Moving From C/AL to AL – Chapter 2

My programming career began a long time ago. Back then a wise guy gave me a copy of Visual Basic 6 Pro. Since then I have come a long way. Although I want to make clear that I’m neither a hardcore programmer nor a extraordinary talented geek. My goal was always to get the job done.

So after many years of programming in Visual Basic and even VBA I got in touch with Microsoft Dynamics Attain 3.60. My first impression of the C/SIDE programming environment was the feeling of a cutdown version of the Visual Basic IDE. So I felt immediately at home. And C/SIDE was very efficient for my requirements. But of course also a bit boring too. Soon I was playing with com-add-ins again and later there came .net interop. And this felt good. Besides of NAV I invested quite some time into SSIS and there I really liked the script task the most. You had the full power of the .net framework but in a simple and cut down environment. Visual Studio always seemed a bit overwhelming to me. The following years I lost a bit of my coding hunger. I was more interested in things like SQL, Database Design and later the Power Platform rise really got me excited.

Then a few years ago suddenly Microsoft NAV or BC began to change. Suddenly we had a solid three tier architecture. We were confronted with extensions V1 and V2. This got my attention but I was not totally on fire. But this has changed in the last few months.

I did spend some time with Visual Studio Code and my verdict was – Yes, I like it.

I did spend some time with AL and the new concept of extensions and yes again, I like it.

The cloud, Azure functions, the Azure Stack itself, yes once more, I like it.

Now I’m again on fire. I feel excited as there are some many new things to learn.

Sure not all I easy or straightforward. A lot of things feel much harder to achieve now with regard to the new boundaries and Microsoft’s cloud first strategy. Nevertheless I’m willing to follow this path. I like the concept of bringing different pieces of software together. Running an Azure function from NAV BC to create a word or excel file seems pretty crazy but nevertheless I like it. I almost feel young again. Is this a midlife crisis – maybe but for me it feels right and that’s what counts. You should love the work you do. And you should never loose your hunger to learn new things. So yes I’m ready for the challenge. Let the games begin.

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