by ocrickard

A Sparrow-like expanding toolbar button in CoreAnimation.

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OCExpandableButton is a VERY simple component in native Objective C that mimics the behavior of the expanding menu in the Sparrow mail app. You give it an array of subviews, and it presents them when it's activated. It is a normal subview, so you're in charge of rotation, and anything extra.


Usage of the control is totally simple, it works just like any other UIView:

button = [[OCExpandableButton alloc] initWithFrame:CGRectMake(self.view.bounds.size.width - 57, self.view.bounds.size.height - 57, 37, 37) subviews:subviews];
[self.view addSubview:button];

The array of subviews will be positioned and aligned upon opening of the control. The frame for the control should be a square region. The blue "arrow" button will be inset by 4 pixels from this initial rect.

If you want to manually open/close the component (say the screen rotates, or the user begins to scroll), then you can use the following methods:

//Opens the control if the control is currently closed.  No effect if the button
// is already open.
- (void)open;

//Closes the control if open. No effect if already closed.

  • (void)close;

You can make the component reveal with left or right alignment using:

button.alignment = OCExpandableButtonAlignmentLeft;
button.alignment = OCExpandableButtonAlignmentRight;

You can use the delegate property in order to notify of the control's opening/closure.

@interface MyClass : NSObject 

@implementation MyClass ...

  • (void)expandableButtonClosed:(OCExpandableButton*)button { ... }
  • (void)expandableButtonOpened:(OCExpandableButton*)button { ... }


  • Implement inner shadows like they have in Sparrow - Not sure what the right API looks like here. Maybe just letting user specify images, or maybe using masks and drawing inner shadows manually?
  • Suggestions?

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