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Déjà Vu

History repeats itself, over and over again. ASP.NET MVC came out. WebForms was dead. Entity Framework came out, Linq2Sql was dead. Now the same thing is happening with Silverlight*.

Of course, every time this happens, we’ll immediately see reactions from those that have very high interests vested into the technology. It would be silly to think otherwise. If I’m a company or individual that has been promoting a technology for years, what else am I going to say?

Tomorrow some other technology will be deprecated and again we’ll see the same thing happen.

[Edited to add clarifcation] *When I talk about Silverlight in this context, I'm referring to it's use for Web Development


What does dead mean?


When it comes to technology, I think there’s an overall consensus that dead means there will be little to no significant improvements in the technology. This means there will probably be only a few more bug fixes coming out and some minor feature here and there.

Taking this into account, what does dead mean to you?

Need the competitive edge: Building software that your business relies on to be competitive? Technology can play an important part in this.

Need to hire people: People hear about a technology dying, there’s less incentive in learning it. This means less offers on the market. Harder to find people.

Need training: Less demand. Less offers for training.

Need to find a new job: Less demand for a dying technology.


It’s all a chain reaction. But every cloud has a silver lining, The market now becomes a niche. Do you know how well some Delphi and Cobol consultants are paid? If all you care about is the money, this could be a good thing too. This also doesn't necessarily imply that you need to stop what you're doing or port applications to the *next best thing*. Evaluate the situation. What are you advantages/disadvantages?


Lessons to learn…

We’re in a profession where things move fast. Technologies, languages, frameworks come and go. If you’ve been around long enough, you’ll soon realize that it doesn’t matter what language, framework or technology you use, everything has it’s place and time.

Lessons to learn here:

- Don’t jump on board the next hype immediately, no matter who tells you it’s great. Nowadays people get fired even if they pick IBM.

- Don’t limit yourself to learning just one technology or putting all your eggs in one basket. Whether you’re a consultant, trainer or a developer or company writing software, it’s too risky.

- Don’t blindly follow.Open up your mind.


And remember, it will happen again.