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Tech Tips, Tricks & Trivia

by 'Anil' Radhakrishna
An architect's notes, experiments, discoveries and annotated bookmarks.

Search from over a hundred HOW TO articles, Tips and Tricks

Open source projects used in various Visual Studio offerings

A recent blog post by Somasegar had an image with a list of open source projects used in various Visual Studio offerings.

There were some that I knew about and some that I encountered via NuGet packages while using the ASP.NET MVC Internet Application template but didn't really use them.

The purpose of the open source projects that are relevant to web developers is listed:

  • ASP.NET SignalR is a library for ASP.NET developers to add real-time web functionality to their applications. SignalR uses WebSockets (a new HTML5 API that enables bi-directional communication between the browser and server) under the covers when it's available, and gracefully falls back to other techniques and technologies when it isn't, while your application code stays the same. SignalR also provides a simple, high-level API for doing server-to-client RPC (call JavaScript functions in a client's browser from server-side .NET code) in your ASP.NET application, as well as adding useful hooks for connection management, such as connect/disconnect events, grouping connections, authorization.
  • Twitter Bootstrap is a front-end framework for faster web development. It contains HTML and CSS-based design templates for typography, forms, buttons, navigation and other interface components, as well as optional JavaScript extensions.
  • D3.js (or just D3 for Data-Driven Documents) is a JavaScript library for manipulating documents based on data.
  • datajs is a cross-browser JavaScript library that enables data-centric web applications by leveraging modern protocols such as JSON and OData and HTML5-enabled browser features. 
  • DotNetOpenAuth library lets you add OpenID 1.1/2.0, OAuth 1.0(a) authentication and authorization functionality for client and server applications.
  • Microsoft Enterprise Library is a collection of reusable software components (application blocks) addressing common cross-cutting concerns (Validation, Data Access, Logging, Exception Handling, Policy Injection). 
  • Entity Framework (EF) is an open source object-relational mapping (ORM) framework for ADO.NET
  • Highcharts is a charting library written in HTML5/JavaScript. Highcharts currently supports line, spline, area, areaspline, column, bar, pie, scatter, angular gauges, arearange, areasplinerange, columnrange, bubble, box plot, error bars, funnel, waterfall and polar chart types.
  • jqGrid is a grid plugin for the JQuery Javascript library
  • ASP.NET is a free web framework for building web sites and applications. The source code of ASP.NET MVC, Web API, and Web Pages are now publicly available.  
  • Json.NET is a JSON serializer for .NET 
  • Modernizr is a JavaScript library that detects HTML5 and CSS3 features in the user’s browser. 
  • OWIN (Open Web Interface for .NET) defines a standard interface between .NET web servers and web applications. 
  • Knockout is a JavaScript library that helps you to create rich, responsive display and editor user interfaces with a clean underlying data model. It is a standalone JavaScript implementation of the Model-View-ViewModel pattern with templates.
  • jQuery postMessage plugin enables simple and easy window.postMessage communication in browsers that support it (FF3, Safari 4, IE8), while falling back to a document.location.hash communication method for all other browsers (IE6, IE7, Opera).
  • log4net is a tool to help the programmer output log statements to a variety of output targets. 
  • Response.js is a jQuery plugin that provides tools for building performance-optimized, mobile-first responsive websites.
  • StructureMap is a Dependency Injection / Inversion of Control tool for .Net that can be used to improve the architectural qualities of an object oriented system by reducing the mechanical costs of good design techniques.
  • WebActivator is a NuGet package that allows other packages to execute some startup code in web apps
  • Web Grease is a suite of tools for optimizing javascript, css files and images. 
Another indicator of Microsoft's commitment to Open Source is that Microsoft's MVP program will recognize open source activities with the same weight as other forms of community engagement.

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