Tuesday, 9 September 2014

Implementing API in ASP.NET MVC application

Full project can be downloaded here.

We are going to create simple API that will return either collection of movies or single movie in Json format by default, however depends on browser results might be displayed in XML format.
I focused only on GET method in this tutorial.
 
1. Create new MVC application in Visual Studio.
2. In models create interface IMoviesRepository, class Movie and MoviesRepository

public interface IMoviesRepository
    {
        IQueryable<Movie> GetAll();
        Movie GetById(int id);
        Movie Add(Movie movie);
        bool Edit(Movie movie);
        bool Remove(Guid? id);
    }

public class Movie
    {
        public int movieId { get; set; }
        public string name { get; set; }
        public string releaseYear { get; set; }
    }

public class MovieRepository : IMoviesRepository
    {
        private List<Movie> _listOfMovies = new List<Movie>();

        public MovieRepository()
        {
            _listOfMovies.Add(new Movie { 
                movieId = 1,
                name = "Keyboard massacre", 
                releaseYear = "1999" });

            _listOfMovies.Add(new Movie { 
                movieId = 2, 
                name = "Keyboard massacre 2",
                releaseYear = "2000" });

            _listOfMovies.Add(new Movie { 
                movieId = 3,
                name = "Keyboard massacre 3 ",
                releaseYear = "2001" });
        }

        public IQueryable<Movie> GetAll()
        {
            return _listOfMovies.AsQueryable();
        }

        public Movie GetById(int id)
        {
            return _listOfMovies.Find(m => m.movieId == id);
        }

        public Movie Add(Movie movie)
        {
            throw new NotImplementedException();
        }

        public bool Edit(Movie movie)
        {
            throw new NotImplementedException();
        }

        public bool Remove(Guid? id)
        {
            throw new NotImplementedException();
        }
    }
Create interface first and then MovieRepository that will inherit IMoviesRepository and simply right click on class name and apply Implement Interface.



3. Add new folder to your main project WebApiControllers and add Api Controller. Call itMoviesController.cs.



Add this to your main controller class.


MovieRepository movieRepository;

        public MoviesController()
        {
            this.movieRepository = new MovieRepository();
        } 


Calling default constructor will make sure that all repositories are in place. It is good practice to call all services that will be required for controller - we are making sure that our application is loose coupled. If you are familiar with dependency injection this is quite common concept.

As I mentioned I will focus only on GET method, so replace both GET methods with custom code.

You controller should like this :


public class MoviesController : ApiController
    {
        MovieRepository movieRepository;

        public MoviesController()
        {
            this.movieRepository = new MovieRepository();
        }

        // GET api/movies
        public IQueryable<Movie> Get()
        {
            return movieRepository.GetAll();
        }

        // GET api/movies/5
        public Movie Get(int id)
        {
            return movieRepository.GetById(id);
        }

        // POST api/movies
        public void Post([FromBody]string value)
        {
        }

        // PUT api/movies/5
        public void Put(int id, [FromBody]string value)
        {
        }

        // DELETE api/movies/5
        public void Delete(int id)
        {
        }
    }

4. Run your application now and call localhost:YourPortNumber/api/movies

In my case: http://localhost:53909/api/movies

You should get this results in Chrome:


If you run it in IE you will be asked to save file. By opening it in notepad you get JSON results

[{"movieId":1,"name":"Keyboard massacre","releaseYear":"1999"},{"movieId":2,"name":"Keyboard massacre 2","releaseYear":"2000"},{"movieId":3,"name":"Keyboard massacre 3 ","releaseYear":"2001"}]

5. We could improve GetById method. If movie can not be found we want to return HttpResponseException.

// GET api/movies/5
        public Movie Get(int id)
        {
            var movie = movieRepository.GetById(id);
            if (movie == null)
            {
                throw new HttpResponseException(HttpStatusCode.NotFound);
            }
            return movie;
        }

6. There are few rules that you have to be aware. You have to name your GET method starting with Get. So For instance GetCollectionOfMovies. By calling http://localhost:53909/api/movies you get the same results as if your method would call just Get. There is a way to force user to type full name of your method http://localhost:53909/api/GetCollectionOfMovies and this will require changing routing in Global.asax file. I will mention that in one of next tutorials.


