The development of RadDiagram for Silverlight and WPF continues to move full speed
ahead during the Q3 time-frame. After the
release and the awesome series of features we delivered, it is now time to
focus on the next best diagramming bits. Of course,we'll continue to refine the
existing features, improve the flexibility and extensibility of the diagramming
API, make the visuals even more rich and clear the path for more grandiose data
visualizations and user interactions. However, the world continues heading
towards a more colorful spectrum of form factors, platforms and technologies, so
the Q3 release will be a transition towards the next big thing in diagramming.
We'll keep you up to date on this and for now we'll highlight the more classic
(and expected) features we're working on.
We heard your requests loud and clear; you want to display RadDiagram
diagrams in a browser. So, the next release will boast an SVG export whereby the
XML format of a serialized diagram can be reused without modification in your
web applications. This also means that you can store diagrams in the cloud,
serve them through an OData service, use WCF or any server technology and
exchange them between WPF, Silverlight and HTML. Technically speaking the export
is actually an import since the XML file is loaded in the browser using
Kendo is indeed significant and we will continue to elaborate in this direction. This is something big
and wee hope that it will satisfy your need for cross-platform integrations,
developments and rendering on diverse form factors.
Another much requested feature is the free-hand and polygon drawing tools
which allow you to draw freely shapes on the diagram surface, resulting in
respectively arbitrary shapes or multi-line (open or closed) polygons.
The ruler we introduced in the previous release will respect the zooming as will be integrated with the background Grid.
It will also be more integrated with the printing feature and the related
page-splitting, so you can see how a diagram is spread across print pages even
before you hit the print or print preview button.
Custom connector were introduced in the previous release and allow you to
define an arbitrary amount of hotspot on a shape where a connection can be
attached. Once defined this connector is supposedly immovable and part of the
shape's visual definition. There are however situations where the fixed position
of a connector is not desirable while it's semantic meaning is constant. The
most notable example being the foreign-key connection between two table shapes
in a SQL designer. Indeed, in this situation the connection has a precise
(semantic) meaning while the endpoints typically glide around the edge of the
table shapes. In the next release of RadDiagram you will be able to create this
type of connector and it thus articulates a whole species of diagrams which were
previously not possible.
The current version of RadDiagram allows you to group shapes and thus enables
interactions with sub-diagrams as one entity, as far as rotation, translation
and scaling is concerned. These groups are however non-visual structures and
cannot be styled or given content besides the group elements. The visual
container is much like groups except that it also acts as a true visual shape
(including connectors, templating and such), much like the ItemsControl or
HeaderedItemsControl in XAML. Like the gliding connectors, this feature opens up
a whole range of possibilities and diagramming scenarios: workflow diagrams,
collapsible containers, swimlane diagrams, UML deployment diagrams and more.
Yet another much requested feature is a finer level of control regarding what
a user can do at runtime with diagram elements; per shape enable/disable specific manipulations like
rotation, resizing, editing, dragging, connection creation and so on. So, we'll
expand the API with more properties and methods to give access to editing and
The design experience inside Expression Blend and Visual Studio will get a
facelift together with better support for automated (visual) testing.
The mini-map or thumbnail is a great way to navigate large diagrams but it
requires still too much effort to wrap it into a control which contains the zoom
and the expand-collapse of the view. We'll make sure in the next version the
whole process of adding the thumbnail is a matter of click-and-go.
Diagramming shapes can host as good as any type of content and shine when
used in conjunction with other Telerik controls. Earlier we
demonstrated that you can leverage the rich RadDiagram API to incorporate
gauges and other visualization controls inside a shape and through this create
innovative dashboards and designers. We intend to take this article sample to
the next level and merge it with the existing RadDiagram samples, which will
hence highlight the usage of
custom, visual shapes like charts, gauges, image and many more.
These are the major improvements we planned but your feedback and suggestions are,
as always, very welcome.
Thanks to Francois Vanderseypen for the edit.
Miro Miroslavov is XAML enthusiast. You can follow him on Twitter at @mmiroslavov.
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