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Does Visual Studio Rot the Brain?

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 8 years ago | from the also-causes-cancer dept.

Programming 790

duffbeer703 writes "As a UNIX guy dragged kicking and screaming into the Windows world, I've never really been able to enjoy Windows programming. Charles Petzold, who is a long-time developer for DOS & Windows really laid out the reasons for me at the NYC .NET Dev group. Visual Studio and Microsoft tools force you to adopt programming techniques designed around implementation speed, not understanding or quality."

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yes, it does rot your brain, or at least habits. (5, Interesting)

yagu (721525) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884656)

I have a good friend whose son is brilliant. He looks at anything, and instantly is taking it apart and putting it back together. In our technical day and age, he has tinkered with computers a LOT and has shown great acumen in troubleshooting and configuring not only Windows, but putting together a network.

I tried to turn him on to coding, but he went out and got Visual Studio, and went off on his own. He came back and proudly demonstrated his various creations.

While I liked his creativity, it was evident his depth of grasp of the workings of programming were as deep as VS allowed him. Cute screens with cute input buttons and cute input boxes. But nothing in the sense of real code.

He is now taking some programming classes, and while he is doing well, they have begun java, and it has totally thrown him. He's getting back on his feet, but his initial foray into VS gave him some bad (and some wrong) insights into programming and languages.

His reaction so far to having to actually write and understand code is that it is stupid. I think that's a dangerous culture to cultivate in an IT universe. He is doing well in his class but he constantly wants to go back and do the drag and drop thing.

who's fault is that? (4, Interesting)

conJunk (779958) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884716)

I tried to turn him on to coding, but he went out and got Visual Studio, and went off on his own. He came back and proudly demonstrated his various creations.
Well come on. When I was a kid my down sat my down in front of Apple BASIC on our IIgs. When I was little older we got THINK C. Whoever started this kid off in Visual Studio has some 'splainin to do.

There's a reason we start with printf("Hello World."); and not with dragging a text box into a big white rectangle.

Shut up DINOSAUR (-1, Flamebait)

Work Account (900793) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884731)

You know, I work with people like you, and you guys really piss people off.

Coding is about the best tool for the job.

In many cases that's C or Perl or C++ (shudder) or Python.

But sometimes it's Java, or C#, or something you would called "new age" or "gay" (yes, I've had co-workers who are 'professionals' call Java such names).

I call them powerful and simply use them when I need to. I also use other tools like C and can hack assembly code onto hardware controllers.

Your attitude is one of not recognizing that we're just like mechanics, we find a tool and a part and get to work until it's "fixed" aka the design and all requirements are met.

Don't knock others because they don't want to hand-code 100 GUI elements.

I can create software faster in Java than any other language. Java can do almost anything you need it to, and since the late 1990s it has been nearly as fast as C or C++: k.html []

Re:Shut up DINOSAUR (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13884820)

C/C++ is the most used language in the world for a reason. Go learn something about it before knocking it. Java is a slow, time consuming, BOX of a language. You can only go as far as Sun wants you to.

Go read the "Art of computer programming" series, learn something about C and C++ on platforms such as linux and windows. Then come back to java and see how limited it really is.

Open your eyes you lazy mother f*cker

Re:Shut up DINOSAUR (1)

kahanamoku (470295) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884863)

hehe, I need my eye's checked... for a moment there I thought you said XBOX of a language!

Re:Shut up DINOSAUR (4, Insightful)

georgewilliamherbert (211790) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884821)


If the first tool you introduce someone too teaches people, particularly bright kids, not to think about...

  • What tools are best for the job...
  • Why different tools are best for the job...
  • What the nuts and bolts behind pretty drag and drop interfaces are...
  • Why you want nuts and bolts behind the pretty interfaces...

...then that tool is a horrible teaching tool. Period. Programming is not about pretty interfaces, as the original comment notes. That's part of producing functional modern programs, but if you mistake doing that for actually programming, and your tools teach you to make that mistake, you're in trouble.

Re:Shut up DINOSAUR (1)

kahanamoku (470295) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884838)

I can purchase a software package faster than you can create one in java... so, according to your approach, you're the one who's a dinosaur wasting your own time coding.

Fact is, the package I buy will be bloated with extras that I will never need or use.

Programming in RAD languages is no different. You make a call to a pre-existing function/component/"GUI element" and sure, it does the job quicker, but how many bugs does that come with that you dont know about, cant see, and cant fix yourself?

I agree that certain 3GL and 4GL development languages have their place, and so do the 1GL and 2GL's. if people choose to write in a language that is 1 level closer to machine code than what you're using, Kudo's to them for learning about what they're doing, but dont knock them, or you're no better than the guy who built Jurassic park.

Re:Shut up DINOSAUR (1)

Ithika (703697) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884840)

You didn't read the guy's post at all. You saw the word Java and the knee-jerk reaction just *happened*.

If you take a closer look, the GP uses the introduction of Java programming as being "proper" programming, and antithetical to the Visual Studio way of doing things.

In future: read, understand, then post.

Re:Shut up DINOSAUR (1)

TheGavster (774657) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884904)

In practice, you always want to pick the best tool, no matter how maligned it is by the 'hard core' crowd. The difference, however, between you using a tool to avoid hand coding your 100 UI elements, and a new programmer using a tool to avoid code for their UI elements, is that you know how to hand code them. Like you said, you can hack assembler on hardware controllers. If you never touch on that kind of low level stuff in learning, you'll never understand how it affects the high level stuff you use to make a professional job easier.

Re:yes, it does rot your brain, or at least habits (2, Insightful)

js3 (319268) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884738)

This anecdote is quite a load of bullspit. Anyone who has been working with GUI will be stumped for a bit in front of a console.

Re:yes, it does rot your brain, or at least habits (1)

Seumas (6865) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884740)

My much younger brother is going into computer science with a bent toward game programming and most of his courses focus on Visual C++. He is aware of Linux and Unix (because it's what I do for a living and all of my personal stuff runs either on that or OSX), but I doubt anyone is going to teach their programming courses on anything else (for the most part), for the same reason nobody is going to require that students have OpenOffice or StarOffice instead of Microsoft Office.


