Microsoft's Visual Studio now has Achievements

Achievements are the only thing you need to keep a gamer striving towards their next goal. The premise of a few more virtual points for their effort seems to be enough to drive people to do much more. Channel 9 have realised this, and as WPCentral are reporting, are gleefully making the most of the opportunity, with their own achievement system.

While currently in beta, the idea shows a lot of promise. The coders responsible have created a Windows Phone application to go alongside their idea, and it even supports Live Tiles. This has led to the application offering a similar feature set to Microsoft's own Achievement infrastructure for the WP7, Games for Windows, and Xbox LIVE platforms. Appealingly, the service even allows you to compare the Channel 9 equivalent to Gamerscore with other users of the same service.

The app is only usable by those who have signed up to the beta for the system, but if you are not one of the beta entrants, then you still have an opportunity. The designer has invited people to get in contact via his blog, should they want to get into the beta and try the Visual Studio Achievements ahead of the pack.

The move is undoubtedly creative, but since it does have to monitor your code to verify that you have fulfilled the criteria it could lead to some questions being raised among more security-conscious coders. Images from the Windows Phone application are below:

 

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49 Comments

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Ricky65 said,
If only MS spent more time on useful things, like implementing more C++11 language features.

Achievment Unlocked: Making stupid comment based on title without reading article.

I've programmed for over 20 years and right now I'm just shaking my head in complete disbelief.

Developers don't need stupid "achievements". Writing clean code that does what you want is an achievement of it's own.

FloatingFatMan said,
I've programmed for over 20 years and right now I'm just shaking my head in complete disbelief.

Developers don't need stupid "achievements". Writing clean code that does what you want is an achievement of it's own.

Exactly, especially the last line!!

Achievement: You've compiled a solution that contains over 10 million lines of code over 3 compiler build farms using MS Team server and VS Archatect Edition!

Good for kids/first time leaners. Irrelevant or anyone who has coded for over a year. So why is everyone bi*ching above me?

Xerax said,
Good for kids/first time leaners. Irrelevant or anyone who has coded for over a year. So why is everyone bi*ching above me?

I wonder this also, it's as if they think students don't use Visual studio, facepalm.

funkydude said,

I wonder this also, it's as if they think students don't use Visual studio, facepalm.


Our school only uses Windows and Office, no other Microsoft products. We code Java (Eclipse), Python, PHP and JS only. And a bit of C++, but not in Visual Studio.

Ambroos said,

Our school only uses Windows and Office, no other Microsoft products. We code Java (Eclipse), Python, PHP and JS only. And a bit of C++, but not in Visual Studio.

Same with the computer engineering department at the uni I graduated from.

I think it might be hard to teach programming on something like Visual Studio. Especially considering most applications in academia are geared towards problem solving and not exactly application development.

I've programmed in other IDEs and even did a lot of work for several years living on the CLI and VIM. That being said, I'm all about the "rapid application development" (RAD, an acronym not really used anymore when describing IDEs). I've had Visual Studio installed on-and-off over the years, and have never sat down to really learn it. These achievements might round out the learning experience enough to at least make it intriguing.

I could see university or college programming courses take on an idea like this... especially since it brings an academic order to the normally chaotic 'real world' practices , it could only lead to good things

This isn't . The achievements are a Visual Studio plugin, for *ANY* version of VS 2010, and anyone with VS can earn and view them. (The plugin is literally months old). The Windows Phone 7 application is just a viewer to let you see what achievements you and your friends have earned - which you can do anyway - which is actaully the thing that's just come out as a BETA. This news article is very unclear on the whole thing

Basically, it's insinuating that this achievement system is a new thing, whereas it's not - it's just the WP7 viewing application BETA that's new

~Johnny said,
This isn't . The achievements are a Visual Studio plugin, for *ANY* version of VS 2010, and anyone with VS can earn and view them. (The plugin is literally months old). The Windows Phone 7 application is just a viewer to let you see what achievements you and your friends have earned - which you can do anyway - which is actaully the thing that's just come out as a BETA. This news article is very unclear on the whole thing

Basically, it's insinuating that this achievement system is a new thing, whereas it's not - it's just the WP7 viewing application BETA that's new

But can you view the achievements you have somewhere other than WP7?

Of course! They weren't going to make an achievement system and then not let you view what you have! I believe you could do it from the site / plugin itself

~Johnny said,
Of course! They weren't going to make an achievement system and then not let you view what you have! I believe you could do it from the site / plugin itself

OK Thats what I wanted to know.

Wish there was some kind of API: I want to write a Android client for it

Dear Microsoft, Visual Studio is not Steam. Dear Microsoft, A PC is not Phone or Tablets. This is example of peopel being idiots.

techguy77 said,
Dear Microsoft, Visual Studio is not Steam. Dear Microsoft, A PC is not Phone or Tablets. This is example of peopel being idiots.

"A PC is not a phone or tablets." Tablets were PCs decades b4 they weren't. & since when does MSFT think a phone is a PC?

Development and achievements dont mix together. However this could be nice if used for people who just started learning programming, like grade 10 students for instance.

Soulsiphon said,
For nerds that spend more time in an IDE than their PS3? How absolutely moronic.

Real nerds already know how to write classes, and use encapsulation and polymorphism. But then again real nerds don't use an IDE for programming at all

Joey S said,

Real nerds already know how to write classes, and use encapsulation and polymorphism. But then again real nerds don't use an IDE for programming at all

Only cool guys and jocks use IDEs. Stupid jocks and their hot girlfriends that are only really attracted to that sporty Visual Studio IDE.

Don't worry, lambda lambda lambda will reveal the power of VIM soon enough...

Inspired? It does actually say on that link that Channel 9 were actually going to make it a reality. And they have

As an aside... these achievements aren't actually *new*, they've been around for MONTHS now. It's actually the Windows Phone 7 application that came out that they were really pushing

I like achievements. They create goals (such as get the HL:EP2 Gnome into the space rocket) that add to the experience but are too silly to add to the main story line.

DonC said,
I like achievements. They create goals (such as get the HL:EP2 Gnome into the space rocket) that add to the experience but are too silly to add to the main story line.
Achievements are alright, milestones (which far too many games use in place of achievements) are stupid.

I like achievements in gaming mostly. Some games I want to squeeze a little more gameplay out before I'm through with it and achievements are great for those. Most games I don't even pay attention to the achievements.

I don't pay attention to the gamerscore on xbox.

-=SEDIN=- said,

I love my achievements

I like them too. Makes me feel better when I am coding a long program and I get a par on the back for doing a good job. :3

Any chance to disable this? Not for me personally, but for those who are worried about their code being monitored?

~Johnny said,
This isn't part of Visual Studio. This is just an entirely unofficial add-in that you have to install yourself.

Yea the title is confusing it "Microsoft's Visual Studio now has Achievements" makes it sound like it is something MS added, automatically, because it states specifically that it "now has" them...

c3ntury said,
Any chance to disable this? Not for me personally, but for those who are worried about their code being monitored?
why would people want this disabled if their code is being monitored?