A Platinum Look At Visual Basic 6

Bruce Von Stiers

I've been looking at the various source materials available for learning Visual Basic 6. One of the best volumes that I was able to find comes from Que Corporation. The title of the book is Platinum Edition Using Visual Basic 6. Loren D. Eidahl, along with Duncan Mackenzie and Lowell Mauer, wrote it. The book was copyrighted in 1999 and lists for $ 49.99.

The book is broken down into eight parts with the last one containing an appendix. There are thirty-four chapters with a total of 1120 pages. The book also comes with a CD that contains some utilities and Visual Basic scripts.

The first part of the book contains information about the building blocks of Visual Basic 6. In the first chapter you learn about some of the new features that this version has over the earlier ones. The chapter covers the work area with its various toolbars and menus. Some of the concepts of programming are covered here as well.

The second chapter has you building your first program. Learn about how to get user input. Put together a form and then add controls to it. The chapter shows how to identify the various input elements and use them to accomplish a specific task. Then you are taken through the steps of how to run your program to test it.

Other chapters in the first section have you working with forms, building controls and learning the different aspects of the Visual Basic programming language. Learn what a program loop is and how important it can be in the processing of input. You will learn and, hopefully, understand what various events do and how event sequencing affects program flow. You will be showed some of the controls that are used in Visual Basic programming. Learn what a ListBox is and how it compares with what a ComboBox control does.

Part Two of the book covers the various controls that are used in Visual Basic. The big emphasis in programming right now is setting up ActiveX elements in programs. This part of the book shows how to set up and implement ActiveX controls in your program.

Chapter 7 covers add-ins like the API Viewer and the Data Environment Designer. This last one is a new feature in Visual Basic that lets you connect to databases and implement data from them in your program.
In Chapter 8 you will learn what a Control Array is (a group of events that share one set of event procedures). The chapter covers both static and dynamic control arrays. It also details the advantages this type of array has over others.

If you think that it's been easy so far, move on to Part 3 of the book. The title for Part 3 is Professional Visual Basic Programming. The chapters here cover how to effectively manage your project. You will also learn how to design user interfaces. And the book shows how to create and all-important feature of any application, Online Help. There is also a chapter in Part 3 that deals with setting up your finished project for distribution.

Other parts of the book deal with advanced topics like creating wizards and add-in features. Part 5 is all about ActiveX components and how they are used in a program. Part 6 has you look at programming for both Intranets and the Internet. And part 7 takes you through the steps to design and implement a database using Visual Basic.

Platinum Edition Using Visual Basic 6 contains all of the information that you will need to get started programming in Visual Basic 6. It takes you from the bare basics of building a program to some very advanced techniques. Using information from this book should make designing and implementing an application less painful and maybe even fun.

Platinum Edition Using Visual Basic 6 can be found at most booksellers in their computer programming section. You can also get this book directly from Que Corporation at their web site, www.quecorp.com.


Copyright © 2000 Bruce E. Von Stiers