Microsoft to back jQuery library

Visual Studio will ship with jQuery JavaScript technology that simplifies AJAX interactions for rapid Web development

Microsoft plans to incorporate the jQuery JavaScript library into its Visual Studio platform, according to several blogs published on Sunday.

JQuery, the jQuery Web site states, is "a fast and concise JavaScript library that simplifies HTML document traversing, event handling, animating, and AJAX interactions for rapid Web development." The technology also was described as lightweight and cross-browser.

"JQuery is designed to change the way that you write JavaScript," according to the site.

Microsoft's Scott Guthrie, corporate vice president in the company's developer division, noted Microsoft's intentions to support the open source technology.

"I'm excited today to announce that Microsoft will be shipping jQuery with Visual Studio going forward," Guthrie said. "We will distribute the jQuery JavaScript library as is, and will not be forking or changing the source from the main jQuery branch.  The files will continue to use and ship under the existing jQuery MIT license."

Microsoft also will distribute intellisense-annotated versions that provide "great" Visual Studio intellisense and help-integration at design time, Guthrie said.

"A big part of the appeal of jQuery is that it allows you to elegantly (and efficiently) find and manipulate HTML elements with minimum lines of code," said Guthrie.

"JQuery is a fantastic library, and something we think can really benefit ASP.Net and ASP.Net AJAX developers.  We are looking forward to having it work great with Visual Studio and ASP.Net, and to help bring it to an even larger set of developers," Guthrie said.

The jQuery intellisense annotation support will be offered as a free Web download in a few weeks and will work with Visual Studio 2008 Service Pack 1 and the Visual Web Developer 2008 Express Service Pack 1. A new ASP.Net MVC download will distribute it as well and add the jQuery library by default to new projects, Guthrie said.

Microsoft product support will be extended to jQuery later this year, enabling developers and enterprises to call and open jQuery support cases.

John Resig, of the jQuery development team, said Nokia also was taking steps to adopt jQuery as part of its official application platform.

Copyright © 2008 IDG Communications, Inc.

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