ArticleImage.gif

Introduction

The Superlist is an Outlook style list control that you can group / customize as can be seen in the image above. I built the Superlist control whilst developing an RSS reader called FeedGhost. Although there are plenty of commercial grouped list controls available I wanted to have total control over the code and of course its usability. Superlist supports drag drop column customisation, grouping as well as handling thousands of entries smoothly. It's also highly customizable if you want to change its look and feel. In this article I'll explain how to use and extend the control in a demo project. If you download the source, you can find demo project under the Tests/SuperListTest directory.

Background

Before deciding to develop my own list control I spent a couple of weeks fighting the standard Listview, trying to get it to work the way I wanted, but I finally gave up when I couldn't get the selected items in the grouped visual order. We needed this in FeedGhost so that articles that the user multi-selected would be displayed in the same order in the corresponding HTML view.

I decided to write the control from scratch rather than basing it for example on the Grid controls. In previous projects I've worked on, I've seen the grids bent and warped into doing the bidding of its creator only to be a maintenance millstone around the projects neck later; not quite working the way you want with plenty of patching code to get it nearly there. In the end you have a pile of brittle code that people are too scared to touch.

I developed Superlist in two weeks, strangely enough it was about the same time I spent trying to get the Listview working in the first place, admittedly I spent the following two weeks fixing the bugs


Read more Introduction

Last edited Sep 5, 2007 at 8:49 AM by LeePaulAlexander, version 8