Copying code from a tutorial and understanding what that code means is generally straight forward. However, just knowing a programming language is insufficient for success. You need to understand the platform you’re building on and the available toolsets. The predecessor to this article, The Platform, discussed the platform 😉 and environment that C# operates in. Here, you’ll learn the essentials of capabilities, toolsets, and running a basic app.
1 — You can use the editor of your choice
The .NET Framework SDK is a free download and includes nearly everything you need to write code, including a C# compiler —
csc.exe. All you need is an editor and there are a lot of free and paid options.
Ultimately, the editor you write code with will be your choice. In this 7 Things series, I’ll be using VS Code, which is a very popular editor for many different programming, script, and markup tasks. VS Code works well for C# programming because it has syntax highlighting and code completion. It also has a built-in terminal window for running commands. Another benefit is that it runs on Linux, Mac, and Windows with a similar experience.
Note: There have been recent discussions about a new extension to VS Code called the
C# Dev Kit. It’s been confusing to people because there’s also been a long supported extension called the
C#extension. The C# extension is free and provides pretty good syntax highlighting, debugging, and other services. The
C# Dev Kitisn’t required, though it offers much more functionality that you may or may not need, and is planned to have an associated fee. VS Code is still free and will continue to be free by all indications.
Another editor option is Visual Studio, which is a full featured IDE with a lot of productivity features. If you’re on a Mac, Visual Studio for Mac is free. On Windows, you have both free and paid options. Visual Studio Community is free and has all of the core Visual Studio IDE features. Visual Studio Pro and Enterprise are paid and offer even more features. One of the reasons I prefer VS Code for this series is that it works fine for iOS, Linux, and Windows.
You should visit the site for the editor of your choice and read the documentation on how to install and operate. It doesn’t take…