Since the introduction of Visual Basic 1.0 (as early as 1991), Rapid Application Development (RAD) has been a core theme of the Microsoft tools for developers. Rich designers for UI development are huge time savers over a coding approach to accomplish the same task. This was true in the world of pure Win32 programming and still is today, with new UI frameworks benefiting from designer support. But as you will see, designers are also used for a variety of other tasks outside the realm of UI programming.
In .NET 1.0, Windows Forms (WinForms) was introduced as an abstraction layer over the Win32 APIs for windowing and the common controls available in the operating system. By nicely wrapping those old dragons in the