Yesterday I delivered the opening keynote at the VSLive! conference in Orlando, Florida.

 

At the keynote, I narrated an interesting incident that took place during one of our photo shoots for a  Visual Studio ad campaign that we pulled together a couple of weeks ago.  During this photo shoot, a little old lady walked up to us as we were shooting and asked what we were doing.  Now, typically, on a movie set, you always say that you’re shooting “a mayonnaise commercial”.  Don’t ask why, it’s just a classic thing on a movie or a photo shoot.  So, we told her, “It’s a mayonnaise commercial.”  She looked at our backdrop, thought for a second, scratched her head, and said, “So, what does mayonnaise have to do with code and schemas?”  It just proves that developers come in all shapes and size.  They all have different needs, and not all developers are the same. 

 

Our goal with Visual Studio 2005 has been to build the right product for every single customer.  In this context, I announced a 4th edition of the family of Visual Studio 2005 products – The Standard Edition.  To summarize, here are the 4 different editions of the Visual Studio 2005 family of products.

 

  1. Express -- for the student, enthusiast, and hobbyist.  It’s for building applications for your personal enjoyment and use in addition to sharing with friends and family.
  2. Standard -- for the VB6 customer and the Web customer who haven’t yet made the transition to the world of .NET.  It preserves the simplicity of the Express products while adding support for all languages and product types.  It’s the ideal entry point for professionals building Connected Systems on the .NET Framework for the first time.  The biggest new feature you’ll see in Standard is the ability to access remote data sources and build solutions for mobile devices.  Data, of course, is the lifeblood of applications and with Standard you have a true professional-level tool capable of accessing any data you need.
  3. Professional -- for the professional developer.  If you’re a professional developer working by yourself or in a small team, the Professional Edition will have everything you need to get your job done.  Using the Pro product, you’ll get the full breadth of professional development features, including the ability to build and debug middle-tier business objects as well as design and develop SQL Server 2005 applications.
  4. Team System -- for the professional development organization, from the architect to the operations manager, who need to manage the software development lifecycle and collaborate more effectively.  With Team System, we add new capability for group development, modeling, testing and deployment.  Team System’s top three design goals are – increase productivity, reduce complexity and make development more predictable. 

The focus for the rest of my keynote was ‘Connected Systems’ – the ability to connect to your world of people, information, and devices.  Our company has made a greater investment in interoperability than I think people often give us credit for.  Whether it's on the platform side, identity, application integration, networking, the work that we've done to support open standards and interoperability is really quite dramatic.  The most important of these is the work we've done in collaboration with IBM and the WS-I Web Services Interoperability organization.

 

Recently Forrester Research did another survey where they asked decision makers at software companies across North America which platform, J2EE or .NET, they will use for the majority of their development work in the coming year.  The majority of those surveyed came from companies with 5000 or more employees, so these are all substantive organizations doing mission-critical work.  Forrester determined that 56% of enterprises will choose .NET. This is a great proof point that .NET is enterprise ready, TODAY! 

 

Some of you know that we’ve built a Feedback Center specifically to get your feedback on Whidbey. Report a bug, make a suggestion. We’ve seen a number of bug reports and fixing those have had a tangible effect on the quality of the final product.  Keep the suggestions coming, we’re listening and you’re making a difference.

 

Namaste!