During the Ignite 2021 conference, Microsoft announced the launch of Power Fx, a low-code and full open source programming language.
As the base of Microsoft Power Apps canvas, Power Fx uses a graphical user interface rather than a developer’s manual coding, saving programmers the need to build apps from scratch. Ultimately, the language can also be distributed on Power Platform, Microsoft Dataverse, Microsoft Power Automate, Microsoft Power Virtual Agents, and beyond.
In addition, the open source aspect of this tool gives programmers a free entry-level platform to develop apps by sharing content and information with other developers on GitHub.
Finally, since the language is Microsoft Excel based, many users will already know how to use the formulas involved. This familiarity will allow business users and professional developers to work together to solve problems. So, while many other low-code platforms haven’t achieved their proprietary formatting and extensibility, Excel Power Fx’s syntax base gives developers a one-stop-shop approach to building all their apps.
In general, Power Fx combines the familiar Excel framework with the use of source management and the ability to edit apps in text editors such as Visual Studio Code. In this way, developers can collaborate with millions of other developers to create apps faster.
By adding to the benefit of the Excel base, Power Fx also works on formulas in a similar way. This means that, similar to an Excel spreadsheet, when a developer updates the data within Power Fx, the formula processes the change in real time, automatically calculating the new value involved and executing it the switch so that the programmer does not need to make a reviews manual.
In terms of formula, as a starting point, App.OnStart will be the starting property for this language. Still, Microsoft has a backlog of named formulas and is preparing more Excel and user-defined functions, additional data types, dynamic schema, and error handling summary.
Now that Power Fx has been introduced, Microsoft plans to remove the documentation and language from Power Apps canvas to suit more diverse contexts for developers building different types of applications.
For now, users can learn more about Power Fx in the new Power Fx and Power Apps documents or start a free trial with Power Apps canvas.