A Happy New Year 2014!


Years with 4 different digits :-)


In the year 2013 the first blog of the year was about

  • Many new Windows Store apps
    • Yes, there are many more Windows Store apps. Probably some you are wishing for are not here, yet. Probably others don't have the same features as on other platforms. But definitely, there are many more Windows Store apps! Which one are you missing?
  • Faster updates for Windows, Windows Phone, Visual Studio
    • Yes, updates are coming a lot faster. We have Windows 8.1, Visual Studio 2013 (there have been 4 updates for Visual Studio 2012), and more updates are on the way.
  • C++11 and TypeScript
    • Yes, C++ is active again. C++11 brought great new features. Now, C++14 is on its way for some more changes. TypeScript reached the Beta stage on 5-Dec-2013 (Version 0.9.5). It's nearing the first release.

What I'm expecting from 2014?

Of course it's out of question that cloud usage will increase, and it will become the norm to create apps for mobile devices first. However, here I would like to take a look at some specific Microsoft technologies.

C# 6

Mads Toergesen already talked about the Future of C#. At the NDC London conference he introduced some great features of the upcoming C# language. With Roslyn in the home stretch, it should become easier to add language features. C# 6 doesn't seem to have a feature as big as generics, LINQ or async, but many smaller ones that come very handy, such as

  • Primary Constructors
  • Readonly auto properties
  • Exception filters
  • Static type using statements
  • Property Expressions
  • Method Expressions
  • Params for enumerables
  • Monadic null checking
  • Constructor type parameter inference
  • Inline declarations for out params

It's not clear yet what and when it's really coming. But for sure there are some great C# enhancements in the time to come. A list of these extensions with comparisions how to write code today is described in the blog post of DaminG. Mads Torgersen himself gives some great information about C# and Roslyn at .NET Rocks.

M#, Between C++ and C#

Let's continue with C#. There are other talks about a new language (code name M#) that is based on C#. It just sits between C++ and C#: C# for Systems Programming with safety and productivity similar to C# and performance like C++. Joe Duffy has a blog post of this new language and its goals. Some highlights:

  • Aggresively stack allocate objects, deterministically destruct...
  • Elements of C++ const (with safety), immutability, isolation
  • Async programming at scale
  • Type-safe system programming, easily carve out sub-arrays and sub-strings without allocating
  • Modern error model with fail-fast as the default prolicy, exceptions for rare dynamic failure, typed exceptions only when rich exceptions are needed 

Project Midori

The language M# was developed together with the operating system Midori. First from Microsoft Research, it was quiet for some years now around this new operating system. Now Mary Jo Foley has some information about Midori. If parts of it can be found in the next Windows system, or it takes a completely different roadmap, it's interesting in any case.

Microsoft "Mod"

Mary Jo also writes about Microsoft Mod as Microsoft applies for a trademark. I'm not sure about this name (does it really sound good in your language?), and as Mary mentions, "Microsoft applies for many trademarks it never ends up using commercially or publicly". However, it's interesting what's behind this, and there's already an ongoing discussion about Office as Windows Store apps. Of course, Microsoft Office is available on Windows RT as a desktop application. OneNote is already available as a Windows Store app, and it's great, using it a lot. I'm expecting other parts of Office to be available as Windows Store apps as well.

Microsoft Project Siena

A Microsoft Windows Store app that is already available in the store is Microsoft Project Siena. This allows easily creating Windows Store apps. Is this the new Visual Basic? This app shows some more ways what's all possible with Windows Store apps. I'll try to create a real app using data offered by the Menu Card app very soon.

Windows Azure

The Menu Card app just mentioned makes use of several Windows Azure features: Mobile Services, SQL Azure, Storage, and the source code is managed with Visual Studio Online. The least year many new features were added to Windows Azure. I expect enhancements in a similar fast pace in 2014. Waiting for some cool new features with Mobile Services :-)

Build Windows

Let's see what new things we'll see at Build 2014 in San Francisco, the annoucement from Steve Guggenheimer mentions news about Windows, Windows Phone, Windows Azure, Windows Server, Visual Studio and much more :-) 


With all this to come


I wish you all

A Happy New Year 2014!

Live long and prosper!