Infragistics Releases 'Aikido' Framework for Web 2.0 Controls

Infragistics’ newly released "Aikido" framework is optimized for Web 2.0 development .

Microsoft's Asynchronous JavaScript and XML (AJAX) extensions provided developers with the tools to build Web clients with partial-page refreshes and desktop-like controls to improve the user experience. But the November release of .NET 3.5 Framework and Visual Studio (VS) 2008, which integrated the ASP.NET AJAX extensions and their respective VS tooling, challenged component vendors to step up their value to developers.

Princeton, N.J.-based Infragistics Inc. is the latest vendor to offer a brand-new framework for its ASP.NET server controls. The company released the "Aikido" framework last month as part of its NetAdvantage for .NET 2008 volume 1, which offers tooling for WinForms and ASP.NET. Up until this release, Aikido was available to customers only in community technology previews (CTPs).

Components Experts
In the components business for almost 20 years, Infragistics worked with alphas and betas of .NET to develop its initial components framework.

"We bolted on a lot of capabilities to add AJAX and all these rich features, and so what has happened is [we offer] way more capabilities than 90 percent of the people need," says Jason Beres, the company's director of product management. "And that shows when you render it -- that takes more HTML."

The new framework is optimized for Web 2.0 development, according to Beres, built around ASP.NET AJAX, XHTML and CSS, with minimal HTML on the client for better performance.

NetAdvantage for .NET will support ASP.NET AJAX 1.0 on ASP.NET 2.0 and ASP.NET AJAX 3.5, which is built on the new 3.5 Framework. Users will have access to the same UI controls, among others.

"It's the same codebase, but when you compile it for the CLRs, you get optimization for that CLR," says Beres.

The Aikido framework is just one of the many new UI tools from Infragistics. Later this month at MIX08, the company will showcase UIs with prototypes of Silverlight 2.0 charts and gauges pulling in a mix of online services such as Windows Live (contacts and maps), sample data from the Northwind database, and Windows Communication Foundation.

In late January, the company added more charts (2-D and 3-D) and an Office 2007 Ribbon navigation control to NetAdvantage for WPF 7.2.

About the Author

Kathleen Richards is the editor of and executive editor of Visual Studio Magazine.

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