Ok, so if you haven’t already heard…
Announcing the release of Visual Studio 2008 Beta 2, .NET FX 3.5 Beta 2, and Silverlight 1.0 RC!
Deep link for the Professional Beta 2 Edition
Yes folks, this is almost hot off the press. No, I haven’t got a copy on hand. I was going to download it this weekend, but we have a prior commitment on Sunday so even if I did download the Beta, I’d not have time to play with it much.
Instead I’ll wait until Monday and get a copy then. Having said that, I do know that (courtesy of some contacts via Redmond) that there will be an updated copy of LINQ in the Beta 2 and a few other refinements. Problem is I won’t have time to evaluate it until next week so.. watch this space!
Visual Studio (.Net) 2008 represents what Microsoft centric-people call a "version three" product (VS.Net 2003, VS.Net 2005 & VS.Net 2008). For those who don’t know what that means, it more or less is shorthand for.. the third major revision of a product – they’ve ironed out a lot of inconsistencies and bugs, plus the product line has matured a whole lot. Since the .Net Framework went rev 3.0 with Vista (not coinciding with a Visual Studio release) it has already hit "version three" status already. .Net 3.5 is really a feature rich point release.
I think we have a few other examples.. Depending on your viewpoint, SQL Server either hit "version three" as SQL Server 2000 or SQL Server 2005 (depending on where you draw the line between SQL Server 6.5/7 and 2000). In either case both SQL 2000 and 2005 had hit major strides in stability, performance and features – the proof is in the pudding as SQLServer 2000 is still very popular with migration still being planned by many large enterprises and smaller businesses.
Similar case with Microsoft Office which, I am lead to believe, is where the "version three" legacy comes from in the first place. Originally the Office products were standalone applications until Office ’97 united the lot. By Office 2003 we had hit "version three" (Office 97, 2000, 2003) and Office had become the dominant electronic office software package in most government and private sector offices. To some degree Office had reached saturation between Office 2000 and Office 2003. Still waiting to see how well Office 2007 travels.
Anyhow, back on topic.. Can’t wait to see what the Visual Studio team has done with Beta 2.. Lots of expectation around this release.