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.NET expensive, poorly managed by Microsoft, exploited by educators
My opinion on .NET and the shortage, is based on my own experience. I wanted to be a .NET developer. I invested over $20,000 dollars to become a .NET developer. The joke was on me. Spent may hours attempting to achieve .NET certification. My first experience was with a educational facility named New Horizons. They advertised .NET training and instructed me that if I signed up for a 3 month plan I could achieve my MCSD certification with no prior C programming experience. This obviously did not happen as they did not have the courses offered that I needed during that time period and they did not have the qualified instructors either. I labored for two of the three months learning SQL and some .NET and spent much more money on books. The material was way over my head as all the text provided by Microsoft approach the learning as if you are already a C or VB programmer. At the end of the three months I did not have half the classes completed that I needed and was extremely frustrated. I was enrolled in a Master Program at the time and had to focus on that so I left the .NET issue alone. After achieving my Master I returned to the institution to try to complete the courses I paid for and they said they would honor the program. But Microsoft had changed their programs and the MCSD was no longer available. I needed all new books and could not achieve the cert I originally wanted. Also there was no instructor lead training it was all self learning on in-house network so I had to be on-site. Without prior training and no on the job experience where I was using the language the attempt to learn was impeded intensely and was eventually too much. I had to abandon the plan. After my experience I learned that the language is very difficult to keep up with as it is changing all the time and the texts are prohibitively expensive, the framework is very cumbersome to set up and maintain on a local machine such as a laptop. Educators will tell you things that are completely untrue to get your cash so beware and they do the language a dis-service by creating frustrating environments for people honestly wanting to learn it. Microsoft creates an environment where their texts and classes are over priced their cert programs are in consistent and hard to understand and seems to have no concern for the developers except for a developers social networking site called Spark which didn't really help me at all though I was very frustrated by the time I found it. It is sad that there are few .NET programmers but it is a very difficult environment to break into. I now do most of my server side programming in PHP.