I can’t recall the last time I’d been this excited about building a new feature.

My client has a high-touch, high-visibility application — and I mean “high-touch” more in the sense that a lot of people use it, rather than it gets used often (quantity as opposed to duration, I guess). At the top of my clients’ Christmas list this year was a new feature for building and persisting reports that can be used to monitor the progress of work items through their process.

I wanted to build them a reporting engine that was flexible enough to provide insight from multiple data sources, and with an interface that was as familiar and intuitive as possible.

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Given a SmartForm with the same item view attached to it three times, like rows: View A at top, View B in the center, and View C at bottom. Each view contains a series of controls, including a picker. Events on the view are wired such that the selections of the controls are recorded in a data label as each was made, So a dropdownlist control set to “I”, a radio button list with “am” selected, and a picker control set to “asleep” would give us a value of “I am asleep” in the data label.

I was seeing a peculiar behavior wherein the entire value of the data label in View A was being wiped out after the picker resolved, but the same combination of controls and values were working just fine in subsequent views. The same was also true if I skipped View A and used View B.

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