PDC 2008 - The Future of C#

So I had a chance today to attend a session given Anders Hejlsberg on C# 4.0, and beyond.  Honestly I walked out of the session going ... that's it?  The feature list started with the dynamic keyword, which is cool but simply does not help the 80% of C# developers today.  Most C# developers today are so bound to type safety that dynamic will give them even more heartburn than var did.  Now in reality it will likely make scenarios like property movement from service contracts to domain objects easier, but all its really doing is the same thing I blogged about the other day when working against .NET types, just with more layers and interfaces so that it can be built into the language directly. The next big thing mentioned was Named and Missing parameters.  In the talk be mentioned that these should have been there long ago and he's absolutely right about that. As such, you'll get no big congratulations from me. What else?  Co-variance and Contra-variance of course ... a couple of things on this.  First, I don't think a lot of people will care.  Second, perhaps I'm slow but I have no idea why a new keyword is needed for this.  If a type is being used only as an input, then the compiler can detect that and add the "in" keyword, and if it is output only, then add "out".  Why do I need to personally decorate this?  Are their edge cases? Probably, but then have an opt-out model where you can take direct control only if needed. The C# 5.0 stuff about the compiler as a service is ... sexy.  That is a concept that excites me, but that's just teaser stuff right now and they have no idea how/when they'll deliver.  But what about other stuff?  How about extension properties?  What about interface inference (which is a major step towards duck typing)?  I don't see a bunch of "type safe" enterprise developers getting excited about C# 4.0 as presented.  They might think its cool, but will they use it like they use automatic properties or LINQ?  I think not.   Technorati Tags: pdc2008,C#

GiveCamp Kiva Lending Team

Just a quick update, that several of the micro-finance loans I made as part of the GiveCamp Kiva team have recently made their first payment back, which allowed me to begin to re-invest most of those funds in another loan.  I'm backing the Yon Dial 2 Group, from Senegal.  Here are their details: Palmarin (http://www.sem-fund.org/palmarinfr.php) is a village rich in fruits and vegetables. Nevertheless, lack of structures specialized in transformation incite people to import fruit and vegetables juices at very high cost. This why this group of women, confronted with difficulties in conserving and disposing of fresh products (cabbages, tomatoes, carrots) are seeking a Kiva loan to create a local fruit and vegetable transformation unit. They will sell the transformed products to touristic businesses and meet a large customer demand. Remember if you've like to become part of the GiveCamp lending team at Kiva and help make a difference around the world for less than the cost of a video game, then check out the team here.

Tulsa TechFest 2008

Holy smokes, did I have a blast at Tulsa TechFest!  It was a great couple of days hanging out with some great speakers, like Randy Walker, Caleb Jenkins, Zain, Chris, Phil and many more.  I did presentations on three different topics.  The first of these was called Building Services That Rock, the second was Intro to C# 3.0, and finally an intro to Parallelism in .NET.  All were well received, I believe, and I thank David for having me out to speak again. This was my first time back since the original Tulsa TechFest in 2006.  In the year between I went to Heartland Developer Conference.  I've had a fantastic at both events, but Tulsa TechFest's enormous size in comparison to HDC and never ending topics is just immensely compelling.  At this one conference I could have seen talks on Robotics Studio, Expression Blend, C#, VB, LINQ, Sharepoint, Silverlight, and TDD.  When I say I could have seen these, I mean without conflicts, attending all keynotes, and that is just one possible path through this conference extravaganza. Seriously, if you've not ventured to Tulsa TechFest, check it out next year.  And keep your eyes here for an announcement soon about Dallas TechFest 2009.