Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Follow the leader

First, some disclaimers.
  1. I work for Microsoft, on Microsoft Office Live
  2. I do not work on C#, VB.Net, or even in Developer Division (DevDiv)

Ok, on to the point. Jeff Atwood recently posted about some frustration he's dealing with regarding the differences between C# and VB.Net. Here's the article: C# and the Compilation Tax

I noticed something when I worked at GeoAge (How's that for link love to the company that had to lay me off?). We were a VB.Net shop, and I'm pretty sure they still are. I was a C# dev at heart. One thing that I hated about using both languages was that Intellisense was a lot better in VB than in C#. Autocomplete in particular saved me thousands of keystrokes a day at work.

Then I started playing with VS 2005. Turns out that in 2005, C#'s intellisense seemed to take a huge cue from VB, and we had equivalent completion, and intellisense.

I've developed a theory. The VB team focuses a lot of energy on making developing code easier, while the C# team devotes time to making the language more powerful. I think the C# team then capatilizes (one version back) on the work from the VB team. Probably under a lot of pressure from their customers, since they see how much more productive VB devs can be.

So, I expect that in the next version or two of VS, we'll see background compilation in C#, and see the My namespace make it into C#. Those are my predictions.

Just hold on Jeff, and hopefully the C# team will make you happy. Of course, by the time they do, the VB team will have some new thing that makes their devs more productive, so you'll be wanting more from the C# team. It's a vicious cycle, but I think it makes C# a better language, and the .NET platform stronger. If you can deal with being a cycle back in productivity.

1 comment:

Neonalune said...

Went to office live and was very disappointed, unless I misunderstood, I can only use IE! Not worth it when I only use firefox to switch just for a website. Besides neonalune.com is now officially mine!!!! Alll minnnneeeee!!!

Thanks though :-)