MS just announced this publicly last week, it’s a Visual Studio product that seems to be geared towards the not-quite-developer market with a focus on rapid application development. Reminds me a lot of Access if you watch the keynote or demo videos, very fast to set up data binding. I noticed during the demo that they show a for where you pick the deployment mode and it actually has an option for 3-tier – a good sign that they ‘get’ some of the challenges of the real world.
Haven’t tried it yet, mildly cynical yet hopeful – businesses end up building a lot of minor apps that would be nice to push down a layer. Don’t agree? Think of it as a lot like using reporting tools instead of the DBA writing a lot of complex queries. Sometimes it hurts when you get a bad report, but overall it’s moving the work down the stack to someone that is more affordable and has the time to focus on it. On the DBA side we’ll definitely want to see how and when they do data access and whether we can coach these new users on how to do data access well.
Here’s the info available so far: http://www.microsoft.com/visualstudio/en-us/lightswitch.