Re:yes, it does rot your brain, or at least habits (2, Informative)

2short (466733) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884826)

If it matters in the least whether a non-OS programming class uses Windows or Linux, it's a lousy class.

Re:yes, it does rot your brain, or at least habits (1)

AuMatar (183847) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884879)

As of 4 years ago, my college was all Unix workstations (mainly Sparcs) for their programming classes. Not a minor school either, UIUC. Most of the big universities are still teaching on Unix from what I've seen.

Re:yes, it does rot your brain, or at least habits (2, Insightful)

rackhamh (217889) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884771)

Some people like to build a computer by simply identifying compatible components and plugging them together. Others aren't satisfied unless they know the intimate details of how each of those individual components works. Either way the computer does its job in the end.

Hopefully this analogy makes sense. Basically, don't assume that just because somebody's preferred modality is different from yours, that makes it faulty.

Apples and Oranges (5, Insightful)

mustafap (452510) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884788)

You seem to be comparing 'Playing with Visual Studio' against 'Taking programming classes'.

Visual Studio is not a teaching aid. It's (just about) a programming toolkit with some bolted on frameworks. You will create rubbish if you do not know what you are doing. Try thowing eclipse at him, he would have the same problem.

Having said that, I hate having to program with Visual Studio. It's like a great big book of usefull spells, but they are written in invisble ink :o)

Re:yes, it does rot your brain, or at least habits (1)

Pulse_Instance (698417) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884790)

It seems like your problem is that you gave him a tool and he found something fun to do. Visual Studio can be used to do many things not just make GUI Apps, I haven't made a GUI app with Visual Studio in a long time. The reason I use Visual Studio is to keep all of my files organized with a project and all of my projects organized within a solution, I also use it to compile my code.

Re:yes, it does rot your brain, or at least habits (4, Insightful)

x0n (120596) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884804)

"Visual Studio and Microsoft tools force you to adopt programming techniques designed around implementation speed, not understanding or quality"

Force? noone's forcing me to use the RAD tools; I use VS primarily as an editor with intellisense and solution/project file management; no more, nor less. FUD.

- Oisin

Re:yes, it does rot your brain, or at least habits (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13884831)

His reaction so far to having to actually write and understand code is that it is stupid.

Less competition for me.

If you want him to learn the correct way to program, show him the DFT. Then, run that DFT on a sequence of 1024 samples. After that, show him the FFT. Finish up with one of djb's beautiful, hand optimized assembler FFTs. If he doesn't get it, then he just won't get it: not everybody is meant to be a great coder.

If he does get it, then start him on some cryptography code, but more importantly is for him to notice that neither of these utterly important topics is programming. They're both math more than computer science, and computer science before mere programming.

This isn't meant as an insult on the son. Coding really isn't for everybody, and it's not at all an indicator of intelligence. I've seen drooling morons who could produce terrific code, and some of the ugliest code around spills out of the brains of genius cryptographers; however, if you want to cultivate him into being a coder, show him Lisp.

Re:yes, it does rot your brain, or at least habits (4, Insightful)

nmb3000 (741169) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884845)

If used correctly Visual Studio does not "rot your brain" or cause bad habits.

The places where Visual Studio excels is in some of the following:

Code/syntax highlighting
Designing graphical aspects (forms, window layouts, etc.)
And others

One of my favorite features is the form of auto-completion and showing function prototypes. You don't have to have memorized the entire Win32 API to be a "good" programmer. Documentation comes in many forms and by having the IDE tell you when you open a parenthesis what the function expects as inputs is just another way of looking at the docs.

The one place where I think that an IDE can cause some harm for new programmers is the "shake-and-bake" method of designing an app where it asks 10 questions and writes the code for you. Past that, IDEs are a great tool for managing larger programming projects.

You win the 'dumbest post of the week' award (3, Insightful)

LibertineR (591918) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884864)

First idiot, an IDE is not supposed to teach you ANYTHING.

It is a tool. Does your socket wrench teach you how to build a house? Do your credit cards tell you how to spend your money?

Someday, somehow the Microsoft bashing needs to end, or at least be about something intelligent. If you are a programmer, well versed in the basic concepts of code, both procedural and OO, then all that Visual Studio will do for you is increase your productivity in what ever you are planning to create in the programming languages that it supports.

Now, some might argue that features like 'intellisense' can help you remember the depth and breath of the WIN32-64 APIs but that is not close to doing what it takes to become a profiecient programmer. The only thing that teaches you how to code, is to CODE, CODE and CODE SOME MORE. In addition to that, it wouldnt hurt to learn from others, from books, from classrooms, user groups, etc, what programming is all about.

If you (or your good(but not so brilliant) friend think that by picking up an IDE that it will teach you how to really program, then you both need counseling.

Re:yes, it does rot your brain, or at least habits (1)

slashdotnickname (882178) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884872)

I tried to turn him on to coding, but he went out and got Visual Studio, and went off on his own. He came back and proudly demonstrated his various creations. While I liked his creativity, it was evident his depth of grasp of the workings of programming were as deep as VS allowed him. Cute screens with cute input buttons and cute input boxes. But nothing in the sense of real code.

So you blame Visual Studio for having him build a pretty GUI instead of coding an intricate algorithm?!

Good programmers begin with a love of solving mathematical and/or logical puzzles. This is not something you can just instill into someone by tossing them an expensive IDE. Of course he was going to create pretty looking GUIs. VS is just a tool designed to help with some of the more laborious (i.e. brainless) parts of programming.

Maybe you're projecting yourself onto him, and he's not much of an analytical thinker... sounds like his love of shinny, pretty things might lead to a more promising career on Broadway.

Re:yes, it does rot your brain, or at least habits (1)

b4k3d b34nz (900066) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884900)

It sounds like your idea of real code is "spending 5 hours getting an array of checkboxes to work". Why should someone's first dive into programming have them trying to run everything out of a message loop? Give the kid a chance to have some fun, succeed in creating something and learn a few basics before you force him into COBOL.

