Scott Hunter: The Current State of .NET & Its Future Impact

If .NET were a country, Microsoft’s Scott Hunter would clearly be one of its senior statesmen. During his general session on Wednesday, March 9 at the Visual Studio Live! event in Las Vegas, Hunter gave an overview of the current state of .NET and the impact of having it now be open source.

He also ran through some the latest features and revisions to ASP.NET 5 and Visual Studio 2015 at his keynote address, appropriately entitled, What’s New in ASP.NET 5 and VS 2015. Hunter is the principal program manager lead for the ASP.NET team at Microsoft, and even he remains somewhat surprised at the new openness at Microsoft.

“Everything my team does these days would have seemed unthinkable to me four years ago,” he says.

Between the open sourcing of .NET and other performance enhancements, Hunter is enthusiastic about the state of the .NET framework right now. “As a .NET person, I can’t imagine a better time to be part of .NET,” he says. “Everything we’re doing now is open source. All .NET Core is open source. And the performance of .NET, 40 percent did not come from our team. It came from the open source community. I think it’s really cool we’re getting those kinds of contributions.”

He began by clarifying its new name, considering the move to open source. “We actually renamed ASP.NET 5 to ASP.NET Core,” he says, “but we’ll stick with the title for now.”

Hunter touched on several major themes during his talk. The cross platform compatibility, performance and speed, and the move to open source are certainly some of the most important aspects of the current state of .NET. “Obviously cross platform is a big thing,” he says. “For the first time ever for any device anywhere, there’s a .NET for it. You can leverage your .NET skills across all those platforms. And it’s fast, we’re in the top five; and the move to open source.”

The new ability to make a seamless transition from running apps on-premises to running them in the cloud is another factor. “One big thing is being able to transition an ASP.NET app from on-premises to the cloud, and not having to change lot of code,” he says. “We don’t want anyone to have any reason to not use .NET.”

Another forthcoming introduction will be .NET Standard. “This has a much bigger surface area,” says Hunter. “It will let you build class libraries of code to share across Xamarin, share across the desktop, and across .NET Core. The hope is to let you leverage your skills across all those platforms as you want to.”

Hunter then spent some time demonstrating what he was discussing. He worked through the step-by-step process of putting together a Web app using Visual Studio and ASP.NET Core (formerly ASP.NET 5). After walking the enthusiastic crowd through each step, Hunter concluded his demo dramatically. “So there’s ASP.NET running off a memory stick, built on a PC, running on a Mac. You can move back and forth between platforms super easy.”

Visit the VSLive! website for more details on upcoming events.

Posted by Lafe Low on 03/15/2016

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