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When to start using Acropolis? RRS feed

  • Question

  • Hi guys, I've been evaluating the acropolis framework and I'm loving it, some things are a bit hard to get used to though I have found it more simpler than the MS P&P CAB (Composite UI Application Block). I read somewhere that the P&P team do have a migration path for CAB to Acropolis, though I'm thinking it would be neat to start off with acropolis now and work through any framework changes as they occur. My question really is, when should I start using acropolis to start developing applications? Is there any public schedule for acropolis (beta, rc release dates?).

    I am in the design phase of a new development at the moment and am starting some prototypes, one in CAB and another in acropolis. I hope to have made a decision on UI in about a month, though I'd also like to use LINQ for the DA layer.

    Could you tell me any time expectancy for acropolis? I don't mind developing with it prior to its release, though once my project completes acropolis will need to have been released.

    Many thanks
    Monday, September 24, 2007 6:36 AM

Answers

  •  

    Hi Brett,

     

    "Acropolis" is currently a technology preview  and should not be used in live production. That said, we do encourage you to use and evaluate Acropolis and give us feedback on the technology. In the mean time, CAB/SCSF is the right technology to use if you are interested in building componentized application for live production.

     

    We currently do not have a finalized timeline for the technologies in "Acropolis". We will be updating the community once we have something.

     

    Thanks,
    Kathy Kam

    Program Manager

    Microsoft

    Wednesday, October 3, 2007 9:49 PM

All replies

  •  

    Hi Brett,

     

    "Acropolis" is currently a technology preview  and should not be used in live production. That said, we do encourage you to use and evaluate Acropolis and give us feedback on the technology. In the mean time, CAB/SCSF is the right technology to use if you are interested in building componentized application for live production.

     

    We currently do not have a finalized timeline for the technologies in "Acropolis". We will be updating the community once we have something.

     

    Thanks,
    Kathy Kam

    Program Manager

    Microsoft

    Wednesday, October 3, 2007 9:49 PM
  • It should be noteted P&P have anounced they will not be working on new SCSF releases due to Acropolis ( May be somone should tell them its only a preview ) .. I dont know if they will create a VS2008 release.

    "

    What happens to SCSF when Acropolis ships? Will p&p still support it?

    With the announcement of Acropolis, we currently have no further plans for SCSF releases.  That being said, our customers should rest assured that we are not dropping support for SCSF. We will continue to support the forums, provide fixes and assist customers in their implementations. Additionally the newly launched SCSFContrib project is an ongoing community effort to extend CAB/SCSF which will continue. We will continue to look at ways to help customers build smart client applications including providing pure WPF guidance as well as guidance for building Acropolis applications. "

     

    eg  QUESTIONS from youir sponsers when you release in in Jan 2009 ?

    why are all other applications WPF and yours is not ?

    Why are we using a discontinued framework ?

    Why cant we go to VS2008 we need all these new products that are not available on VS2005.

     

    or if you develop your own WPF framework

    Why did you sepnd 3 man years on that look at this product ?

     

    Kind of puts us the customer  in a hole..

     

    Regards,

     

    Ben

     

    Tuesday, October 16, 2007 1:40 AM
  • Ben,

      You've made your point very clearly, repeating it in every post asking about an Acropolis timeframe is not making it any more likely to get a response. I'm asking politely that you refrain from reiterating this message in the future. Please do not take this as me attempting to quell your discontent, because I am not. Like I said, it's just repetitive what you're saying.

     

    It's a preview technology and can go the way of the Dodo just like WinFS before it. You are taking a calculated risk by investing in learning it now, because it is very volatile, has skeletal documentation, and not guaranteed to even go RTM. However, complaining about these facts is not going to change them at this time.

    Tuesday, October 16, 2007 4:10 AM
  •  

    Mike, I'll have to repeat myself too :-) : IMHO it is risky to invest in Arcopolis and plan to use it in production but in my opinion it is well worthy investing in learning Acropolis because it is a very good source of ideas and information.

     

    Therefore I thank you guys again for providing the previews and allowing us to early learn what this technology is about.

     

    Tuesday, October 16, 2007 2:58 PM
  • BenK, as far as I know SCSF and CAB were never Microsoft supported products so it was your own responsibility to use them or not. Microsoft made that clear since tbe begining when they released the first CAB that was built on .NET Framework 1.1.

     

    Since this was never a supported product then why do you complain that Microsoft is not going to continue updating them?

