Changing a Panorama Control Title Font.



So rather a grand title for this, another ‘Sequencer App’, but while putting it together this felt like the best use of my existing/developing sequencing platform to date, so if the title is a little cheesy, so be it.

I always try and add a little something different with every iteration of this app and, as I liked the font I used for the Splash Screen (Above) I wanted to try and add it to the main Panorama Screen (Below).


I turned to Blend but quickly found that there was no way to change the Font for the Panorama Title within the Designer.  So I switched to XAML View and used a method for manipulating the design that I have used before (but not blogged about).


Its a simple enough job to take the Panorama Title out of the main declaration and give it its own sub declaration. Then by adding a Text Block I was able to set the font to the one that I desired:


Of course this trick can be expanded upon by using other controls (and attributes) besides a Text Block.  For instance I have used a background transparent Bitmap to pleasing effect in another example.


One thing to be aware of is that this new section of XAML cannot be modified in the designer (the designer works fine, but this section is effectively ‘hidden’) so I guess we are making the design ‘Partially un-Blendable’ with this trick (though in reality most designers know enough about the XAML underpinnings that I would not expect this to be a problem).


Finally I had to bring Blend in again in order to embed the font into the XAP.

NB “Ambient Soundscape” should appear in the MarketPlace later this week.



Verse 1






Songster is a fun to use interactive song writing aid for Windows Phone 7.  It’s focus is a step based music composition screen which allows the simultaneous input of up to 12 different instruments.  Both drums and Musical parts can be written and played back in real time in an iterative and interactive process. Over 50 high quality musical samples can be assigned to 1 of 12 Pads (Live Screen) or Rows (Sequencer Screen) with individual control at note level of volume, pitch and position within the stereo field.



Sequences developed in the Sequence Screen can be chained together to form a song, additional editing features in song mode support an iterative / trial approach to song arrangement whereby individual sequences can be copied, deleted, repeated, edited and ‘dragged’ to different positions within the arrangement structure.


Pads can be arranged on the surface according to taste and have individual sounds assigned with custom volume, pitch and position within the stereo field.  A Special ‘Jam’ mode allows an individual sample to be spread across all pads.

Scared of Blend

I think I read somewhere recently that we all (ie programmers) need to be designers, and I have come around to that way of thinking myself.  So that is going to be my next (OK, next but one after building confidence in Azure) learning target.   I have managed to scrape by so far ( and were both done in Visual Studio) but enough is enough, the line must be drawn here.   Perhaps I will start by giving those two sites a design makeover, or maybe I will try and do a ‘completely non code’ site – forcing myself to understand what all those knobs and buttons in Blend actually do!

Silverlight Blend Design Day

Having done all my Silverlight coding in Visual Studio (and keen to get into Blend) this looks right up my street.

Here is the blurb:

A Silverlight Design Day is opportunity to learn about Silverlight and Expression Blend from a design and interface developer perspective.
The first half of the day will start out with a short poll, asking these three questions:

  1. How many of you write code?
  2. What technologies do you use today?
  3. Is there anything specific you want to cover?

The tools and the platform will then be introduced by accomplishing designer tasks based on the earlier poll as much as possible.
The second half of the day will be your opportunity to get your hands on Blend and Silverlight. PCs will be available already configured to run through tutorials, made especially with designer and UI tasks in mind.

Here is the info page: