Soon Winter ‘16 will be available in all the Salesforce Orgs and you will able to switch to new Lightning Experience — a newly designed Salesforce with a much cleaner and very rich UI. I still remember when Salesforce created a great buzz about the Salesforce1 Mobile App and becoming an API first platform in 2013. And then in 2014 they introduced new the Lightning framework and Wave Analytics platform. If we connect the dots, all previous releases were like pieces in a greater puzzle.
With this new Lightning Experience, you will get more and more places to use your Lightning Components, all of which was restricted to an independent Lightning App before this release. For those who are new to Lightning Components, it is a new client-centric component framework which helps you to create responsive applications for both mobile and desktop. It is built on an Open Source UI Framework, Aura. If you are looking for a guide to getting started, our blog has a Build Your First Salesforce1 Lightning Component post complete with code to get you up and running.
Lightning components and apps are the future of the Salesforce1 platform. Salesforce is working on many new features which will help you to use these reusable components in various places like:
- A standalone Lightning App.
- Inside Lightning Experience or the Salesforce1 Mobile App as a Custom Tab.
- As a Lightning Extension, where it replaces an existing component with itself. (Safe harbor: This is still in pilot.)
- Using Lightning Out you will be able to use Lightning Components within VisualForce, not only inside Salesforce. Using this feature, you will be able to expose your components outside of the Salesforce Platform, like in Heroku, Sharepoint, and many other places.
At Dreamforce ‘15, Salesforce also introduced the Lightning Design System, which is a not only a CSS Framework but also a style guide to build modern enterprise pixel-perfect apps. It is collection of design patterns, components, and guidelines for creating unified UI in the Salesforce ecosystem. You can integrate it with any of the front-end development frameworks you’d like. It uses a standard class naming convention called “BEM” (Block-Element-Modifier).
Topcoder has started another Salesforce1 Lightning Fun Challenge Series to build Lightning components. This fun series will help you learn Lightning, and we may even publish some winners on the AppExchange for Components. Join us to be the part of futuristic Salesforce App development at lightning.topcoder.com.
In upcoming blogs, I will share solutions and details about our first Lightning fun challenge.