Microsoft to launch LightSwitch cloud/desktop development tool on July 26

Microsoft to launch LightSwitch cloud/desktop development tool on July 26

Summary: Microsoft is launching its Visual Studio LightSwitch 2011 tool for cloud and desktop development on July 26, according to the company's own LightSwitch Web page.

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Microsoft is launching its Visual Studio LightSwitch 2011 tool for cloud and desktop development on July 26, according to the company's own LightSwitch Web page.

Visual Studio LightSwitch, codenamed “KittyHawk,” is a rapid-application-development (RAD) tool targeted at fledgling coders interested in building business applications. Microsoft released the first public beta of LightSwitch in August 2010 and a second beta in March 2011.

On the 26th, the final version of LighSwitch will be generally availabile, according to a July 4 blog post by Justin Anderson, a Software Development Engineer for the Visual Studio LightSwitch Team. (I've asked Microsoft officials if MSDN/TechNet subscribers will get the code on that date or before then, but have not received a response. I've also asked whether the launch will be Webcast, and for those details, once available.)

Update (July 6): Microsoft officials are saying LightSwitch will first be available to MSDN subscribers on July 26th, with general availability on July 28th. They declined to say more about the launch location or when/whether it will be Webcast. I'm hearing that execs may say more about this next week at the Microsoft partner conference.

Microsoft is positioning LightSwitch as a way to build business applications for the desktop, the Web and the cloud. It’s a tool that relies on pre-built templates to make building applications easier for non-professional programmers. It’s so easy, it’s like flipping a switch, the Softies have said when explaining the choice of final name for the product.

As of Beta 2, Microsoft added to LightSwitch capabilities for building line-of-business (LOB) applications that target Windows Azure and SQL Azure. The second beta also enabled professional developers to use Visual Studio Professional (or higher) to create application extensions, which Microsoft describes as reusable components such as themes, screen templates, shells, data sources, business types and controls.

Topics: Hardware, CXO, Microsoft, Software Development

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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23 comments
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  • RE: Microsoft to launch LightSwitch cloud/desktop development tool on July 26

    What's the difference between LightSwitch and WebMatrix?
    leoberto
    • LightSwitch vs. WebMatrix

      Hi. WebMatrix is a Web-dev tool that seems pretty squarely aimed at professional developers:

      http://www.zdnet.com/blog/microsoft/microsoft-takes-aim-again-at-web-developers-with-new-webmatrix-tool-suite/6747

      LightSwitch is aimed more at nonprofessional programmers and is focused on biz-app development (whethr those business apps run in the cloud, Web or PC/desktop.

      That's at least how it seems to me... MJ
      Mary Jo Foley
      • RE: Microsoft to launch LightSwitch cloud/desktop development tool on July 26

        @Mary Jo Foley
        Non-programmers creating business applications... It reminds me of Access applications created by non-programmers in the '90s into the 2000s. As a consultant, I spent a lot of time rewriting doggedly slow, extremely oversized Access applications created by business users into VB/SQL Server applications to perform correctly.

        For those who've worked in computers long enough, you recognize the repeating patterns of architectures over the years. Are we looping around with this and will consultants have to customize/rewrite these apps as well?
        As a full-time trainer, I am having trouble envisoning these non-programmer professional students. Who are these people?
        corkwatchr
    • RE: Microsoft to launch LightSwitch cloud/desktop development tool on July 26

      @leoberto In a nutshell: Microsoft Silverlight based Web-App verses Web standards ASPX.Net based Web-site. New school verses old school!
      NewZed
      • RE: Microsoft to launch LightSwitch cloud/desktop development tool on July 26

        @lloyd_derbyshire@... It is true what you say. Personally I like this application offered by Microsoft. <a href="http://www.papa-johnscoupons.net">Papa Johns Coupons</a>
        kuntakinte77
  • RE: Microsoft to launch LightSwitch cloud/desktop development tool on July 26

    FOSS - Free and Open Source Software. Hmm, great idea for corporations who (in theory) get the tools to run their businesses without having to pay for them. Not such a great idea for me, a professional software engineer who likes to be paid for my labor. Linux Geek, you are such a tool.
    Sir Name
    • RE: Microsoft to launch LightSwitch cloud/desktop development tool on July 26

