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Opportunity to change from .NET to J2EE

By kipplummer ·
I have 4 years of .NET development experience (3 years of VB6 and ASP experience before that) and I have the opportunity to change from my current position as a .NET developer to a position that will be on a Java (J2EE) platform. I have Microsoft certifications and have really been .NET (C#) focused for years (with minimal experience in Java). I am looking for opinions on if this sounds like a good career move (to expand my skill set) -- or a bad career move (to risk falling out of practice in .NET -- in which most of my career skills have been based). I realize my potential new employer is taking a bit of risk by hiring me since I have little Java experience (but they feel I am good OO developer and I could pick up Java quickly based upon my compentency in C#). I do not know of anyone who is really good in BOTH platforms... so I have reservations about switching platforms at this point in my career. Any thought/opionions?

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I think it would be a good move

by M_a_r_k In reply to Opportunity to change fro ...

I am going to guess that over the next 10 years, Java and .NET will be equally popular. You've already got 4 years of .NET and 7 years of MS development under your belt. You won't lose too much by stepping away from it for a few years. Getting Java experience will look good on your resume next to your .NET experience. You'd be surprised at how often comapanies look five or more years into your past work history to find some experience or skill that they like. .NET is changing fairly rapidly (faster than Java) but that shouldn't be too big of a concern. You probably know that .NET is really easy to learn especially if you are already familiar with MS' development environment. In my opinion it is much easier than Java, so go for the on-the-job training of Java with the new job. Good luck.

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Don't Decide on Technology

by Wayne M. In reply to Opportunity to change fro ...

Where do you see yourself in 2 years at your current position versus in the new position?

The choice of .Net versus J2EE should be at the bottom of your priority list. Neither one will disappear over the next several years and each will provide ongoing development options. The question is where do you want to be? Do you want to stay as a developer or do you have other business desires? Which job provides better growth options for your desired path? Which provides greater stability, benefits, or pay? What about the work culture - do you like a social atmosphere or a more focussed, "just do the job and get out of here" environment?

Do not make a job decision based largely on code syntax and libraries. Determine which possible work environment best fits you as an individual now and in the near future.

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It would make you more "marketable"

by Perry Neal In reply to Don't Decide on Technolog ...

I agree with comments that both .NET and Java are going to be around for years to come. Having experience in both platforms could only serve to make you more desirable in the job market. As I was told in school, you're not a C# or a Java developer. You're a developer - the language is just a tool. I'd say go for it!

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my opinion...

by brian.kiser In reply to Opportunity to change fro ...

I was in the Microsoft world for about 8 years before doing my first real Java. I was bored with my current job and when the opportunity came to do Java (IBM's flavor, called WSAD) about 3 years ago, I jumped on it. I found the tools and interface to be years behind Microsoft. It was frustrating that copy/paste didn't work in some parts of the IDE! How basic is that? Also, the team I worked with followed a very rigid workflow that included lots of use cases and UML modeling, along with associated bloated and buggy tools like ClearCase and Rational XDE (XDE wouldn't ever print your diagram correctly and ClearCase had big problems merging changes to Word documents and sometimes lost our diagrams).

I stayed in Java about a year. It wasn't long, but was long enough to finish one sizable application and maintain a couple more. I do consider the experience somewhat rewarding as I got to see how the "other team" works, use their tools, and learn something. However, I just got into .NET about two years ago, and it's now my bread and butter. If I'd skipped Java and stayed in .NET, I would now have an extra year of experience. (Another year of experience in a particular tool is a lot when you only have two.)

Personally, being so experienced with the Microsoft world, I suspect you will be disappointed with Java, unless you are one of those guys that loves to tinker and enjoys studying and trying to understand intricate behavior and quirks. (That's not me. I just enjoy finishing projects as quickly as possible and moving on to the next.) Still, you have enough .NET that if you step out a year for Java, you can probably get right back in without missing much.

