad code formatting problem on the kindle detracts from a fine book.
Most recent customer reviews
I need more practical sample program to undersant the dependency property, chapter 8.Read more
You can only loose time reading it. the author clearly missed the concept here.Read more