Re:yes, it does rot your brain, or at least habits (5, Interesting)

ankarbass (882629) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884903)

No offense,

But, taking stuff apart doesn't make you brilliant. Most of us geeks took things apart when we were kids. People around us said the same things you're saying about so and so's kid. The kid is stumped with java because he's having to go beyond instant gratification and actually learn something. There is a fundamental difference between just discovering random facts and learning ideas that have depth. Just because he can play video games or memorize oodles of random computer facts, or fankly, even put a network together, doesn't mean much. I'm not saying the kid isn't smart, most geeks are "smart", few are brilliant.

It's good for him to struggle. He'll find out if he's really brilliant. His response that the ideas are stupid is just his ego combined with youth. Does he think math is stupid too?

My point is that visual studio isn't the problem. The problem is thinking that mucking about with computers is equivalent to learning difficult things. Whipping up some crappy kid-app in Visual Basic is about as difficult as Whipping up some crappy speakers in woodshop. It no more makes you a programmer, or dare I say, a computer scientist, than building the crappy speaker makes you an acoustic engineer.

The kids problem isn't visual studio, the kids problem is that the stuff he's done requires tinkering and doing but no hard thinking. Now he's being forced to think and it sounds like he's finding out that it's not quite as easy as just doing. That's good!


Perhaps (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13884659)

Visual Studio may rot the brain, but that's better than the testicle-rot I get from an average linux install. Don't get me started on the rectal cancer I contracted by using BSD...

Re:Perhaps (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13884669)

If only I had mod points to mod this funny...

Help! (4, Funny)

ArchieBunker (132337) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884663)

Help I did type Y work for years and now I'm doing type X. Things are different and I don't understand, why!

Re:Help! (1)

Gilmoure (18428) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884692)

Help not will you receive, devient XYX.

Re:Help! (1)

LostCluster (625375) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884871)

This is exactly the situation those of us who grew up with VB3 to VB6... is C# with a coat of paint on it. We got used to breakpoint and resume coding, and that rug got pulled out from under us. I never wanted to be a coder anyway...

Re:Help! (2, Informative)

Azi Dahaka (625546) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884886)

If you RTFA his complaints are not with using a GUI IDE, but rather with Visual Studio itself. VS's project templates remove so many steps and try to hide code, leaving newer developers in the dark about what is really being done behind-the-scenes. It also does some arguably sloppy techniques such as including a few dll references that are not necessary, adding lots of unused using statements, overusing class-wide members, etc.

He isn't opposed to using Visual Studio itself. When guiding newbies, he instead has them create projects "from scratch" rather than using a "Windows Application" template. This at least gives them an idea of what their project is doing, and a better understanding of programming.

He also finds Intellisense to be a wonderful tool, but over-reliance on it removes the desire to actually learn how the framework works.

These factors and others are why he feels Visual Studio rots programmers' minds. Nothing to do with that it's not a plain text editor.

Re:Help! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13884887)

See? Once again the dangers of static typing rear their ugly head!

Great quotes (4, Interesting)

tcopeland (32225) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884665)

This is in the section where he's talking about filling in event handlers for a VB form:

> This bothered me because Visual Basic was treating a
> program not as a complete coherent document,
> but as little snippets of code attached to visual objects.

So true. You can't "read" the program, instead, you can only leap about from handler to handler. And another good point when talking about a XAML demo:

> It was very, very cool, except that the 12 tick marks
> of the clock were implemented in 12 virtually identical chunks of XAML.

I'm not sure about this one - seems that one of the few times that duplicated code is OK is when it's in generated code; i.e., in a JavaCC-generated parser. For everything else, there's CPD, the Copy/Paste Detector [] .

Re:Great quotes (1)

leerpm (570963) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884809)

It's called Event Driven Programming. It's not something specific to Microsoft, and they sure didn't invent it. If you program a GUI application in Java, you would use the same general approach.

Re:Great quotes (1)

dnoyeb (547705) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884897)

Yes, VB is essentially a wrapper for COM. Thats what I thought when I first saw it, knowing COM. Its great for those quick programs we use at work to drive io ports to test things.

VB is a crap shoot though. Either it works or it does not. Forget debugging that thing as it can get near impossible.

Turn off all the other featurs (2, Insightful)

Sourtimes (553114) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884671)

I ten to turn off all the auto coding features and use it for a really good editor, code highlighting, regex replacement, etc. It is actually really nice when working with both a Database and coding by hand.

Re:Turn off all the other featurs (2, Interesting)

Amouth (879122) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884729)

i know many people that code.. some of them ar die hards and want notepad/vi/joe others want a full blown ide and try not to look at code.. the die hards are the ones that make quality software the others make nice looking stuff.. personaly i fall just short of the die hard.. i am mainly in windows so i use editplus, a wonderful app.. and only open VS when i want to play with laying out forms because well it makes sence.. personaly i hate the way they have the code interface.. it is almost like they don't want you to be there

Force? (4, Interesting)

b0r1s (170449) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884673)

They allow and perhaps encourage, but they don't force anything...

Visual Studio (VS newer than VS 6, up to and including VS 2005) is in the top 3 products MS has ever produced (behind MS Office and MS SQL Server). Powerful, flexible, and yes, it allows for very rapid development.

Re:Force? (0, Troll)

abscondment (672321) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884695)

I've been forced to restart a visual studio crash more than twice a day this week. I'd much prefer if they merely allowed me to crash it, when I felt like it.

I can't wait until I return to my normal job, programming in a real IDE that doesn't freeze so often.

Re:Force? (1)

leerpm (570963) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884783)

Then there is something wrong with your particular installation/environment. I have run VS .NET for days, and not had to restart the IDE app.

Re:Force? (2, Insightful)

Slimcea (832228) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884812)

Pray tell - which IDE doesn't? At some point or the other, just about every IDE I've used so far (Delphi, NetBeans, Eclipse, JBuilder) has decided to simply go belly-up and either stop responding to me or start acting in really weird ways.

