Thursday, July 3, 2008

The eternal debate continues

If you program on the Microsoft stack and unless you live in a cave or just woke from a coma you've surely heard of or even been part of the VB vs C# debate. Visual Studio Magazine has recently rekindled the arguments again. So I thought I'd take a few lines to reiterate my comments to the editor.

I started in development with C++ and MFC which I worked with for a bit over two years, I changed jobs and found myself doing classic asp and VB6. At the time this was pretty much the norm. When .Net was announced I was eager to learn and get onboard with all this new framework had to offer. It looked like things were going to get a lot better for VB in the .Net world and the language would evolve into a first class object oriented language. But even from the earliest days of .Net there was the rumbling of those who didn't want change or evolution. Their mantra was "the same but different". As these things go the squeaky wheel got the grease and VB retained a lot of the baggage it had been carrying around since version 1.

This to me was a sign to look elsewhere in the stack to find the evolution that would make me more productive. The search was to lead me to C#, coming from a, by this time distant C++ background, it was a fairly easy choice. It has been a choice that I have not regretted once. I will no debate the choice of language, because whether it's Java, C++, C# or VB, for many developers it's a near religious choice.

I believe the choice is black and white, evolve or wither, but as long as the "back in version 1" crowd is still making noise, VB will always remain a "could have been" contender.

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