Apart from MIX08 big announcements about Silverlight 2.0, Silverlight for mobile and IE 8.0, there were an interesting collection of announcements that if you put them together a picture of a unified API layer on top of Windows Live services will emerge. In my opinion, this is huge.
There are three main components in realizing this new unified platform:
- Cloud Data Services
- Programming Frameworks
The really really new announcement in MIX08 was the SQL Server Data Services (SSDS) which is in private beta right now. ADO.NET Data Services is the new name of the project Astoria that was announced for the first time back in MIX07. Microsoft Sync Framework was first unleashed back in November of 2007. What was so exciting though is the adaption of these technologies by Windows Live Services. With that you can reuse the same tools and techniques to access new services. Your focus won’t be on how to make calls to a certain services (Data Access) but on what to do with the data you get (Business Logic).
One might ask, will this go all the way to cover services like Live ID and Messenger, for example? The answer is NO. This unified model suites better the type of services that is solely data centric. In which, you main purpose is to access a store with basic operations of Get, PUT, POST and DELETE. Services like Live ID are operation centric thus the model does not apply.
I am pretty excited about the direction of the API and the adaption of the model by Windows Live Services. It won’t take long to see cool new apps built quickly and easily against the Live Platform. I want to write one myself!