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Journal Journal: C# (C Sharp) - Demon Spawn or Useful Language?

War Journal Entry #328

I like writing command-line applications. I *love* building web-based applications. I like *designing* GUI applications, but loathe building them because of ugly toolkits and APIs.

I'm actually learning C# and liking it!

Good lord, have I lost my mind? Possibly.

Here's how I got here:

1. Saturate mind with 16-bit DOS C.
2. Create my own library for DOS programing. (Fun!)
3. Then C++, also DOS.
4. Then Linux -- Perl, C, C++, you name it.
5. Then 32-bit Win console C and C++.
6. Then C and Win32 API. (Not too fun)
7. Then C++ and MFC. (Less fun - IMHO)
8. Then create my own library for Win32 programming.
9. Finally get fed up.
10. ???
11. C#! (Profit?)

So here I am. And I like it! Here's why:

1. Clean, modern.
2. String handling doesn't suck ass!
3. .NET is pretty impressive once you realize what it's all about.
4. Easy as hell to create applications.
5. Kind of brings back the fun of building applications.


1. End-users must have the latest .NET framework (

dotnetfx.exe - about 23Mb) installed to run my C# applications.
2. See #1.
3. See #1.
4. Not cross-platform (yet - possibly never).
5. It's not C/++.

In short, this is fun and I'm glad I took the risk, bought the book*, and dove into it.

C# VS.NET 2003 is about $100. It's a heck of a deal.

As I pointed out in the disadvantages, my biggest gripe is that I sure wish my programs were easier to distribute. 23Mb of Framework for 16Kb of application is painful and I don't believe Windows 95 is even supported!

*The book I'm using as my guide is _C# and the .NET Platform_ (2nd ed.) by Andrew Troelsen.
It assumes you already know how to program in a C-like language, so there's no scurvy filler like "a variable is used to store a value..." to skip over.

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