Modern IDEs are complex beasts - they've got to parse your code, handle reflection, manage multiple debug processes et al. While I agree that they should ideally be bug-free, complex things often break somewhere or the other.

Microsoft DEVELOPER tools are good (5, Insightful)

Work Account (900793) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884683)

I don't like MSFT any more than the next guy, but they do a couple things right:

1) Hardware (keyboards, mice, ...)
2) Developer tools

I find Microsoft tools like and even some of their languages (C#) to be surprisingly good.

Granted, I prefer Open Source most of the time, but when forced to use certain Microsoft things like Natural Keyboards or Visual Studio, I kind of like them.

I'm sure I'll get modded down for supporting them, but hey I'm just being honest.

Re:Microsoft DEVELOPER tools are good (0)

Namronorman (901664) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884735)

I'd like to say the same thing, really. I personally use both Linux and Windows, and while coding for Windows (C and C++) using the Windows API, it's very convenient to have something solid like Visual Studio. I myself have a purchased copy of Visual Studio .NET 2003 and it's wonderful.

Nothing is forced upon me, the GUI was easy to learn, and I can still do everything by hand. Even though there are a lot of pretty things to look at, you have a choice and at the end of the day, that's what I want. Visual Basic on the other hand? It seems like a lot of people mis-interpret the visual part. By the way if anyone wants to say you have to use their visual resource editor, you don't, there's an open as option!

Re:Microsoft DEVELOPER tools are good (5, Funny)

deinol (210478) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884843)

I'm sure I'll get modded down for supporting them

This is Slashdot. You would have been modded down for supporting them, but you always get mod points for pointing out that you would be modded down.

Now I'm going to be modded down for not being very funny.


Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13884885)

Now I'm going to be modded down for not being very funny.

You're welcome.

Re:Microsoft DEVELOPER tools are good (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13884895)

Three things, in my opinion. Their games studio is pretty rock solid.

Here's an interesting thought. Is it possible that part of the reason Microsoft has been so successful in keeping Windows the de facto standard is because their developer tools are pretty solid? That is, they've got a solid developer's network and pretty reliable APIs. Or is that a consequence of having been the de facto standard for so long?

Re:Microsoft DEVELOPER tools are good (4, Insightful)

captain_craptacular (580116) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884902)

If anyone but MS made Visual Studio I have 0 doubt that everyone on /. would be singing it's praises right now. VS is IMHO if not the best, then without of a doubt one of the top 2 IDE's in existance right now and has been for quite some time. Even in the much maligned you aren't forced to do anything with the GUI.

The authors gripes about not being able to see the code in it's entirety are complete BS. All you have to do is expand the conveniently hidden setup and autogenerated code and you can read to your hearts content. The default is to hide most of that code because frankly, it's insignificant. Do you really need to see the declarations for the 250 objects on your form? Do you really need to see the wrappers around database drivers? No and No.

Are you going to claim that a mechanic who uses the computer in your car to tell him you have a bad sparkplug is a bad mechanic? Or are you going to be quietly grateful that he was able to fix your problem for $50 in 1/2 an hour instead of the old school "hard core" method of slowly replacing part after part until you figure out which was the broken one, which costs you lots of time and money?

Say what? (2, Funny)

187807 (883881) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884691)

From TFS:
...Microsoft tools force you...

Microsoft? FORCE? No way!

Re:Say what? (1)

Gilmoure (18428) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884712)

In post-Soviet Georgia...

Top Down / Bottom Up (3, Insightful)

dubl-u (51156) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884701)

In the article, he mentions that IntelliSense encourages bottom-up programming, as it can only give hints for existing code. That's less true about IntelliJ's excellent Java editor IDEA (and I think Eclipse too, but it has been a while). Why? Because if you write a method call that doesn't exist, you can hit alt-enter and it will create the method for you. As somebody who likes both top-down and bottom-up approaches depending on circumstance, I think it balances things out nicely.

Re:Top Down / Bottom Up (5, Interesting)

_xeno_ (155264) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884870)

Eclipse does something like IntelliSense, but it does it correctly, assuming his description of IntelliSense is correct.

Basically, Eclipse doesn't do anything while you're typing. If you type out "id" and a space, it stays "id" with a space after it. In fact, Eclipse won't do anything if you just type "id." It will only start offering suggestions after you enter a period to access an object's properties and methods. Even then, if you're typing fast enough, it won't pop up anything. If you pause, it will display a list, but it won't alter your typing unless you press enter. So if you have a new object, and you decide it needs an "id" field, which you haven't defined yet, you can simply do " = foo;" and Eclipse won't replace "id" with anything. (It will, however, flag it as an error, since "id" isn't defined in this example.)

Now there's another feature of Eclipse's implementation: pressing Control-Space anywhere a Java identifier can go will bring up a list of identifiers that can fit there. (This includes things like in doc comments.) So if you don't want to type out "ExcessivelyLongInterfaceNameInterface," you can just type "E" and hit Control-Space, and up will pop a list of everything that starts with "E." However, it will NEVER replace what you're typing, until you press enter. Continuing to type will further refine the list, so if you type "x" after popping on the list above, it'll further refine the list to things that begin with "Ex."

This gives you all the power of Microsoft's IntelliSense (something I missed when going from Visual J++ to Java 1.2 all those years ago), but causes none of the "don't do that for me" problems the author of the article was complaining about.

I don't think his complaint was the concept of code assistance, it was Microsoft's implementation.

Indeed it does! (5, Funny)

fyrie (604735) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884706)

I'm a C# coder who uses Visual Studio 2003 8 hours a day during the week. I recently got an MRI and the results were unanimous - TEH BRAIN ROT!

Nonsense, it's just another tool! (4, Insightful)

Average_Joe_Sixpack (534373) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884711)

I will say VS has "allowed" more "unqualified" developers into the mix due to the ease in using the tool, but to say it would effect the creativity of a good developer is bullshit. This guy sounds like the old time machinists who bitch about CNC over a mill and lathe.

