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Most compelling example of WPF to date

I'm finally getting pretty excited about WPF (Windows Presentation Foundation) and I saw a presentation yesterday featuring London Underground's new WPF based application that allows them to visualise the network in realtime, and even playback archives. Follow the link below and choose 'London Underground Demo' or seek to 39 mins. Make sure you watch it to the end to see the rotating 3D view.

London Underground and WPF demo

London Underground and WPF demo

Seriously, Wow (the image above doesn't come close to doing it justice - go watch the presentation.)

The weird thing is, we could have done this before. A higher tech solution might have used GDI+ and DirectX or you could have opted for a quicker low tech solution with little train sprites moving atop a zoomed bitmap. But I think this is the great thing about WPF, it lowers the barriers. I'm looking forward to seeing some real out of the box thinking.

So far, this has to be the most compelling use of WPF that I've seen. Though they aren't mentioned, I know that some of my old colleagues at Edenbrook Solutions were involved in putting this together and this doesn't surprise me, there are some seriously talented people there. Well done guys.

Whilst the demo does a great job of extolling the virtues of WPF I think it's a great case study for the SOA (Service Oriented Architecture). The presenters refer to their earlier efforts to build an SOA and then to a number of services that they leveraged in creating the demo. Only with these services making all the necessary disparate data readily available would such a proof of concept have been possible.

And apparently, the whole thing only took 14 days. I have to say I'm not sure I buy this and suspect a lot of discovery code went before (or they have a very cheap consulting bill).

I'm keen to start blogging about WPF but I'm not sure where to start (seriously, it's huge). I'm currently, very slowly, working through Charles Petzold's Application = Code + Markup so stay tuned for a review shortly.


Josh Post By Josh Twist
11:27 AM
30 Jan 2007

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Posted by Mick Bersani @ 07 Feb 2007 5:32 PM
Yeah, I saw it at the Vista UK launch and it looked great.
It's on our TFS now, need to have a look sometimes ;-)
Take care Josh.

Posted by Josh @ 08 Feb 2007 8:12 AM
Mick is one of the 'seriously talented people' I refer to, hi Mick! Anyone who reads Italian should check out his blog (http://blogs.ugidotnet.org/PuntoRete/) - I'm sure it's awesome :)

Posted by Leonardo Zacché @ 16 Aug 2007 3:35 PM
What about a 3D File System Viewer?
Humm... "3D Explorer"?

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