On September 19th, I made the initial contribution to Open RIA Services, committing the RIA Services codebase. The project is officially under way, giving developers even greater input into a framework that they love and reinforcing existing investments.

Right off the bat, I’d like to thank you for your patience during this process. I’d also like to thank Colin Blair, the Open RIA Services project lead, for his patience and persistence. Colin and I reached an informal agreement over 11 months ago that he would be the Open RIA Services project lead if Microsoft would donate the source code to the Outercurve Foundation. Since then, Colin has been preparing project plans, planning work items, and building the community around the project to ensure a successful launch. Well done, and thank you, Colin!

WCF RIA Services vs. Open RIA Services

As I mentioned when I first announced the open-sourcing of RIA Services, there is a distinction between Microsoft’s “WCF RIA Services” and the new “Open RIA Services” at Outercurve Foundation. Both are great technologies for creating n-tier applications with the .NET platform, and will continue to empower developers to continue to use the architecture that they prefer.

WCF RIA Services

Microsoft supports your existing investments in WCF RIA Services and Silverlight. The latest version of Silverlight will be supported for 10 years, and WCF RIA Services will be supported too. WCF RIA Services V1.0 is included with Visual Studio 2013 for customers building new and existing applications. We will ensure that you can bring your existing applications forward into new versions of Visual Studio with compile-time Silverlight code generation, as well as the runtime functionality that makes Domain Services tick. WCF RIA Services is alive and well with Microsoft standing behind it.

Open RIA Services

The Open RIA Services project will be led by Colin Blair, a Microsoft MVP who has focused on RIA Services for several years. Colin has created a project site at http://www.openriaservices.net, as well as the CodePlex project site at http://openriaservices.codeplex.com. The published roadmap lists better Silverlight 5 compatibility, change notifications, NHibernate, Multi-Client support, a new code generation strategy, and many more features across versions 4.x, 5.x, and 6.x. There’s a lot to do, and the project can use your help. We look forward to seeing how Open RIA Services will grow in the future!

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