When do you adopt new technologies?

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The latest news from Microsoft is the delay of Visual Studio 2005 until late 2005 (September is the estimate) and the release the .NET Framework 2.0 beta 2. As I received this news, I contemplated when I should begin to wholeheartedly dive into the next release of these tools. After all, I am building applications now using the .NET Framework 1.1 (plus it pays my bills). In addition, there is the consideration of how long the next technology will take to enter the mainstream after the next versions are released.

Should I wait until that time or push the envelope and tell clients what is coming down the pipeline? I am apprehensive about making such promises, since features may be removed or altered in the final product. My preferred method is staying up-to-date with respect to the technology but only digging in once it has been released. How do other developers approach this situation?

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  • http://redferret.co.za redferret

    I would say wait until it becomes mainstream. A lot of MS’ product specs can change significantly before release, and you may find it difficult to integrate with the existing technology if you are too far ahead.

    I am not a .NET expert, but the question of moving to code in PHP 5 is a very much similar one. You want to be ahead of the rest, but not so far ahead that you find yourself alone in the wilderness (unless you are in the small minority of cases which require it).

  • http://www.totalpda.co.uk dhtmlgod

    The old company I worked for adopted .NET just after it was released. I had been working with it since Beta 1, so by the time we moved to it, I already had loads of experience with it. However, that was a dev shop and we simply did the next cliens site on it. My current position however, is for one website and a load of internal systems. I really don’t know when I’ll get the chance to move things over to .NET 2.

    Personally, I’m looking at starting a few website backup a closed last year, and I’m going to be looking at doing the CMS for them in .NET 2, mainly to use as a learning tool.

  • http://www.rockymountainpc.com jlrosine

    I think it depends on your needs for each project. I have a few projects coming up that I’d like to utilize the new authentication features in, so I might use it (version 2). I’m like you, reluctant to use something that isn’t officially released yet. If the project doesn’t really benefit from 2.0, I just code with 1.1. If I can absolutely justify making the jump and possibly taking a hit on recoding something later, I’ll probably do it depending on the project scope. I would never tell clients of features in 2 though, I think it might bite you in the arse later on. But then again, I’m a low risk kinda guy.

  • http://www.realityedge.com.au mrsmiley

    I tried using .NET 2.0 beta 1 with C# express 2005 and to say its buggy is an understatement. While it has some cool features, the undocumented one was that SQL Server 2005 Express has the ability to clobber all previous instances of SQL Server client tools and servers on your system.

    I ended up having to remove SQL Server 2005, reinstall SQL Server 7 and the SQL Server 2000 client tools I previously had on my machine just so I could get back to work.

    Then again, the new form designer is way cool. .NET 2.0 apps have the potential to look very sexy out of the box for a change. No more annoyances with OS themes not working in design view.

  • Dr Livingston

    I have no plans to adapt Dot Net, thank you very much :p

  • http://www.dynamicfunctions.com Kadence

    I usually wait until something gets somewhat popular. By then its usually reliable.

    However at the beginning of this week I messed up and tried out Microsoft Anti-Spyware Beta. I had heard good things about it. Well, the program for the most part seems to run fine; however there was a file-sharing program that it detected as spyware. Rather than just deleting the program, it wiped out the whole directory – including the downloads directory. Gigs worth of media files were gone. There wasn’t even a “stop” button for the scan, so I saw it happening and couldn’t stop it (I didn’t want to risk rebooting or turning the computer off).

    Oh well. I should’ve known to always be wary of Microsoft products (even though one of my best friends just started working for them) – I’ll know better now.