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Lightswitch RTM

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  • User profile image
    vesuvius

    Available at http://www.microsoft.com/visualstudio/en-us/lightswitch

    You can get a 90 trial or buy it for $200 (£ 121.53) but is free if you have a MSDN subscription.

  • User profile image
    JoshRoss

    I installed it the other day, created the slowest application in the world, and shortly after had a motherboard failure. I guess that I'm safe now, since bad things come in threes.

    -Josh

  • User profile image
    figuerres

    ,vesuvius wrote

    Available at http://www.microsoft.com/visualstudio/en-us/lightswitch

    You can get a 90 trial or buy it for $200 (£ 121.53) but is free if you have a MSDN subscription.

     

    during the pre release i was just not really impressed with a lot of what they were not doing and the things that just did not seem ready for the kinds of stuff i need to do.

    I think it's a great idea and a great start on a toolset. but i think it needs to go thru at least a V2 before it will be worth  spending more time on it.  too many things that are just not "done" or have closed boxes / limitations that are to hard to work past to get to what i need.

    I need to be able to point it as a database i already have with asp.net membership data and application data and tell it to use them, not create a new database at all.

    sure i can link up my tables for the editor but the membership system is a real show stopper, i do not want to do funky hacks to get it to just accept that i have a database with members, asp.net, silverlight and winforms and wpf all can handle this but lightswitch does not.

    there are other issues but that's my primary pain point in taking this any farther.

  • User profile image
    JoshRoss

    All fairness, I thought that I would add that the whole episode took no longer than two hours.

    -Josh

  • User profile image
    cbae

    ,JoshRoss wrote

    I installed it the other day, created the slowest application in the world, and shortly after had a motherboard failure. I guess that I'm safe now, since bad things come in threes.

    -Josh

    I count only 2 bad things, unless you consider installing it in itself a bad thing.

  • User profile image
    W3bbo

    ,vesuvius wrote

    Available at http://www.microsoft.com/visualstudio/en-us/lightswitch

    You can get a 90 trial or buy it for $200 (£ 121.53) but is free if you have a MSDN subscription.

    I read some press are calling for Microsoft to reposition Lightswitch as a successor to Access, and that they should be including it with Office Professional, and that pitching it as a "developer product" even though it's aimed at ad-hoc LoB application (typically by people with limited software dev experience).

  • User profile image
    cbae

    ,W3bbo wrote

    *snip*

    I read some press are calling for Microsoft to reposition Lightswitch as a successor to Access, and that they should be including it with Office Professional, and that pitching it as a "developer product" even though it's aimed at ad-hoc LoB application (typically by people with limited software dev experience).

    Holy run-on sentence, Batman. You lost me here:

    ...and that pitching it as a "developer product" even though it's aimed at ad-hoc LoB application (typically by people with limited software dev experience).

    Are you saying that the press is saying that Lightswitch SHOULD BE pitched as a developer product even though Microsoft is targeting adhoc LoB applications?

    Or are you saying that the press is saying that Microsoft is already (mistakenly) pitching it as a developer product even though it's aimed at adhoc LoB applications?

    Or are you saying that you read some press by people with limited development experience calling for Microsoft to pitch it as a developer product even though it's aimed at adhoc LoB applications?

     

  • User profile image
    W3bbo

    Sorry, it looks like the rest of my reply got cut-off (I made that posting on my iPad, I probably hit the submit key too soon). It should read as: "and that pitching it as a "developer product" even though it's aimed at ad-hoc LoB application (typically by people with limited software dev experience) is not the right way to market this product if Microsoft is to secure a wide user-base. The current strategy only works if the same people who look at what's inside MSDN subscriptions are the same people who need go solve LoB problems in their day-to-day jobs, and this isn't usually the case."

  • User profile image
    cbae

    @W3bbo: OTOH, it might be attractive for people "with limited software dev experience" to use a product with the name "Visual Studio" attached to it so that they can start claiming that they're developers. Not that it would be a good thing for "real" developers if this were to happen. Smiley

    They're certainly pricing it so that it could be affordable to purchase à la carte, which would be attractive to non-developers who wouldn't already have an MSDN subscription. When MS Access came out, it was $99, and that was over 18 years ago. Even then $99 wasn't much, and IIRC, I purchased Access at Egghead Software just to get a competitive upgrade price on FoxPro 2.0. Asking for only $100 more than the original price of Access 18 years later seems pretty reasonable.

