If you’ve been following us religiously you might have noticed our recent exploits from BUILD, Microsoft’s developer-oriented conference, being held at present where they have showcased numerous new technologies, including the big fish — Windows 8. Apart from the new operating system and its employment on a tablet (comparison with iPad 2 here), the next major news to break from the event has to be Visual Studio 11 (developer preview, of course) with .NET Framework 4.5.
Visual Studio has always been at the cornerstone of Microsoft’s product-related strategy for it appeals to beginners and hardcore developers alike thanks to its ease of operation and seamlessly user-friendly environment. Ever since 1995, the system has changed in the face of evolving Microsoft software, growing and advancing once again as a new era under Windows 8 looms upon us.
Visual Studio 11 has seen a major overhaul with a lot of new complex solutions easily attainable, making effortless Windows development a reality. This new release includes .NET 4.5 Developer Preview, and support for many of Windows 8′s new features, including the ability to develop Metro-style apps, which are displayed on Windows 8′s new “Start Screen”, support for HTML5, CSS3, enhancements for game development, Code Clone Analysis, Code Review Workflow with Team Explorer, Exploratory Testing and Enhanced Unit Testing.
More than just support for Microsoft’s newest platform, however, Visual Studio 11 makes the job of developing applications easier for developers, especially graphic intensive ones. For starters, there’s a new built-in image editor that supports alpha blending: gone are the days when you had to use separate tools for your app’s graphical needs. There’s also a new debugging tool that allows developers to track down visual flaws in a 3D environment and diagnose the problem. Hot!
It doesn’t end here. Following the current trend of transitioning offline services to the Internet, known as the ‘cloud’, Visual Studio 11 includes several features that make it easier to create apps that interact with an online back-end. Microsoft’s Server and Tools Business President Satya Nadella chirps:
Developers have long been the cornerstone of Microsoft’s success, and that relationship is now more important than ever. In today’s world of connected devices and continuous services, we are focused on helping developers build the next generation of client applications that are tethered to a back-end cloud.
It still doesn’t end here. There’s a plethora of information we can give you about Microsoft’s new IDE. But since it won’t be feasible, we suggest you check out what’s new in VS 11 at the MSDN Blog to get a good idea of how hard Microsoft is working behind the scenes to provide us with the best software for development.
You can download VS 11 developer preview either from the MSDN site (requires MSDN subscription), or get a 64-bit developer preview of Windows 8 (includes all development tools), or just wait for the standalone release which will come out anytime today.
Do share with us your experience of using VS 11 after you download it or any project / website you have developed with any version of Visual Studio. We would love to hear from you!