Channel 9 Interview: Look Who's Working on Visual Basic (Beth Massi)

Channel 9 Interview: Look Who's Working on Visual Basic (Beth Massi)

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Last month when I was in Redmond I was pulled into a photo with some of the people working on Visual Basic. Do you notice something quirky about these pictures (besides me)? Yes, they are all wearing grey shirts! There's apparently a running joke going on with how Jonathan Aneja (top row, 4th from the left in the first picture) only wears grey. So the team all wore grey to see if he would even notice!

The joke is explained in this Channel 9 interview with the VB Language Design Team. I sat down with the VB Language design team and asked them about their design process, favorite features, their thoughts on other languages, as well as what the Visual Basic language strategy really is. It was a fun and enlightening interview with a group of really smart people lead by Paul Vick.

-Beth Massi, VS Community

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  • One thing that I would like to see in, is support for the XNA Framework. You can do it currently in VB by jumping through hoops, but having this supported properly would be great.

    In line with the comments on the video, My favourite part currently in is the XML Literals in conjunction with Linq. It has saved me from learning too much about workings of Relational Databases. Being able to something like, where order is in one table and customer is in another with a relationship between them. Very nice :).


  • "XNA support" , as with most teams as MS, each team is working on a small part of the solution.    

    I'd seen some of the VB support implemented a while back but priorities changed for both the VB team and XNA team and so this has been put on a backburner for now, but i'm sure it will eventually be brought back to the forefront especially if enough users keep requesting it.

  • Is this ALL the people working on the VB language that I use day-in and day-out?  Thats pretty cool.

  • That's pretty much the compiler team (I think one person was missing), but the VB IDE team wasn't there for this (they're about the same size)

  • Please hear me.

    I know that you work hard, but it seems to me that VB.Net has reached a critical point when its missing features outweight its extra features too much. I program in Basic/VB/VB.Net for more than 10 years and I feel really bad when I bump into things that I can't do in VB.Net (only in C#). I don't like C# too much. is better, but it lacks too many important features now.

    1) yield return. Do you seriously thing it's fun to do it by hand?

    2) lambdas for Action. Why can't we? "Just because!"

    3) multy-statement lambdas. C# had this for 3 years already.

    Just try to catch up with C#. Decent collection initializers would be good.

    I also think that there should be some switch to disable emitting compatibility code (in exception handling for example). I think this would allow VB.Net to be XNA-compatible.

  • Nice, thanks to shared this, but where is Milind L?

  • the link above to Paul Vick ( smart people lead by Paul Vick.) seems dead.

    Great shots of the VB team.  Makes me want to learn VB right away :)

  • Continuing the community interviews from our Italian Visual Basic MVP Alessandro Del Sole , this time

  • The blonde guy on the far left (2nd photo) reminds me of a character from an anime series I've seen... Just don't remember which series or character

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