More Capabilities at a Higher Speed: WinJS 2.0
During “What’s New in WinJS?”, a Build presentation by Paul Gusmorino, details emerged on the scope of the changes that will be seen with WinJS 2.0. Gusmorino listed several Win8.1 apps that have switched to 2.0, including Store, Music, and Skype among many others.
Looking at the design goals for WinJS 2.0, both developers and users will benefit from the inclusion of more user-interface patterns and improved speed. The ListView control in 2.0 is approximately 30% faster than in WinJS 1.0 (as reported on a Microsoft Surface.) In Gusmorino’s demo, the Windows Mail app was used to exhibit the increased speed of the control, and it was visibly faster.
WinJS 2.0 At a Glance
- List view
- App bar
- Dispose model
- Async debugging
- Navigation bar
- Search box
- Back button
- Binding template
- Item Container
Interestingly for a touch-centric OS, the controls List view and App bar benefit from improved keyboard support. List view will add support for a Vertical Grid and Grouped List Layouts providing additional flexibility when creating user interfaces.
Controls aren’t the only improvement, the internals of the library are receiving improvements as well. Control cleanup is made easier with the use of the dispose() method which will remove a control and all of the outstanding references to it so garbage collection can function properly. The dispose() method is also hierarchical in that a parent object with children objects can all be removed with a single dispose() call to the parent object. Asynchronous debugging is made easier as the call stack is more informative as it shows a more comprehensive listing of the execution steps leading to the call of an asynchronous method.
For more information on the new and updated controls, check out the WinJS 2.0 preview documentation.
Mike Hartington Jul 26, 2015