I have been using the Web Client Software Factory ( WCSF ) since its release and have been impressed with its list of services. Of course, I also have no experience with Ruby on Rails and MonoRail to compare it with and have pretty much grown up with the ASP.NET Model.
One of my goals over the next couple of months is to give MonoRail a seriously look. Scott Bellware mentioned he was looking at both the Web Client Software Factory and MonoRail as a web framework in one of his posts:
I am curious where Scott and team decided to go with this as I know that since his post the Web Client Software Factory has been released and presume MonoRail has probably gone through some advancements.
Anyone familiar with both MonoRail and WCSF have a fair comparison of the two and/or a good pulse on where MonoRail is going in the future?
Web Client Software Factory
Obviously the Web Client Software Factory is no Rails ( so I hear anyway :), but you have to come out with a 1.0 version at some point and then look to feedback to find out your positives and negatives as well as get feedback for future versions.
There are a lot of real goodies in the first release of WCSF to help you with Dependency Injection, Model-View-Presenter, Unit Testing Support, Workflow, Url Permissions-based Security, Site Map Services, etc.
When looking at the WCSF Project Roadmap ( bottom of page ), it looks like WCSF will offer more Rails-like services with Data-Drive UIs, Validation, UI Responsiveness, additional support for complex workflows, etc. I can only assume that these vague descriptions may mean AJAX Support, Validation Application Block Support in Enterprise Library 3.0, and perhaps wizards to help with building UI's and data access logic based on database tables ( LINQ to SQL maybe? ). AOP support may be introduced via the new Policy Injection Application Block.
My guess is that the next version of WCSF will be a serious productivity enhancement and give that rich AJAX experience..
Can MonoRail Compete?
Can MonoRail seriously compete with this list of WCSF deliverables no matter how much I hear developers say they prefer the bare-metal feel and cleaner separation of responsibilities? I will be figuring this out for myself over the next few weeks, but I am concerned that the MonoRail Project just does not have enough resources to compete with WCSF. Or maybe my lack of experience with MonoRail has me asking the wrong questions?
To be fair, however, I have been closer to the WCSF Project, watching its every move, participating in forums, and presenting it at Code Camps. I haven't given the MonoRail Project the same fair attention and look forward to spending more time with it and giving it the time it deserves. As with all the Castle Projects, no doubt learn a million things, too.
Best Way to Migrate from ASP.NET to MonoRail?
If an ASP.NET Web Forms Developer wanted to successfully move from ASP.NET to MonoRail, what is the recommended approach other than the Getting Started Examples of course and documentation? Any particularly good online / downloadable examples reflecting current releases? I am curious where a MonoRail novice like myself starts to give it a fair look, evaluate it against WCSF, and find out more about its roadmap and priorities.
Any thoughts and feedback is much appreciated.
By David Hayden