Developers: How Will the Lightning Component Bridge the Client and Server?

The Salesforce Lightning Component is a user interface framework that allows developers to dynamic applications for both mobile and desktop. It was designed to support multiple-tiered, partitioned component development, and makes the promise to bridge client and server.  How does Salesforce accomplish that bridge?

What is Salesforce Lightning?

Salesforce designed the Lightning Component Framework to build responsive applications for all devices. Built on the Aura framework, enables developers to create apps completely independent of Salesforce data and bridges client and server with Apex on the server side and JavaScript on the client side.

According to the Salesforce Developer Guide, Lightning provides a client-server framework that, “accelerates development as well as app performance, and is ideal for use with the Salesforce1 mobile app and Salesforce Lightning experience.”

Salesforce also created a Lightning App Builder that allows applications to be built visually rather than through coding. Some visual app builders are a bit slow and clunky, so Salesforce addressed this problem by incorporating both custom-built and out-of-the-box components.

Out-of-the-box components allow teams to kick-start application building. There is no need to optimize the apps for different devices – the components are already in place to handle that step. Developers can also create their own business-ready components, making them available directly from the App Builder so that admins can create interfaces without having to write a single line of code.

The goal with Lightning is to provide a path to seamless, customized apps for any mobile device running Salesforce1.  Furthermore, all Lightning apps can be shared and distributed with other developers directly on the AppExchange.

An Important Note On The Aura Framework

The Lightning Component framework is built on the open source Aura framework. The Aura framework enables you to build apps completely independent of your data in Salesforce.  Developers should understand that some of the features and components that are available in Aura are not currently available in Lightning. Salesforce continues to work on making more available all the time, but developers should keep this important potential limitation in mind.

Tried Lightning Before And Didn’t Like It? Try It Again

Salesforce recently revamped the entire Lightning experience based on feedback from developers. The previous interface was rather dated and a bit counterintuitive when compared to other Salesforce tools and many developers resisted utilizing Lightning for that reason. The updated version improved the look and feel of Lightning, and was met with positive reviews from the development community.

“I’m excited to see how quickly developers will be able to build apps in the Lightning framework,”  Liana Trigg – Salesforce.com Technical Account Manager

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