Community Convergence in a nutshell: The March CTP for Visual Studio, creating Art with LINQ, videos showing how to write LINQ to SQL, interviews with core members of the Microsoft C# team, and much more! Read on to learn all.

Overview

Welcome to the twenty-second Community Convergence, the March CTP issue. I'm Charlie Calvert, the C# Community PM, and this is where I publish information about the C# community and the C# development team.

The big news is the release of the March CTP. If you haven't done so already, be sure to download and install a copy of this relatively stable and remarkably innovative product. There is also a video available which describes many of the new features found in this CTP. More information on CTP's is available at the end of this post.

What's New from the C# Team

All the links in this section are to articles or videos by members of the core C# team that creates the compiler, the IDE and LINQ. The videos feature either interviews with key team members, or depictions of writing LINQ to SQL database code in Visual Studio Orcas.

Figure 01: LINQ Art! A Portrait of Wes Dyer as a Hotshot LINQ Developer!

Figure 02: Nothing but Code! Three of the four videos I contributed this week show how to write LINQ to SQL programs in Visual Studio Orcas.

What's New in C#

More on CTP's

A CTP is a Community Tech Preview. Orcas is the next release of Visual Studio. Each release of Orcas is designed to keep you up to date with the progress being made towards the next release of Visual Studio. A beta is designed to reach a certain quality bar, while a CTP is simply designed to preview up coming technology. Nevertheless, the current CTP is remarkably stable.

The March CTP is an important release of Orcas because it contains a fairly stable release of LINQ to SQL. LINQ is designed to introduce querying as a first class citizen in the C# language. LINQ to SQL provides the ability to query relational databases, while LINQ to XML gives developers the ability to query XML. A third technology, LINQ to Objects, provides an API for querying data of various kinds residing inside a C# program.

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