Earlier this week we released the April CTP refresh of Atlas (which, like the March CTP drop, supports a go-live license).
Yesterday we then made available the first download of our new Atlas Control Toolkit, which runs on top of the core Atlas bits and provides a bunch of cool free Atlas-enabled controls that make even more common Ajax scenarios no-brainer easy to implement. You can run the samples from the Atlas Control Toolkit online here. You can then download the Atlas Control Toolkit here.
I’m really jazzed about the Atlas Control Toolkit for three reasons:
This first release is just the beginning -- our goal is to have the Atlas Control Toolkit contain between 50-100 useful, high-quality Atlas controls over the next few months. You’ll be able to add the assembly into any project and be able to immediately get great Ajax value out of it with very little effort.
Click here to then see a page that has the TextBoxWaterMark control on it in WYSIWYG mode within Visual Web Developer (notice how the extender control points at the TextBox, and is able to add properties in the property grid to the TextBox it is pointing at).
All of the controls in the toolkit are obviously shipped with full source as well, so you can look to see how they are built and re-use techniques/source when building your own controls.
3) We are going to use a collaborative, open-source, model to develop it. Specifically, we are going to setup a source control repository on the Internet and allow both Microsoft and non-Microsoft developers to work on the project together. This means you’ll be able to contribute controls of your own to the toolkit, make improvements to existing ones, and fix bugs. We’ll then publish regular binary drops (with source of course) that any ASP.NET developer will be able to download and use within their sites (if popular your control might even be used billions of times a day).
We are still finalizing the exact details of the project, and are getting servers built-out now to support it. We’ll be publishing more details later this month. This has been something the team and I have wanted to try for awhile, and we really looking forward to getting it going.
To learn more about Atlas, obviously check out the Atlas site. I also posted some pointers to great Atlas content here a few weeks ago (including a pointer to a sample of how you can use the Atlas Client Libraries with PHP).
Hope this helps,
P.S. There is also now a dedicated forum for the Atlas Control Toolkit here.
P.P.S. Shawn has a good post walking through how to use the CascadingDropDownList control here.