Learning DX Step-By-Step - #1

Tutorial #1 - HELLO WORLD

Wednesday, February 21, 2007 by RomanDA | Discussion: DesktopX Tutorials

Step-by-Step Tutorials

#1 - Hello World

A series by RomanDA

Listing of other DX Tutorials: Click here

Today's Lesson: "HELLO WORLD" the first program all programmers have to make.

In this lesson we will cover how to create a simple text object, change its color, font, and size, we will even make it change color and size when we move our mouse over it. We will take this 1 step at a time, so you can follow along.

For this and all the Step-By-Step DX Tutorials you will need to purchase DesktopX for $14.95 from Stardock.

Lets get started.

STEP 1 - Load DesktopX
Once you have DesktopX installed, look in your Start Menu for "Object Desktop" then for "DesktopX", click it to load the program.

You will see the DesktopX STARTUP Screen (yours wont say PROFESSIONAL unless you purchased PRO) One you see this screen, click on "CREATE" because we want to CREATE a new Widget.

It will load the DesktopX SETTINGS Window:

We just wish to get these screens out of the way for now, we are not going to use them. Click "CANCEL" on the SETTINGS window, and DONE on the STARTUP Screen.

You should have a blank screen now with a new icon in your system tray:

STEP 2 - Create an object
RIGHT CLICK on the icon in your system tray and you will see a popup menu like this one:
You will need to select the "NEW OBJECT" item on this menu.
You will see the OBJECT PROPERTIES window below (as well as the object itself). This window will be referenced over and over in these tutorials. IE: Open Properties / Select States (which would mean to select the States TAB in the Properties window)

You can access this properties window at any time by RIGHT-CLICKING on the object and selecting PROPERTIES.

STEP 3 - ADDING THE HELLO WORLD TEXT
When you added the object, it brought up the PROPERTIES window, now select the "STATES" tab to change to this TAB.
  • In this window, select "TEXT" (see the arrow!) and it will show you a Text Entry area.
  • Type in "Hello World I'm a DX Object" or whatever you want it to say!
  • Click on "APPLY" and you will have your first DX Object:
STEP 4 - Changing the FONT/STYLE/SIZE
  • RIGHT-CLICK on the new Object and select PROPERTIES
  • Click on the STATES Tab
  • Click on the FONT button (see arrow!)
  • Use this window to pick a font, style and size, and then select OK
  • You will need to select APPLY on the PROPERTIES window to have these changes show on your object.
  • If you don't like look, repeat the process above until it looks the way you want.

STEP 5 - Changing the FONT COLOR
  • RIGHT-CLICK on the new Object and select PROPERTIES
  • Click on the STATES Tab
  • Click on the COLOR button (see arrow!)
  • Use this window to pick a color you wish to use for your text then select OK
  • You will need to select APPLY on the PROPERTIES window to have these changes show on your object.
  • If you don't like look, repeat the process above until it looks the way you want.

STEP 6 - Creating a MOUSE-OVER/OUT Effect
Ok, so we have our text, its boring, its just sitting there doing NOTHING. Don't you want to have it change color, style, font, or size you move your mouse over it?

Well, in DX this is VERY simple.

  • RIGHT-CLICK on the new Object and select PROPERTIES
  • Click on the STATES Tab
  • Click on the ADD button (see arrow!) under the STATES window.
  • Select Mouse over from the drop-down list, click OK.
  • This will create a BLANK STATE for the object. If you look at the original State that was already created (the default one) it shows Mouse Away DX has code built into it to handle this simple Rollover task.

  • Use the COPY FROM button under the STATES area and pick Copy Parameters from 'Mouse Away' State this makes the Mouse OVER state identical to the Mouse AWAY state.
  • The idea here is to save time. This makes it so that both states are the same to start with.

  • We are going to change the font to BOLD and its Size to 14 so that when we move the mouse over it, it will turn BOLD and grow in size.
  • You can pick whatever combination of font, color, size & style you want to make it look the way you want.
  • Click OK on the window below when you are Done.

  • You will need to select APPLY on the PROPERTIES window to have these changes show on your object.
  • If you don't like look, repeat the process above until it looks the way you want.

