Panel with 3 orbits in VB.NET

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Panel with 3 orbits
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clib:OrbitPanel.Orbit="1" /> <Button Content="Button 14" Background="Blue" clib:OrbitPanel.Orbit="1" /> </clib:OrbitPanel> </Grid>
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This listing produces the image from the opening of this section (figure 24.1), with two orbits of buttons. In order for this listing to work, you must define the following namespace:
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xmlns:clib="clr-namespace:ControlsLib;assembly=ControlsLib"
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Panels are all about measuring and arranging their children. Measuring is used to ask each child what size it wants to be, and to provide the overall size for the panel. Arranging is used to calculate the final location of each of the child elements. This panel has been a pretty simple implementation both for space reasons and to keep to the essentials of what we need to learn. If you want to take it further, there are some enhancements I d recommend.
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24.1.5 Enhancements
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The panel we created in this section is a good starting point for your own panel design. There are a number of places you could take this panel. Three enhancements I d recommend are using start and stop angles, defining orbits using a grid-like approach, and item clipping.
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START AND STOP ANGLES
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Currently the panel starts calculating layout at zero degrees and completes at 360 degrees. A simple change would be to provide dependency properties for StartAngle and StopAngle, and use those in the layout calculation. This would allow arcs of controls rather than full orbits.
DEFINING ORBITS
Another potential change would be to make the orbit definitions more flexible. Rather than only providing a number of orbits, you could use orbit definitions in the same way the Grid panel uses RowDefinitions. An example of the markup might look like this:
<clib:OrbitPanel> <clib:OrbitPanel.OrbitDefinitions> <clib:OrbitDefinition StartAngle="25" StopAngle="40" Width="100" /> <clib:OrbitDefinition StartAngle="340" StopAngle="270" Width="Auto" /> <clib:OrbitDefinition StartAngle="90" StopAngle="180" Width="*" /> </clib:OrbitPanel.OrbitDefinitions> ... </clib:OrbitPanel>
This would enable you to support different arcs for each orbit, as well as set widths (optionally using grid units) for each orbit. You would accomplish this by creating a custom collection type to hold the orbit definitions, then creating an OrbitDefinition class. The collection would be exposed
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Creating panels and controls
by the panel. The measure and layout calculations would change to use the provided sizes rather than calculating sizes.
ITEM CLIPPING
The third enhancement is item clipping. I didn t implement this in the OrbitPanel because, frankly, it doesn t make a lot of sense to do so. But clipping the individual child elements is often essential to the functioning of a panel. When an item is clipped, the portion of the element that would normally lie outside the allotted space isn t shown. This is accomplished by setting the size of the rectangle in the arrange step to be smaller than the size of the element. For example, to modify listing 24.4 to clip all elements to 30 x 30 pixel rectangles, change the finalRect to be calculated like this:
double maxWidth = 30; double maxHeight = 30; Rect finalRect = new Rect(centerPoint.X + left - maxWidth / 2, centerPoint.Y + top - maxHeight / 2, maxWidth, maxHeight);
In a real panel, you d calculate the maxWidth and maxHeight based upon available space in the layout slot. In addition to this calculation change, be sure to apply the same measurement to the call to the measure step, so the child has the ability to resize itself if possible. Creating a custom panel in Silverlight is a straightforward process once you decide on a layout algorithm. The majority of the work is performed inside the measure and arrange steps. The measure step is where the panel calculates the size of each element and the size of the panel itself. The arrange step is where the panel performs the actual positioning (and optional clipping) of the child elements. Creating a custom control is similar to creating a panel; many of the same steps apply. In the next section, we ll create a control that supports styling and visual states.
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