Unit 20 Event Driven Programming Solutions

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To provide learners with an understanding of the principles of event driven programming as an underpinning technological concept in the fields of programming and systems development.

Unit abstract

Unlike traditional programming, where the flow of control is determined by the program structure and the programmers design, the control in event driven programs is largely driven by external events and is often determined by interaction with the user. Typically, the systems involved employ pre-programmed event loops (or listeners) to continually look for information to process. Event driven programming is a very flexible way of allowing programs to respond to many inputs or events. It is used for all GUI based applications and can be found in web based multimedia as well as mobile technologies. This unit allows learners to become familiar with the underpinning concepts of event driven programming and subsequently to develop particular skills in one chosen language. A variety of languages have the capacity to develop event driven solutions and it is not important which language is chosen as long as the skills being developed and evidenced relate to the key event driven focus. As with all programming, a focus on developing solutions to meet identified needs is made along with one that emphasises the importance of testing and reviewing.

Learning outcomes

1 Understand the principles of event driven programming

Characteristics: key characteristics eg event handlers, listeners, trigger functions, event loops, forms
Features: key features eg flexibility, suitability for Graphical User Interface (GUI) environments, simplicity of programming, ease of development, potential portability
Programming languages: available languages eg Visual Studio .Net environment, Action Script, Java, C++
Development environments: environments eg for a given GUI, Java Runtime, mobile phones,  multimedia, web based

2 Be able to design event driven programming solutions

Development: selection eg identification of programming language, identification of programming libraries, selection of development environment
Design methodology: options eg reuse of existing system, adaptation of code, use of open source
Design method: tools eg GUI template, graphical interface, design guides, state and interaction diagrams, screen layouts, data storage event procedures and descriptions, data and file structures
Specification: contents eg input, output, processes, user need, purpose
Creation of application: use of development environment eg mobile, handheld, web based, desktop, dedicated device; debugging delivery environment
Interaction: considerations eg exchange of data with other systems, compliance, compatibility, recognition of standards employed

3 Be able to implement event driven programming solutions

Triggers: types eg key press, alarm, system event, touch screen event, mouse click, external trigger, network event, incoming data, incoming call, Global Positioning Systems (GPS) data change
Tools and techniques: tools eg use of tool boxes and controls, debugging tools; techniques eg selection, loops, event handlers, triggers, listeners, objects and object properties, menus
Data: properties eg variables, data types, declaring variables, scope of variables, constants
Programming: coding eg use of methods, use of ‘traditional coding’
Control structures: types eg subroutines, branching, interrupts, signals
Complexity: multiple events; user interaction
Errors: handling eg management of extremes, use of system imposed statements
IDE: typical elements eg source code editor, compiler, interpreter, build automation tools, Debugger

4 Be able to test and document event driven programming solutions

Testing: mechanisms eg valid declarations; debugging code; comment code; naming conventions; checking functionality against requirements; documentation
Impact testing: types eg range testing, input testing, load testing, system compatibility
Onscreen help: methods eg pop-ups, help menu, hot-spots
Documentation: technical documentation to include eg designs, delivery system, platform, environment, file structures, coding, constraints, maintenance requirements


Balena F – Programming Microsoft Visual Basic 2005: The Language (Microsoft Press US, 2006) ISBN 0735621837
Bond M, Law D, Longshaw A, Haywood D and Roxburgh P – Sams Teach Yourself J2EE in 21 Days,
Second Edition (Sams, 2004) ISBN 0672325586
Palmer G – Java Event Handling (Prentice Hall, 2001) ISBN 0130418021
Sharp J – Visual J#.NET Core Reference (Microsoft Press US, 2002) ISBN 0735615500
Suddeth J – Programming with Visual
Studio .NET 2005 (Lulu.com, 2006) ISBN 1411664477
Troelsen A – Pro C# 2005 and
the .NET 2.0 Platform, Third Edition (Apress US, 2004) ISBN 1590594193



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