CodeSmith Tools 2011 Roadmap

First, a brief apology.

For the past two years we here at CodeSmith Tools have been working hard, but we made the mistake of doing so behind closed doors. Communication was at the core of this company when we opened our doors back in 2004, and it is something that we wrongly allowed ourselves to get away from. Well we are going to fix that: From here on out we vow to reopen the lines of communication with more blogging, more news posts, and publicly releasing company roadmaps.

Enough about the past, let’s talk about the future.

CodeSmith Generator 6.0

CodeSmith Generator 6.0 is already under development, and is currently scheduled for a release in summer of 2011.

We are working towards a two version complete migration to WPF and complete Visual Studio Integration. Many of the features and tasks in 6.0 are steps necessary to complete features in 7.0 for Visual Studio Integration.

Another primary goal of 6.0 is ease of use. We want to make it easier for both new and veteran users to create, configure, and run code templates and projects.

  • Improved IntelliSense
    • IntelliSense in templates is currently a bit hit and miss. We will be making the template editing experience much better.
  • Framework Packages
    • We are adding a package manager that will allow users to select a framework (PLINQO, CSLA, NHibernate), and add completely new projects with pre-configured CSPs and templates to their solutions in mere seconds.
  • New Template Parser
    • We are completely rewriting the template parser to enable us to provide better IntelliSense and enable complete integration with Visual Studio. It will also make adding new template features much easier and enable us to implement features like ‘go to definition’.
  • Improved Template Error Messages
    • The new parser will make it possible for us to provide more intuitive error messages when you have template syntax errors and other issues.
  • CSP Configuration Wizard
    • To streamline using CSPs and template frameworks, we will be adding a generic CSP wizard that will simplify template configuration to a few short steps.
  • New CodeSmith Project Management UI
    • We are redesigning the CodeSmith Project management UI components to make it easier to use, including tabbed views and bigger, friendlier, shinier buttons.
  • Migration to WPF
    • Generating code has never looked better: We will be modernizing our UI and moving it to WPF.
  • .NET 4.0
    • CodeSmith 6.0 will target .NET 4.0 and enable you to use .NET 4.0 assemblies in your templates.

CodeSmith Frameworks: PLINQO for Entity Framework

PLINQO for Entity Framework templates are under development for CodeSmith Generator, and are currently scheduled for release in spring of 2011. (These templates should be available for beta well before that.)

These templates will be part of the PLINQO family because they will share a lot of the functionality and core features. Also, this will allow the PLINQO framework to grow along side Entity Framework, inheriting key features such as multiple database providers.

  • Key 1.0 Features
    • EDMX Generation
    • POCO Entity Generation
    • Safe Regeneration
  • LINQ to SQL Migration
    • We intend to offer a simple migration path from one PLINQO framework to another, ideally allowing users to do as little as regenerate an updated CSP, and then be able to compile their projects with minimal code changes.

Long Term Plans

We are thinking ahead for all of our products.

  • CodeSmith Generator 7.0
    • Many of the features of 6.0 are steps necessary for 7.0 to complete the migration of CodeSmith Generator to WPF and move the code template editor into Visual Studio. Non .NET developers don’t have to worry, the CodeSmith IDE will still be available, it will merely be sharing it’s functionality with Visual Studio.
  • CodeSmith Insight 2.0
    • Our goal of Insight 2.0 is to listen to customer feedback and use that to drive the direction of the product. Want to see something in Insight 2.0? Contact us today.
  • NHibernate Templates
    • NHibernate Templates will be the next framework we work on after Entity Framework. NHibernate 3.0 is in beta, and frameworks such as Sharp Architecture are really taking the community by storm, and we are planning to take these factors into account when we author the next version of our templates.

kick it on