One of the other announcements from MIX was “Project Jasper,” which is (in the words of the guys who wrote it):
[…] a set of components aimed at fulfilling the need for a rapid and iterative development experience for data. With Jasper, you are able to just point at a database and immediately begin coding against its data using intuitive, domain-specific data classes. No configuration and no source code generation are required. Jasper works with existing application frameworks (including ASP.NET, WinForms, and WPF) and existing, real-world databases.
One of the ways that Jasper does it’s “point and code” magic is through dynamic generation of entity types based on the shape of the database it’s pointed at. Since the types are dynamically generated, you can only do late binding against them, so VB is the primary language that Jasper works against in Visual Studio. This would also be a perfect scenario for dynamic interfaces, a feature that was slated for Orcas but did not make it (more on that soon), sadly.
I’d encourage anyone interested to check out the announcement and the initial CTP!
I was sad to see dynamic interfaces didn’t make it after reading about them in the initial docs and from Ralf Lammel (http://blogs.msdn.com/ralflammel/archive/2006/12/23/generalized-vs-dynamic-interfaces.aspx).
Project Jasper background: http://oakleafblog.blogspot.com/2007/04/to-deliver-dynamic-adonet-30.html
Pablo Castro’s Jasper Video: http://oakleafblog.blogspot.com/2007/05/mix07-session-videos-with-linq-ef-or.html