We're getting ready to start the planning process for the next release of Enterprise Library which will target .NET Framework 3.0. In case you missed it, .NET Framework 3.0 is the new name for what used to be known as .NET Framework 2.0 combined with the new WinFX class libraries for WCF, WPF and WF. For more information on the name and version, check out Soma's post.
While we expect that the new WinFX libraries in .NET 3.0 will require us to make certain updates or changes to existing blocks (for example, to allow the Logging Application Block to work within a WCF pipeline), the platform change isn't going to be anywhere near as significant as the move from .NET 1.1 to .NET 2.0. This is hopefully good news for you, as it means we can focus more of our energy on improving the library in other ways.
So where should we focus our efforts? While we have a few ideas up our sleeves, the best ideas are likely to come from people who are using Enterprise Library on real applications (and if you're still reading, that probably includes you!). So don't be shy - tell us what you want!
Instead of just providing a feature list, imagine you have $100 (Australian dollars, of course) to invest in the our new release. If there's only one feature you care about, you can invest all $100 in that feature. If you want 5 new features or changes, you could invest $20 in each of those, or you could split it up differently depending on how important each request is to you (eg $60/$20/$10/$5/$5).
Please use your imagation and come up with whatever crazy suggestions you want for this new release. But to help get you started, here are a few feature areas you may want to consider:
- New blocks (please specify what these blocks should do)
- New providers for existing blocks (please specify which blocks and what the providers should do)
- Integration with new WinFX features (which ones?)
- Changes to the internal architecture (what and why?)
- Better support for deployment or operations processes
- Performance improvements
- Improvements to the configuration tool (such as?)
- Improvements to the documentation (such as?)
- New or improved samples or training materials
- Software factories or guidance packages to help you build blocks or providers
- VB version of the block source
- ...anything else?
Please limit your suggestions and your virtual investment to things that belong in Enterprise Library. The p&p team is continuing to work on a bunch of other projects such as our new Software Factories for scenarios such as web services, smart client and web development - but these are all different projects to Enterprise Library (even though many of these will leverage EntLib blocks). Enterprise Library is - and will remain - a library of general purpose application blocks for common development scenarios.