What are Developers Point of View on SharePoint Framework

What are Developers Point of View on SharePoint Framework

Obviously it is also important to take care of developers and think about their thoughts on any technology changes. After all, they are going to build and maintain the system on the new technology. The success of new technology also depends on these developers as well. Lets discuss about SharePoint Framework (SPFx).

Suggested Topics

What is SharePoint Framework (SPFx)

Future prospects of SharePoint Framework (SPFx)

Required tools and libraries for SharePoint Framework (SPFx) development

Setup Microsoft 365 tenant for SharePoint Framework development

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Build SharePoint client side web part using SharePoint Framework (SPFx) – I

Build SharePoint client side web part using SharePoint Framework (SPFx) – II

Build SharePoint client side web part using SharePoint Framework (SPFx) – III

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What is the Developers Point of View on SharePoint Framework

What is Required Toolchain for SharePoint Framework

How to Integrate gulp tasks with SharePoint Framework Toolchain

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How to Upgrade SharePoint Framework client side solutions in SharePoint Online

Current release of SharePoint Framework is more focused on user interface extension which allows developers to customize and extend user interface of SharePoint using its provided client side web parts. Being client side web parts, these are executed at client side and can work on SharePoint data (On-premises or Online).

In Microsoft 365, it can use Microsoft Graph or custom web APIs to connect and consume data using OAuth and REST methods.

Developers who have been working on SharePoint are already aware of deep concept of SharePoint technologies and its history such as web parts and SharePoint data model. However main changes are new set of tools for building, packaging and deploying client side web parts.

Developers also need to gain knowledge of TypeScript because SharePoint Framework (SPFx) artefacts are built upon TypeScript. Typescript is typed framework or superset of JavaScript which is further complied to JavaScript language before deployment on production.

SharePoint Framework (SPFx) client side development tools are built on Typescript classes, interfaces and modules. We’ll grasp sufficient knowledge of Typescript as it is required to build client side web parts using SharePoint Framework. The extension of Typescript file is .ts and it is compiled to JavaScript using tsc command.

Object Oriented Programming (OOPs) concepts shall help to developers as TypeScript uses strongly typed objects, object inheritance, classes and interfaces. These concepts are already known to current .NET, Java and C/C++ developers.

For building and packaging there is no need of Visual Studio only. This is due to some open source technologies like node.js, npm, Gulp which can be used by any platform for developers with their preferred code editor or IDE e.g. Visual Studio Code, Sublime even Notepad.

For developers who do not have experience on SharePoint solution development previously, can also work on SharePoint Framework provided they have knowledge of modern client side web technologies. Client side development can provide a better, more dynamic and more responsive experience for users and even an easier experience for developers.

The most common pattern of using JavaScript for SharePoint Online extension is JavaScript Injection. In this method of customization, Script Editor Web part is used to inject JavaScript on SharePoint Pages and then use of web browser DOM manipulation to inject HTML, CSS and JavaScript to build required solution.

But this method has some disadvantages, in most of the cases customers are bounded for not to be able to take advantages of SharePoint Online features.

But SharePoint Framework provides better way to handle such situations and as it uses TypeScript, it is more Object Oriented.


What’s next

It was just an overview and outlining of SharePoint Framework (SPFx) and what is required for developers? In the next set articles, we’ll see SharePoint Framework (SPFx) toolchain in details e.g. Gulp task integration and provisioning SharePoint assets etc.


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About Author

Satyendra Mishra

Project Management Professional (PMP) and Microsoft certified, motivated, energetic and accomplished Project Manager / Architect with 15+ years of work experience in Management, Architecture, Analytics, Development and Maintenance. I have been fortunate to be a part of over 25+ .Net / SharePoint projects delivery with various companies across different industry sectors. This has provided me a valuable insight and experience especially in successful implementation of SharePoint based solutions.

My experience in Web application implementation includes technology strategy and road-map definition, business and technical requirements identification, governance, platform architecture, solution design, configuration, development, quality assurance, training, post-production support, team lead and overall project delivery along with project management.

Satyendra Mishra holds a B.Tech. in Computer Science & Engineering and PG Diploma in Advance Computing from Center for Development and Advance Computing, Pune, India. He is also a certified Project Management Professional (PMP).

I love to share Project Management Tips and Tricks by writing Blogs in the Project Management India Community. I have written around 300+ articles in the Project Management, .Net, SharePoint and related client side technologies.