Why We Built The NuSoft Framework

posted on 10/03/07 at 09:28:54 pm by Joel Ross

Now that we've put the NuSoft Framework out there, I figured it would be a good time to talk a little bit about why we use it internally at NuSoft, and we felt it was valuable enough to release to everyone.

Before the NuSoft Framework, just about every custom development project at NuSoft Solutions started with the tech lead developing some sort of framework that other team members can leverage when building the user interface. Getting that framework in place usually takes a week or so, and not much else can be done until at least a good chunk of it is in place. Not only that, but the framework is usually fairly routine once you make a few key decisions. It's the same type of code over and over again, which makes writing it by hand error-prone. Also, making the decisions about how to handle certain aspects takes time and usually has consequences that aren't always obvious when the decision is made.

The end result is that projects usually take a week or two to get off the ground before other developers can really jump in and get going. It's this time that the NuSoft Framework is intended to help with. It also helps you by making a few of those key decisions. Why is that a good thing? Because the decisions are based on past project experience and frameworks that we've built in the past. It's a best of breed among a few different frameworks, extracted out to be quick and easy to start using.

It's definitely not the only solution out there. If you've looked at .NetTiers (another CodeSmith template-based code generator framework) or some of the software factories being generated by Microsoft, you'll notice they all do pretty much the same type of thing. While I think the NuSoft Framework is one of the best options, the point is to use something. In most cases, it's better than starting from scratch. I personally think both of the other solutions I listed are great and give you a lot of foundation - almost too much for smaller projects. And I think that the smaller niche is where the NuSoft Framework can fit in nicely.

So far, just about every project that has used it hasn't used it "as is". It's meant to be a set of templates that you can use to get a jumpstart on your project. If you don't like how something is implemented, you've got the full source so you can change it! And so far, that's exactly what's happened - to the benefit of the projects.

The NuSoft Framework is being actively used at NuSoft, so we fully expect it to progress - version 2.0 should be out in a week or so. We have a list of features we want to add beyond that, but we are definitely open to ideas from the community - an exciting prospect that's already giving us ideas.

Categories: Development, Software, C#, RCM Technologies