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Learning C# 2005, 2nd Edition by Brian MacDonald, Jesse Liberty

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Events

GUIs, such as Microsoft Windows and web browsers, require that programs respond to events. An event might be a button push, a menu selection, the completion of a file transfer, and so forth. In short, something happens and you must respond to it. You cannot predict the order in which events will arise. The system is quiescent until the event, and then springs into action to handle it.

In a GUI environment, any number of controls can raise an event. For example, when you click a button, it might raise the Click event. When you add to a drop-down list, it might raise a ListChanged event.

Other classes will be interested in responding to these events. How they respond is not of interest to the class raising the event. The button says, “I was clicked,” and the responding classes react appropriately.

Publishing and Subscribing

In C#, any object can publish a set of events to which other classes can subscribe. When the publishing class raises an event, all the subscribed classes are notified. With this mechanism, your object can say “Here are things I can notify you about,” and other classes might sign up, saying “Yes, let me know when that happens.” For example, a button might notify any number of interested observers when it is clicked. The button is called the publisher because the button publishes the Click event and the other classes are the subscribers because they subscribe to the Click event.

Tip

This design implements the Publish/Subscribe (Observer) Pattern described in the ...

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