Microsoft’s F# language is best suited for financial and scientific applications, but a startup wants to broaden its usage to building mainstream Web applications.

IntelliFactory, which is based in Hungary, is set to release WebSharper Platform 2010 in early February. WebSharper enables developers to write Web applications in F#, which are then compiled into JavaScript for execution on the client-side.

Writing JavaScript is time-consuming, and the developer is prone to errors because it is an untyped language, said IntelliFactory founder Adam Granicz. “Many bugs only surface at runtime.”

Pricing has yet to be determined, but customers will be required to pay for support, Granicz said.

F# is a productive programming language for creating Web applications that eliminates the “painful details of using ASP.NET,” said Granicz.

F# offers numerous productivity advantages over C# or Visual Basic when it comes to ASP.NET development, due to its expressiveness and that it is a statically checked, type-safe functional programming language, Granicz said. “It addresses many of the weaknesses of ASP.NET, such as using strings for IDs and method names to connect markup with code-behind [class files], untyped form values, and overly complex form construction.”

The .NET Framework provides a myriad of choices for building with Web applications that use ASP.NET Model-View-Controller, ASP.NET Web Forms and Silverlight. WebSharper is designed to integrate with ASP.NET and existing ASP.NET applications.

WebSharper differs from those standard approaches because applications are built from pagelets (miniature Web pages) written in F#. Developers can leverage a large subset of the .NET Framework’s F# core libraries and .NET system namespaces, according to the company.

About David Worthington