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Introducing T4 Templates

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Presented at DevEvening Melbourne # 1.

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Introducing T4 Templates

  1. 1. Introducing T4 Templates<br />Chris Melinn<br />
  2. 2. Agenda<br />This presentation will provide a short overview of T4. We will learn the basics of creating a template and then see a few examples of how T4 is used by others.<br />
  3. 3. The Basics<br />
  4. 4. What is T4?<br />T4 = <br />Text<br />Template<br />Transformation<br />Toolkit<br />
  5. 5. What is T4?<br />Generates any textual format <br />Common examples:<br /><ul><li>Code (C#, VB, etc)
  6. 6. SQL
  7. 7. XML</li></li></ul><li>But…<br />Editing T4 sucks *<br />* with the default Visual Studio setup<br />
  8. 8. The Default Visual Studio Editor<br />
  9. 9. Fortunately, there is a solution…<br />Free Visual T4 Editor<br />Community Edition<br />from Clarius Consulting<br />
  10. 10. The Visual T4 Editor (inside Visual Studio)<br />
  11. 11. DEMO #1<br />Creating Templates<br />
  12. 12. How it works<br />T4 engine performs two steps to generate output from a template:<br />Source: Oleg Sych http://www.olegsych.com/<br />
  13. 13. Applications of T4<br />Examples of T4 in the wild<br />
  14. 14. “If you’re going to do something twice or more, manually, in your company, generate it.”<br />~ Scott Hanselman<br />
  15. 15. T4 can be used to generate…<br />
  16. 16. DEMO #2<br />ASP.NET MVC CodeTemplates<br />
  17. 17. DEMO #3<br />T4CSS<br />
  18. 18. Summary<br />For more information…<br />
  19. 19. Resources<br />Oleg Sych’sblog is the best collection of T4 resources I have found anywhere<br />http://www.olegsych.com/<br />His CodePlex project, T4 Toolbox, contains several ready-to-use code generation templates and other supporting extensions.<br />http://www.codeplex.com/t4toolbox<br />
  20. 20. Editing Tools<br />Visual T4 Editor from Clarius Consulting<br />http://www.visualt4.com/<br />Tangible T4 Editor by Tangible Engineering<br />http://t4-editor.tangible-engineering.com/T4-Editor-Visual-T4-Editing.html<br />
  21. 21. Other Examples of T4<br />T4CSS<br />http://haacked.com/archive/2009/12/02/t4-template-for-less-css.aspx<br />T4MVC: Creates strongly typed helpers to eliminate your “magic strings”<br />http://aspnet.codeplex.com/wikipage?title=T4MVC<br />Generate WPF and Silverlight Dependency Properties using T4<br />http://www.codeproject.com/KB/WPF/DependencyPropertyCodeGen.aspx<br />
  22. 22. Contact Me<br />Blog: http://chrismelinn.wordpress.com<br />Twitter: http://twitter.com/ChrisMelinn<br />

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