Visual orthogonal to coding (1)

evw (172810) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884725)

Visual Studio and Microsoft tools force you to adopt programming techniques designed around implementation speed, not understanding or quality.

So VS makes implementation easier. Does that lead to sucky code? No. It just lowers the bar so that sucky coders can knock something out.

Here are some guys who compare a GUI design using VS to Mac OS X. Executive summary: VS does well in polish, although after some tool development on the Mac side it holds its own: ment/ []

It must be Microsoft's fault! (0, Troll)

Jeian (409916) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884730)

This is just silly. How on earth does a software program *force* you into bad programming techniques? Either you know how to do it right, or you don't.

But any excuse to bash Microsoft, eh?

Re:It must be Microsoft's fault! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13884795)

wow. simply stunning

you have never programmed more than helloworld have you

Re:It must be Microsoft's fault! (0, Redundant)

A beautiful mind (821714) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884815)

Hey, I'll start bashing Bush in a second too, I know you would like it ;)

But seriously, some things are bashed for a reason.

Re:It must be Microsoft's fault! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13884848)

wb jeian

Does it? Not sure. But from experience I can say: (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Crowhead (577505) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884734)

Beware the coder who can't for the life of him code without it.

Re:Does it? Not sure. But from experience I can sa (4, Funny)

rackhamh (217889) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884798)

Why, in case the martians attack and take out all our strategic IDE reserves?

Re:Does it? Not sure. But from experience I can sa (4, Insightful)

Doctor Crumb (737936) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884836)

Exactly; if a person needs an IDE in order to understand the code, then that person is not a programmer, they are an IDE operator. IDEs are the assembly line of the programming world; you can get cheaper, less skilled labour to produce something adequate using it. I wouldn't say that they necessarily "rot the brain", but they do keep many people from ever improving beyond the level of being an IDE operator.

charles is on the payroll (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13884744)

Yes, VS rots the brain. Worse, it will rot your paycheck and tie your future to being a MS sockpuppet.

oh... my... god... (-1, Troll)

circletimessquare (444983) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884748)

classic slashdot partisan bullshit

saying that using a microsoft development platform rots the brain?

right! gotcha!

this is a title that only the brain dead linux/ perl/ apache/ php/ firefox partisans here on slashdot would appreciate, laugh, slap each other on the back in their smug holier-than-thou clique, and go on to their next hilarious article about balmer throwing chairs or something

like any of this partisan crap is supposed to mean anything in the real world?

here's a news flash for you:

brain dead partisan politics, nay, high school cliques, like the ones you find here on slashdot, with no basis in reality or technology, now THAT rots the brain!

for real

i feel like i have to go take a shower to wash the stink of slashdot off me when i read headlines like this

i can feel a million fat dweebs with stuffed penguins next to their monitor in the basement crawling on my skin


Re:oh... my... god... (2, Insightful)

kerohazel (913211) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884782)

Apparently parent can't get enough of this crap.

Re:oh... my... god... (1)

P3NIS_CLEAVER (860022) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884811)

It would of been a more worthwhile article if he had compared these problems with other IDEs such as borlands or eclipse. Maybe 'IDEs rot the brain'?

That being said, I have written .NET console applications with textpad and BAT files. What does c have to do with it?

Re:oh... my... god... (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13884894)

It's not about "an MS development platform" - it's about a wizard-packed, macro-laden, obfuscuated way of programming. Visual Studio is a gem of a programming environment and I use it for my own C++ science apps. I just don't use the things in it that sprawl my code across 20-odd different source files and make coming back to it at a later date a nightmare. And that's a news flash for you.

NO (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13884762)

but it will make your pennis small.

Disconnected from the environment (4, Interesting)

erroneus (253617) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884768)

Is it good or bad? I can't tell you. But the more disconnected from the environment and the machine, the less comfortable I feel about programming. Then again, the only program languages I know are Assembler for 6809, general forms of original BASIC and C. Object oriented stuff more or less caused me to lose interest in programming because it was increasingly difficult to imagine what the computer was really doing when it was executing my code. With BASIC and C, I can mentally write the assembler code and understand what's going on.

So... yeah I can see where programmer's eye-candy would be a major distraction for a programmer just getting started. But "back in the day" useful code could be written in Basic and C... wasn't complex or beautiful but served some purpose. In today's visual environments, it's not too hard to imagine kids getting REALLY bored with making meaningless code that doesn't look like the apps they are accustomed to running... but it's that meaningless code that really drives apps right?

Maybe I'm missing something important (and I probably am) but my initial impressions of graphical RAD tools are that it's a lot of flash and bluster but doesn't inspire a coder to write code.

C++ Intellisense and... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13884769)

..."Edit and Continue" are awesome features, and I wish that an open-source IDE had them. Actually, kdevelop's Intellisense is coming along nicely, so that just leaves the latter. I doubt we'll ever see it in our lifetimes, though :( These two features are really the only things I admire about Visual Studio (I'm not interested in the "Visual" aspect at all), which in turn is the only product of Microsoft's that I admire. I can live without them, but going back to make, gcc and gdb feels like going back to the stone ages.

Absolutely Not (3, Insightful)

th1ckasabr1ck (752151) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884770)

I've posted about this before. []

I guess I'm one of those uncool geeks who actually likes Visual Studio. I use it 10 hours/day and it certainly makes me more productive at my job.

It's also worth noting that VS doesn't FORCE you to do anything. There's always "Win32 console project" if you want to code like that.

For those of us who don't care (4, Informative)

mikejz84 (771717) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884773)

I use VB6 and .net when I need to bang out an app, esp for database stuff. I known dame well it's the ideal way, but then again, I don't call myself a programmer. I really don't care about the deep stuff, just making something to get the job done. If I need something better, I would hire someone to do it. .net is like an automatic car; purist dispise them, but for 90% of people, they could care less, they are not intrested in the car, just were it can get them.

Death to Code Generation (5, Insightful)

dubl-u (51156) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884774)

I often end up reviewing or working on code from other people, and I couldn't agree more about his dislike of generated code.

