Learning .Net


I originally posted this as a forum entry at the Tulsa DNUG forum. I thought that it would make an appropriate blog entry… The question being discussed is which .net language (VB.net or C#) should someone learn first and which is more in demand.

Learning both definitely has it’s advantages. But I would suggested learning one really well first. So then the question becomes which one to learn first. That is what depends on your existing experience or on the company that you are (or would like to be) working for.

Personally, I learned VB.net first, mainly because I already had my MCSD in VB6. That made the VB.net syntax easy. The difficult part then becomes the OOP concepts (Inheritance, Interfaces, Everything is a type of object/class). Beyond the OPP concepts, learning the .net framework and .net programming model (ADO.net, WinForms, ASP.net, etc) is the next hurdle.

.net learning curve / process

  1. Language Syntax
  2. OOP Concepts
  3. .net framework and programming model

Fortunately for me, I already had the VB syntax down and a exposure to Java (OOP concepts). The only thing that I really had to dig down for was the .net framework and new programming model. Here is the good part. Once you know one .net language well, to learn another, all you really need to add is the new syntax. Because of a client that I am now working for, I am currently learning C#. The learning process has been MUCH easier than I would have ever imagined. Mainly because I already know the OOP concepts, the .net framework and programming model, and although they are NOT the same… the similarities between Java Script syntax (or any language that has their roots in C.. C++, Java, Perl, etc.) and C# have made learning the C# syntax a refreshing breeze (for the most part)

So my suggestion is that it doesn’t matter which .net language you learn first. Just learn it. Practice it, hone those .net Jedi skills. Then learn the other (VB.net or C#)… then, who knows… let you imagination go wild! Dig in to COBOL.net! (hey why not?)

 Happy Coding!


About Caleb Jenkins

Caleb Jenkins is an international speaker, author and 6 time Microsoft MVP award recipient, he currently works for Solera as a Director of Software Development. An entertaining and informative speaker who approaches software from a fresh perspective that spans UX, agile practices and technologies for enterprise customers from across the globe. Leading UX product design teams, coaching multi-team agile transformations and architecting and mentoring at some of the largest companies in the world, As a long time community leader and former Microsoft Developer Evangelist, Caleb is well known for his engaging speaking style, depth of knowledge and creative energy. Founder and Principal Mentor of Proaction Mentors, former UX Manager and Agile Coach, Senior Architect for Six Flags Corporation, Product Architect on a Cloud Marketing Platform, Caleb has made a career out of empowering others while building products and teams that delight customers and solve business needs. You can follow him on twitter (@calebjenkins) or his blog, DevelopingUX.com and if you're still reading this, then you could also subscribe to his blog RSS feed or sign up to receive updates by email