What is the Windows Presentation Foundation? The Windows Presentation Foundation is the unified presentation subsystem for Windows. It consists of a display engine and a managed-code framework. The Windows Presentation Foundation unifies how Windows creates, displays, and manipulates documents, media, and user interface, which enables developers and designers to create visually-stunning, differentiated user experiences that improve customer connection. When it ships, scheduled for 2006, the Windows Presentation Foundation will be available on Windows XP, Windows Server 2003 and all future releases of the Windows operating system. When delivered, the Windows Presentation Foundation will become Microsoft’s strategic user interface technology. What is the Windows Communication Foundation? The Windows Communication Foundation is a set of technologies for building and running connected systems. The Windows Communication Foundation is a new breed of communications infrastructure built around the Web services architecture. Advanced Web services support in the Windows Communication Foundation provides secure, reliable, and transacted messaging along with interoperability. The Windows Communication Foundation’s service-oriented programming model is built on the .NET Framework and simplifies development of connected systems. The Windows Communication Foundation unifies a broad array of distributed systems capabilities in an extensible architecture, spanning transports, security systems, messaging patterns, encodings, network topologies and hosting models. The Windows Communication Foundation will be an integral capability of Windows Vista and will also be supported on Windows XP and Windows Server 2003. Microsoft has also done significant work to integrate the Windows Communication Foundation with existing Microsoft technologies for building distributed systems including COM+, MSMQ, and ASP.NET Web services. Applications built with those existing technologies can now be exposed as services without modification to the application. This infrastructure-level solution greatly assists developers in exposing existing applications as services. The Windows Communication Foundation also provides simple and mechanical mechanisms to migrate applications that use .NET remoting, ASP.NET Web services, and .NET Enterprise Services to natively use the Windows Communication Foundation programming model. Is C# used for any core features of Windows Vista? Yes, for example, much of the Windows Presentation Foundation is written using C# Why do we need XAML as a new way to create applications in .NET Framework 3.0 (formerly WinFX)? The new application model in Windows Vista separates out declarative code (XAML) from procedural code (C#, VB.NET, J#, etc.). One major reason for using XAML is to bridge the gap between developing an application for Microsoft Windows and developing an application for the Web. XAML does not give you new functionality; it is just a declarative way to instantiate and initialize Microsoft .NET objects. XAML does, however, provide you with a way to solve problems such as:
- When you write procedural code (C#, etc.) to create a number of controls, and compare that to the equivalent XAML, the XAML is more compact, less redundant, and less error-prone. Writing a designer for XAML will be a lot easier than writing a forms designer for C# or VB.NET, since the designer won’t have to do all that code parsing to figure out where to insert or change the setting of a property.
- In the real world, many customers find requests coming in at the very last minute asking for changes to the user interface—a button needs to be moved or removed or the company logo needs to appear on every window. It is especially at the end of the development process, when you think your code is “frozen” and tested, that you’d rather not have to dive into the source code and start changing things. Who knows what subtle interaction you might break? With XAML, most—if not all—of the presentation layer is in its own file, thus providing a high degree of certainty that making a user interface change in the XAML will not break business logic code.
- XAML enables professional graphic designers or user interface specialists to add beauty, style and grace to an application without modifying source files directly. Partitioning the user interface and the logic that drives it means each of us can get our job done without getting in each other’s way or having to understand the myriad details of one another’s tools.
- XAML is considerably smaller than the equivalent C# code. Since there is less code, there are fewer opportunities for errors