Defining the Handler Type

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Go Up to Defining Your Own Events

Once you determine when the event occurs, you must define how you want the event handled. This means determining the type of the event handler. In most cases, handlers for events you define yourself are either simple notifications or event-specific types. It is also possible to get information back from the handler.

Simple notifications

A notification event is one that only tells you that the particular event happened, with no specific information about when or where. Notifications use the type TNotifyEvent, which carries only one parameter, the sender of the event. All a handler for a notification "knows" about the event is what kind of event it was, and what component the event happened to. For example, click events are notifications. When you write a handler for a click event, all you know is that a click occurred and which component was clicked.

Notification is a one-way process. There is no mechanism to provide feedback or prevent further handling of a notification.

Event-specific handlers

In some cases, it is not enough to know which event happened and what component it happened to. For example, if the event is a key-press event, it is likely that the handler will want to know which key the user pressed. In these cases, you need handler types that include parameters for additional information.

If your event was generated in response to a message, it is likely that the parameters you pass to the event handler come directly from the message parameters.

Returning information from the handler

Because all event handlers are procedures, the only way to pass information back from a handler is through a var parameter. Your components can use such information to determine how or whether to process an event after the user's handler executes.

For example, all the key events (OnKeyDown, OnKeyUp, and OnKeyPress) pass by reference the value of the key pressed in a parameter named Key. The event handler can change Key so that the application sees a different key as being involved in the event. This is a way to force typed characters to uppercase, for example.


See Also