What happened to the Zone information on the status bar in IE9?

One query that comes in quite a bit from the IT Pro community around IE9 is this: what happened to the zone indication from the status bar? Zone information, for both the Developer and the IT Pro, can be pretty important. It determines the security context the page runs in, as well as the application…


How Much Personalization Should Your Software Support?

In my last post, I took a look at one specific element of the design in Windows Vista. My intention was to explore two themes that I think this one small example illustrated well: the importance of telling a consistent story well, and the importance of understanding the human emotional response to a user interface….


Why Did My Windows Vista Glass Go Away When I Maximized My Window?

Up front notice: I am neither the designer nor the developer of the window chrome in Windows Vista. I have been using Windows Vista Beta 2 as my primary operating system since it was released. My overall impression so far: it is really, really tight. Sure, there are still some warts. Sure, I have to…


Light Up Your Fonts on Vista: Selecting Segoe UI Using GetThemeSysFont, NONCLIENTMETRICS, or SystemFonts.MessageBoxFont

Last time around, I suggested, “Let’s see if I can talk about something other than rendering text next time around…” It looks like the answer to that one is no. Windows Vista has reached Beta 2, and we are already beginning to see documentation around lighting up your applications on Windows Vista. One of the…


Creating Text Labels With a Drop Shadow Effect in Windows Forms

One great new feature in WinFX / Windows Presentation Foundation (Avalon) is the ability to render true drop shadows using the DropShadowBitmapEffect class. What do I mean by true shadows? It’s relatively straightforward to simply render text twice onto a form, but in the real world the edges of shadows do not have hard edges….


GDI vs. GDI+ Text Rendering Performance

In my last post, I included the unverified claim, “I have heard (but I have not personally verified) that GDI font rendering is approximately 10x faster than GDI+ font rendering (1M glyphs / second vs. 100K glyphs / second). Of course, there is a reason why GDI+ takes more work – text is truly device…


Windows Forms Font Hinting with TextRenderingHint

After poking around the concepts of raster and vector images, I really wanted to dive a bit deeper into the most common form of vector image you will find today: fonts. Most of the fonts you run into today on a Windows system will be either True Type or Open type fonts, which are vector…


Manipulating HSB (HSL) Values to Create Windows Forms Panel Background Colors

In my last entry, I provided some code to convert from the HSB color space to the RGB color space. Note that we are actually referring to the HSL color space, not the HSB color space. I am using the name HSB because this is the convention used by the .NET Framework and its supporting…


Converting from HSB to RGB in .NET

I want to digress a bit from the controls we have been drawing and measuring to talk a bit about color. In some of the examples we have been building, we have been trying to make it possible to set the color just one time rather than explicitly specifying background colors and highlight colors. Consequently,…


Performance Effects of Scaling Raster Images

We have been exploring the technique of pre-rasterizing vector images, and the last time around we took a look at a particular example where pre-rendering our vector image performed better than real-time rendering when the image is small, but that the pre-rasterized version began to take much longer as the size of the controls go…