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Web-based Scheduling Solution with the WOW-Factor for ASP.NET 2.0 and Up

Infragistics WebSchedule lets you create Web-based scheduling applications with a superior user experience to rival the richest desktop-based scheduling applications. This article looks at new features in the NetAdvantage for Web Client 2009 Vol. 2 release that deliver that WOW-Factor.

Editorial Note

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Infragistics NetAdvantage® for Web Client: ASP.NET controls 2009 Volume 2 release has added an indelible WOW-Factor for you to take advantage of in your Web-based scheduling applications using ASP.NET 2.0 and up. Create superior user experiences for your scheduling users with Infragistics WebSchedule™ set of UI controls and data management components included in NetAdvantage® for Web Client: ASP.NET controls that rival the richest of desktop-based scheduling software. In this article, you will be introduced to the hottest features in this, the latest release of the WebSchedule controls.

You can download WebSchedule and scores more ASP.NET and Silverlight UI controls in NetAdvantage® for Web Client 2009 Vol. 2 from Infragistics with a 30-day free trial.

1.0 Multi-Resource View

In WebSchedule a resource is any person, place or thing that has activities. For example, an employee, a conference room, or a piece of audio/visual equipment can all have a schedule. Similar to Microsoft® Outlook® 2007, WebSchedule allows your Web-based applications to display the schedules of several visible resources at the same time in the new NetAdvantage® for Web Client 2009 Vol. 2 ASP.NET controls release.

To enable multiple resource view, set the WebScheduleInfo™ component's EnableMultiResourceView property to true and then you can add or remove resources that you want displayed from the control’s VisibleResources collection.

1.1 Overlay Mode

Multi-resource overlay mode allows users to see scheduling information for different resources in one view; the currently active resource displays in a unique style to distinguish it from the inactive resources. By default, all styling mimicks the default color scheme for Microsoft Outlook 2007 out of the box without requiring you to set any styles yourself.

A tab control controlled by the EnableMultiResourceCaption property allows your users to switch between different resources.

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Figure 1. A side-by-side example (in a user control) shows one way in which the multi-resource view of two Infragistics WebDayView™ controls can be customized.

2.0 Continuous Multi-Day Events

Sometimes the activities you need to track in your scheduling application will span more than one day. A simple implementation of a calendar would render in an HTML table, and consequently such multi-day events would be prone to appear fragmented and broken-up. WebDayView™ and WebMonthView controls however, display one continuous banner for an event that spans multiple days which makes your schedules appear much more elegant and refined.

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Figure 2. Multi-resource view in Infragistics WebMonthView™ that shows multi-day events for two resources simultaneously.

2.1 Continuation Arrows

When the entire multi-day event (including its beginning and end date) is not visible within a particular WebSchedule view, you can have it display continuation arrows. These UI elements indicate to users when the start and end dates are, with an accompanying label which you can custom format.

3.0 Generic Data Provider

WebScheduleGenericDataProvider™ allows you to bind the WebSchedule controls to many new and custom data sources. You have greater flexibility when choosing and combining sources of scheduling data. It complements the existing WebScheduleSqlClientProvider™ and WebScheduleOleDbProvider™ controls which are based on the WebSchedule standard data model.

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Figure 3. Use of the new Infragistics WebScheduleGenericDataProvider™ in a WebSchedule application.

3.1 Generic Data Model

Scheduling data can be in any schema you want, because you specify the data source you are binding to by setting 3 properties (ActivityDataSource, ResourceDataSource, VarianceDataSource) on WebScheduleGenericDataProvider. You can easily pull activities, resources, and variances (activities that differ from the standard activity in a recurrence) from completely different data sources, if you like.

If the names of your fields differ from the way we have named ours, you can specify your names by setting the AppointmentBinding, ResourceBinding and VarianceBinding properties on the WebScheduleGenericDataProvider.

