Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Telerik Watch Minute: Enhancing RadGrid filtering

After the busy "news update" TWM last week, this week I decided to bring you an episode dedicated to cool Telerik coding tip. Specifically, in this episode I show you how you can easily use the client-side API of RadGrid for ASP.NET AJAX to enable complete keyboard control over all filtering operations. You can change filtering functions and filter the grid without ever touching the mouse! It's a simple tweak you can easily add to any RadGrid to give your "power users" the ability to be more productive. Enjoy! Download the code NOTE: You'll need the AdventureWorks DB to run the demo Click here to watch video full size (for better viewing of code)

Monday, September 29, 2008

Telerik beats Microsoft to the jQuery punch (barely)

Microsoft let loose some big news on Sunday: in a few weeks time, they will officially be shipping the popular jQuery JavaScript library with Visual Studio! Being a long time user and fan of jQuery, I personally found his announcement very exciting. If you've never used jQuery, you've been missing out. It was the first JavaScript library I used that actually made JavaScript programming fun (an adjective not usually associated with the world's "favorite" scripting language). jQuery makes simple JavaScript animation, DOM querying, CSS manipulation, and so much more so easy and very intuitive. Point: jQuery is great. Microsoft's decision to ship jQuery will not directly affect the framework (MS is not changing or "enhancing" the library), but the attention will definitely help drive jQuery's popularity and in turn its online support. For Microsoft's part, they will be shipping free Visual Studio IntelliSense providers for jQuery in "a few weeks" and then providing "official" Microsoft product support for jQuery later this year. And while the Microsoft announcement is great, Telerik has got even better news! Before Microsoft ever indicated that they would be making this move, Telerik began showing-off jQuery integration with the RadControls for ASP.NET AJAX. Our developers, like Microsoft's, recognized the power of this compact framework and its ability to easily enhance the RadControls. In fact, on Friday (days before the MS announcement) our own .NET Ninja Vladimir Enchev showed you how you can use jQuery to add some neat animations to RadGrid. Imagine our surprise when days later Microsoft made their jQuery announcement! Are our offices bugged?! Either way, we're thrilled Microsoft has officially decided to support jQuery, too, and we're happy to be leading the way for Microsoft and the rest of the ASP.NET AJAX component world. Stay tuned for more details as Q3 draws near!

Telerik Reporting SP2 released

All you Telerik Reporting developers out there, don't miss Telerik's latest Reporting update. Released late last week, the second service pack for Reporting Q2 2008 is mostly a maintenance build. If you have been having any of the problems described in the release notes, download this update from your Client.net account and update away. If not, you may want to wait for the Q3 release that is only about a month away. That release will pack many new features, including support for cross-tab reports.

Still haven't tried Telerik Reporting? What are you waiting for?! If you have a Telerik Subscription license, you've got this in your toolbox and I think you'll be impressed with how far we've advanced our reporting solution in the last year.

Friday, September 26, 2008

RadControls SP2 coming next week, Official Chrome support

Here's a quick heads-up before the weekend arrives. Next week Telerik will be shipping Service Pack 2 for the Q2 2008 RadControls for ASP.NET AJAX. This release will primarily be a roll-up of bug fixes since SP1, and no new major functionality will be introduced. We will, however, be delivering complete support for Google's new Chrome browser in SP2. Even though Google's browser is still a beta product, we know that many of your sites need to support it, so we're fixing-up all of the issues Google's browser introduced and giving you full-support next week. Grab SP2 when it comes out next week if you need to fully support Chrome.

For those interested in seeing new functionality, you'll get to see a preview of the new features coming to Telerik's flagship UI suite in the "Q3 Futures" build for the RadControls for ASP.NET AJAX due mid-October.

Silverlight 2.0 RC0 released, Telerik RC coming next week (update)

In case you missed the news, Microsoft has just released the official Silverlight 2 Release Candidate build, a major step towards getting an official plug-in. Now, by many early accounts, we expected to have a final plug-in around this time, but I think it's clear that Microsoft is saving that release for the upcoming PDC festivities. So, we get an RC instead of an RTM, but according to the great ScottGu, applications built to work with RC0 should be upgradable to RTM with a "few hours" work. Among the highlights of things changed Beta 2 to RC0:

