Microsoft has released the first beta of its Visual Studio LightSwitch toolset aimed at nonprogrammers.
has released the first beta of its Visual Studio
LightSwitch toolset that will enable nonprogrammers to create business
software giant released the beta to the Microsoft Developer Network on Aug. 20
and then made it available to the public at large on Aug. 23. The beta version of
Microsoft Visual Studio LightSwitch
is now available for download here
LightSwitch is a new addition to the Visual Studio family that enables
developers of all skill levels and organizational size to easily build business
applications that target the desktop, cloud and Web.
to Microsoft's LightSwitch web page:
LightSwitch, you can build custom applications that rival off-the-shelf
solutions. Get a head start by using preconfigured screen templates that give
your application a familiar look and feel. LightSwitch also provides prewritten
code and other reusable components to handle routine application tasks, along
with helpful step-by-step guidance. However, if you need to write custom code,
you can use Visual Basic .NET or C#. You can
deploy to the desktop, browser, or cloud (post-Beta) to share your application
with others more easily without the cumbersome installation processes."
an Aug. 23 blog post, Jason
, corporate vice president for the Visual Studio team in the
Developer Division at Microsoft, addressed several developer concerns about
LightSwitch and provided a basic walk-through and tutorial on the new
the question of who should use LightSwitch, Zander said: "LightSwitch is
primarily targeted at developers who need to rapidly produce business
applications. It is part of the Visual Studio family, and when you get into
writing code you are in the VS IDE [integrated development environment]. At the
same time, we have found that most line-of-business applications follow a
standard pattern, and LightSwitch is optimized for helping you leverage those
goal with LightSwitch is to help you rapidly produce line-of-business
applications by optimizing for the most common application patterns (data +
screens + code). LightSwitch allows you to create desktop applications (the default)
or browser applications. The applications you produce follow a classic
three-tier architecture and are built on top of .NET
(Entities, WCF RIA Services), Silverlight, ASP.NET,
with access to multiple sources of data like SQL Server and SharePoint."
addition, Zander gives information on the limitations of LightSwitch, how it
relates to Microsoft Access, and offers advice on how to upgrade or scale
applications created with LightSwitch. Zander's post also includes several
informative diagrams and screen shots to familiarize
developers with the LightSwitch tool
and its architecture.
LightSwitch on Aug. 3
at the VSLive conference, which took place on
Microsoft's campus in Redmond, Wash.