Test it out, move your mouse over the object and see what it does.

CONCLUSION
Ok, you have made your first DX Object, now what?

Check back as I add new Step-By-Step Tutorials on how to make this a link to a folder, web-site, or just about anything you want!

I hope you have enjoyed this step into DX, and look forward to the next installment.

Enjoy,RomanDA
AKA: David A. Roman
http://romanda.wincustomize.com
MySecret
Reply #1 Wednesday, February 21, 2007 9:13 AM
Thank You, I can't believe how easy it was to make. Your presentation is perfect and even someone who has never skinned anything like me can follow this.

It's My Secret
ZubaZ
Reply #2 Wednesday, February 21, 2007 9:27 AM
Can you make a "hello David" object?
RomanDA
Reply #3 Wednesday, February 21, 2007 9:41 AM
Can you make a "hello David" object?


yes, but no one wants to use that one.

A go away Romanda would be a big seller.
RomanDA
Reply #4 Wednesday, February 21, 2007 9:42 AM
Your presentation is perfect and even someone who has never skinned anything like me can follow this.


im so glad this was simple to follow.. i have a lot more planned, just need to get TIME to do them, and since time = money, if i could get $1 from everyone who uses these, id have... $1 lol..

kenwas
Reply #5 Wednesday, February 21, 2007 12:15 PM
Congrats to you for what you are doing with these lessons. It is a superb contribution to the community and I applaud you for it.
Island Dog
Reply #6 Wednesday, February 21, 2007 12:30 PM
These are great David.  Keep up the great work!

 
Quentin94
Reply #7 Wednesday, February 21, 2007 1:56 PM
Great RomanDA!
sViz
Reply #8 Wednesday, February 21, 2007 5:01 PM
Excellent work DA! Thank you for stepping up.
pjdark
Reply #9 Wednesday, February 21, 2007 8:13 PM
nice and simple! step by step instruction= sweeeet! thanx RomanDA! CANNOT WAIT FOR NEXT INSTALLMENT!  
RomanDA
Reply #10 Thursday, February 22, 2007 7:28 AM
Step #2 is now up and live - Folder Object

I will also be uploading #3 today as well "ATTACK OF THE CLONES" As soon as I have a link, it will be added.
gef
Reply #11 Friday, February 23, 2007 1:41 PM
Bet you can't create a text link to 'My Computer' 
Not as easy as you would think - I've tried.   
RomanDA
Reply #12 Friday, February 23, 2007 4:13 PM
Bet you can't create a text link to 'My Computer'
Not as easy as you would think - I've tried.


kind of like this:

Function Object_OnLButtonUp(x,y,dragged)
Const MYCOMP = &H11
On Error Resume Next
With CreateObject("Shell.Application")
Set objFolder = .NameSpace(MYCOMP)
.Explore objFolder.self.path
Set objFolder = nothing
End With
End Function
gef
Reply #13 Friday, February 23, 2007 6:12 PM
Nice one - easy when you know how.   
Jimbo9294
Reply #14 Sunday, February 25, 2007 10:26 AM
An excellent series. I have you as one of my favorites, and I'm just catching up on the emails that WC sends. I'm off to the next one.  
canmandeco
Reply #15 Monday, March 12, 2007 6:58 PM
This was easy to understand and simple to follow. I'm looking forward to the others.
Great Job!
Reilith
Reply #16 Sunday, July 06, 2008 2:35 AM
thanks a lot for the great tutorial! it was very easy to follow, even for idiots like me!
looking forward to the other tutorials
Nyctea
Reply #17 Saturday, February 28, 2009 12:22 PM
I'm a total newbie here, with lots of ideas percolating away inside my head but no knowledge of how to make those ideas real. RomanDA, you have been a huge help in getting me started. Thank you very much! This is an excellent tutorial. Well written, easy to follow, and a good introduction to this whole new hobby. I'll certainly try the rest of your series.
ladyj55
Reply #18 Monday, September 28, 2009 6:28 PM
Just decided to give a try, thank-you because my brain's have been retarted for a while, you've made me feel so intelligent.    

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