The Next ClientUI Roadmap Unveiled
On August 18th, 2010, we delivered the first WebUI Studio 2010 release with 188 new controls (btw, did you notice something in common between the number and the date?). The 188 new controls span across ASP.NET, Silverlight 3, Silverlight 4 and WPF 4 development platform – that’s inevitably the most incredible milestone in our release history, ever.
Compared to the original roadmap, the 2010’s first volume release shipped 3x more controls than initially planned. This reflects our strong commitment in providing the most complete tools with the best quality possible for line-of-business application development. Our flagship ClientUI was the industry’s first development suite with comprehensive MVVM support, journal-aware navigation framework, and a solid architecture to support unified development model. To revisit the new 2010 highlights, please see the 2010 tour page.
While other vendors are still struggling in making their controls MVVM-compliant, we are already several milestones ahead with hundreds of MVVM resources and videos available. Since the release, approximately 66% of new sales came from developers who migrated from competing solutions. Interestingly, the majority of our new customers weren’t only attracted by the amazingly rich controls we offered in the suite, but also the overall framework and architecture that thoughtfully designed to provide a ubiquitous solution for rich client application development.
Bill Gower, the author of several Silverlight books, commented in our Facebook page:
“The other thing that I really appreciate and like is the thing that although Silverlight and WPF are very much alike and in future versions will probably be one product, right now there are some very real differences. Using the Intersoft controls makes those differences less obvious and truly gives the developer Silverlight and WPF with one set of code.”
Thanks Bill for your praise – I hope you loved ClientUI as much as we love building it.
Continuing the success and quality of the first 2010 release, we will be back with 40+ new gorgeous controls in the upcoming 2010’s second volume release. With our focus remains unchanged on the Silverlight and WPF strategy, the upcoming release will be strongly focused on presentation and data controls geared toward line-of-business development that take advantage of our unified development approach, commanding and MVVM-ready architecture.
In this blog post, I’m going to outline the next roadmap for this year’s second release, particularly on the Silverlight and WPF lineup.
Yes, that’s right! A new, more powerful data grid is coming your way in the upcoming release. What is the problem with the current data presenter lineup and why do we need a new data grid, you might ask. The fact is there is nothing seriously wrong in the presenter – in fact we just see it having a different position from the data grid. Here is some background.
When we first introduced presenter lineup for the Silverlight back in 2008, the presenters were mainly designed to offer a richer interface with more innovative multiple view presentation concept. It is certainly impressive for the kind of applications tailored for consumers such as iTunes style music library application, or document management which require view-switching capability, but not quite for powerhouse data applications which require more traditional grid functions, say, the hierarchical layout feature, grouping with aggregates and column total to name a few.
You can say that it is a bit ironic as we are going back to the basics, yet this kind of functionality is one of the most requested from our customers and industry partners. The market demanded a versatile, more traditional data grid that is ideal for line-of-business applications. And that is what we are working to deliver!
Unlike other grids which still sit on the outdated Silverlight approach, the new UXGridView is engineered, from the ground up, to take advantage of the latest Silverlight and WPF features. The new grid will be entirely built upon the ClientUI Framework, so you can expect it to use the most cutting-edge design pattern which leverages commanding, MVVM and advanced data binding engine. Rest assured that it will be a perfect addition to the ClientUI family, as you can now bind everything together using MVVM along with the rich controls in the existing ClientUI lineup.
UXGridView will include most features you expected in a data grid – column moving, resizing, sorting, freezing and so on – plus an Outlook-style grouping, customizable editing controls and an advanced filtering dropdown. It also sports a nice, WebGrid style status bar where you can arrange and group most of the important commands in one place such as paging, refresh, and editing. The paging interface is interestingly a standalone control you can use to provide paging functionality to other controls as well such as list box, data form, or other items control – all using the same MVVM semantics and Silverlight’s new data binding concept.
While we have most functionality covered, how about the performance? Is it capable of handling large data source, a million rows perhaps? As we built the world’s best performing grids and schedulers, I should say that is not something to worry about. The recent lab tests, in the current development version, shows impressive results with our improved data virtualization architecture – it’s a sleek, highly responsive data grid, even when fed with millions of rows. Best of all, we retained all the grid features and customization aspects while achieving this new performance level, unlike competing solutions which trade-off certain features to workaround the performance.
All Things Input
As the heading suggested, the upcoming volume release will include a multitude of input controls, all geared toward line-of-business application scenarios. It will include any input controls you can imagine – masked text box, currency editor, date time editor, domain up down, numeric up down, rating, slider bar, memory-efficient file uploader, color picker, and date time picker with an innovative analog clock, and much more! All these new input controls will uniquely support MVVM and commanding, and implement ISO-standards for user experience and accessibility – innovations which set us apart.
As if the list weren’t enough, we are going to add few more heavyweight controls, for instance, an intuitive calendar with ultra smooth animation even when multi-month view is enabled! We will also ship a standalone busy indicator, and a new kind of tab control that lets you navigate to a XAML page instead of inline content – bet that’s something you wouldn’t find elsewhere.
The WebUI Studio 2010 R2 is expected to arrive before Christmas this year, and yes, that means it’s just around a month to go. In summary, with 40 new controls added in the upcoming R2, this translates to an incredible 220 controls in total for the Silverlight and WPF lineup. Our team is hard at work to ensure you get the most out of your subscription investment with two major release cycle in a year. And with the second release scheduled next month, we will be back to our regular release cycle. Learn the top reasons to choose WebUI Studio here, and the benefits here.
Unfortunately, I cannot provide more details for the controls roadmap in this public blog post. To read the complete details, please logon to Developer Network and click on the product roadmap announcement in the Dashboard/Home window.
If you’re a prospective customer and wish to get a copy of our latest roadmap, please direct your email to email@example.com. We’ll send you a copy of NDA to be signed in order to receive the roadmap details.
As always, your feedback is valuable for us to drive our products development. If you have requests on a particular controls or features, please feel free to write us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Chief Software Architect