Managing the lifecycle of the components you build, deploy, operate and support on Office 365 is difficult. The platform is new, the cloud is new, and much of your classic DTAP model is simply no longer appropriate. We at Rapid Circle are committed, for some time now, as being a Microsoft Cloud company rather than just a SharePoint company and the recent developments around SharePoint announced at the Future of SharePoint event on May 4th continue to vindicate our stance.
Some key aspects relevant for developers and administrators that we found very interesting were
- Node.js & Gulp tasks are used for packaging deploying components.
- The Local development model is going to be very different. A SharePoint workbench is introduced where Gulp and node.js will used to host files locally, so you don’t need to use IIS on your local machine.
- Visual Studio Code, an open source code editor is being promoted as the preferred tool. Also clearly indicating that Visual Studio is not a must-have requirement for developers.
It's important to note that SPFx not a radically new model. The framework might be new, but we've been doing client-side development for some years now using similar frameworks. Finally though, Microsoft is creating this framework which leverages techniques we already use such as CSOM, REST API's. Taking it a step further Microsoft is openly embracing open source technologies such as node.js, Gulp, Yeoman and more.
Using Rapid ALM to evolve our Instant Intranet solution we are also “early adopters" for Visual Studio Code as the default editor for our apps development where we use Angular 1.4, Require JS. Moreover, we utilize NPM and Gulp for building, packaging and deploying our Instant intranet apps. Finally we use Git for source code control & versioning.
With this development model, we have successfully created and setup intranet for customers in the first quarter of 2016. This new development model in SharePoint is giving us the platform for Rapid and Instant service to our customers.
And we're looking forward to the upcoming SharePoint Framework and will continue to evolve & enhance our own to software development lifecycle!
This blog post is part of the series Future of SharePoint. More on this topic can be found at http://rapidcircle.com.au/tag/FutureOfSharePoint/