It Takes A Village To Raise A .Net App
It Takes A Village To Raise A .Net App
It Takes A Village To Raise A .Net App
It Takes A Village To Raise A .Net App
It Takes A Village To Raise A .Net App
It Takes A Village To Raise A .Net App It Takes A Village To Raise A .Net App It Takes A Village To Raise A .Net App It Takes A Village To Raise A .Net App It Takes A Village To Raise A .Net App It Takes A Village To Raise A .Net App It Takes A Village To Raise A .Net App It Takes A Village To Raise A .Net App
It Takes A Village To Raise A .Net App It Takes A Village To Raise A .Net App
It Takes A Village To Raise A .Net App
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  #1  
Old 06-21-2010, 04:11 PM
Philld Philld is offline
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Default It Takes A Village To Raise A .Net App


This is not a rant just a fair and honest question. Do you find that it takes more code to write a finished .net application VS a VB6 app or an MS Access application?

A little back story on me if your are interested. I am the I.T. Manager and sole developer at a Small/Mid size oil & gas company. I have been the manager for over 3 years writing "systems" in MS Access at a fairly fast pace. I have 1 Tech who works for me who takes care of the day-to-day PC maintenance and Lab operations. I am responsible for administer the domain (as too many of the Techs have broken it in the past) and oversee network operations. We have 8 sites across the US and approx 150 PC's. 6-8 months ago, we switched working from MS Access to VB 2008. My manager (the CFO) wants to know why I haven't finished working on any new systems in the last 6 months. What do I do?

Do I tell him we don't have the man power? Or that I am a bad programmer? Or something else?

Please help.
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  #2  
Old 06-21-2010, 10:18 PM
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PrOpHeTIt Takes A Village To Raise A .Net App PrOpHeT is offline
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My 2 cents...

IMHO, yes and no.

<rant>First off the CLR is HUGE, it really should more easily allow for more customizable deploy scenarios, I care little for supporting AERO when I want file I/O...</end rant>

However the end result of the .NET language is as all high level languages is, simplify mundane and complicated alike in order to sterilize the development environment.

That is a double edged sword, it definitely leads to RAD but hamstrings some of the creativity by "Guiding" down paths of predetermined code structure.

I am a firm believer in only about %10 of your code should do anything, the rest should be either explaining or supporting the %10 that does, and for that, the .NET CLR is one beautiful orchestration of well thought framework design.

Lines of code are for the most part irrelevant unless you just go ignorant wild, what it compiles to, how efficiently it runs, and the fewer bugs the better is the goal.

Remember in .NET in some sense you are feeding the environment information on HOW to write the most efficient code for you, and THEN it gets compiled.
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  #3  
Old 06-22-2010, 08:22 AM
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AtmaWeaponIt Takes A Village To Raise A .Net App AtmaWeapon is offline
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I think most of the effect is psychological.

You mentioned you spent more than 3 years writing MS Access applications. In 3 years you learn a lot of tricks. Every language has a few boilerplate steps to getting a decent application started that you have to be aware of; over 3 years you learned the Access boilerplate and probably don't even notice yourself writing it or using templates to put it in place. When you get stuck on something, you have a good idea where to look to solve the problem.

Then you moved to VB .NET. The .NET CLR is pretty big, but only a small portion is likely to be used day-to-day. The problem is, the boilerplate's different. You use different techniques for connecting to databases. The data model's different. The GUI generation is different. The way the controls behave is different. Many of the functions you're used to in VBA are either missing or have been replaced by methods that may behave differently. It takes time to re-learn the boilerplate.

I can vouch for this. I'm a seasoned veteran of Windows Forms applications in C# and VB .NET. When I start a project I spend a couple of minutes setting a few project settings how I like them and then I'm ready to start cranking out code. I'm only novice to intermediate with WPF applications in either language; when I start a new WPF project it takes 3-5 times longer before I'm cranking out code. Even when I'm writing code, I often have to stop and go read a few pages of documentation before I can continue. WPF isn't 3-5 times more complicated than windows forms; it's 6 years less familiar!

Access was designed to solve a specific problem. The designers of Access were able to create a programming API that focused on making it easy to write database applications with a simple GUI. They could take shortcuts and make assumptions since it was likely you'd be using Access as your data store.

.NET is a programming framework for solving general problems. It can write GUI apps for Access databases. It also has to support console applications. The GUI has to be very customizable because users might have an innovative UI planned. The database interface can't assume you're using Access; it has to be just as easy to use MySQL, Oracle, MSSQL, or any other database engine. You might use .NET to write a Windows service, a SOAP web service, a REST web service, an ASP .NET web application, or even a managed device driver. Since .NET has to support these scenarios and more, it is much larger and not as streamlined for creating Access GUI applications.

So based on these points, I'd agree. If you've got 3 years experience in Access, it will be faster to produce a nontrivial application in Access than in .NET. If you had 3 years of .NET experience and little Access experience, I'd argue you'd probably make faster progress in .NET. With equal experience in both, I'd say it depends on the project. If it's a basic "put a form on a database" project Access will likely win due to its streamlining. If it's a more complicated problem that involves a complicated UI and interoperation between multiple databases, I'd wager it'd be easier to get things done in .NET, particularly if the multiple databases aren't all Access.

One more thing that may not matter to you: .NET scales better than Access. If you're careful with how you write your .NET application, you can switch from Access to MSSQL to MongoDB to flat text files on a whim and spend less than a day updating your data layer. I'd wager it'd take longer to migrate data from one DB to another than to update the data layer in the ideal application. On the other hand, changing databases when you're using Access is a pretty big deal. In the best case, you'll have to hack in a layer to insulate Access from the other database. In the worst case, you'll have to rewrite the application from scratch in a framework like .NET.

I'd like to close with a personal opinion. If I were the IT manager responsible for 8 sites and 150 PCs with only 1 tech to help me out, I'd feel pretty stretched. If my manager was poking around asking me why the application he asked me to write in a brand new programming environment with which I had no experience was taking so long, I'd probably tell him it's because there's still a couple of months before my next job starts.
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  #4  
Old 06-22-2010, 09:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by atmaweapon View Post
i'd like to close with a personal opinion. If i were the it manager responsible for 8 sites and 150 pcs with only 1 tech to help me out, i'd feel pretty stretched. If my manager was poking around asking me why the application he asked me to write in a brand new programming environment with which i had no experience was taking so long, i'd probably tell him it's because there's still a couple of months before my next job starts.
hahahahaha



anyways @OP - numbers of line of code is rather subjective IMO, more lines of code doesn't necessarily mean more work. It's all about if you know how to get it done, how fast you can get it done, and is it maintainable.

I'm with the previous posters, you need to get over the hump of getting to know the new language, and it'll take a little while, hang out around here or some other forum if you need (forums are how I always get to know a new language I need to pick up).

As for telling your boss you're not a good enough programmer... bah! First off you can become good enough at the language given some time, and second off you're doing the job of more men... get another coder is my suggestion.
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  #5  
Old 06-22-2010, 12:08 PM
Philld Philld is offline
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Thanks everyone. I am getting faster, just doesn't seem fast enough right now.
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