The first bits for Oslo should become available around Microsoft Professional Developers Conference (PDC) time. ”Oslo” is the codename for Microsoft’s forthcoming modeling platform. Modeling is used across a wide range of domains and allows more people to participate in application design and allows developers to write applications at a much higher level of abstraction. “Oslo” consists of:
- A tool that helps people define and interact with models in a rich and visual manner
- A language that helps people create and use textual domain-specific languages and data models
- A relational repository that makes models available to both tools and platform components
It will be available as an add-on to Microsoft's Visual Studio development suite. It includes a new programming language, a visual modeling tool, and a repository for storing models in a database. A modeling language is used by developers to specify the kinds of patterns and queries to be carried out by the software. Then the software itself would apply high-level queries to the model that the architect designed, simplifying and shortening the whole development process.
Oslo will (at least in CTP) be available as an add-on to Visual Studio, but with a visual modeling tool. The visual modeling tool will be helpful for comprehending complicated models. Underlying the visual modeler is a declarative programming language 'M' (formerly called 'D').
The repository is a SQL database of models and related metadata that allows developers or architects to look at models with database tools like Microsoft Access, Excel, or SQL Server Reporting Services. Likely, you'll have multiple repositories, such as for each project that would include models for business process, for security, and for other important elements of your software.
The schedule and final packaging for Oslo has not been announced.