If you have custom fields that you want to extend Activity and Resource objects within WebSchedule, then you can retrieve these custom fields from your data entities using the new DataRow property on these classes.

While the WebSchedule standard data model includes a lot of additional information useful for many Web-based distributed scheduling applications, WebGenericDataProvider can work with a smaller subset of data. Table 1 shows the minimum information needed for the different WebSchedule entities.

Entity Required Fields
Appointment ID, StartDateTimeUtc, Duration, ResourceID, VarianceID, Subject and Status

Variance ID, StartDateTimeUtc, OriginalStartDateTimeUtc, Duration, ResourceID, VarianceID, Subject and Status
Resource ID and ResourceName
Table 1. Minimum data requirements for each WebSchedule entity being data bound using WebScheduleGenericDataProvider.

3.2 Supported Data Sources

The following data sources are supported by WebScheduleGenericDataProvider:

  • DataSet and DataTable
  • Data Sources that implement IListSource
  • Data Sources that implement IDataSource
  • Data Sources that implement IEnumerable (IEnumerable is read-only, updates require at least an IList or ICollection)

WebScheduleSqlClientProvider continues to support a SqlDataSource or ADO.NET SqlConnection to a single Microsoft® SQL Server® 2005 (or 2008) database instance. WebScheduleOleDbProvider™ supports an AccessDataSource or ADO.NET OleDbConnection to an Access® database (.mdb file). Custom data providers can still be written using the IDataFetch and IDataUpdate interfaces to adapt any other data source not supported by one of the built-in data providers, but we think you’ll find WebScheduleGenericDataProvider removes any need to write a custom data provider for many data sources.

4.0 Summary

WebSchedule lets you show your users a superior user experience in a Web-based scheduling application, one that rivals even the richest of desktop-based scheduling applications. You can easily show your users activities by the day, week or month. They can track their own schedules, or the schedules for any resource (singly or multiple resources at once). Whatever data source(s) you may have that contain your schedule data today, integrating it with WebSchedule has been greatly simplified. Put the WOW!-Factor into your Web-based scheduling applications today.

Download WebSchedule and scores more ASP.NET and Silverlight UI controls in NetAdvantage® for Web Client 2009 Vol. 2 from Infragistics with a 30-day free trial to see for yourself how Infragistics can help you create killer applications with the WOW!-Factor in little to no time.

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Copyright © 1996-2009 by Infragistics, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Infragistics, NetAdvantage and the Infragistics logo are registered trademarks of Infragistics, Inc. WebSchedule, WebMonthView, WebDayView, WebScheduleGenericDataProvider, WebScheduleSqlClientProvider and WebScheduleOleDbProvider are trademarks of Infragistics, Inc. All other trademarks or registered trademarks are the property of their respective owner(s).

License

This article, along with any associated source code and files, is licensed under The Code Project Open License (CPOL)

About the Author

Murtaza Abdeali
Product Manager Infragistics
United States United States
My name is Murtaza Abdeali, also known as Taz, I am the Product Manager for Web Clients at Infragistics. I manage our ASP.NET product line.
 
I started at Infragistics in 2004 as a Developer Support Engineer, where I enjoyed being at the fore front of all the product lines, talking directly to customers, answering questions, solving simple and complex problems.
 
Then I joined our Evangelism department as a Technical Evangelist, where I travelled all over the world visiting customers, speaking with them face to face, talking about the product and technologies around. During the same period, I also did some consulting and training gigs. This was the time where I got to see Infragistics customers actually using the product within their applications and being able to help with their problems in real time.
 
In my current role as a Product Manager, I still do all of the above, but I am also responsible for setting the direction for our ASP.NET product. So, if you want to discuss anything regarding the ASP.NET toolset, please feel free to contact me: murtazaa@infragistics.com

Comments and Discussions

 
QuestionProblem at adding the activity in the webdayview control PinmemberBopinwar Ashwini2-Oct-12 20:25 

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