The following is a post from Steve Guggenheimer, Corporate Vice President of Developer Platform & Evangelism at Microsoft.


The developer ecosystem is undergoing rapid change, having grown from fewer than 20 million professional programmers just 15 years ago to more than 100 million coders today, ranging from pros to citizen developers. And, the opportunity has never been greater: With an explosion of low cost, powerful devices and the access to massive computing and processing power in the cloud, developers are no longer constrained by the hardware or software of a specific device or a local data store. But with opportunity comes the challenges of learning new technologies, fierce competition, and juggling the variety of devices and services in the marketplace. A successful path forward can include navigating any number of difficult choices before an app can generate revenue, create a differentiated experience and provide an efficient return on investment.

At Build 2013 this week in San Francisco, we will showcase how developers, app builders and companies of all sizes can create experiences on the Windows platform to engage consumers, empower employees, solve problems and drive companies. Whether developing a client application for the Windows desktop, or building to the modern device and cloud application patterns with Windows 8 and Windows Azure, developers are seeking consistent and flexible platforms.

Every application scenario requires a different set of considerations for today’s developer. Does the app require high performance like a graphically-intensive game? What kind of security model is needed to protect which types of data? Which, and how many, consumers are using the app, across which devices and which device types?

Developers that focus on building Web and mobile technologies are part of a broad community that supports today’s market realities of increasing device proliferation and the escalating importance of cloud services. These developers place a significant emphasis on Web standards like HTML5/Javascript, open source tools, languages and frameworks. Developers of websites and mobile (store) applications optimize their efforts for skills transfer and the balance of reach and application depth to optimize their return on investment while also ensuring each device offers a quality user experience.

Another segment of developers, grounded in an established set of app patterns and architectures, is anchored in traditional client-server technologies. These applications are often built to support line-of-business scenarios and are often built on top of, or integrated with, existing solutions built in .NET. These developers are increasingly using cloud, Web and mobile technologies to enhance their existing applications and support a broader set of devices while also factoring in the need to to comply with the security, management and access control technologies that are critical to the organizations that use them. Once transitioned, these developers can extend the value of their investment for their line of business customers to seamlessly reach a number of device types and power their experiences with greater cloud efficiencies.

The Windows platform can meet all of these needs across device and service platforms, and is enabled by platform commonality between Microsoft’s PC, tablet, phone, server and cloud. In the last few years, Microsoft has made huge engineering investments in a common Windows core across the broad platform of Windows PCs, Windows Phones, embedded Windows devices, Xboxes, Office and SharePoint applications, Windows Server, Windows Azure and more.

At Build 2013, we will talk about how developers of all types will be able to use Microsoft’s broad portfolio of product level capabilities spanning our devices and services, and show how these capabilities can be used together to address the needs of today’s developers. As we look even further toward the future, this platform synergy will continue to get better and better to support a thriving ecosystem of developers and even greater opportunity.

Tune in here to watch the keynotes and learn more!