      @Sir Name
      Software should be free!
      the people have the right to be empowered by software and no corporation should stay in their way!
      Linux Geek
      • RE: Microsoft to launch LightSwitch cloud/desktop development tool on July

        @Linux Geek <br>I have developed several applications (custom-made) for some business establishments (Sales and Inventory,Accounting Systems, POS, Lending Systems, etc.). These companies used my developed software for their business. In your line of thinking, I should have given my servvices and applications for free to the companies.
        Jeof Adriel
      • RE: Microsoft to launch LightSwitch cloud/desktop development tool on July 26

        @Linux Geek

        And the people who spend years in college to learn how to make the software should pay their bills in... smiles.

        Right?
        Michael Alan Goff
      • RE: Microsoft to launch LightSwitch cloud/desktop development tool on July 26

        @Linux Geek : Want everything for free? Food? Housing? Car? Gaz? Hookers Education?
        Someone has to pay to develop software. I suspect you aren't helping by developing anything.
        Gis Bun
  • RE: Microsoft to launch LightSwitch cloud/desktop development tool on July 26

    Any word on pricing yet?
    mcfortman@...
    • Pricing

      No word yet, as far as I know. Thanks. MJ
      Mary Jo Foley
    • RE: Microsoft to launch LightSwitch cloud/desktop development tool on July 26

      @mcfortman@... Since the stand alone SKU fits between VS Express (Free) and VS Pro ($799 full version no MSDN) lets say $400 approximately. My guess is $350 with intro pricing. Ugrades from VS2010 could be very cheap to encourage the community to hit play.
      NewZed
      • RE: Microsoft to launch LightSwitch cloud/desktop development tool on July 26

        @lloyd_derbyshire@... well to answer my own question in case anybody else runs across this thread, it just went up in the Microsoft Store for $199 (says you save $100, so maybe it will be $299 later).

        http://www.microsoftstore.com/store?SiteID=msstore&Action=DisplayProductDetailsPage&productID=230090400&pgm=77961100&WT.mc_id=vssitebuy_lightswitch-buy
        mcfortman@...
  • RE: Microsoft to launch LightSwitch cloud/desktop development tool on July 26

    @Linux Geek
    grow up and change your nappies to trowsers.
    owlnet
  • Not sure where to place this

    You have HTML5 app compatibility that should ultimately be a development target for non-programmers in Windows 8, so why should they work with native application development languages? As much as these OSS bozos get on my nerves, they should agree that HTML5 should be the most ideal application development platform for an operating system that is going to be sold on the majority of PC's in the very near future, and it's both an open language, as well as easy-to-code-for - moreso than C-based languages.
    Joe_Raby
    • RE: Microsoft to launch LightSwitch cloud/desktop development tool on July 26

      @Joe_Raby Where is the tooling for HTML 5 LoB development? Can you wait up five years to get a productive development environment. Do you feel lucky? You have to ask yourself that question.
      NewZed
    • RE: Microsoft to launch LightSwitch cloud/desktop development tool on July 26

      @Joe_Raby - I don't mean to sound snarky, but all other languages are not going away because of HTML5. SilverLight + .NET bears no resemblance to HTML + JavaScript from a development and architectural perspective, so we can all get comfortable with the fact that they won't cancel each other out... ever. :-)
      scH4MMER
  • MJ - Is there any info whether LS supports developing apps

    targeting Windows Phone 7 Mango in Silverlight (not sure this ver of SL is supported by WP7 Mango update), by providing templates for WP7 apps...? That would be awesome feature i feel, as SL for Mobile for WP7 is not that much easier to develop for someone coming from iOS/Android/HTML5 background.
    jinishans
  • RE: Microsoft to launch LightSwitch cloud/desktop development tool on July

    Many thanks Mary-Jo,

    Nice to have someone as close to Microsoft as you are. The information you have access to is timely!

    Cheers,

    Paul P
    PaulSPatterson.com
    PaulPatterson