Atlas renamed ASP.NET AJAX, to ship by end of year

Microsoft has announced that Atlas, its tool for working with Ajax and ASP.NET, has been renamed ASP.NET AJAX and will be shipped by the end of 2006.

Microsoft has announced that Atlas, its popular tool for working with Ajax and ASP.NET technology, has been renamed. The newly named product will also ship by the end of the year and will work with Visual Studio 2005.

In all, there are three renamings, according to Scott Guthrie, general manager within the Microsoft Developer Division working on ASP.NET and Atlas. Guthrie writes here in his blog that Microsoft's client-side JavaScript will be called the Microsoft AJAX Library, while the server-side functionality that integrates with ASP.NET will be called ASP.NET 2.0 AJAX Extensions. Finally, the Atlas Control Toolkit, a set of shared-source controls and components, will be called the ASP.NET AJAX Control Toolkit.

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Reference: Mini-Guide: Microsoft Atlas

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In addition, Guthrie said the ASP.NET AJAX tools will ship by the end of this year. "Our goal is to ship the 'Atlas 1.0' release around the end of this year," he wrote. "The plan is to first have a Beta, then an RC, and then decide on the final date based on customer feedback."

This release will be a so-called "core" set of functionality -- meaning that not all the features in the current Atlas CTP (Community Technical Preview) will make it to Atlas 1.0. Those features will be made available as separate downloads, Guthrie said:

We aren't pulling back from these features at all. We are simply trying to optimize the timing of the first fully supported set of features and also make sure that we have the flexibility to continue to evolve and innovate some features in a more agile fashion (whereas we are trying to "bake down" the core set of features and avoid having it change dramatically in the future).

A white paper with additional details about the 1.0 release, including how it will differ from the previous CTP releases, will be available in a few weeks, Guthrie said.

Along with the upcoming ASP.NET AJAX release for Visual Studio 2005, there are also Ajax bits from Microsoft that work with Orcas, the next version of Visual Studio. Keith Smith, senior product manager of Web platforms and tools for Microsoft, said here on his blog that the company will continue to release CTP versions of ASP.NET AJAX for Orcas "as a way to incorporate partner [and] customer feedback into the development process."

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