After making Office for Android and iOS free last week, Microsoft has shaken the developer world this time around by making .NET open source, committing to make it run on Linux and Mac OS X and giving away a special version of its flagship developer application, Visual Studio.
Soma Somasegar, Microsoft's Corporate Vice President for its developer division, confirmed that the entire .NET core server stack would be eventually open-sourced under the MIT open source license.
The development platform will also be embracing other platforms outside Windows with Linux and Mac OS X coming with Android and iOS likely to be next.
Somasegar also confirmed that Microsoft would produce a free, fully featured edition of Visual Studio called Visual Studio Community 2013 which would be free for non-enterprise application development.
He also provided more details on the forthcoming Visual Studio 2015 as well as .NET 2015. Perhaps the single biggest improvement is the fact that it is pushing other mobile device platforms as well (iOS and Android).
This is a massive bet for Microsoft, a company that has changed a lot since Satya Nadella took over, so much so that even the director of Linux Foundation, Jim Zemlin, acknowledges that the new Microsoft is "certainly a different organization when it comes to open source".
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Désiré has been musing and writing about technology during a career spanning four decades. He dabbled in website builders and web hosting when DHTML and frames were in vogue and started narrating about the impact of technology on society just before the start of the Y2K hysteria at the turn of the last millennium.