Does anyone have a list of all of the awesome things Microsoft has done in the past few years that totally go against their previous policies / culture? Things like this are still so surprising to me. No complaints!
MS’s work on RxJS https://github.com/Reactive-Extensions/RxJS was and is pretty cool. TypeScript http://www.typescriptlang.org/ is also getting a lot of play.
I would love TypeScript or some sort of annotations to get into the ECMAScript process. There was sorta positive talk from Google, who were talking about using it as the basis for an optional type system for JS (with stricter semantics than TypeScript’s–SoundScript would ensure that type annotations matched run-time reality, when in TypeScript they’re development-time aids as much as anything).
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That MS still does some bad things doesn’t illustrate that “nothing has truly changed.” The last couple of years has seen a lot of improvement, particularly in regards to their participation in open source.
For the generation that grew up on a steady diet of Slashdot (may God save your tormented souls), MS is the residual Great Evil still and may never recover.
Of course, most people on that site were pretty full of it, but it reflects a common sentiment among a certain crowd.
F# is pretty sweet. Reactive Extensions (for C#, JS, and other languages) is very cool too.
In addition to the other projects mentioned, Visual Studio Code and the Roslyn compiler are both open source from Microsoft.