UK Microsoft's Eric Nelson Interviews Roberto Leitón

6/1/2008 ArtinSoft Update /

On June 10, ArtinSoft's CEO Roberto Leitón was interviewed by Eric Nelson, an Application Architect in Microsoft UK that has spent the last 12 years working with UK ISVs to help them explore and adopt the latest development technologies. Nelson first contacted ArtinSoft in early 2007, while doing some research on VB to .NET migration options for a large ISV in the UK. Since then, ArtinSoft and Nelson have teamed up to help several companies move off VB6, and he has been providing very useful Visual Basic to .NET upgrade resources through his blogs.

In this interview, Leitón tells Nelson how he first got involved with Microsoft and the VB migration business, and why rewrite might cause more harm than actual help to companies seeking to evolve their legacy systems. "The VB6 migrations are just starting to happen, we have been seeing a big increase in the number of large VB6 applications that are being migrated or the strategy to migrate them is being formulated. The experiences companies are having with total rewrites are increasing the number of automatic migrations", noted Leitón. He also reveals how beneficial ArtinSoft's solutions can be now that the clock is ticking with regards to the VB6 End of Life (EOL), thanks to a mix of automated application migration and some manual efforts. When asked about whether the VB6 to C# represents any real advantage, Leitón highlighted the importance of this .NET language among finance and insurance verticals, and why it is so important for them to take their investments directly to C#, avoiding the need of painful, long transitions.

Nelson also conducted a similar interview with William Morgan of Logica, one of ArtinSoft's partners in the UK. The Lead Architect for Logica's finance business provided very interesting insights on why there appears to be an increasing number of customers choosing migration strategies, especially when their apps are part of a business critical suite. A need to integrate within the wider enterprise, support costs going up, the difficulties in keep developers engaged on older technologies, and compliance regimes that prohibit to run critical applications on unsupported software, are some of the key considerations. "Logica has built a pretty strong partnership with Artinsoft now, the people who built the Visual Studio VB Upgrade Wizard, though we use an extended version of their tooling; this is more productive and makes our life easier than the standard downloadable version", said Morgan regarding Logica's relationship with ArtinSoft and the Visual Basic Upgrade Companion tool.

You can read the complete interviews at Eric Nelson' blog.