The Visual Basic series has always had a bad reputation as a starter language. When VB.NET came out with the .NET Framework, it made huge changes that improved its reputation while alienating longtime Visual Basic developers. Since then, VB.NET has moved very close to full parity with C#, as both languages have borrowed heavily from each other. The two languages are functionally equivalent for just about every use out there now; XML literals in VB.NET are the only feature it has that C# doesn't that I can name off hand.
Microsoft and the .NET community clearly favor C#, so I have to wonder what the strategy is with VB.NET. In my mind, it is totally irrelevant to Microsoft's strategy, but the company will maintain it to keep people happy. What do you think?
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Justin James is the Lead Architect for Conigent.