"Visual Studio will make it much easier to build sophisticated SharePoint applications," such as a customer-tracking site or a human resources or employee services application, Teper said. Visual Studio 2010 will make it easier to debug and deploy applications on SharePoint. It also will feature wizards to generate SharePoint application components.
"Rather than writing 100 lines of code to generate a part on a page in SharePoint, you'd like to tell Visual Studio to just generate that code for you," Teper said.
An advanced application packaging model in SharePoint Server 2010 is supported in Visual Studio 2010, Teper said. Applications can be deployed as a group and changed independently. While Visual Studio 2010 is not required for building SharePoint applications, it will make it much easier to do so, Teper explained.
Microsoft's reliance on Visual Studio is a change of direction for SharePoint, according to Koplowitz.
"The development environment, which has been really a SharePoint environment, although it's a powerful development environment, it was out of step with the standard Microsoft development tools," Koplowitz said. "Now, it becomes more native .Net [for] programmers and aligned Visual Studio. I think there will be a lot more custom development on the platform."
Also featured in SharePoint and accessible via Visual Studio are APIs for REST and Atom. These APIS enable easier integration with data such as weather data on the Internet. Users also can use REST and Atom to build application mashups. SOAP already has been supported in SharePoint.
APIs also are featured for Silverlight and Microsoft LINQ (Language Integrated Query).
Another feature in SharePoint Server 2010 is a "solution sandbox" for securing code similar to the sandbox concept in Java. "It's a way for people to run their custom code on SharePoint and protect it from other things and vice versa," said Teper.
"Everybody will live in their own sandbox," he said. Previously, developers needed an administrator's assistance to isolate code in SharePoint.
SharePoint Server 2010 also will feature a new release of SharePoint Designer, enabling non-developers to build simple SharePoint applications without writing code.
This story, "Microsoft to detail feature-complete SharePoint upgrade," was originally published at InfoWorld.com. Follow the latest developments in Microsoft at InfoWorld.com.