     

    Tuesday, October 16, 2007 3:04 PM
  •  Danut Prisacaru wrote:

     

    Mike, I'll have to repeat myself too :-) : IMHO it is risky to invest in Arcopolis and plan to use it in production but in my opinion it is well worthy investing in learning Acropolis because it is a very good source of ideas and information.

     

    Therefore I thank you guys again for providing the previews and allowing us to early learn what this technology is about.

     

     

    I hope by "you guys" you're not including me. I'm just a moderator (volunteer) for the forums. I don't actually work for Microsoft. I'm usually not as vocal with moderation, however I do not want to see this situation get out of control.

    Wednesday, October 17, 2007 3:00 AM
  • Appologies if my  posts in this and a similar  thread here were too many it was a repeat. , in my defence i can only say i replied to some comments resulting in a 3 or 4th message on the topic.

     

    It is not really Acropolis and the team that im complaining about , more the genuine need your customers have now for good WPF tooling. I note Acropolis  was designed as Microsoft realised  this , it is just a bit frustrating to see it running as a preview  and looking at what features to do ... To an outsider it looks like you guys are trying to build an ideal platform when there is a genuine need 10 months ago when .NET3.0 and WPF was released.. P&P could have provided a SCSF for WPF but they have  discontinued it due to Acropolis  . As we have no anvenue to provide this feed back  to MS Management i hope mine and the original posters will show what a lot of enterprise developers feel and that our voices will filter up .

     

    Regards,

     

    Ben

     

    Thursday, October 18, 2007 11:28 AM
  • Danut ,

     

    SCSF was supported by the SCSF community which included members of the P&P team  ( i think) and as they say they will continue to support it ..

     

    "That being said, our customers should rest assured that we are not dropping support for SCSF." but personally the forums provide good enough support,

     

    I have no right to complain about their not being a WPF product but i can express my feelings ( i think before i get too repetative)  that we need better tooling than VS2008 ASAP and using Acropolis while its a preview is a mistake.  My next project is a mobile /WCF one so the 3 forms apps will be WPF but they are small so there is little risk.

     

    Regards,

     

    Ben

    Thursday, October 18, 2007 11:48 AM
  • Ben, I understand your distress regarding WPF v1 and its (lack of) focus for the enterprise app developer. With a little bit of effort WPF can work in an enterprise environment. From flashy apps with UI prepared by professional designers to standard data entry applications, WPF can run the gamut. Of course the lack of a built in Grid could be considered a serious impedance, but a few of the 3rd party vendors have stepped up and provided free datagrids for WPF.

     

    If you need help moving to WPF from CAB/SCSF, I'd be more than willing to give assistance. I'd definitely advise against using Acropolis for anything but prototypes that you can afford to throw away at this point.

     

    Thursday, October 18, 2007 3:45 PM
  • Hi Mike I have joined the SCSF contrib project and we will see.  First task VS2008 support and to be help Ohad on moving in the SCSF guidance package for pure WPF.


    Regards,

     

    Ben

     

    Monday, October 22, 2007 5:56 AM
  • Excellent! I forgot that there is already a port of the CAB to WPF. I might dive in there myself

     

    Tuesday, October 23, 2007 12:19 AM
  • Wow, what happened here, lol. Smile

     

    I am slowly coming to terms with WPF and have managed to put some interfaces together, I notice that you've mentioned about the grids that are available, I know I shouldn't be posting to here and should find help elsewhere, but I've been stuck for a while.

     

    I have a situation where I need to create a grid that has multiple frozen header rows and single column row header (this would be similar to a "freeze" in excel), I also require each cell to be an individual object instead of rows of data (as opposed to how a datagrid would behave). This may sound whacky, though if I try and visualize the problem, maybe you might see where i'm coming from.

     

    Australia    | 2.50 | 3.50 | 4.50

    New Zealand  | 2.95 | 3.95 | 4.95

    -------------+------+------+------

    Prod Type 1  |    4 |    3 |    0

    Prod Type 2  |    0 |    1 |    8

    Prod Type 3  |    3 |    2 |    1

     

    From the above, each cell represents and has reference to a collection of product, for example the bottom left data items would be represented something like:

     

    Range    | Design | Description    | Cost

    ---------+--------+----------------+-----

    Range A  | 0001   | Fancy Product  | 0.90

    Range A  | 0002   | Plain Product  | 0.80

    Range D  | 0003   | Boring Product | 0.50

     

    I have designed a mock screen that represents this design, looks great, though I don't know how to make the grids "work". Basically, when a user selects a cell in the top grid, the bottom grid should update to reflect the items associated with that cell, they can update the values in the top grid prompting updates in the lower grid, it's all in my head and I can manage to do it in windows forms with a custom table grid for the upper grid, though I have no idea where to start with WPF to model this.

