Microsoft shifts gears (again) with its Oslo modeling platform

Microsoft shifts gears (again) with its Oslo modeling platform

Summary: It's been awfully quiet on the Microsoft service-oriented architecture (SOA) front for the past nine months or so. But on August 17, Product Unit Manager Doug Purdy broke the silence to provide an update on Microsoft's "Oslo" modeling platform and strategy.

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It's been awfully quiet on the Microsoft service-oriented architecture (SOA) front for the past nine months or so. But on August 17, Product Unit Manager Doug Purdy broke the silence to provide an update on Microsoft's "Oslo" modeling platform and strategy.

The Data Programmability team (which manages Astoria, Entity Data Model (EDM), Entity Framework (EF), XML, ADO.Net and tools/designers) is merging with the Oslo team, Purdy blogged. (The Oslo team has been working on the M language , which was formerly known as "D"; the Quadrant tool; and the modeling repository.)

Purdy blogged:

"What does this mean for you (.NET developers)?  You are going hear more about how 'M'/EF/EDM align.  How our VS tools related to 'Quadrant.'  How this notion of 'model-drive software' evolves with the existing .NET FX (Framework) investments. ... More to be reveled at PDC (in November in Los Angeles)."

Purdy acknowledged Microsoft officials used the "Oslo" term too broadly when the company first shared its high-level Oslo vision back in 2007. At one point, Microsoft was referring to everything from the next release of its Workflow Framework (WF) and Windows Communication Framework (WCF) 4.0, to its "Dublin" application server, the next release of BizTalk Server, and a future release of SQL Server as all being components of Oslo.

In more recent months, however, the team began shifting its positioning to only use "Oslo" to refer to the modeling pieces of the platform. WF 4.0, WCF 4.0, Dublin and other ".Net 4.0 wave" deliverables, expected to be released in the spring of 2010, are no longer positioned as pieces of Oslo.

So what is Oslo today? Purdy offered this definition back in April:

"The term 'Oslo' today refers to a modeling stack — which is just technology jargon for a data stack. We have a language ('M') for writing down other languages, instance data, schemas, expressions and functions. We have a repository (which is just a SQL Server database with a “catalog” in it) for storing data. We have a tool ('Quadrant') for getting N views (graphical and textual over that data). We have a set of base 'models' that people can use and extend to help people write down and access data. We are then taking that stack and working with teams all over Microsoft to move the application lifecycle (design, build, manage) to top of this stack."

Purdy still isn't mentioning any ship targets for M, Quadrant or the repository, but maybe now that the team behind those modeling elements is merging with a team shipping discrete tools, Microsoft's new modeling platform will start trickling out sooner rather than later....

Topics: CXO, Enterprise Software, Microsoft

About

Mary Jo has covered the tech industry for 30 years for a variety of publications and Web sites, and is a frequent guest on radio, TV and podcasts, speaking about all things Microsoft-related. She is the author of Microsoft 2.0: How Microsoft plans to stay relevant in the post-Gates era (John Wiley & Sons, 2008).

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6 comments
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  • makes a little more sense

    I had a very difficult time sorting thru what M did and quadrant did and Doug's effusive personality only clouded things.

    I understand what the EF does and how it helps . I have no idea what M or Quadrant does and how that would help, even after watching the videos. But I know Doug thought it was cool.

    Please make a more down to earth presentation this year.
    lynn@...
    • M was a solution looking for a problem

      [i] I have no idea what M or Quadrant does and how
      that would help, even after watching the
      videos.[/i]

      Exactly. M was a grand solution for a poorly
      defined problem. They were actively searching for
      the problem -- after building the solution. ("What
      would YOU like M to do?")
      interlocutor
  • Custom XML?

    I wonder if they're using custom xml in this, too. See this: http://www.groklaw.net/article.php?story=20090817235436439.
    epitax
  • RE: Microsoft shifts gears (again) with its Oslo modeling platform

    I don't know how MDA or MDD would gain pitch again. They were never that successfully used in enterprise development, eventhough they make a lot of sense.
    Ram U
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