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Alex ( does a very good job in covering the new features of .NET 4.0 and Visual Studio 2010. His focus is on the developers that have experience in development using previous versions of Visual Studio, more specifically Visual Studio 2008.



The following are my views towards his book.

1. Scope / Coverage

Even as the book is labeled as introduction, it is covers a broad spectrum of technologies, features and references that are focused into helping a developer quickly decide what to use in the new .NET framework.

a. Content

  • The content included covers as much as possible the new additions that are included in the new .NET version 4.0.
  • He shows the Visual Studio 2010 new features and quickly shows how to extend it using Managed Extensibility Framework. Some of my favorites are parallel debugging enhancements.
  • The author delves into JQuery, which Microsoft has decided to support.
  • Some of the very interesting content is on the out-of-band releases including ASP.NET MVC, Windows Azure Silverlight 3 and WCF Data Services.

b. What is not included?

  • Windows Phone 7 Series. This was only talked about in the MIX10. The data may not have been available at the time of writing.
  • Microsoft Pinpoint (Microsoft code name "Dallas")
  • Windows Embedded development.

c. Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Introduction
Chapter 2: Visual Studio IDE and MEF
Chapter 3: Language and Dynamic Changes
Chapter 4: CLR and BCL Changes
Chapter 5: Parallelization and Threading Enhancements
Chapter 6: Windows Workflow Foundation 4
Chapter 7: Windows Communication Foundation
Chapter 8: Entity Framework
Chapter 9: WCF Data Services
Chapter 10: ASPNET
Chapter 11: Microsoft AJAX Library
Chapter 12: jQuery
Chapter 13: ASPNET MVC
Chapter 14: Silverlight Introduction
Chapter 15: WPF 4.0 and Silverlight 3.0
Chapter 16: Windows Azure

2. Depth

  • Avoids getting into depth on the topics presented, to present the new concepts in assumption of the developer’s existing knowledge.
  • Code samples are on book and exist mostly as snippets and very easy to follow. There are no downloadable examples.

3. Complexity

The book is written in a very simple way and easy to follow. There are no irrelevant intimidating details. So it’s a book that you can grab and never put down until you’ve finished reading the entire book.

4. References

  • The author includes reference links to blogs, Wikis and a lot of online resources including the MSDN documentation, which is a very convenient strategy to avoid flooding the reader with details which may not be of interest to them. Most sites do not use url routing and that is really not nice.
  • There are notes from interviews between the author and people behind the new technologies, in which they explain what some specific areas that need clarifications and what their future views are in relation to the features they are working on.

5. Target

The author targets experts that want to make a transition from .NET 3.5 to 4.0. Some obvious 3.5 features have been purposely excluded from the text

6. Overrall

It is evident that the author has made extensive research into the breadth of what MS is working on, in relation to .NET and Visual Studio and has also been watching the online community.

What I would like to see in the next edition are some details on OData protocol, Expression Blend 4 and Embedded development and Windows Phone development.

I should say I’m one of the beneficiaries of this book. Excellent work Alex.


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Posted on Monday, April 19, 2010 9:15 PM | Back to top

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