Kunal-Chowdhury.com - Microsoft Technology Blog for developers and consumers

Silverlight 4: Text to Speech application using COM API

imageHave you ever heard of Text to Speech engine? “Yes” I think. Yes, it is not a new thing in the Computer World. It was available since Windows 98 (as much as I can recall) but it is completely new in Silverlight. You can now use the Silverlight application to give an API call to the SAPI Engine which will convert the text to voice. Sounds Good? This is achievable using the COM APIs only.

 

Here I will describe you how to use COM API to give a TTS call to the SAPI Engine. After reading this topic here, you will be able to write your own code to develop your own application having the Text to Speech functionality in Silverlight 4.



Text Trimming in Silverlight 4

Have you ever tried Trimming your Text in Silverlight 2 or Silverlight 3? If yes, just recall the lines of code you wrote for trimming your text content and showing an Ellipsis (i.e. “…” three dots) at the end of the text. If you didn’t try it earlier, then just imagine what you have to do and how you will do. Also imagine the no. of lines you have to write. Confused smile

In this post, I will show you how I can implement this feature the easy way. Stop!!! I will not write here a huge code nor I will use any library to do that. Microsoft has added this functionality in Silverlight 4. You just have to set the Enum value to the TextBlock property. Surprised smile Wao!!!

So, how to do that? Let us try it.

Community TechDays is Back – July 2010 to August 2010

Microsoft Community Techdays is back again, starting from July 2010 – August 2010 in 9 cities across India. Attend it and get trained on latest Microsoft Technologies. You can join these sessions In-Person and also can watch them online streamed from various cities. Registration is open for both In-Person and Online Event (Developers and IT Professionals)

 

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Go and Register for it now at: http://www.communitytechdays.com/


A Simple Application using Silverlight Physics Helper Library

Recently I was interested to work with the Physics Helper for Silverlight. I saw couple of demos on net which uses the Physics library for Silverlight to create good animations with Friction logic. Yeah, friction. You can drop a ball on a surface which will bounce over that surface. I found it very interesting and thought to create a Simple Demo for it.

Here I will demonstrate you creating a Sample Application using Expression Blend. You don’t have to write a Single line of Code using Visual Studio. Surprised smile Is it? Yes, lets start doing that.

Silverlight 4: Interoperability with Windows 7 Taskbar using COM

Microsoft released Windows 7 last year which has lots of functionalities including a nice UI. Among those features one of the most user friendly feature is Pin/Unpin application to Taskbar. You can develop WPF or Windows Forms applications in which you can implement this feature. But do you know that this is also possible in Silverlight? Yes, Silverlight 4 has the power to talk with any other application using the COM API. You can read one of my earlier article [Silverlight 4: Interoperability with Excel using the COM Object].

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In this Article I will show you how we can talk with the Windows 7 Taskbar. Read the complete Article and provide your feedbacks or suggestions.


Microsoft Expression Studio 4 Released

image Microsoft launched their Expression Studio 4 today (7 June 2010), as expected. It includes Sketch Flow, Expression Encoder, Expression Web and Expression Design. This release comes with the Upgrade version. If you already have the licensed copy of Expression Studio 3, it will auto update to Expression 4 and you need no new license.

You can download it from Microsoft Expression Studio site.

Please note that, if you are developing in Silverlight for Windows Phone 7 and want to use Expression Blend, don’t install this version of Expression Studio. Continue working with the Expression Blend 4 Beta and the Windows Phone 7 CTP Tools for developers. Once the Windows Phone SDK releases, there will be service pack for Expression Studio.


Tips & Tricks - Working with Event Handler

Sometimes we write the following code while working with EventHandler and that may create some problems. I will discuss this later on. Let us see the code:


                private void RaiseOperationComplete(EventArgs e)
                {
                    if(OperationComplete != null)
                    {
                        OperationComplete(this, e);
                    }
                }



In the above case, suppose two thread subscribed to the same OperationComplete handler and one unsubscribed the event. In such scenario the OperationComplete event will become null and for the next thread due to the event is null it will not execute. This happens mainly in multithreaded applications but you can't guarantee for single threaded application too.

So what to do? How can we make sure that our application will not come into such situation and work properly?


Silverlight 4: Interoperability with Excel using the COM Object

Silverlight 4 has the capability of accessing the COM object using the COM API. You can access any program installed in your PC using those APIs in Silverlight. You can open Notepad, Word, Excel or Outlook from Silverlight application.

 

Here I will demonstrate you the step-by-step tutorial on opening an Microsoft Excel book followed by data sharing between the Silverlight application and the Excel Sheet. Here we will use a DataGrid which will load some customer information. Then we will pass the data to the Excel Sheet and then we will modify the data in the external application (i.e. inside the Excel sheet). You will see that, the modified data will reflect automatically to the Silverlight Application.


Silverlight 4 Tools for Visual Studio 2010 and WCF RIA Services Released

The final release of Silverlight 4 Tools for Visual Studio 2010 and the RIA services is out and you can download it from Microsoft Download site.

Read the complete Blog post made by Scott Guthrie regarding the Release of Silverlight 4 Tools for Visual Studio 2010 and WCF RIA Services.


Drag and Drop Operation in Silverlight ListBox

In this article, I am going to discuss with you regarding the Drag and Drop functionality inside a Silverlight ListBox control. This article will also cover the Drag and Drop operation between two ListBox control. We will use here the Silvelright 4 Toolkit to implement the feature.


Drag & Drop functionality is not present in Silverlight ListBox by default. Hence, there was a big problem implementing the feature. We had to write a huge code for this feature. But using Silvelright Toolkit you can do it very easily. You can download the Silverlight 4 Toolkit from the CodePlex Silverlight Toolkit site.


How to work with the Silverlight BusyIndicator?

Silverlight BusyIndicator is not a new thing in Silverlight. It was first added in Silverlight 3 Toolkit in November 2009 release (if I am not wrong). In this post I will describe about this for those who wants to know about it.

So, What is this Busy Indicator? Busy indicator is a tool which you can add in your Silverlight application to show a loading indication to your user while saving some sort of operation in database. Generally it is useful when you calling your WCF Service to store something in server or retrieving some data from server.


 
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