  • Snap-to-pixel rendering by default (SL used to use "sub pixel" rendering). This will help Silverlight applications look "crisper" on screen and finally help improve the readability of the text!
  • More new controls: Combobox, PasswordBox, and ProgressBar
  • Updated default skin- looks much cleaner than the original default skin
And that's about it at surface level. For a complete list of the well over 30 breaking changes in RC0, check out Mike Snow's blog. Most of the changes are small "tweaks," but they may affect your app if you used a lot of the Silverlight API.
As for Telerik, we've got our RC0 bits ready to go. In fact, we were going to release them today, but Microsoft was a little late getting the RC0 plug-in out the door. On Monday, we will be releasing the RadControls for Silverlight 2 RC0, which will not only work on the new plug-in, but also pack some new controls and features (more on those later). And in about 4 weeks, around the time of PDC, we will release the RadControls for Silverlight 2 RC1, followed shortly by the official RadControls for Silverlight with our big Q3 release in early November.
It has been a long road, but Silverlight 2 is finally (almost) here! UPDATE: I got our planned release day for the RadControls for Silverlight RC0 wrong. After the MS delay last week, we decided to add a few more things to RC0, so we need a few extra days to re-test. Look for Telerik RC0 by week's end.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

New Sitefinity book published by Falafel

So, you've built a great website with Sitefinity (in record time, no less). You've wowed your clients with the site's rich page layout editor. You've impressed them with the site's ability to easily host blogs and forums. You've stunned them with the affordable price. Your clients are ready to become "web masters," but to get there they want some training. Before you trudge-off and try to build a training program for your Sitefinity users from scratch, don't miss the new book published by our good partners at Falafel titled Sitefinity Made Easy. In this 216 page book, the training masters at Falafel have built a complete 2-day course targeted at non-developers to help them get the most out of Sitefinity. From a complete tour of Sitefinity's features to in-depth discussion of customizing pages with modules, this book covers most of the topics end-users need to be productive in Telerik's CMS. There are even sections dedicated to walking the non-developer through Sitefinity installation and deployment, so if your end-users are a little more "hands-on," this is a great resource for them, too. The book is available directly via Lulu Press, $30 for paperback, $20 for digital PDF. Enjoy the resource and watch for more great books from Falafel soon!

Monday, September 22, 2008

Telerik Watch Minute: Back in the saddle

After a short interruption to the weekly flow of TWM episodes courtesy of Ike, we get things re-started this week with a quick re-cap of some important Telerik news. Today's video is strictly updates- no code or demos- but I'll be preparing more content this week that will include some fun new "bite size" demos. In the mean time, don't forget to follow Kevin's RadTip series where he's already got a half-dozen step-by-step videos showing you how to use RadGrid for ASP.NET AJAX client-side features. And speaking of bite size demos, what do you guys want to see? There's ton I can cover in this quick 2 - 5 minute format, but I want to know what you're most interested in seeing. Drop some ideas in the comments and stay tuned for another update soon!

Friday, September 19, 2008

RadGridView for WinForms webinar coming soon

Up 'til now, a lot of our online webinars have been showing the love to Telerik's ASP.NET AJAX, WPF, Silverlight, and Reporting products, leaving the RadControls for WinForms out of the fun. Fortunately, that story is about to change as Falafel has announced their next RadWebinar. On October 1st, Falafel CEO & Microsoft MVP Lino Tadros will be doing a brand new (FREE) webinar on the RadGridView for WinForms. The RadGridView is one of Telerik's most popular WinForms controls and clearly one of the most essential for LOB application developers, so this should be a very popular session. Lino will be covering a number of topics during this live 2-hour event (of which the on-demand video will be available in high quality online much faster than before- sorry for those continued delays) including:

  • Basic overview of the RadGridView's features, design-time support, and API
  • Detailed look at hierarchy support
  • Examination of high-performance data binding features and configurations
  • Introduction to exporting data
If you're a WinForms developer and you want to learn more about Telerik's RadGridView, don't miss this session. You can register now to save your spot and then tune-in live on October 1st at 9:30 AM PDT for all the fun. Hope you enjoy the webinar and keep telling us what you want to see next so we can prepare the content you need! Register for FREE RadGridView RadWebinar now

Thursday, September 18, 2008

New Survey: What would you power?

Given my recent encounter with a power-less world, I've been inspired to finally update the Telerik Watch Poll. In the days after Hurricane Ike, the silence of a city without electricity quickly transformed in to the sound of roaring portable generators, rumbling away in many people's driveways, supplying them with a trickle of power. In most cases, these generators could only support a few devices, so many people had to choose what was important enough to plug-in to their precious supply of electricity. That got me thinking... If you could only power a single device with your generator for an entire week, what device would you choose? Clearly, this is a bit of an extreme question since genertors would allow you to power multiple devices, but play along. If you had to pick a single electric device to power in your house for a week (a choice you couldn't change), what would you pick? The refrigerator to save your food? Your air conditioning to remain comfortable? Your computer to avoid withdrawls? Make your opinion known in the new poll!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Hurricane Ike attacks Telerik Houston

