Monday, October 30, 2006

Q4 2006 Preview

The days are getting shorter, clocks have been set back ("the good" DST change), and it's a cool 76 degrees in Texas. Fall has definitely arrived and that means it's time to get ready for the Q4 release of telerik's r.a.d.controls. With the Q3 release (and SP1) just weeks old, telerik is already hard at work preparing the Q4 release set to hit the virtual shelves of your account near the end of the year. Telerik has updated the public Road Map with a few details about what we can expect to see in Q4 and that's what we'll take a look at today. First, if you've spent any amount of time on the telerik forums you will have likely run into (or submitted yourself) a desperate plea for more documentation and examples for many of the r.a.d.controls. Telerik has heard your cries and a key deliverable of the Q4 release will be expanded documentation and samples for the controls. While many (including myself) think that telerik's documentation is some of the best among peer component developers, additional documentation can never hurt and it will definitely help people just getting started with the r.a.d.controls. Along with the documentation there is promise of several "full-sized" applications to show best practice implementation of r.a.d.controls, which means we'll probably see some new Help Desk Beta like demos. Telerik will also continue their journey of providing full support for ASP.NET AJAX (previously "Atlas") in Q4. The first beta release of ASP.NET AJAX changed a number of things in the core "Atlas" libraries (see Scott Guthrie's informative post) that caused many compatibility problems with r.a.d.controls. Telerik has been quick to analyze the changes, though, and it is likely that a compatibility fix will be delivered before Q4 in a possible Q3 SP2 release. In Q4, telerik will continue to refine the compatibility of all r.a.d.controls with ASP.NET AJAX and introduce a number of demos that highlight the differences between r.a.d.ajax and ASP.NET AJAX (the later of which is also supposed to be officially released before year end with the VS2005 SP1).

Finally, I've saved the best for last. Telerik will be introducing new major versions of editor, spell, input, and chart. Not much is known at this point about how these controls will change, but we do know that editor 7.0 and spell 3.0 will introduce a new "innovative AJAX spell check" and that chart 3.0 will introduce improved databinding (finally!) and multiple Y axis support. And while not on the official Road Map, input 2.0 has been mentioned several times in the forums as being a part of the Q4 release, introducing new data type specific textboxes to the infant control. We should also expect to see the first betas of telerik reporting by the end of this week, so it too may be released around the Q4 (or early Q1) time frame. Clearly, this release will be as big as ever and the enhancements should make good holiday (or New Years) gifts for all telerik developers. Keep your RSS readers tuned-in to this blog and I'll begin giving previews of the new controls as the betas start to roll out in the next few weeks. Thanks~ //Todd Anglin