Microsoft .Net and Visual C#. Opinions?

In order to feel like I’m doing something productive with my unemployment, I’ve been studying various aspects of programming, most recently the .Net framework. I’ve finally wandered through a huge host of introductory material to the framework itself, and find myself on the cusp of choosing a language to learn.

Up until now, I really wanted to wander into C++. Industry standard, proven technology, powerful, versatile, and so on. But I’ve come to realize… there’s no way in hell I’m going to get good enough at it fast enought to do myself any good. That, and there are hordes of qualified C++ programmers out there.

C# is, because of its integration into the framework, an easier language to start off on. But I’m wondering whether it will catch on, and whether it will end up being a useful skill.

I have my doubts about .Net, and the whole idea behind the platform. It seems like it’s based on some flawed assumptions. Such as:
[li]The dual compile, to IL and then binary, is an advantage.[/li][li]Web-based applications will begin to replace local applications.[/li][li]The internet is seen as a tool, instead of as a repository of knowledge.[/li][/ul]
However, Microsoft may have a clearer vision of the future than I do. I sure hope so.

Anyway, I was wondering if there was anyone out there with experience in .Net and particularly C# who could share some insight into their usefulness. I’m also curious as to whether anyone can do a comparison between C++ and C# that a novice could reasonably grasp.


I dunno exactly what to say. We use C++ here and I cannot find good developers. Mostly I suppose, because we don’t offer a relo package and we are in a small town in PA.

I have looked at C# and have found it interesting. However, for us, Borland C++ Builder gives us the same advantages of a RAD tool with a strong language underneath. (for the VC++ fans, lets not hijack the thread too much and start an IDE war.)

I think if I were in your shoes though, I would look at Java, which seems to still have a good following. C# and Java are similar and I think that you can make the transition to C# rather quickly if you decide to do that. Look at Bruce Eckel’s Thinking in Java online. Just my opinion of course.

IMHO .net is going to be around for a good while. The group I work with consists of very experienced C and C++ programmers. We started with .net and C# fairly early and found that while you can pick up the basics quite quickly, once you get into some of the really cool stuff, and into real life situations, there can be some rather steep learning curves despite the fact that it is quite similar in syntax to Java. Despite that, we are using it almost exclusively now. No, I don’t work for Microsoft! I would suggest, if you haven’t already done so, that you check out the resources available at the Microsoft Developer Center. You can find message boards, webcasts, events, and so on. Obviously, no technology works everywhere for everyone.

Not to hijack the thread or nothin’, but where do you work, Khadaji, are you hiring C++ people if you can find them? Want my resume? :slight_smile:

MrVisible - you could probably do worse things than learn C#. I don’t think all of Microsoft’s “vision” for the future is flawed, but I don’t think the transition will happen as quickly as they’d like. My opinion on the whole .NET thing is that you’re better off just using Java, but that doesn’t mean that it won’t be a good thing to have on your resume.

I’ll respond to you via email, but the short answer is, even though I budgeted for 2 new developers this year, Management won’t let me hire at this time.