As you've probably heard about by now, over the weekend the Houston and Galveston areas (and many areas to the north) were slammed by massive Hurricane Ike. The storm that canceled the Houston TechFest came on shore early Saturday morning and carved a path that happened to drive directly over my home base in North Houston. Thankfully, no one was hurt and no serious damage was inflicted to homes or businesses in my immediate area, but the storm did knock-out the power, which still remains out of commission today. But while the storm has disrupted life here in Houston, I know for many of you it's life as usual and that means you need your Telerik Watch updates. In that spirit, I've "retreated" to the powered parts of North Texas and am now back online, ready to bring you your regularly scheduled Telerik Watch programming. Many thanks to all of you that kept us in your prayers over the weekend and for your kind words. All is well and now it's time to get back to making your developer lives easier than ever before! See some pics of Ike aftermath in The Woodlands

Friday, September 12, 2008

Looking Ahead: ASP.NET Q3 Road Map

Last week we looked at the updated Q3 2008 Road Maps for WinForms, WPF, and Silverlight. This week, let's take a look at the recently updated road map for the RadControls for ASP.NET AJAX. The Q3 2008 road map for the ASP.NET AJAX controls looks different than it has for past major releases. That's because the focus on the ASP.NET AJAX teams for Q3 is more about making the Telerik RadControls are highest performing, most stable ASP.NET components available on the market. Work like this is incredbily important and we are confident that by Q3 our controls will be unrivaled in terms of performance and stability- which should translate in to similar benefits for your Telerik-powered applications. But we're not stopping there for Q3. In addition to all of the work we're doing to maximize performance, we're also introducing some exciting new initiatives:

  • Visual Style Builder for ASP.NET: This web-based tool will make it possible easily design new skins for the RadControls, completely visually. No need to parse the complicated Telerik CSS files.
  • Silverlight Server Controls: We will start introducing ASP.NET AJAX server controls that make integrating Silverlight functionality in your ASP.NET applications very easy.
  • Data Improvements: We've got a big announcement to make in this space for Q3, so stay tuned for the "big reveal" in a few weeks.
We're also adding new features and client-side enhancments to several of the key ASP.NET AJAX controls (like RadEditor, RadScheduler, and RadGrid), so all told Q3 is going to be a big release! Check back here often for more details as they become public and get ready for a great release in early November.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Nevermind, Houston TechFest canceled due to Ike

Well, that didn't take long. Only hours after inviting you to join me this Saturday for the Houston TechFest, I have just received official word that the event has been canceled due to Hurricane Ike. With wind speeds expected to exceed 100 mph in Houston, many businesses and schools are closing their doors, including the University of Houston where the event was scheduled to take place. Conference organizers plan to reschedule the event, but right now it looks like facilities will not be available 'til late January '09. When the date is re-set, of course, I will give you the details right here on Telerik Watch. On the bright side of this news, you now have plenty of time to schedule your travel to Houston TechFest 2008 2009! I, for one, am off to batten down the hatches, charge the laptop batteries, and get ready for a wet weekend.

Join me at the Houston TechFest Saturday

This Saturday I will be participating in the 2nd annual Houston TechFest, and so far it's looking like it's going to be another huge success. The only thing that could get in the way of this year's event is a Category 3 hurricane barreling down on Texas, but what's a TechFest without a 120 mph breeze. At last count, well over 600 people had registered for the TechFest, and registration is still open! If you're in the Houston area and you don't mind driving through a little rain, register for the TechFest now and come join the festivities on Saturday! For my part at this event, I'll be doing two sessions: one on Silverlight and the other on ASP.NET AJAX. Neither session is new, but the ASP.NET AJAX session will be updated with brand new content for the Houston TechFest, including a first look at Google Chrome and ASP.NET AJAX. I'll make the slides available after the sessions right here on my blog and I'll also try to record at least one of the sessions and make the video available, too. That is, of course, if Hurricane Ike doesn't decide ruin the party...

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

RadControls for WPF service pack released

For those of you already building cutting-edge applications with WPF and Telerik's RadControls for WPF, there is a new service pack out that you should check out. Officially released yesterday, the first service pack for the Q2 2008 RadControls for WPF is mostly a bug-fix release. There are a few added small features to RadGridView and RadNumericUpDown, but there no significant new features or new controls in this maintenance release. So, I guess this is release is more like a "Vista SP1" than a ".NET 3.5 SP1." Either way, you can check out the release notes for all the nitty-gritty details and then download the updated bits directly from your Client.net accounts.

Welcome new Telerik Evangelists

This was a big week for the Telerik Evangelism Team. As of Monday, our ranks grew by two as we welcomed John Kellar and Gabe Sumner to Telerik's Developer Evangelism role. Both of these guys are outstanding developers and great communicators, so we're very happy to have them on our team.

