Chapter 2. Visual Studio .NET

If your goal is to produce significant, robust, and elegant applications with few bugs, in a minimum amount of time, then a modern IDE, such as Microsoft Visual Studio .NET, is an invaluable tool. Visual Studio .NET offers many advantages to the .NET developer, including:

  • A modern interface, using a tabbed document metaphor for code and layout screens, and dockable toolbars and information windows.

  • Convenient access to multiple design and code windows.

  • WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) visual design of Windows and Web Forms.

  • Code completion, which allows you to enter code with fewer errors and less typing.

  • Intellisense, which pops up help on every method and function call as you type, providing the types of all parameters and the return type.

  • Dynamic, context-sensitive help, which allows you to view topics and samples relevant to the code you are writing at the moment. You can also search the complete SDK library from within the IDE.

  • Immediate flagging of syntax errors, which allows you to fix problems as they are entered.

  • A Start Page, which provides easy access to new and existing projects.

  • The same code editor for all .NET languages, which shortens the learning curve. Each language can have specialized aspects, but all languages benefit from shared features, such as incremental search, code outlining, collapsing text, line numbering, color-coded keywords, etc.

  • An HTML editor, which provides both Design and HTML views that update each other in real time. ...

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