Volta Technology Preview from Microsoft Live Labs Helps Developers Build Innovative, Multi-Tiered Web Applications with Existing Tools, Technology – Stories

ErikMeijer,PrincipalArchitect,MicrosoftCorp。

PressPass:WhatisVoltaandhowdoesitbenefitdeveloperstoday?

Meijer:VoltaisatoolsetcreatedbyMicrosoftLiveLabsthatallowsdeveloperstobuildmulti-tierwebapplicationsusingestablishedlanguages,libraries,developmenttoolsandthe。

NETFramework。

Voltaoffersaspecializedfacilityforpartitioningfunctionalityacrossclientandserverviadeclarativetier-splitting。

Voltaextendsthe。

NETFrameworktodistributedSoftware+Servicesapplications,allowingdeveloperstouseexistingandfamiliartoolsandtechniques。

Additionally,Voltasdesignallowsdeveloperstodelaysomedecisionsuntillaterinthedevelopmentprocessmakingitfasterandcheapertoadjustarchitecturestoaccommodateevolvingrequirements。

PressPass:WhatistheoverallgoalofVolta?

Meijer:Voltaisatoolsetthatsimplifiesdesigning,buildinganddebuggingdistributed,multi-tierapplicationsusingexisting。

NETcompilers,toolsandlibraries。

Voltaachievesthisgoalbyatechniquecalleddeclarativetier-splitting。

Theprogrammerinsertsexplicitdeclarationsintothesourcecode,statingthetiersonwhichcertainclassesandmethodsshouldrun。

Basically,Voltaautomaticallyinsertslow-levelcommunicationandserializationcodeandmovestheannotatedcodetotheappropriatetiers。

ByreleasingVoltaasanexperimentaltoolset,wehopetovalidatetheoverallgoalandapproach,aswellascollectfeedbackthatwillbehelpfulindrivingfurtherdevelopment。

PressPass:WhatmakesVoltauniquecomparedtotheotherwebdevelopmentapplicationsandtoolsthatareavailabletoday?

Meijer:Unlikeotherapproaches,Voltastartswithaclient-sideperspective。

Thatis,oncedevelopersaresatisfiedwithanapplicationsfunctionalityandfullyunderstandtheinternalobjectinteractions,theydecoratethecodewithdeclarativeattributes,orannotations,toindicatethepartsoftheapplicationthatshouldrunonothertiers。

TheVoltaruntimeutilizesasmanyexistingwebtechnologiesaspossible,suchastheCLR,ASP。

NET,andstandards-basedwebbrowsers,makingitpossiblefordeveloperstoworkwithVoltainawaythattheyarealreadycomfortable。

Inaddition,VoltaisdeeplyintegratedwithVisualStudio2008includingthedebuggers。

Developersareabletoseamlesslystepfromonetiertoanotherthroughcode,setbreakpointsonanytierandtraceflowsofcontrolacrossdistributedsystems。

Additionally,Voltaenablesnewend-to-endprofilingandtestingforhigherlevelsofapplicationperformance,robustnessandreliabilitybymaintainingasingleprogrammingmodelacrossmultipletiers。

PressPass:HowdoesVoltamakeiteasiertobuildawebapplication?

Meijer:Voltadramaticallyreducestheamountofnewstuffdevelopersmustlearnbecauseitextendsthelibraries,toolsandtechniquesthattheyarealreadyusedtoin。

NETtonewdistributed,web-based,Software+Servicesscenarios。

Moreover,Voltaallowsdeveloperstodelayirreversibledecisionsuntilthelastresponsiblemoment,greatlyincreasingtheagilityofdevelopmentinintermediatephaseswherechangeisoftenrapid。

Sincedevelopersinitiallycreateeasy-to-manage,single-tierclientapplications,andthenincrementallydistributepartstoothertiersthrougharefactoringtechniquetheyarealreadyfamiliarwith,theycanapplyfamiliarskillstonewproblemsreducingdevelopmentcostandrisk。

PressPass:Whataretheuse-casescenariosforVolta?

Meijer:Voltacaterstoclient-serverapplications,includingAjax-stylewebapplications。

Byenablingdeveloperstoprototypeandrefinetheirdesignsthroughrefactoring,Voltaisparticularlysuitableforscenarioswheredeveloperscannot,orshouldnot,partitionfunctionalitybetweentheclientandserverupfront。

Inaddition,Voltaoffersthesameprogrammingmodelonthebrowserandtheserver,helpingdeveloperscontrolthecomplexitiesandidiosyncrasiesofthesedifferentrealms。

PressPass:AsaMicrosoftLiveLabstechnologyexperiment,howdoesVoltafitintoMicrosoftsoverallweb-developmentstrategy?

Meijer:MicrosoftLiveLabsisdedicatedtodevelopinginnovative,Internet-centrictechnologiestoimproveandacceleratetheevolutionofMicrosoftsInternetproductsandservices。

ReleasingVoltaasantechnologypreviewallowsustogatherearlyfeedbackfrombothcustomersandpartnersalike;thisfeedbackwillinfluencefuturedevelopmentofVolta。

SinceVoltasdeclarativetier-splittingworkspurelyontheMicrosoftIntermediateLanguage(MSIL)level,itcanbeappliedtoany。

NETapplication,writteninanyprogramminglanguageandlibrariessupportedby。

NET。

Thisincludesrichtraditionalclientapplicationsrunningunderthestandard。

NETFramework。

PressPass:HowdoesVoltapromoteinnovationinMicrosoftsSoftware+Servicesefforts?

Meijer:Voltamakesiteasiertointerfacewithexistingwebservicesfromfamiliar。

NETprogramminglanguagesandlibraries。

Byautomatingsomedeploymentaspects,Voltamakesitconsiderablyeasierandfasterfordeveloperstocreatemulti-tierapplications,freeingthemupfromrepetitive,low-levelcommunicationsoftware,sotheycandevotetheirtimeandcreativeenergytomoreindepthaspectsoftheirdesigns。

PressPass:IsVoltapartofaMicrosoftproductroadmap?

Meijer:VoltaisanexperimentthatenablesMicrosofttoexplorenewwaysofdevelopingdistributedapplications。

CurrentlythereisnoplantofitVoltaintoalargerproductroadmap。


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