With the Kendo UI Q2 2016 release in the books, we take a look at the future of the Kendo UI toolset.
The Kendo UI Q2 2016 release is now behind our back and in your production code base. Moving on, I am sure that you are eager to know what’s next for Kendo UI 2016 in the autumn release.
For historical reasons, we called our official releases “Q”s. This originated from the RadControls times, when we had four releases per year. At some point, we decided that we can deliver more if the release periods were just a bit longer (I am sure that each and every developer will understand that) and we started making three releases per year. We kept the naming to avoid confusion.
Time passed, and the Q notation made less sense to newcomers. On several occasions, we had to apologize to confused users who were looking for a Q4 release. Eventually, we started to call the releases “R”s internally. Old habits die hard, so you will see both notations for some time—please don’t let that confuse you.
For this release, we took a long, hard look at several popular complex data entry scenarios that many of you requested and voted for. The Kendo UI editors and dropdown widgets are feature-rich and mature, but there is always more to be added. We believe that the additions from this QR will fully enable what you need—and much more.
The widget has many names and variants, such as message box, alert, prompt and confirm. What’s common is the interaction—a message of some sort that requests an action from the user. While similar to the Window, it has a few additional features like a footer with one or more buttons, and an optional title.
The dialog widget enables a few additional data entry scenarios that were somewhat hard to achieve before—namely, a form with the field filled by selecting single/multiple choices from a grid, tree view or even a tree list.
To follow the progress of the dialog picker demos (and for few more amazing gifs), you can subscribe to the following GitHub issue.
Any sufficiently complex UI includes an entity form that prompts for picking a relationship to a lookup table (one to one or one to many), usually implemented with dropdown lists or combo boxes. There is a fairly common case here in which the user starts entering data for the record, only to figure out that the lookup data table is missing the value he needs. Support for adding a new lookup record in-place is the right UI choice. Otherwise, the user will be forced to abandon the current task and go to another screen where the lookup table entities are managed.
This and several more features will be enabled with the dropdown improvements scheduled in Q3. The footer and no data template configuration options (available for the combobox, dropdownlist and the multiselect) will allow developers to implement user interface that suggests creating a new record if no existing one matches the user query.
This, along with 21 more dropdown-related enhancements and bug fixes, is described in details in the following GitHub issue.
The upload widget is set to receive some API improvements that will enable the support of common use-case scenarios, the most notable being the Drag and Drop custom drop zone/additional callbacks. Further details are described in this issue.
The custom editors Spreadsheet feature spawned a healthy discussion in this issue. The good news—the development part is already done.
The features listed above are just a few of the tasks we have put on the table. Most likely, you have already noticed that each feature highlight has a corresponding GitHub issue. From this release on, we are maintaining a live public roadmap in GitHub. To avoid complications, we decided to use the issues section of the Kendo UI Core repository for this purpose. Despite the name, we are maintaining issues for the commercial part of Kendo UI, too.
The issues for this release are assigned to the 2016 Q3 milestone—the full list includes 83 issues, with 20 of them are already closed.
We are actively monitoring the feature suggestions in our UserVoice portal—the suggestions that are related to the current iteration are marked as “planned." Once we complete them, the votes will be “freed” up for re-casting.
Petyo Ivanov is a former Kendo UI Product Manager.