     

    I've tried posting on the Xceed forums with no luck at this stage, please help or point me in the right direction, I'll be very appreciative if you could.

     

    Thanks

    -Brett

    Tuesday, October 23, 2007 8:22 AM
  • Hi Kathy, thank you very much for your reply, sorry I didn't notice it until just now, replies aren't getting emailed to me for some reason.. I'd like to quickly take this oppertunety to say thank you for all your hard work. I enjoyed watching your video TechEd presentation, I look forward to seeing how the Acropolis framework unfolds and hope for us all that it's a huge success.

     

    -Brett

    Tuesday, October 23, 2007 8:26 AM
  • Brett, you'd probably get a better response to your question in the general WPF forums. However, I've recently contemplated how to do column freezing with the GridView...let's say that it's not pretty. I haven't checked to see if any of the third party grids support it, but I would suggest going with one of them if they do support that.

     

    Thursday, October 25, 2007 4:54 AM
  • Thanks for that Mike, I've started a thread here (http://forums.microsoft.com/MSDN/ShowPost.aspx?PostID=2312901&SiteID=1) on the WPF forums to try get some help. The Eceed grid does support Column freezing, though it doesn't support row freezing. The biggest problem that I'm finding with all the custom grid controls that are out there only focus on 2D "Tables", where a grid should be a 3D control (not in the 3D UI form), let me iterate.

     

    I need a grid, where I am not bound by column type, but can instead have a cell type, when you look at it, all custom grids I've seen think mostly about binding data to an arbitrary list of objects of the same type (Orders for example). I want to populate a grid with cells containing objects, like assigning a customer to a cell, but then the immediate cell below contains an orderline, bad example but it shows what I'm after.

     

    I did create something a long time ago for Windows Forms called an object grid, because that's what it allows one to do, place any object in any cell, you control rendering through a "Cell Renderer" object that knows how to paint that object, this is similar to how the DataGridView works when using virtual mode, though again, one column can only contain a single data type.

     

    I have been attempting to do something about this in WPF, but my gosh it's hard to think of how to do it, I'm still trying to come to terms with WPF itself let alone try and create a complex control like this. The basics of the control work around creating 4 parts; left "row" headers, top "column" headers, top left "Null Content" area (which can contain something and the main content area which contains a ScrollViewer which contains another Grid to house rows and columns of data. I have then bound the left of the top column header with the "HorizontalOffset" property of the scroll viewer and likewisse the "VerticalOffset" on the top of the row header. This works, but then I have to messily bind the height of the row with the height of its row header and again the widths to the column headers, I haven't completed this yet though it's starting to work. Let me know how you go with yours.

     

    What makes my model hard though is the fact I'm supporting more than one row/column header, I guess I could start with thinking of no column/row headers and support freezing as it's known in Excel.

     

    I'm really trying to love WPF, as I do love the fact that I no longer have to owner draw, but I'm finding it difficult to model basic things like this.

     

    Anyway, thanks for the help though, I'll keep posting on the other forum, though just wanted to give you an update Smile

     

    Kind Regards,

    Thursday, October 25, 2007 9:55 AM
  • What a bummer, I got an email the other day from Jill Kinman at IdeaBlade that acropolis has now been abandoned, such a shame Sad

     

    Good to hear that the P&P guys are back on top of things though, but I really did like the Acropolis model, it was much simpler than CAB, one thing I do find with CAB is that it is in many ways over-engineered and in some cases harder to debug runtime problems (espessially with the way you wire up m-to-m events).

     

    Thursday, November 1, 2007 1:17 AM
  • Brett,

    I've got two answers for you...buried somewhere in the ATC and/or Bea Costa's blogs is a sample showing how to combine a treeview with a gridview (allowing you to do the detail view of a given row).

     

    Also, acropolis isn't being abandoned. The message from all of the announcements is that Acropolis is being rolled into .NET Framework proper (possibly 4.0).

     

    Here's the post from the ATC team

    Friday, November 2, 2007 12:34 AM
  • Ahh, with the details, I'm not after it within the same grid, since this will still mean that it's a row based structure, where I require a cell based structure, think of my use-case as a 3 dimensional grid, but to get to the third dimension it's viewed from another two dimensional table.

     

    Might need to tell Jill from IdeaBlade that Acropolis is still around, since I got an email with the subject "Acropolis is Dead - New Life for CAB!". Good to hear that it's still alive, I look forward to hearing more on what will be going into the toolset.

    Friday, November 2, 2007 2:34 AM