Sunday, 7 September 2014

1# Twisted lasers - Puzzle game - First look

Recently I started working on a puzzle game which main objective is to move laser beam source to designated location by using mirrors that will change the direction of laser. Very easy concept, however there will be more obstacles and more tools to use apart from mirrors.

So far I was able to create a custom grid that can be very easily modified. For instance if game requires 8x8 or 6x6 grid this can be changed by providing correct input for Building Grid script.


// Constant offset value
  xOffSet = (float)10/gridColumns;
  yOffset = (float)10/gridRows;

  firstTile = CreateSingleGridTile(firstPoint, secondPoint, thirdPoint, fourthPoint,  0, 0);
  firstTile.renderer.enabled = false;

  GameObject grid = new GameObject();

  // This method can be used from other Scripts to build extra grids, inventory systems etc
  BuildGrid (ref grid, gridRows, gridColumns, arrayOfTiles, "SingleTile", xOffSet, yOffset, zOffset, firstTile,  firstPoint);

  // Set main beam position

  var positionOfBeamToAppear = arrayOfTiles[xMainBeam, yMainBeam];

  mainLaserBeam.transform.position = new Vector3(positionOfBeamToAppear.transform.position.x -xOffSet/2, positionOfBeamToAppear.transform.position.y - yOffset/2, positionOfBeamToAppear.transform.position.z +zOffset);

  var positionOfLaserTargetToAppear = arrayOfTiles[xLaserTarget, yLaserTarget];
  
  laserTarget.transform.position = new Vector3(positionOfLaserTargetToAppear.transform.position.x -xOffSet/2, positionOfLaserTargetToAppear.transform.position.y - yOffset/2, positionOfLaserTargetToAppear.transform.position.z +zOffset);

 }

 public void BuildGrid (ref GameObject grid,
                        int gridRows,
                        int gridColumns,
                        GameObject[,] arrayOfTiles,
                        string tagName,
                        float xOffSet,
                        float yOffset,
                        float zOffset,
                        GameObject firstTile,
                        Vector3 initialBuildPosition
                        )
 {

  bool nextRow = false;
  for (int row = 0; row < gridRows; row++) {
   for (int column = 0; column < gridColumns; column++) {
    if (row == 0 && column == 0) {
     grid = Instantiate (firstTile, new Vector3 (initialBuildPosition.x, initialBuildPosition.y, initialBuildPosition.z - zOffset), Quaternion.identity) as GameObject;
     arrayOfTiles [row, column] = grid;
     grid.renderer.enabled = true;
    }
    else {
     if (!nextRow) {
      grid = Instantiate (arrayOfTiles [row, column - 1], new Vector3 (arrayOfTiles [row, column - 1].transform.position.x + xOffSet, initialBuildPosition.y, initialBuildPosition.z - zOffset), Quaternion.identity) as GameObject;
     }
     else {
      grid = Instantiate (arrayOfTiles [row - 1, column], new Vector3 (arrayOfTiles [row - 1, column].transform.position.x, arrayOfTiles [row - 1, column].transform.position.y - yOffset, arrayOfTiles [row - 1, column].transform.position.z), Quaternion.identity) as GameObject;
     }
     arrayOfTiles [row, column] = grid;
     grid.renderer.enabled = true;
    }
    // Based on name we can easily find the position of tile
    grid.name = string.Format ("{0}_{1}:{2}", tagName, row, column);
    grid.tag = tagName;
    grid.collider.enabled =true;
   }
   nextRow = true;
  }
 }

