Now that VS 2008 is out of the box, so to speak, it appears that a new era in Windows development is upon us. Language-Integrated Query is one of several game-changing technologies now supported in the Microsoft software kit. Although it is still early and there is a lot of learning to do, LINQ is poised as a whole new way of developing with data.
It is fair to say that the first rush of .NET technology was about catching up with Java, although there was much unique about .NET too. With LINQ, for now, it seems Microsoft has stolen a march on the Java opposition.
I spoke recently with Jason Beres, director of product management at Infragistics, which is one of the major third-parties in the Microsoft market. Beres said people will take LINQ very seriously. “I think it going to be the de facto way to do any real data binding or object access moving forward,” he said.
With the new Microsoft tool kit comes Windows Presentation Foundation (WPF). Is WPF game changing? That is hard to say. When it was first conceived, the ubiquitous Web interface seemed to be overstressed, and ready to be replaced by a new generation of WPF-based Smart Clients that would use something like WPF. But, before WPF made it too market, AJAX came on strong as a means to give new life to Web interfaces.
This means the plate of companies like Infragistics is pretty full. Infragistics has just rolled out NetAdvantage for WPF 2007, which is compatible with Visual Studio 2008. At the same time, according to Beres, the company has been re-tooling its frameworks around ASP.NET AJAX as well.
For Infragistics and others, Silverlight looms as another alternative interface. Watch for Infragistics and others to provide Silverlight components, especially now that Silverlight 2.0 (which, more than its predecessor, rightly bears the mantle of “WPF/Everywhere”) arrives in its first beta form.
LINQ, WPF and VS 2008 have been primary areas-of-interest for the SearchWindowsDevelopment.com site for some time. We invite you to check out our LINQ VS 2008 pages, and to stay tuned.