Visual Basic Guru Moves to Microsoft's 'Oslo' Team

Paul Vick, a principal architect on Visual Basic, is moving over to Microsoft's broad software modeling initiative known as "Oslo." Vick, who helped Microsoft deliver its popular VB tool set, will now help produce Oslo, which is expected by some to be as big a deal for Microsoft as .NET.

Perhaps as evidence of how important Paul Vick, a principal architect of Microsoft's Visual Basic, is moving over to take a role in building out the Oslo declarative language.

Visual Basic is perhaps Microsoft's most popular language and is responsible for a whole sector of people who otherwise might not have become developers to actually learn to code. As a seminal Microsoft developer technology, Visual Basic enables the rapid application development of GUI applications.

That Vick is leaving his perch atop the VB development team to join the Oslo effort could be significant. The Oslo team already has some of Microsoft's sharpshooter developers on it, and the group only gets richer with Vick. Oslo insiders have said Microsoft's move to Oslo could be as big as the company's move to .NET several years ago.

Vick, who has worked on VB for more than 10 years and is named on several Microsoft patents relating to Visual Basic technology, said in a blog post: "I started asking myself whether it was time for a change. And, after thinking about it quite a bit and talking to quite a few people, I decided that it was. As much fun as it has been to work on Visual Basic, I felt the need to be doing something different than what I've been doing."

Don Box, a partner architect in the Microsoft Connected Systems Division, said in his own blog post, "Paul just joined my team to work on the Oslo language. ... I can't put into words how happy I am that Paul signed up to help us birth this baby."

The Oslo language is a new declarative programming language Microsoft has in the works that was code-named D. Microsoft will deliver an early look at the language as well as an Oslo tool and repository next month at its Professional Developers Conference.

Describing his future plans, Vick said:

""As to my next challenge, well, there isn't a whole lot I can say about that ... yet. I've got some personal ideas rattling around in my head that I'm going to get some time to spend working on, but my day job is going to be working with guys like Douglas Purdy, Don Box and Chris Anderson on the Oslo product.""

Although Vick is moving to Oslo, he said he will remain involved with the VB community. He also will be giving the primary talk on VB at the upcoming PDC.

"Even as I physically move to another team, in many ways I'm not really going anywhere," Vick said. "I'll be carrying with me a title of 'Visual Basic Language Designer Emeritus,' meaning that I will continue to participate in the VB language design process and will continue to work to ensure the VB language specification is kept complete and up to date, although I will no longer have primary authorship responsibilities."