 // Update is called once per frame
 void Update () {

 }

 public GameObject CreateSingleGridTile(Vector3 firstPoint,Vector3 secondPoint,Vector3 thirdPoint,Vector3 fourthPoint, int xArrayIndex, int yArrayIndex )
 {
  GameObject gridTile = new GameObject(string.Format("Reference_{0}:{1}", xArrayIndex,yArrayIndex) );

  MeshFilter meshFilter = (MeshFilter)gridTile.AddComponent(typeof(MeshFilter));

  meshFilter.mesh = CreateMesh(firstPoint,secondPoint, thirdPoint, fourthPoint);

  gridTile.AddComponent();

  MeshRenderer renderer = gridTile.AddComponent(typeof(MeshRenderer)) as MeshRenderer;
  renderer.material.shader = Shader.Find ("Mobile/Particles/Additive");

  renderer.material.mainTexture = tileTexture;

  float gridItemWidth = (float)1/gridColumns;
  float gridItemHeight = (float)1/gridRows;

  gridTile.transform.localScale = new Vector3(gridItemWidth,gridItemHeight,+zOffset);

  // Set grid Tile position
  // TODO add variable to calculate the grid difference 

  gridTile.collider.enabled = false;
  return gridTile;

 }


 Mesh CreateMesh(Vector3 firstPoint, Vector3 secondPoint, Vector3 thirdPoint, Vector3 fourthPoint)
 {
  Mesh m = new Mesh();
  m.name = "ScriptedMesh";
  m.vertices = new Vector3[] {
   firstPoint,
   secondPoint,
   thirdPoint,
   fourthPoint
  };
  m.uv = new Vector2[] {
   new Vector2 (0, 0),
   new Vector2 (1, 0),
   new Vector2(1, -1),
   new Vector2 (0, -1)
  };
  m.triangles = new int[] { 0, 1, 2, 0,2,3};
  //m.RecalculateNormals();

  //m.Optimize();
  
  return m;
 }

Tuesday, 29 July 2014

Pararell Universe Planets

After successful reception of Solar System asset that I published to Unity3d store I decided to create some more planets, this time imaginary that might exists somewhere in the universe.

Solar system still available here

First teaser of new planets


Submitting model with entities in MVC using DataTable fails when using pagination

I have uncommon issue today while trying to submit model with entities and using dataTable plugin.
Model was loosing entities data when user used pagination provided by dataTable plugin.

I post question on stackoverflow, unfortunately I did not get any answer but few hours later I found some small hack and it works now.

If anyone is interested I post it on stackoverflow:

http://stackoverflow.com/questions/25017597/submitting-model-with-entities-in-mvc-using-datatable-fails-when-using-paginatio/25020152#25020152


Tuesday, 8 July 2014

Get the values from http query string variables in View in ASP.NET MVC

This method can be used in any view but it is recommended to make sure your ViewModel contains all necessary information. We are going to use this approach in layout page, as normally layout page does not have any model(it can have but then it might get very messy and personally I think for big projects it could be extra constraint).

Consider a situation in which you are interested in values for variables from http request.

http://localhost:49853/Home/Index?searchType=global

In above address we are passing variable searchType. Let's assume that searchType can have 2 different values - local and global.

In your main css file:

#mainNav.global {
  background: #404939; }
  #mainNav.global nav.nav {
    background: none; }
    #mainNav.global nav.nav .top {
      background: #404939; }
    #mainNav.global nav.nav a:hover, #mainNav nav.nav a.active {
      background-color: #7dc243; }
     
      #mainNav.local
      {
          background: #3C7987; }
        #mainNav.localnav.nav {
                  background: none; }
        #mainNav.local nav.nav .top {
                          background: #3C7987; }
        #mainNav.local nav.nav a:hover, #mainNav nav.nav a.active {
                        background-color: #7FDCFF; }

