How to Get the Most Out of ASP.NET

As an ASP.NET developer, you're aware of the benefits of Microsoft's web application framework, like the fact that it's flexible, fast and free. Hard to beat, right?

But if you're looking to improve your ASP.NET skills, check out the following resources to help keep you at the top of your game. You know technology is always changing. ASP.NET, Microsoft’s framework for developing dynamic web pages, services and applications, is no exception. In addition to keeping up with periodic releases of ASP.NET, these resources and tips can help you get the most out of this versatile platform.

1. Join the conversation around ASP.NET

Developers are famously generous about sharing what they know with fellow developers, from troubleshooting notes to tales of “this happened to me” to a plethora of handy tips and tricks. ASP.NET developers are no different. Be sure to check out these sites, which all feature forums, tips and discussions focused on ASP.NET and related development platforms:

  • StackOverflow is a question-and-answer site for professional and enthusiast programmers that ASP.NET developers often cite among their top go-to resources.
  • CodeProject features news, developer-contributed articles, discussions and an active user community.
  • GitHub, a web-based hosting service for software development projects that uses the Git revision control system, has paid and free subscription options that give members access to an impressive code repository.
  • Microsoft Developer Network (MSDN) serves as a hub for information, documentation and discussion for the global community of Microsoft developers.

2. Follow the experts

You can learn a lot from following ASP.NET and Microsoft tech experts who blog and tweet about the platform – and a variety of developer topics. We recommend adding these folks to your feeds:

  • Scott Hanselman, a Microsoft employee and longtime programmer, speaker and teacher, shares musings on his areas of expertise. He also produces numerous podcasts.
  • Jon Galloway works at Microsoft as a community program manager focused on ASP.NET MVC. He tweets from @jongalloway.
  • Adam Tuliper, Microsoft’s Southern California developer evangelist, software architect, Microsoft Developer Network and Pluralsight author and .NET stack aficionado, also offers virtual office hours so you can pepper him with your questions in real time.
  • Rion Williams is a software developer and graphic designer with a passion for Microsoft development technologies, food, art, music, travel and family. He tweets from @rionmonster.
  • Ignat Andrei writes his blog in English, tweets from @ignatandrei in Romanian and regularly contributes to threads in the ASP.NET Forums.

3. Expand your ASP.NET range with online training

In addition to learning from the experts noted above, you can get free ASP.NET training online from Microsoft Virtual Academy. MVA also offers in-person training events (called Jump Starts) in its many technologies and development platforms, including ASP.NET. Meanwhile, subscription-based Pluralsight offers developer-created coursework that covers the gamut from ASP.NET to XML.

Have a tip or resource for getting the most out of ASP.NET? Share them in the comments.