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Building an ASP.NET App: John's DVD Catalog - Part 5: Display

by John Peterson

Introduction

I was hoping to get a lot more done, but something came up, like it always does, and I didn't quite make it... so here's what I've got so far on the basic layout and display routines... it's not much, but it's better then nothing.

A Basic Template (Very Rough Draft)

Once I've got my database designed and setup, I usuaully jump back to the layout section and whip up a quick and dirty sample of what I want a typical end result page to look like. Then it's simply a matter of trying to get the data from the database to the web page by builing the code to connect them... so along those lines... here's a very rough draft of one of the DVD details pages.

The Main Hurdle

Next I look for the main hurdles that I think I'm going to face and try and come up with reasonable solutions. Based on the sample code from the last section, it was apparent we had an easy way to store and retreive standard string and numeric values, but I wasn't 100% sure how I was going to handle passing around values like audio formats or characters since there's an unknown quantity of each.

Some quick prototyping made it clear that this would actually be much easier then I thought it would be. Basically, by creating a custom data encapsulation class for an actor/actress, I could then simply place an array of them into my dvd details class. I'll probably give a better explanation of this later on, but take a look at the code and you'll see what I mean.

Please note that these actor objects are currently populated by hand and not from the database because I wanted to be able to test them easily before writing the stored procs and VB layers.

Update

I haven't had as much time to devote to it as I'd hoped, but some additional progress has been made and I thought it only right that you get to take a look. The latest zip file can be downloaded from here.

I've fleshed out some of the display code in a new dvd.aspx file and added some of the additional data fields to the DvdDetails class. I'm still hard coding some stuff to test with, but a decent amount is now actually coming from the DB and geting it all is mainly just a matter of determining a final set of data required and writing the appropriate stored procs. Anyway, take a look... things are staring to get interesting. In particular playing with the ASP.NET table control was neat since I didn't want to do straight databinding to a datagrid.

Project Links

Building an ASP.NET App: John's DVD Catalog
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