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Standard widget sets

2002-09-10 18:02:26+00 by Dan Lyke 4 comments

Remember 10 or 15 years ago, heck, almost 20 years ago, when we used to enjoy writing widgets like pushbuttons, trying to make them generic in an age when graphics standards hadn't really happened? So, two rants: Why, in 2002, does a designer feel it necessary to create a new slightly different pushbutton widget rather than simply using the stock text one? And why, in 2002, does Microsoft's .NET framework not provide a pushbutton that works as nicely in this role as, say, the ones in VisualBasic 6?

[ related topics: Microsoft moron Graphics ]

comments in ascending chronological order (reverse):

#Comment made: 2002-09-10 20:21:38+00 by: Shawn [edit history]

years ago, when we used to enjoy writing widgets like pushbuttons, trying to make them generic

Um... I'm still doing this. Am I behind the curve again? But then, I'm still using VB6. What is so different about the .NET buttons? I've only gotten my toes wet so far as .NET is concerned (and only then because MS seems intent on dragging me, kicking and screaming, into it). I'm still trying to find a good (free) reference - probably mostly tutorials - targetted at VB6 gurus.

#Comment made: 2002-09-11 20:03:02+00 by: Dan Lyke

The main issue is that the designer wants a look that I think is somewhat 1984 Mac, albeit with more colors, and the stock .NET widgets don't do that, and don't seem to do an icon terribly well. I've got something working, but it sure would be nice to just use the stock widgets and group boxes and the like.

So this isn't really a .NET rant, although it would've been nice to have a pushbutton that did what the designer wants, this is really a design rant.

#Comment made: 2002-09-12 01:56:30+00 by: Shawn [edit history]

I imagine you should still be able to subclass the button if you need/want to change its basic appearance. But if you're getting a lot of requests to create a certain look, it might be worth looking at - and investing in - Stardock's DirectSkin OCX. I've been using their WindowBlinds product (which is based on the same technology) for years to skin all of Windows. (LightStep may have broader market recognition, but most who are actually in the skinning community consider WindowBlinds to be the top game in town.)

#Comment made: 2002-09-12 02:51:35+00 by: Dan Lyke

Yeah, my cow-orker subclassed the button. It's not perfect, but it works. When I get a chance I'll try to write one that does everything right, it shouldn't be more than a few hours of work. But I guess the real point is that I shouldn't have to be writing yet another freakin' button class at this point in my career. I should have been done with that a decade ago.

More pointless whining about human nature, I guess.