Note that there are two sorts: the kind you never edit and the kind you have to edit. I love compilers, as they generate machine code so well that you never should have to look at it. But programs that generate source code or, even worse, documentation, are things I revile. They let an amateur get quick results, but at a drastic reduction in long-term maintainability. As Martin Fowler says, "Any fool can write code that a computer can understand. Good programmers write code that humans can understand."

Re:Death to Code Generation (1)

rainman_bc (735332) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884827)

I couldn't agree more about his dislike of generated code.

Ruby on Rails is taking the OSS world by storm right now, and from what I can see it's all about "generated code".

I've played around with it some, and while cool, it's a framework, with some similarities to others out there, including dotNet.

Eclipse handles some things MUCH better (1)

martone66 (643104) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884776)

Coming from a Java/Eclipse background, there are some things about Visual Studio that really annoy me.

1. Go To Definition works about 75% of the time in VS, but it seems to need to do a lot of searching in order to find where a class or interface is declared. In Eclipse, I can control-click on a class, method, or variable, and 100% of the time it will quickly jump to its definition.

2. Go To Reference is worthless and just does not work in VS. Contrast this with Eclipse, which will not only find all references of a given class, method, variable, etc, but can give me a call hierarchy to let me jump back in the call stack to find out how low-level methods are called.

3. I miss Eclipse's Open Type, where I can start typing the first few letters of a class and have it list matching classes in the project.

It's not all bad, I do like some things about VS and C#. I do like C# properties. I like the Command Window in the debugger, and I like being able to right click a statement and set another line as the next statement while debugging. The point-and-clickyness of the form designer is nice.

However, it seems like I do a lot more plain old text searching in VS (for classes, methods, etc.) than I ever did in Eclipse. I feel that Eclipse lets me code at a higher level of abstraction than VS does.

stfu, this article is flamebait (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13884779)

I'm the lead dev on an ASP.NET project consisting of 500 pages, dozens of web services, and several rich client apps. In all of that there has been zero dragging and dropping.

This article is crap and comments thus far are even worse. MS gets stuff wrong, but VS is not one of them.

What about Eclipse? (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13884781)

Eclipse has even more nice/brain-rotting features than Visual Studio, mostly because Java is a much easier language for an IDE to understand than C++ because there is no preprocessor. In fact Eclipse makes Visual Studio look like not much more than Notepad with a GUI builder. It even detects compile errors and warnings as you type. So it totally encourages that bottom-up programming style. Is it also evil? Developing Java in Eclipse is so much faster than developing it by hand, and Eclipse provides tools to "clean up" what you did by refactoring, tools to automatically generate stubs for those undefined classes/methods that you're calling to get rid of those nasty red underlines representing compile errors, etc. I would say it's just much easier to make an IDE smart if it knows what you're doing, i.e. you declare stuff before using it.

So you want to program in vi? (1)

RingDev (879105) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884796)

VS.Net makes developing simple applications very easy. It also makes programming very complexe applications relatively easy. True, your average entry level programmer is not going to be getting into threading, memory management, abstraction, multitier design fundamentals and design patterns. But they are there and amazingly easy to use in .Net. I would say that Microsoft's development tools are one of the primary reasons why we have seen equally impressive if not better languages drop of the face of the planet (Power Builder vs VB5). I've been out of the Java loop for almost 2 years ago, but last time I worked with it your choices in IDEs were basicly, crap, and crappier. Either you delt with bloated interfaces that sucked resources, or you worked in a text editor by hand. At that same point in time VS.Net 2k3 was available with an amazing amount of developer assistance tools. And now with VS.Net 2k5 coming out, there are so many great tools to save us even more time! With the exception of default instantiations, VS.Net 2k5 is looking like the best IDE released to date.


Human resources and time matter too (1)

quintessentialk (926161) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884805)

Caveat: I did not RTFA. Implementation speed and efficiency is part of total speed and efficiency too. In my case, I'm a graduate student in physics, not computer science. Though I personal don't use visual [x] products, my problem solving approach is frequently "quickest and easiest path to a working solution." Often there are more efficient ways, but I know that when I factor in the time I would need to spend studying and experimenting, it turns out to be a quicker solution over all to take an easier route.

Feh. (1, Interesting)

Black Parrot (19622) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884807)

I'll take a text editer and CLI over an IDE anytime.

Ok, not anytime. The IDE search & jump facilities are extremely useful when you first sit down to work on a code base that you aren't familiar with. But for my own code, or for others' code that I've worked with long enough to understand reasonably well, I find IDEs a nuisance.

Forced? (2, Insightful)

JesseT (840296) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884816)

As a long time user of both MSFT's Visual Studio IDEs, Eclipse, and *nix style (autoconf/automake/emacs/etc.) development and build environments, I have to attest that this article is somewhat misleading. Visual Studio doesn't force you to use drag-and-drop anymore than say Eclipse's Visual Editor plugin. Sure, the marketing people at MSFT spend all of their time talking about how VS let's you do drag-drop-n'-click programming, but that doesn't mean the actual product does solely that alone. You can write everything by hand if you so choose.

I think we've seen this argument before, but in other forms. How many times have I seen hard-core C and/or C++ programmers state that "automatic garbage collection rots the mind?" Sure, you might not need to keep track of all of those allocations anymore with GC, but you still need to understand how a given garbage collector works in order to write efficient code for that garbage collector. Same goes with Visual Studio and managed applications: you need to understand the underlying system (in this case the .NET CLR and class library framework) to get the most out of it.

Professional developers worth their salt understand this.

Understanding is Implementation Speed (1)

shapr (723522) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884818)

How can you implement something that you don't understand?
How can you fix something that you don't understand?
Once you've optimized the inner loop, the only way to improve your code is to change your abstractions, or change your implementation completely. That requires that you understand what you're doing. The more you understand it, the better your program can be.
I'd suggest test driven development, it interleaves design and implementation. Because, you can't implement something that you don't understand, and understanding often comes just after you wrote the code that requires or is required by the code you are about to write.

thank you for agreeing! (1)

Mark19960 (539856) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884828)

I *HATE* visual studio. I find myself doing it in notepad instead!

