Yesterday Microsoft started introducing Visual Studio 2010 to Windows
developers with a
press release and a
MSDN website. Introductions to the next Visual Studio also popped
up on various technology news sites; InformationWeek,
Technica each have brief summary and explaination of the
information Microsoft has released so far. Only NetworkWorld
digs into the subject by asking various developers to give their
impressions of the new Visual Studio.
All of the attention is being focused on Visual Studio Team System 2010 and its emphasis on “riding the next-generation platform wave, inspiring developer delight, powering breakthrough departmental applications, enabling emerging trends such as cloud computing, and democratizing application life-cycle management.” The MSDN website fleshes out each feature category more with a small blurb about each one, but only fleshes out application life-cycle management.
The application life-cycle management category is the one being talked about right now. Basically, it is about pulling modeling, testing, and collaboration closer together. For instance, Visual Studio will automatically generate a list of tests to run against the code. For the testers, a feature dubbed “Tivo for debugging” has been developed. The feature will record a testing session which can be appended to a bug report. The developer can then playback the session and hopefully track down the bug. The affects are two tiered. The developer will get information to help squash a bug, and the tester will not have to try to convince the developer that the bug exists.
UML (Unified Modeling Language) has been added to Visual Studio in the new version, and it is the basis for the modeling tools in the new Visual Studio version. The idea is that by allowing programmers access to the design tools, and tools that expose the design, it will help them visualize the program. A new tool, the “architecture explorer”, will display the relations and dependancies in a giver piece of code in a nicely visual format.
There are hints about what the other categories mean scattered through out the articles. Feature requests from developers have been added, which will hopefully increase their delight. Apparently, many of the features were built with agile programming in mind, so the new features and tools should help facilitate that development style.
The next generation platform and emerging trends are two interesting categories. Visual Studio 2010 focusing on Windows 7 is a given, but what isn’t a given is what other platforms and emerging trends Visual Studio is going to be focused on. GPU programming and parallelization, for example, are two areas where programmers could use some help. Microsoft also announced the .NET 4.0 framework along with Visual Studio, but they have been quiet about features and details so far. The new .NET framework could be one platform they are targeting. Then there is the Microsoft Watch article which contains a quote by, Microsoft CEO, Steve Ballmer which indicates a cloud centric operating system will be unveiled at Microsoft’s Professional Developers Conference.
The powering “breakthrough departmental applications” category is fairly nebulous. It seems to translate to, “You can still code programs in Visual Studio 2010. You won’t have to buy a separate program “