This is one installment in our series “In Own Words” by Voitanos asking experienced SharePoint developers to share their thoughts on the new development model for SharePoint - the SharePoint Framework. In this series, we ask each person a series of questions and let them share their thoughts.
I’m Paolo Pialorsi, I live in Italy. I’m a senior consultant. I work in a company of my own called PiaSys.com and I’m mainly focused on SharePoint and Office 365, all day long.
What’s your background as a SharePoint developer?
Well, I started using SharePoint very early, it was 2001, and I didn’t like it, to be fair. Then when SharePoint 2007 came out, MOSS 2007 came out I fell in love because I really liked the idea of a .NET Framework and the capability to do real extensibility, even if on the server side. And since there I’m still a full SharePoint lover and developer.
How much time have you spent with the SharePoint Framework?
When I saw the SharePoint Framework was pretty early, in real solutions, in summer 2016.
What is your impression of SharePoint Framework today?
I think that the SharePoint Framework is a good starting point to provide the capability to extend the modern sites and the modern UI. Of course there is still something to do. The SharePoint Framework has to be improved from a capabilities and functionalities perspective, as well as from an adoption perspective.
What is your impression of the SharePoint Framework roadmap?
The roadmap of the SharePoint Framework is really fast. The product group is releasing a lot of new functionalities really, really fast, which is totally okay and good. I would like to see some improvement in the area of the enterprise development and in the area of the tooling around the SharePoint Framework and not only releases around the functionalities and capabilities.
What is your favorite part of the SharePoint Framework?
I think that adding the TypeScript in SharePoint Frameworks make it really, really cool and from a .NET developer perspective it is really easy to use the same approach, the object oriented approach, that we were used to use with .NET, even in the SharePoint Framework.
What is the one thing you would add to the SharePoint Framework?
I’d love to have the capability to do automated deployment, fully automated deployment, of a solution with the SharePoint Framework in order to be able to leverage the product capabilities also when we do remote provisioning, which is a killer feature for me, for a developer, and so I really would like to be able to do that automatically.
What is the one thing you would change to SharePoint Framework?
For sure, I would like to change the provisioning of SharePoint Framework. I mean, whenever you create right now a list or a content type, or a site column, you are tied to the old school CAML syntax and to the feature framework or a kind of feature framework. I would like to see something else.
What is the biggest challenge with SharePoint Framework?
I think that one of the biggest challenges is what I really like about the SharePoint Framework. So, the fact that you have to learn a new language, TypeScript, which is close to the experience of the .NET developers, but not exactly the same story. And sometimes if you approach the TypeScript development as like as a .NET developer, you could fail. So for sure, adding TypeScript, adding all the new tooling around makes the SharePoint Framework really challenging, especially for old school server side, full server side developers who were used to write the WSP packages and solutions in the past, and still today.
Predict the future - Where do you see the SharePoint Framework Going?
Well, if I have to predict the future, I would like to see the SharePoint Framework broadly adopted. And I think that because now we have groups, teams, and all the new services around the Office 365 platform that rely on the modern sites, sooner or later, I think sooner than later, people will move to the SharePoint Framework. And my dream is to have the capability to use the SharePoint Framework not only to extend SharePoint modern sites, but also to extend all the UI of all the services provided by the Office 365 platform. Why not?
Do you have any Advice or Words of Wisdom?
I’m a SharePoint lover, but I’d like to advise people that SharePoint is just one of the services of Office 365. So I would suggest people to pay attention not only to SharePoint and SharePoint Framework but also and really to the Microsoft Graph and to the full set of services provided by Office 365. Because if you can create a real solution, which will use all of the services, you will win.