If you've ever dreampt about being able to type that command, your dream got a little bit closer today. During Microsoft's conference today (April 3rd 2014), Microsoft announced that Roselyn, the codename of the .NET Compiler Platform, would be open sourced. To put this into layman's terms: One of the most widely developed platforms in the world now mostly uses permissive licensing. It's more than a gift, it's straight out of left field. But what does this mean for developers, consumers, and the company?
It means an increase in quality for sure. The advantages of open sourcing code as a commercial strategy have been well documented in Eric S. Raymond's "The Magic Cauldron", and now Microsoft is finally learning to follow his advice two decades after the fact. Bugs will be fixed sooner, the number of auditors for the source will skyrocket, reducing the chance of vulnerabilities and malfunctions, and innovations can be made at a much more accelerated pace than previously possible.
So, you're aware of the benefits of Microsoft's decision and want to jump in? Getting the sources for .NET (a line I thought I'd never write on this blog) is as simple a process of just typing this line:
git clone https://git01.codeplex.com/roslynIt's hosted on Codeplex, but it wouldn't be surprising to see a github mirror appear within the week.