This Week in Programming: Microsoft .NET Goes Truly Cross Platform

19 Aug 2017 9:00am, by

While last week we watched as Go developers wrung their hands over the upcoming Golang 2.0 release, the big news this week in the world of programming was certainly Microsoft’s announcement of .NET Core 2.0 alongside the latest version of Visual Studio 2017 and the .NET 2.0 Standard.

And by comparison, the reception seems to be a warm one, with developer Andrew de Rozario calling the release of .NET Core 2.0 “a watershed moment in its evolution.” As de Rozario notes, the move effectively flips things around for .NET developers for multi-platform support:

So the previous way of sharing code across multiple platforms was the Portable Class library, and it kinda sucked. The more platforms you attempted to support the fewer APIs you could access. Working with the lowest common denominator just doesn’t scale.

.Net Standard effectively inverts this. It defines a set of APIs that all .Net platforms can implement. With each release of .Net Standard the number of APIs has increased.

Over at Business Insider, the move is described as part of “Microsoft’s ambitious plan to win over app creators,” which it calls a drastic shift from its initial efforts to offer Windows-only effort first announced in 2002 to build business software. While .NET Core, the multiplatform, open-source version of was first announced in 2016, the latest version “adds a bunch of technology from the standard version of .NET, bringing the younger offshoot closer to parity with the original model,” as well as bringing performance boosts and security updates.

As we look into other news we noticed in the programming world this week, we’ll offer up a few more in-depth looks at the .NET announcements before moving on.

News from Around the Web

  • ZDNet examines what’s new with Microsoft’s .NET Core 2.0 and why it matters, noting the increase “from 13,000 APIs in .NET Standard 1.6 to 32,000 in .NET Standard 2.0” and how that “means developers should have an easier time porting their existing .NET Framework code to .NET Standard.”
  • Infoworld explores the simpler .Net Core and standard .Net APIs and offers a quick guide on everything you need to know about .NET Core 2.0, calling it a “smart move” that is “the start of Microsoft’s push to be the dominant platform for complex containerized applications”.
  • In other programming language news this week, Oracle said, much like a break-up where you still want to remain friends, that it doesn’t want to continue its “development of enterprise Java and is looking for an open source foundation to take on the role.” Java EE 8 is expected soon and “retools enterprise Java for cloud and microservices environments.” (Infoworld)

Looking beyond the news, we found a slew of great information this week on those of you looking to upgrade your skill sets:

Feature image:  15th century “pull toy of a cart and driver,” from Indonesia (East Java), courtesy of the New York Metropolitan Museum of Art, public domain.

A newsletter digest of the week’s most important stories & analyses.