Choosing compilation targets was a relatively straightforward operation prior to .Net Core. Developers now face several possibilities and choosing a target is not so obvious anymore. To understand the big picture in .Net Core, the key concepts are: target framework monikers and .Net Standard.
Microsoft has made available Bot Framework Preview to developers and Google has purchased API.ai, a bot engine with many integrations.
Microsoft continues to refine their new extension for Visual Studio 2015 which provides developers with the ability to write C/C++ code in VS2015 and then transfer it to a remote machine running Linux for compilation and debugging. This combines the benefits of Visual Studio's IDE with advantages of a Linux deployment environment.
Real-time analysis of event streams has a new focus in Big Data platforms, both on-premise and in the cloud. AWS have released Amazon Kinesis Analytics, a rival to Azure StreamAnalytics. Both platforms use a simple SQL language for complex querying, and move Big Data analysis into a SaaS-like space.
Don Syme, creator of F#, presented at .Net Fringe 2016 an assessment of the current status of F#. He also commented on the duality that exists in F#, a functional language created on a runtime built for object oriented languages.
The routine creation of XAML data entry forms can be tedious, but thanks to a new Visual Studio extension this process can be streamlined. XAML Power Toys for Visual Studio 2015 provides a way for developers to quickly create data entry forms using XAML for WPF or Xamarin forms applications. With UWP app support coming, this is an all-in-one tool that supports all major WPF use-cases.
Due to a combination of design errors, bugs, and incorrect documentation, it is surprisingly hard to use .NET's HttpClient correctly. As a result, applications that appear to be working correctly in production can suffer from performance issues and runtime failures under load.
Microsoft has released the 4th preview of Visual Studio "15", the successor to VS2015. New in this release is a focus on the new lightweight installer, expanded language support in the IDE editor, and C++ focused workloads.
Amazon recently updated their API Gateway service to include Usage Plans. A common pattern for companies that expose their APIs, include monetizing them through a 3rd party developer ecosystem. Usage Plans allow an organization to manage 3rd party developer consumption patterns and billing at an API key level.
You can now run Microsoft SQL Server on Google Cloud Platform. All the major cloud providers support SQL Server, either with an IAAS or PAAS model, but the offerings have very different feature sets. Providing an attractive option for migrating SQL Server to the cloud seems to be a new focus for Google, Amazon and Microsoft.
Microsoft PowerShell has been released as an open source project and now is available for Linux and Mac OS X. Windows administrators apply their scripts and knowledge to non-Microsoft systems, while developers can view and contribute to the project's source code.