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GlossContourSurface™ in action.

WALKTHROUGH 1 — DESIGNING GlossContourSurfaces™, DEPLOYING AS ContourServers™

GlossContourSurface™ is a container class which can parent any visual controls. GlossContourSurface™ is particularly valuable as a ContourServer™, but it is equally useful as a flat or contour and gloss capable container for any UI.

So long as your project involves 1 GlossContourButton™, the drawing and ContourServer™ capabilities of GlossContourSurface™ do not increase your resource footprints, because instances of both classes share a common instance of methods defined in GCServer_Base. In other words, GlossContourSurface™ can be used liberally for diverse purposes, with minimal resource impact.

As a non-server UI element, GlossContourSurface™ provides border faceting, tinting, and luminosity offset capabilities to your UI.

As a ContourServer™, GlossContourSurface™ is valuable even as a flat surface, because it delivers extremely high speed drawing by eliminating client computation of overlapping drawing data. Substantial compute-intensive overhead is eliminated by automated, minimized broadcasting and drawing events, by minimized particular drawing, and by high speed sharing of once-generated ContourServer™ data.

Wherever client GlossContourButtons™ are placed on a GlossContourSurface™, they are automatically drawn to assume the contours of that position. In the image above for instance, when Button 1 is moved to the position of Button 2, it automatically assumes the contour and light effects of the GlossContourSurface™ at that position. This means for instance that you can visually design a surface populated with buttons which are automatically drawn as their position requires — and that you can do all this without coding or configuration. Toolbar wrapping algorithms for instance can simply position buttons, counting on automated ContourServer™ behavior for flicker free redraws at extremely high speed. No specialized coding is required.

Because all this cost-saving behavior is automated, terribly little understanding of this control is necessary. You simply configure your gloss and surface effects, and, to deploy GlossContourSurface™ as a ContourServer™, you simply assign the surface to each client's ContourServer™ property.

GlossContourButtons™ as ContourClients™ of their parent GlossContourSurface™ (ContourServer™).

CONFIGURING THE SURFACE CONTOURS AND EFFECTS OF GlossContourSurface™

Practical implementations will usually set the base color to SystemColors.Control, using relatively moderate radii and gloss. These are defaults.

GlossContourSurface™ as dropped on a form (default state).

To configure this instance as the ContourServer™ shown at the top of this page, we only have to set the ContouredRegions property to BottomOnly.

ContouredRegions set to BottomOnly.

Having prepared the surface, we could now add GlossContourButtons™, set their ContourServer™ properties to the surface, and we would have a working server/client set.

To avoid repeating overlapping material, a deeper introduction to graphic configuration is presented in WALKTHROUGH 2 — DESIGNING GlossContourButtons™, DEPLOYING AS ContourServers™ OR ContourClients™ .

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