  • User profile image
    PerfectPhase

    @figuerres:  I agree it needs work, but I really like it as another tool in my toolbox.  I've used it for a couple of projects now for simple forms over data and it's worked really well, and lets me get back to more intreasting work much faster. 

  • User profile image
    figuerres

    ,PerfectPhase wrote

    @figuerres:  I agree it needs work, but I really like it as another tool in my toolbox.  I've used it for a couple of projects now for simple forms over data and it's worked really well, and lets me get back to more intreasting work much faster. 

    as i said for me the #1 problem is how they are not supporting a simple direct way to let me use my cuurent membership data.  i have seen folks hack around it but to me at this time it's just not what i want / need.

    if/when they get at least to V2 i will be more interested in it.

    with Silverlight I held back untill after they had it working with C# for me it would have been a waste of time to play with the first javascript version.

    early in the Lightswitch beta i and others told them what we needed and as far as i have been able to see our requests for key items was ignored.  If they had done just a little bit better at working with the things we asked about i might feel different now.  not just my requests, not that i expected them to chnage everything for me, half of the problem is that they did not communicate back very well. for example in connect they did not reply with anything like "we want to do this but we can not do this in V1, but we will see if it can be a V2 item"

    when there are like 50 votes for something and multiple feedback from other beta users and you just leave the item hanging it does not communicate very well , it gives an impession that they did not listen and that is no way to run a beta IMHO.

     

  • User profile image
    JoshRoss

    @figuerres: I think a bigger problem is that search in LightSwitch does not work like non-programmers expect it to. And if this product is targeted towards non-programmers, then you have to import their expectations.

    If anything, you would think it would be easier to index and search structured data, as opposed to non-stuctured data. If Windows Desktop Search can do it, then you think someone could have bothered to put some rudimentary modern search functionality into the product. 

    -Josh

  • User profile image
    spivonious

    I think MS would sell more copies if they positioned it as the successor to Access. I took a quick look at it, and while it lets you get a Silverlight app up and running very quickly, there didn't seem to be a whole lot of options. I also wonder how easy future enhancements would be.

  • User profile image
    W3bbo

    ,spivonious wrote

    I think MS would sell more copies if they positioned it as the successor to Access. I took a quick look at it, and while it lets you get a Silverlight app up and running very quickly, there didn't seem to be a whole lot of options. I also wonder how easy future enhancements would be.

    The thing is, Access is entirely self-contained: it is its own storage engine, query execution engine, user interfaceand user interface designer, reporting system, and management tool, all rolled into one (relatively) low-cost package.

    LightSwitch isn't, it just combines existing disparate platforms together (SQL Server, Silverlight, Linq, etc). So as such, LightSwitch isn't a true successor for Access. Maybe if LightSwitch supported a version of SQLCE that had parity with Access's DDL and DML features) and came with a guarantee that Silverlight will continue to be supported 20 years from now (I'm sure someone, somewhere, has Access applications that old).

    So all things considered, I really think LightSwitch is in a better place to succeed FoxPro than Access.

  • User profile image
    figuerres

    ,JoshRoss wrote

    @figuerres: I think a bigger problem is that search in LightSwitch does not work like non-programmers expect it to. And if this product is targeted towards non-programmers, then you have to import their expectations.

    If anything, you would think it would be easier to index and search structured data, as opposed to non-stuctured data. If Windows Desktop Search can do it, then you think someone could have bothered to put some rudimentary modern search functionality into the product. 

    -Josh

    which leads to another thing i have issues with in this:  by trying to be two different things at the same time you make a number of comprimses that in the end (IMHO) make the whole product weaker than it could be.  while making an easy entry data tool is a great idea I personally think it's ultimately a dead end.

    looks at how advanced MS Access apps needed folks who could write VB code to do more than access could via the designer. sure the access report tools and UI tools could do a lot.

    but in the end you often needed a real developer to handle complex bits.

     

  • User profile image
    devSpeed

    ,W3bbo wrote

    *snip*

    Maybe if LightSwitch.... came with a guarantee that Silverlight will continue to be supported 20 years from now.

    We have an access Customer support application that was written in 1996. It is an internal app and it still works. There is no reason to dump it.

     

  • User profile image
    spivonious

    I'll probably get flamed, but our work order tracking system is in Access 97.

  • User profile image
    Blue Ink

    @spivonious: I don't see why you should get flamed... the good old "if it ain't broke don't fix it" trumps any other consideration IMHO.

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