Microsoft has released UWP Community Toolkit 1.4. This toolkit demonstrates the custom controls, app services and helper functions for developers so that they can quickly and efficiently bring their apps and products to Universal Windows Platform, all with a little or minimum effort.
The current release focuses on usability improvements of existing controls and services. Improvements like better accessibility for controls where each control can be used keyboard, mouse and touch inputs.
Microsoft has also added a new project (and a new NuGet package) called Microsoft.Toolkit.Uwp.DeveloperTools. This will provide support tools for developers. At the moment, it contains two controls:
- FocusTracker: Can be used in your application to display information about the current focused control (name, type, etc.). This is extremely useful when you want to ensure that your application is accessible.
- AlignmentGrid: Can be used to display a grid, helping you align controls on your pages.
Along with the above improvements and stabilizations, here are a few of the main new additions to a growing list of helpers or controls:
- Carousel: A new control that presents items in a list, where the selected item is always in the center and other items are flowing around it. This reacts not only to the content but also to layout changes, so it can adapt to different form factors automatically. The carousel can be horizontal or vertical.
- ViewExtensions: ApplicationViewExtensions, StatusBarExtensions & TitleBarExtensions provide a declarative way of setting AppView, StatusBar & TitleBar properties from XAML.
- NetworkHelper: Provides functionality to monitor changes in network connection, and allows users to query for network information without additional lookups.
- Saturation: Provides a behavior to selectively saturate a XAML element. We also introduced the CompositionBehaviorBase to ease creation of new composition-based behaviors (Blur now uses this).
- Twitter streaming API support: Twitter Service was missing support for Twitter’s streaming service; we added support for live tweets and events.
- Search box for Sample App: The new Sample App allows you to search for a sample directly from the main menu.
Since, this is an open-source project, you can find the complete release notes on GitHub.
You can get started by following this tutorial, or preview the latest features by installing the UWP Community Toolkit Sample App from the Windows Store.