When diving into a development technique or technology, I find that documentation isn’t always enough. Often, a code sample is needed to help me solidify my understanding. Code samples vary in their complexity, but I prefer “Hello World!” programs – a homage to Brian Kernighan and Dennis Ritchie's book entitled, The C Programming Language – because they tend to be the most useful; by keeping things simple, they eliminate mental distractions and focus entirely on the fundamentals. That stated, no matter what your preference is on the topic of “simple versus complex”, code examples are a wonderful teaching tool.
As part of its commitment to supporting the community, the VB team has published a ton of code examples on MSDN. These examples cover a wide range of topics, including:
- Windows Phone 7 (*)
- Windows Presentation Foundation (WPF)
- Office 2010
- and much more!
(*) Oh, you haven’t heard? You can write apps for Windows Phone 7 in VB and you can sell them in Marketplace.
From the VB team: See anything missing? Please file a request on the VB code wishlist, where we’re collecting suggestions for future VB code samples, and we’ll do our best to make it available!
In addition to these code examples, the VB team has also recently published a boat-load of resources worth checking out. These include links to blogs, books, documentation, training kits, tutorials, and tools. In addition to these resources, I’d also recommend following folks like Beth Massi (@BethMassi) and others listed on the Visual Basic Bloggers at Microsoft page on MSDN. On Twitter, there’s @learnvbnow, a good resource for VB samples and blog posts from the Microsoft and the VB community at-large. And, of course, there are podcasts like .NET Rocks! – a vital resource for the on-the-go developer.
Finally, there are a great number of code examples and snippets for other languages like Visual C#, Visual C++, and F#. There’s also the StyleCop Compliant Visual Studio Code Snippets on CodePlex, containing 38 code snippets for Visual Studio 2010. I’d also strongly recommend checking out the MSDN Code Gallery (and CodePlex) for samples and open source projects to help jumpstart your learning.