Call yourself an ASP.NET guru? We believe you can if you have fully mastered three things: user controls, classes and state management. User Controls A user control is a part of a web page which you group together and treat as a single object. This has the advantage that you can then reuse this user control on other pages. Examples of user controls would include:
* The title of a website (this would have a specific formatting, although the text would vary from page to page)
* A search form
* A log-in form
* A calendar
* A menu (or, for that matter, a menu item on a menu)
If the webpage you’re looking at was written in ASP.NET (ie if it ha an ASPX extension), we’d bet it has at least 5 user controls on it.
The heart of the.NET framework upon which ASP.NET is based is the concept of classes. The very first thing Microsoft ASP.NET does when you create a webpage is to specify that it inherits from the Page class. You can build basic websites without being an expert on object-oriented programming (the buzz phrase for working with classes when programming), but: – it will take you longer; and – you won’t enjoy it as much! Unfortunately, teaching classes is difficult; the only real way to learn is through experience – we reckon it takes about 3 years to get to grips with classes fully.
Even VB and Visual C# programmers who already program using classes and user controls can come unstuck when it comes to state management (HTML programmers can ignore this part, and will wonder why it was worth mentioning). When you submit a request for a web page to an ASP.NET web server, you get sent back HTML. The web server then promptly forgets about this. The only way in which you can give your page a “memory” is to embed within information within it, using concepts like viewstate, or to get the current session to remember information (using techniques like session variables and cookies).
So that would be our nomination for the 3 things you have to master to learn ASP.NET!
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