• 20 Feb 2013

    Using AJAX Update Panels

    An UpdatePanel can be used to enable partial-page postbacks within an ASP.NET page.  The contents of the UpdatePanel, which need to be encased in a ContentTemplate element, will be sent back to the server whilst the rest of the page will remain unchanged.  The data returned from the postback will then be rendered to the page using updates within the DOM (Document Object Model).

    As long as the page contains a ScriptManager control and an UpdatePanel control partial-page postbacks can happen.

    An UpdateProgress control can be added to an update panel to make it so loading symbols can be used to show when a partial postback is happening, thereby informing the user that an update is in progress.  The required loading symbol (of other HTML elements to be displayed) need to be placed within a ProgressTemplate element within the UpdateProgress control.

    There are several advantages to using UpdatePanels, the main ...

    • Software Applications
    • Software Design & Development
  • 20 Feb 2013

    Auto Spell Check

    Recently, I was asked to implement an auto spell check functionality for a client’s ASP .Net application.

    There are third party custom spell checkers available already; however they come with a high price tag. After doing some research and with the guidance from my seniors, I came across the ‘Telerik Rad Spell’. Initially, by looking at the Telerik documentation and live demo, it just looked fairly straight forward to use but in order to get it to work according to our client’s requirements, a lot of changes had to be made.

    As mentioned above, the initial usability of the ‘Telerik Rad Spell’ for simple applications is quite straight forward. All you have to do is register the Telerik assembly and add a script manager in your .aspx page as in the following line:

    <%@ Register TagPrefix="telerik" Namespace="Telerik.Web.UI" Assembly="Telerik.Web.UI" %>

    <telerik:RadScriptManager runat="server" ID="RadScriptManager1" />

    Once the assembly has been added, you are free to use ‘Telerik Rad Spell’ anywhere ...

    • Software Applications
    • Software Design & Development
  • 05 Nov 2012

    Normalisation. Part 4

    Third Normalised Form (3NF)

    This is the last stage of normalisation, there are further levels but it’s the first three that are the integral ones.

    This level of normalised form is the process of identifying transitive dependencies. As intimidating as this sounds, it really isn’t! These are attributes which depend on fields other than the primary key.

    For example, within the customer table there is a field entitled discountAmount. This particular field is dependent on the membershipType and not the custNo. Therefore, these two fields will be put into a new table. The membershipType will become our primary key, every tables needs one.

    Now we have a separate table, we need a way of linking it to the customer table, the membership type is a part of every customer. To do this we use a foreign key. A foreign key is always points to the primary key in another table. ...

    • Software Design & Development
  • 29 Oct 2012

    Normalisation. Part 3

    Second Normal Form (2NF)

    Second normal form is only concerned with tables with composite keys, so our Customers table is already in 2NF. The aim of this stage of normalisation is to ensure all partial dependencies are removed.

    The way we remove the partial dependencies we have in the Bookings table is to go through every attribute and question is dependency on the composite key. For example, if we consider the flightDestination field, this is dependent on the flightNo and not the CustNo and therefore needs to be removed into its own table.

    We can also identify that the membership related fields are dependent on the custNo, so these will be added to the Customer table.

    It is not possible for every field in our Bookings table to depend on just the one primary key so these will remain where they are. For example, bookingDate is dependent on the composite ...

    • Software Design & Development
  • 08 Oct 2012

    Normalisation. Part 2

    Un-normalised Form (UNF)

    Your list of fields is in un-normalised form (UNF). I find that normalisation is easiest to do in a spread sheet application due to its tabular nature, you can easily chop and change things as you go. The following table contains all of the attributes that will be in the database. If you want to have a go at listing them yourself and see how you do, that’s fine! Don’t worry about any of the ID fields just yet, that’s the next stage.

    • Cust_No
    • Cust_Addr
    • Cust_Town
    • Cust_County
    • Cust_Postcode
    • Cust_Name
    • Cust_Tel
    • Cust_DOB
    • Cust_Email
    • userName
    • password
    • staffID
    • staffName
    • bookingNo
    • bookingDate
    • membershipType
    • discountAmount
    • flightNo
    • flightDestination
    • flightCapacity
    • flightDate
    • flightTime
    • flightReturnDate
    • flightReturnTime
    • flightCost
    • airline
    • paymentMethod
    • quantityOfSeats
    • subTotal
    • Total
    First Normalised Form (1NF)

    There are a few steps to getting our data into 1NF. Firstly we need to identify all attributes which we don’t require. These are attributes which can be calculated using ...

    • Software Design & Development

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