Happy 20th Birthday Visual Basic!

Happy 20th Birthday Visual Basic!

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Twenty years ago, May 20th, 1991 at Windows World, in Atlanta, Microsoft founder Bill Gates demoed Visual Basic 1.0. Twenty years later, the 10th version of this latest in an unbroken line of Microsoft BASIC languages stretching back to Microsoft’s founding is still going strong. When you look back over the history of a tool that’s been around that long you start to see some familiar experiences from Wetware products (commonly called children :P ): The cute and cuddly days of its youth, in the 16-bit era; the awkward teen years and the transition to .NET; sibling rivalry with the new baby (C#); and finally getting those braces … er, underscores off :). And now, finally out of those turbulent teen years, a matured language looks to the future. Visual Basic has always had a personality for humanizing programming and with Async methods in vNext it continues that tradition.

You might ask after two-decades how VB can keep re-inventing itself to face modern and future challenges. The answer is quite literally that – re-inventing itself.  OK, more accurately re-writing itself. The VB compiler is being re-written from the ground up in Visual Basic and its syntactic and semantic analysis services exposed through a managed API that exposes parse trees, expression binding, assembly production (and more) to enable a world of new scenarios including REPL, VB as a scripting language, and more. It’s all very exciting! As a VB user for … half my lifetime, now, it’s great to look back and be proud of where VB has been, happy with where it is, and especially excited about where it’s going!

I have many fond memories of Visual Basic and likewise great aspirations for its future and I know millions of customers out there have the same. Please, share your stories (and hopes), and join me in wishing our old :P friend, VB, a Happy 20th Birthday and many more! :D

Anthony D. Green
Program Manager
Visual Basic (code-name "Roslyn") Compiler

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  • I am  a big fan of Visual Basic from the years it was born since 1991 (from Version 4.0 onwards). It has sure matured in to a robust platform like no other language has ever done.  Keep it up Microsoft team !!!

  • Happy 20th Birth Day to you VB.... I Love U

  • happy birthday....

  • Dear VB. Net developers, I understand that it might be not very pleasant for you to hear, but still I don’t understand why Microsoft hat to refuse old good VB 6.0, with all it fans, books, learning investment and efforts around the world. With support of COM features, which also at those times were said to be the prime perspective and new vision of Microsoft, this near perfect compiler and IDE has just been buried alive  I am still using (unsupported) Visual Basic 6 for my current projects, and still making discoveries about this wonderful developing tool.

    Many developers would ask – is it worth risking money and time to learn new .Net concept, while it can be so easily replaced by Microsoft again one or two years later, as it was done with VB 6  and COM?

    It would be interesting to know, how many of original VB 5/6 product team professionals moved to VB.NET team? What do they think about this question? Don’t they regret the effort spent building splendid VB 1-6 environment, which was just loosed with company’s policy change?

    Would it not be smarter, at those bifurcation times, to leave original VB branch, team, developing and support, while creating new .Net languages like F# for enthusiasts?

    I am very happy that you are all so excited about you current work over VB.NET and wish you of course good luck, but… Exactly, “be proud of where VB has been”…

  • Feliz Cumpleaños para visual basic...

  • Happy birthday VB!

  • Happy birthday VB !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • I started writing VB with the Commodore PET, then Vic 20, Commodore 64, Texas Instruments then finally VB1.  It’s the only language I use professionally as a Sr app/web developer.  I also taught VB @ NYU for the SCPS program and the students loved it!  VB will NEVER die because its users won’t let it.  C# may be an interesting language for now but VB has stood the test of time.  Happy Birthday VB!!  Live long and prosper.

  • Congratulations to the 20. birthday!!!!

    Small inconvenience, that does not have a converter, which is written in previous versions of the VB program converted to make current. It Is Regrettable.

  • One of my best languages; it is simply speak it and write it syntax

    Happy BDay Visual Basic

  • Happy Birthday VB!! I remember the day I got the stack of diskettes to install 1.0. Father made an investment for me to learn and 20 years later I am proficient in both VB and C#. My how times have changed, but VB has remained relatively the same. Always keeping up with the other deep seeded development languages, always keeping the human element in the forefront, and alwyas delivering the solutions I could dream up!!

    HAPPY BIRTHDAY Indeed......

  • Its to late. Eventhough sharing my wishes

  • Happy Birthday VB

  • Happy Birthday VB

  • Happy Birthday VB :-)))))

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