Spark future?

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Agarwal

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Feb 12, 2014, 2:28:29 PM2/12/14
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Hi,

   I have some pretty big sites in production using Spark; it has been my goto view engine for the last few years.

   Today I was going to start a new site, and decided to check on Spark's current version and status. I was surprised to see that, on Spark's website, the latest stable release was from 2012 and for MVC 4. Checking nuget, I found a more up to date version (1.7.5.3) built in late 2013, but no template for MVC 5.

   I was just wondering if Spark is still actively maintened, or if it's time to switch to another view engine. Of course, I'd rather not; I love Spark, and my designers too; with Spark we found a way to cleanly separate developing and designing in a way that makes sense for both parties. The html-ish of the Spark paradigms is what does it, versus eg Razor views.

   Thanks!

Simon Labrecque

   

Robert Greyling

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Feb 14, 2014, 4:21:49 AM2/14/14
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Hi Agarwal,

Thanks for the email, and glad you're having success with Spark on so many projects. I do actively maintain Spark and I fix any bugs that come in, but there is not much changing in the world of Spark. Personally I don't use MVC anymore since moving everything over to frameworks like Fubu, ServiceStack and Nancy depending on the client and requirements so I can't say I've ever done anything on MVC5 - the last version I worked on is MVC4. There should be no problem with Spark working with MVC5 however, and the latest Nuget has got binaries all the way from .Net 2 up to .Net 4.5 packaged inside. If someone wants to test it out on MVC5 and let me know if there are any bugs, I'll be happy to release a Nuget for it after fixing any bugs.

As far as the future of Spark is concerned, we've had absolutely zero help from Microsoft in terms of exposure of the project, and in reality, just like with some many other OSS initiatives, they've inadvertently ended up crushing the life out of innovation. I still consider Spark to be an excellent server side templating engine free from the contraints of System.Web which is something that Razor can never claim, and we use it in a ton of places like email templating, and CMS systems in SharePoint and many more applications, but it will never really be able to compete with something like razor unless a brighter light is shone on it. Personally I think that the world of the web is changing fast and that with client side templating engines written in Javascript like Jade and Handlebars, Mustache etc etc taking over the world, I would think even the days of Razor are numbered, but at least Spark has other applications server side that have nothing to do with the web, and while that is still the case, I'll still be maintaining it for as long as I can.

FWIW, the best source (because it's the easiest to deploy to) will always be Nuget unless that dies.

Cheers,
Rob


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Nathan Bergen

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Mar 28, 2014, 12:42:17 PM3/28/14
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We are using a build for MVC5 and have not run into any issues.

Nathan
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