After playing around with Deep Zoom Composer heavily over the last few days, I have run into some issues with getting my Deep Zoom apps to work with Blend (I’m using Expression Blend 2.5 June Preview). Its easy to create a quick DZapp with the Deep Zoom Composer but to bring your DZapp into blend to make that next great feature rich user experience can be a little bit of a pain.

So here is how we do it!

First thing to do is create your DZapp and save it in an easy to find location. When exporting the application, set your image type to Collection and make sure you export the images and Silverlight Project.

Once this is done exporting, it will bring up a few selections, you can view you current Deep Zoom in the browser and it should work fine, but if you hit the “Edit in Expression Blend” button, you will most likely find it doesn’t do a whole lot. Press the “View project folder” button and load the “DeepZoomProject.sln” file into Blend. This should load, showing you the art board containing A UserControl, LayoutRoot, A boarder and inside the boarder an object called MSI (this is your multi scale image – your deep zoom).

So from here you can change the size of your deep zoom area and add buttons and other bits and pieces around it.

Hit F5 to test your page.

Ot Oh! Nothing happened? Thought as much.

For some reason when you run your Deep Zoom application through Blend, it just doesn’t work. How do we fix this one? Easy!

In your project folder there should be a few different folders, we want the one called “DeepZoomProjectWeb”.

Go into that and then “ClientBin”, Open the “DeepZoomProjectTestPage.html” and HURAH!

It should be all systems go!

As you work on your project, instead of hitting F5 to test the page, press “Build Project”, and refresh the “DeepZoomProjectTestPage.html” to see your updates.

If you want to change around your deep zoom with the Deep Zoom Composer, load up the ProjectName.dzprj file with Deep Zoom Composer, make your changes, export it out and when you go back into Blend it will ask you to update your project because there has been changes outside of Blend, Don’t do this! You will lose all the work you have done on your project in Blend if you do. Don’t say I didn’t warn you :P.

So I hope this has help in the effort towards making some rad Deep Zoom apps, and I would love to hear from your experiences with the product!

Happy Deep Zooming!!!