Windows Runtime with C++/C#: Anatomy of a WinRT Class

December 30, 2012

The Windows Runtime (WinRT) is based on COM (I referred to it in the past as a “better COM”), which means every method and property must be part of an interface. Also, COM does not support static members (only instance members) and does not easily support parameterized constructors. Inheritance is again an issue in classic COM – the closest thing is COM aggregation, and that’s not really inheritance in the usual sense of the word.Using C++/CX or a .NET language allows creating WinRT types that support methods, properties, constructors and static members, and even events (another feature that is...

Preview of Blend 5 available

December 25, 2012

When Visual Studio 2012 came out, one thing was sorely missing. An Expression Blend tool that can handle WPF 4.5 applications. Blend for Visual Studio that is currently available only supports Windows 8 Store Apps, but not WPF (or Silverlight).A few days ago, Microsoft released a preview of Blend 5 (with Sketchflow), that’s able to work with WPF and Silverlight, along with Windows 8 Store apps.The tool can be downloaded from here: stated that the final version of the tool will be available with Update 2 of Visual Studio 2012 (Update 1 was released about 2 weeks ago).
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Windows Runtime: Where did TemplatePart go?

December 13, 2012

In WPF and Silverlight, controls define their named parts (those that have them) using the TemplatePart attribute. For example, here’s the class definition for the WPF ProgressBar control:  public class ProgressBar : RangeBase{This indicates to those wanting to replace the control template which named parts are understood (and searched for) by the control. XAML based tools can also use this information to provide better user experience for authoring templates.In WinRT, the TemplatePart attribute is defined, but looking at control metadata – it...