On February 13, 2002 Microsoft publicly released the first version of .NET as part of Visual Studio.NET. It’s been an interesting ride over the last 15 years. (Visual Studio, first released in February 1997, is 20 years old this month as well.)
When .NET was first released, it will billed as “Next Generation Windows Services” and seen by many as a replacement to COM. No matter what, it was a major productivity gain for developers.
The .NET Framework, and the surrounding ecosystem, has changed and grown a lot over those 15 years. What started out as a closed platform that only ran on Windows and closed languages (C# and VB.NET) has grown in to a platform that is cross-platform, can run on almost any operating sytem, on almost any device, and has a very active open source community. Next month, on March 7, Visual Studio 2017 will be released.
Listen to an interview with Anders Hejlsberg, father of C#, share some stories and his thoughts on .NET and open source.
Many thanks to the language and product teams, both past and present, for all of their hard work.