Now, in other IDEs, like Kdeveop, you dont get all that wiz-bang stuff, you need to actually KNOW what your writing.
Not to mention, the interface sucks in visual studio (IMO)

Sure....... you can put together some little window that does neat little things
but pointing and clicking, but do you know what its actually DOING?
How does it draw that button, or that textedit in there?

If you dragged it onto the screen and set a few things here and there, who is doing the work?

Re:thank you for agreeing! (1)

JesseT (840296) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884889)

If you want to know what is going on behind the scenes, nothing is stopping you from viewing the code behind a control or a form in the visual form designer. You can work both ways... drag-and-drop a control onto the form designer and view/augment the generated code, or write the code from scratch by hand, and then view/modify that code from the form designer. If you want to understand how the classes that you inherit from work, you RTFM for the product, in this case, the MSDN Library.

The IDE is a tool, and as a tool, you need to know how to use it properly, otherwise you'll find yourself being used by the tool. The argument boils essentially down to user laziness.

The problem is always the programmer (2, Insightful)

b4k3d b34nz (900066) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884834)

The problem here doesn't have so much to do with VS as it does the mentality of any given programmer. VS provides you with a WYSIWYG interface which does most of the connecting of elements, events and properties for you, without ever touching the code. THAT'S A GOOD THING. If the user doesn't have any experience with programming, they'll probably stop there and will have what amounts to a bunch of disorganized components in a form. When it comes to IDE's, the program can only be as good as the programmer. Sure, it'll provide necessary hints and make code/program/solution development quicker or better, but unless the programmer knows what's happening, they're going to create some BS program.

Most would laugh at someone who tried to create a decent web page in FrontPage and it looks like a turd. Why? Because most people who use FrontPage usually don't touch the markup and can only get to a certain level. Once again, the output is only as good as the programmer (or developer, whatever). If the web developer knows good practices like using CSS, external files and correct markup, the website will probably look good or better. The same goes for programmers and VS--if the programmer doesn't know the difference between a function and their mom, they'll only go so far (and they probably have other issues too).

Don't blame someone's bad coding job on the IDE. It can't force you to adopt shoddy programming practices unless you didn't know any in the first place.

So true (1)

TiggertheMad (556308) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884835)

I have been coding for years, and the latest VS offerings are crap. VS6 was pretty nice, as you could at least igonre the MFC auto generated code and just write whatever you wanted to.

More recent versions of VS are just awful. They try to 'help' you so much, it just gets in the way. Compund that with the way that MS products intrgrate with each other, and you have a nightmare of a program. And yeah, too much stuff is hidden behind pretty drag and drop component menus.

I think the reason that MS is so interested in search engines lately is not due to a desire to compete with google, but just to have a search engine that can find a useful article in MSDN when you need it.

No, it doesn't! (1)

MaestroSartori (146297) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884849)

See, it sounds like the real problem here is the whole "visual programming" thing rather than the IDE. All of the 'problems' sound to me exactly like my experience of using C++ Builder years ago, when I was hurriedly knocking out some pointless test apps while learning the basics of C++. I quickly discovered Builder was fairly useless for this purpose, and went to using VC6 to write command-line programs, which was much more educational.

I've now used VC6 and VS.Net professionally. Again not as visual programming tools, but as compiler/debugger frontends for various consoles. They absolutely rock - nice, stable, coherent(ish) IDEs that have less in the way of annoyance *for me* compared to their main alternative in my area (CodeWarrior), or indeed any of the free/open-source IDEs I've used so far.

For the sake of completeness, I must add that Eclipse looks absolutely awesome, and I'm about to invest some time in learning the ins and outs of it. It looks to have all of the VS good points and adds a few of its own (even more customisable, partially down to being open source!).

HS (1)

Chickenofbristol55 (884806) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884850)

in Highschool I took both visual basic and Java courses. I have hated VB and Visual Studio ever since. Its the worst way to introduce a relative n00b to programming. Because it really isnt. It only allows us to use lower level thinking. Everyone's programs in the class were very simliar in nature (we were allowed to create a small little video game of our own design). The only interesting thing was that I made a little rts game, and everyone used some shiity code from a shitty book to move images. Resulting in a quite unnatural looking white flashing graphics. Everyone else pretty much made some text based game or pong, boy did it stiffle creativity. Although, in my java class I made a Stephan Hawking Pac man, and everyone else pretty much did a card game or pong. So maybe Im just blaming VB and VS on some really uninteresting geeks at my school.

Only the lazy fail (2)

NousCS (180385) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884851)

Just as repeated use of calculator degrades a person's math skills I agree that Visual Studio can degrade a programmer's ability to remember all the aspects of a language. However, it really only affects those programmers who are lazy. Many people have already noted that it is easy to turn off the auto-whatevers and use code. You can go further and just use the command line. Lazy FU|5. Also, if you don't use Visual Studio why are you reading this?

Assuming that you code alone... (4, Insightful)

borkus (179118) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884852)

...I'd agree that you're just as well off working in a text editor. However, most software projects involve using other folk's libraries - whether Microsoft's, other vendors' or just libraries created by your co-workers.

I just finished a project where a co-worker of mine worked on the business logic objects for a system and I did the presentation and screen flow. Yeah, I could've fished through his JavaDocs and designs. That would have added 10-30 minutes everytime I had to figure out a new call to one of his libraries. Instead, I could hit "." in Eclipse, pull up the methods and select the one that I needed. In the future, other folks on my team will need to support that code. Being able to receive documentation from within the editor will make their jobs much easier.

It's interesting that the project that author most enjoyed was a C program he wrote for his own amusement. Unfortunately, most of the coding folks do for money involves working with others. While working individually on a project is more fun, being able to do so is typically a luxury.

