App Blocks 101 - What constitutes a simple app block

Topics: Building and extending application blocks, General discussion
Jun 2, 2009 at 4:54 PM

I feel somewhat silly posting such a novice level question, but I would really appreciate a little feedback on this. Can someone explain, in simple terms, the difference between an application block and a mere utilities library?

 

For example, I have a modest utilities library I put together a couple years back. It has basic classes to simplify FTP, Email, Logging, etc common tasks. So in of itself would this utilities library constitute a simple application block, or are there other attributes that need to be present as well?

 

I should note I have lightly used some of the MS Enterprise Library (logging, data access).

 

Thank you in advance for any feedback you can provide.

Jun 3, 2009 at 8:18 AM

Taken from the Enterprise Library documentation:

"Application blocks are a type of guidance, provided as source code that can be used "as is," extended, or modified by developers to use on enterprise development projects."

I don't know the exact definition of application blocks so I'm only basing my opinion from this statement.  The key phrase here I think is "can be used as is, extended, or modified by developers".  So that leaves it up to you if you're willing to let others modify your code.  If not, I think your library would be considered as a framework rather than an application block.

 

Sarah Urmeneta
Global Technology and Solutions
Avanade, Inc.
entlib.support@avanade.com

Jun 3, 2009 at 1:44 PM

Thank you for the reply.

 

That makes sense. I guess since I’m working with internal projects (not to be extended except by my team) they would be more along the line of frameworks.

 

In this scenario, I guess my utilities library could be called a utilities framework?

 

Thanks for taking the time to reply to my post. I really appreciate it!