In layout page in _Layout file header section:
<header>
        <div class="content-wrapper">
            <div class="float-left">
                <p class="site-title">@Html.ActionLink("your logo here", "Index", "Home")</p>
            </div>
            <div class="float-right">
                <section id="login">
                    @Html.Partial("_LoginPartial")
                </section>
                @{
                    string searchClass = "global";
                    if (HttpContext.Current.Request.Params["searchType"] == "local") 
                    {
                        searchClass = "local"; 
                    }
                }
                <div id="mainNav" class=@searchClass>
                    <nav class="nav" data-nav>
                        <ul>
                          
                            @using (Html.BeginForm("Index", "Home", FormMethod.Post, new { id = "searchForm" }))
                            {
                                @Html.ActionLink("Global","Index","Home", new { searchType= "global" }, null)
                                @Html.ActionLink("Local","Index", "Home", new { searchType = "local" }, null)
                                <input type="search" name="searchMode" value="" placeholder="Search...">
                                <input type="submit" name="submitBtn" value="Search">
                            }
                        </ul>
                    </nav>
                </div>
               <nav>
                    <ul id="menu">
                        <li>@Html.ActionLink("Home", "Index", "Home")</li>
                        <li>@Html.ActionLink("About", "About", "Home")</li>
                        <li>@Html.ActionLink("Contact", "Contact", "Home")</li>
                    </ul>
                </nav>
            </div>
        </div>
    </header>
So we are going to toggle class name for navigation bar. If we are in global searchType background color is #7dc243, in local searchType 7FDCFF.

If you are in global searchType your address is :
http://localhost:49853/?searchType=global




In local :

http://localhost:49853/?searchType=local

Thursday, 3 July 2014

Passing object from view to partial view with ViewDataDictionary in ASP.NET MVC

There might be a situation where you have parent model that for instance hold list of objects that you want to pass to partial view. I prefer to not use View Data or ViewBag and make sure that view models I am using always hold information I want to access, but there might be some exceptions.

Take a look at this example
 @Html.Partial("_EditAddress", Model.AddressVM, new ViewDataDictionary { { "statesList", Model.stateList} })
Third parameter in constructor for Partial class is ViewDataDictionary. Using this we can replace ViewData for partial view.
statesList in this example is key and Model.stateList is data that parent Model holds.

To retrieve the data in partial view access it like you would normally access ViewData and cast it to an object you are expecting.

So for instance if we are using dropdownlist helper :
@Html.DropDownListFor(m => m.stateId, new SelectList(ViewData["statesList"] as List<States>, "stateId", "name", "stateId"), "Select state")

Wednesday, 2 July 2014

Get current action and controller name in View in ASP.NET MVC

Being able to get action or controller name on view might come useful when you are using layout for every view(except partial views) in your application.

Layout view
 @if (Request.IsAuthenticated)
                        {
                            <ul>
                                <li>
                                    @Html.ActionLink("Dashboard", "Index", "Home")
                                </li>
                                <li>
                                    @Html.ActionLink("Account", "Manage", "Account")
                                </li>
                                <li>
                                    @Html.ActionLink("GetClients", "Index", "Client")
                                </li>
                                <li>
                                    @Html.ActionLink("Setting", "ListingForOrganisation", "Settings")
                                </li>
                               
                                @if (HttpContext.Current.Request.RequestContext.RouteData.Values["controller"].ToString() == "Client")
                                {
                                <li><span>Add Client</span>
                                    <ul>
                                        <li>
                                            @Html.ActionLink("Temporary client", "AddTemporaryClient", "Client")
                                        </li>
                                        <li>
                                            @Html.ActionLink("Permanent", "AddPermanentClient", "Client")
                                        </li>
                                    </ul>
                                </li>
                                }
                            </ul>
                        }

(HttpContext.Current.Request.RequestContext.RouteData.Values["controller"].ToString() == "Client")
will check if request came from Client controller and if so extra feature will appear.

To get action name replace simply use 
(HttpContext.Current.Request.RequestContext.RouteData.Values["action"].ToString() == "Action name")