Prism – A Look Ahead

We (meaning the Patterns & Practices Client Team) have have just published a post (here) on the P&P team blog that describes our plans for Prism. The post answers two of the most frequently asked questions that we get on Prism:

  • Can I use Prism for WPF/Silverlight 4.0 development?
  • What’s going to be in Prism 4.0?

To answer the first question we’ve started to test Prism 2.1 against the Release Candidates of WPF 4.0 and Silverlight 4.0. Apart from a couple of very minor things in the Reference Implementation and some of the unit tests, we’ve found no issues with using Prism 2.1 for WPF 4.0 and Silverlight 4.0 development. Once .NET 4.0 and Silverlight 4.0 are released, we’ll complete our testing and release an updated version of Prism (which we’ll probably call Prism 2.2). This is an interim release to allow folks to continue to use Prism when targeting the latest and greatest versions of WPF and Silverlight.

In the meantime, we’re going to start work on the next version of Prism (which we’re going to call Prism 4.0) with a target release date around September 2010. As you know, we run a pretty agile ship here in patterns & practices, and we rely heavily on the community to help us guide our projects as we go along. What this means is that we won’t know exactly what’s going to be in Prism 4.0 until we ship it, but of course we do have a pretty good idea on the technical areas that we’d like to address.

For Prism 4.0 the four key technical areas that we’d like to cover are:

  • Managed Extensibility Framework (MEF) Integration
  • Extended Support for Model-View-ViewModel (MVVM)
  • Data Access & Application Services
  • Design-Time Support

The post provides much more detail on each of these areas. We’re looking to you folks to help us prioritize which aspects of these areas we should focus on. If you’d like to get involved, make sure you visit the Prism CodePlex site regularly and let us know what you think. We’ll be dropping code and updates there often once the project gets underway next month.