Gabe is coming to Telerik from a long background doing mostly web development for a large real estate company. But you probably know him as a Sitefinity MVP, a Telerik product Gabe has been involved with for quite some time now. As a Telerik Evangelist, Gabe will be focusing primarily on Sitefinity and SharePoint, so if you're working with either of those technologies, expect Telerik's attention to your needs to improve radically in the coming weeks and months.
Meanwhile, John is joining Telerik after spending the last few years consulting. John is already a very active .NET community member (he runs the big devLink conference in Nashville) and a C# MVP. He'll be applying his real world experience with client app development to focus on Telerik's WinForms and WPF products, so expect some great resources from John in the future to help you with your WinForms and WPF projects.
Join me in welcoming these guys to the Telerik Team and be sure to say 'hi' next time you see them at .NET event somewhere in the world!

Friday, September 05, 2008

Looking Ahead: Q3 Road Maps posted for WinForms, Silverlight, WPF

With Q2 2008 soundly behind us, it's time to turn our attention to the quickly approaching Q3 2008 release. The next (and last) release for 2008 is currently scheduled to ship in early November, so we're less than 10 weeks away from another major Telerik release. The Q3 release is going to be a big one, too! There's a number of big things happening around the time of Q3- a few of which shall remain "secret" until a later date- but we can talk today about the plans for the RadControls for WinForms, Silverlight, and WPF.
The public road maps for all of these suites have been updated on Telerik.com, but since I like to make your lives as easy as possible, here are some highlights:
RadControls for WinForms
  • New! RadScheduler for WinForms
  • New! RadPrompt and RadConfirm for WinForms
  • Major improvements in RadGridView
    • Multi-row column headers
    • Cell merge/span
    • Optimized support for 100's of columns
  • Major refactoring in RadDock
  • Performance improvements across entire theming engine
RadControls for Silverlight
  • New! RadGrid for Silverlight (ported from WPF version)
  • New! RadTimePicker, RadDock, and RadContextMenu for Silverlight
  • New drag-and-drop manager for all controls
  • New animation framework for all controls
  • New theming engine for all controls
  • Vastly expanded documentation and examples
RadControls for WPF
  • New! RadScheduler for WPF
  • New! RadChart and RadGauges for WPF
  • New themes for all controls
  • Expanded documentation and new demo framework (a.k.a. QSF)
Check out the road map links below for more details and then stay tuned for more details on the ASP.NET AJAX, Sitefinity, and Reporting road maps for Q3.

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Advanced RadGrid webinar follow-up, video (update)

This Tuesday, Falafel CEO Lino Tadros delivered a great RadWebinar on RadGrid. It was the first free RadWebinar, and the turn-out was great! Over 200 people from around the globe tuned-in for the live event, and many questions were addressed during the live session. A big thanks to Lino for putting on such a great event and to all of you that attended live! We hope you enjoy these live resources in addition to all of the other video we're generating these days. If you didn't get to see the live webinar, or if you just want to re-watch your favorite parts, we have the on-demand resources ready for your enjoyment. You can watch a streaming, on-demand version of the webinar at the bottom of this post and grab the complete webinar demo code (and PDF courseware and Q&A PDF) too. Soon we'll have a centralized location for viewing all past Telerik webinars, but for now enjoy the video from the comfort of Telerik Watch. Stay tuned for another webinar announcement soon and keeping sending us your feedback so we know where to focus our webinar content in the future!

NOTE: We'll be making the higher quality (and larger file size) video available for direct download soon. I'll put the link here when it's ready.
UPDATE: Larger video is now available on Telerik TV:

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Telerik Watch Minute: Google Chrome and RadControls

This week we take a quick look at Google's brand new browser, Google Chrome. Actually, it's Google's new beta browser, but I guess at this point Google and beta products go hand-in-hand. In the longest Telerik Watch Minute thus far (about 7 minutes), we look at some of the developer oriented features of Chrome and check out some of the RadControls for ASP.NET AJAX to make sure they still behave as expected. To see what happens, watch the video!

Monday, September 01, 2008

Reminder: Free RadGrid webinar tomorrow

After a long, enjoyable holiday weekend (at least in the US), it's easy to forget items that have been on your calendar for weeks. So while you continue to "snooze" all of those important Outlook Reminders, here's your official reminder that the next RadWebinar is being held tomorrow, Tuesday, September 2nd at 9:30 AM PST (12:30 PM EST). And while this webinar is already quite full, we're leaving the registration open for all that are interested to attend.

As I mentioned in the original post, this webinar is unique for a few reasons (see the original post if you want to review) not the least of which is the advanced "301" session outline. Here's some of what Lino will cover tomorrow during this 2-hour webinar:

  • Grid calculations (Footer aggregates, group footers, calculated columns)
  • Client-side features (Data binding, CRUD operations, events, drag-and-drop)
  • LINQ (boosting RadGrid performance)
  • Grid templates (Global item template, nested templates, detail template)

Grab your developer buddies, an open conference room, and join us for a great training session on RadGrid. And if you absolutely can't make it live, we will be making an on-demand version of this webcast available later this week. See you tomorrow!

Register for free RadGrid webinar now