Good luck whichever way you decide to go.

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If you have a Love

by ward In reply to Opportunity to change fro ...

I used to be a C programmer, then C++ when it came out. It was a lot of fun doing the little brackets. <grin> When I was forced to do a project using VB 3.0 <gasp> I nearly quit, but when I hit the run button and window appeared I realized that the fastest way to get my ideas into implementation was VB, not C++ or C. I was hooked, and pretty much have never looked back. The few times that I have delved into Java are kinda like coming home, because it reminds me of the "good old days" of wired up breadboards, stepper motors, primitive editors (brief wasn't actually that primitive), and the little curly brackets... Since you are a C# guy you must have the love of semi-colons and curlies, Java may not present the same warm fuzzy to you as it does to me. After all, you use the brackets every day right now. I only get to visit.

As much as I enjoy visiting home, the bed does seem a little small these days. Right now, I can just plain produce applications faster using VB.NET / ASP.NET than any other method that I have tried. Speed is the primary reason that I have stayed with VB. Speed is the primary reason why I like the framework.

One thing that I can say as a super positive for Java development is the same language on both sides of the wire (browser and server) is a nice thing. I always have this "Shift Moment" in my brain going from one to the other. I had a lady ask me in German how many years I lived in Germany. Her words were gooble-"de"-**** for about 4-5 heartbeats, then I heard the translation inside my head. That's what switching languages is like for me.

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C# is more like VB.NET than like C or Java...

by brian.kiser In reply to If you have a Love

I completely understand where you're coming from, and I agree that Java is like "coming home" when you're a C++ or C guy. The only small caveat I have is when you equate C# to C and Java. While it's true the syntax is similar, C# shares much more in common with VB.NET than either C or Java. I can put together a C# application way quicker than I ever could a Java or C application. Microsoft .NET (both VB and C#) just makes things so much easier than C or Java ever thought about...

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Truly

by ward In reply to C# is more like VB.NET th ...

Syntax is where my nostalgia comes from. There is actually very little else that is similar between C++ on a Intel compiler for an 80C196KB processor and C# for a web app.

Truly the common IDE and all of that juicy framework shared code does make C# and VB.Net some kind of weird twins-seperated-at-birth-totally-different-yet-oddly-similar. I regularly cut-and-paste code from one to the other. If I find a sample in c#, I cut from the web page, paste into VB.NET, do a little line by line dance through the code, and run the code.

I even have an IDE extender that I wrote to convert C# to VB.NET, but it's broken now due to me trying to convert it 2005. Lord what a train wreck. Uhg. Gotta get around to fixing that some day...

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So do I

by porky625 In reply to Opportunity to change fro ...

I have the similar problems with you, I have experience on .NET for more than 3 years. I also would like to have such an opportunity to change from .NET to J2EE. Besides .NET. I do have experience on J2EE too (at least I have some projects/experience which stick on it).

I would like to know how can I well prepare and do preparation for me in order to have a chance to change from .NET to J2EE?
I would like to have chance to work out the J2EE with Weblogic and WSAD. How to do this?

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JRL says "U CAN DO IT!"

by JRL21 In reply to Opportunity to change fro ...

Maybe your potential new employer would'nt mind you going to school to become better at java. Would you consider taking A JAVA course? I'm currently studying both VB.NET and Java. My CIS professor told me I could learn them both, at the same time, because they were so similar, syntax-wise. So since you have much experience with VB I can see how you can become comfortable with Java as well. Not to mention, having an ASP background can help you in JSP. Also, the java and C languages have a lot in common, so I'd say it's not very much of a risk, expanding your programming portfolio.

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Knowing both .NET and Java is also an asset

by mulkers In reply to Opportunity to change fro ...

If you know both Java and .NET, you might take a career path that will let you value your experience in both environments.
I think you should start to watch for Web services and SOA projects. In that kind of projects, knowing both Java and .NET is a must.

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