Does Visual Studio Rot the Brain? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13884857)

Full article []

Hypercard vs. Visual Studio (2, Interesting)

G4from128k (686170) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884858)

From what I have seen, Visual Studio seems to automagically impose a bunch of programming cruft on any project. The default code structures make it hard to fully understand the what and why. In contrast, Hyerpcard [] let the programmer draw all the UI elements with a Drawing tools palette and easily add event-driven code into each UI object (Cm-Option-Click took you right to the code space of a UI object). A simple message passing heirarchy let UI messages flow intuitively from UI objects such as buttons to the card with that button to the background of the card to the file (called a stack) that contained all the cards. In short, Hypercard provided an excellent interface for creating interfaces.

Hypercard had some serious limitations (no data structures, monochrome, single-user applications, sometimes slow on machines under 50 MHz, etc.), but it had a very nice approach to both constructing UI-intensive applications and an extremely fast edit-run-debug cycle.

Its just a tool (2, Insightful)

Zaai (817587) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884866)

Tools are there to facilitate the developer. If the tool doesn't force you to look in depth at the code it generates it can be more productive than tools that do force you to look at auto generated code. This has nothing to do with proper software engineering practise. A good software engineer will first think about use cases, requirements, design before touching the tool. So don't blame the tool for bad development practise.

Visual Studio = Vendor Lock in (3, Insightful)

Spy der Mann (805235) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884867)

Just try doing an #import with GCC.

When you switch from VS to GCC you suddenly find many things you had taken for granted aren't there. Hey, where's the RAD? How do I do this? Why don't my #import's work? What's with those unresolved links?

Etc. etc. etc.

The great thing with open source libraries like wxWidgets (which is very similar to MFC, by the way) is that you know what you're linking to and how they work.

So the key word in here is "transparency".

Finish the fucking story (3, Funny)

heinousjay (683506) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884869)

I have been programming pretty steadily for about 30 years now, and only once have I seen a computer fail in a way I'd classify as "interesting."

I really wanted to hear the end of this...

Huh? (5, Insightful)

Comatose51 (687974) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884873)

Got my degree in CS and programmed almost entirely in *nix and using Emacs. Did my senior thesis using C# and VS .Net. Don't really notice anything different really... The only difference is that I use the .Net library which gives me a lot of prebuilt stuff. VS.Net is not all that different from what Emacs was for me. They both accomplish one thing and that's to save/write my code to a file. I fail to see what was forced on anyone. Programming, the actual process of writing the code is VERY simple. All you need is a text editor and something to compile it afterwards. So I don't see how any tool you use to do that can force you to do anything. If I have bad techniques or habits, that's my fault. If nothing else, VS.Net has made commenting and generating documentation a lot easier. My programming technique isn't something I'm going to blame/give credit to MSFT--not this one for sure.

I disagree (1)

OzPhIsH (560038) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884877)

I do a quite a bit of programming as a graduate computer engineering student, generally relating to the web, and preferably in Java. For smaller projects I prefer vim and some syntax highlighting, and for larger projects, I like to use eclipse. But being a student, I'm often at the whim of certain teacher preferences. For instance, I'm taking an introductory computer graphics class in which we're learning managed Direct3D. Obviously this requires windows. Anyway, my point being that I'm fairly versed with with alternate programming environments. So, I'm a bit curious as to why we're singling out Visual Studio. What about Eclipse? Does it not 'rot the brain' as well? What makes Visual Studio worse than any other IDE? Are we all supposed to go back to using just text editors, or are we just bashing Microsoft products here?

It seems like some people are focusing too much wysiwyg gui editor. That's stupid. I don't care what anyone says. I think the Window's forms editor is a godsend. I wish that the eclipse visual editor was anywhere NEAR close the ease and usefulness of the windows forms editor. I'm an engineer. I like to design slick systems that are componantized, modular, extendable, etc. I like the challenge of design, and I like the challenge of implenting those projects. What I do not like is spending hours trying to create a gui interface for the system. GUI programming is tedious, frustrating, and lets face it, It's BORING. Do I even need to say 'GridBagLayout?' Lets face it. The only real need for a super slick professional looking GUI is if your making a commercial, retail application. If that is your goal, you'll hire someone that specializes in creating and designing user interfaces. Otherwise, probably 95% of the time, there is no point waisting your time hand coding a gui. These tools are there to let you explore your creativity, and realize the beauty of your design without getting bogged down by mundane details, like button placement on a GUI. You'd be a fool NOT to use them.

no gun to your head (1)

fletchzip (914523) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884880)

The statement that "VS forces you to adopt speed and not quality" is as silly as saying "open source development forces you to make non-standardised user interfaces". The quality of the code written depends entirely on the effort, skill and experience of the developer, personally I find no evidence to suggest VS forces people to write bad code. Of course I've seen bad C# and VB code, but to blame the IDE is insane. I've seen bad PHP but I don't instantly blame zend.

As opposed to Qt Designer? Or other tools? (3, Insightful)

Assmasher (456699) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884883)

The tool has nothing to do with whether your fundamental understanding of application architecture is strong or not. What a tool like VStudio or QT Designer DOES do is let people who have no knowledge build applications. That doesn't make VStudio rot your brain. Your brain was either rotted before or not. Most of the worst code I've seen during my career was entered via vi and/or emacs. That doesn't mean vi doesn't rock or that emacs leads to brain rot now, does it?

The Eternal Question (1)

airrage (514164) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884884)

From the article: Programming is the most empowering thing we can do on a computer, and that's what we do.
The old saying is that teacher touches eternity ... a bad teacher touches the same.

Overgeneralization (5, Funny)

bwalling (195998) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884891)

All articles like this overgeneralize.

It's not the size of the tool... (2, Insightful)

xtheunknown (174416) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884892)

I don't care what tool you use. If you aren't a good programmer, you're not going to produce good code, no matter what tool you use. If you are a good programmer, then Visual Studio helps you produce good code much faster.

That said, perhaps I might agree that people who are learning how to code, should probably do so with as little assistance from the tool as possible.

This is the same thing I would say about kids learning math. Using calculators rots the brain, don't you think?
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