Monday, April 23, 2001

Developer Career Tip #0041---Update on VB.Net

Developer Career Tips #0041

Update on VB.Net

As I mentioned in my last article, I'm seeing more and more attention focused on VB.Net. Conferences are teaching courses on it--despite the fact that Beta1 of the product is just a few months old, and Beta2 isn't due out until May. Several books have been published on the Beta itself (I've been tempted and ASKED to write one myself). Personally, I just don't get it.

I understand the need to be 'up' on a product more than most people---I make my living as a consultant and author, and the need to stay current is crucial---but I can't ever recall this much pre-hype over a software development product.

I receive at least ten emails each week from readers asking me if they should begin learning VB.Net right now (presumably from the Beta), how much worth I think the VB6 Certification exam will carry (I can't even guess), and whether there will be Learning Edition, Professional and Enterprise editions of the product.

And now the picture is even more complicated. It's no secret that Microsoft intends to 'retrofit' Beta2 of VB.NET to be more compatible with Visual Basic 6. As far as I'm concerned, the waters are now more muddied than ever.

The bottom line is to stay the course: if your goal this year was to learn Visual Basic 6, or become certified in the product, then that's exactly what you should do. Timelines indicate that VB.Net--when it appears---will probably be available in early 2002. You'll have plenty of time to learn it at that point--hopefully with books and courses that are at least based on Beta2.