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Let’s start with the elephant in the room. As a name for an event, Connect(); //2015 is a little much. Yes, that entire thing is the name. They might be trying too hard.

Now that we’ve got that out of the way, let’s talk about the awesome stuff Microsoft announced this week at it!

Visual Studio Online is now called Visual Studio Team Services. We’ve been a Microsoft gold certified ALM partner since the olden days, when the first releases of Visual Studio’s team solution were called Visual Studio Team System… so if you’re as old-school as us, please join us in a having a bit of a grin at their “new” acronym.

Within the new VSTS, I think the biggest wins by far are browser-based exploratory testing and Release Management services… although by the time you finish reading this blog post, there’s a good chance something even newer and cooler will have been announced.

And there’s other interesting stuff going on in the Visual Studioverse, not specifically ALM-related, except ALM is the entire lifecycle so isn’t it all ALM-related? Perhaps I am overthinking this. In any case…

Visual Studio Code is a new, lightweight, cross-platform IDE for creating and debugging modern web and cloud apps. It’s free, open source via GitHub, and extensible!

Visual Studio Dev Essentials is another free offering, pulling together a package of Microsoft and other third-party developer tools, downloads, trainings, and cloud access into a pretty sweet toolbox.

The new Visual Studio Marketplace opens up a world of extensibility for the Visual Studio suite. There’ve been third-party plug-ins for the IDE for a while, so what I’m really most excited about is the new integrations for VSO-now-VSTS. The DevDiv team has gotten more responsive and reliable about delivery over the years thanks to their agile and DevOps transformation, and by opening their products up to the community we’re sure to see the pace of innovation really take off!

There are the usual subscription and pricing tweaks, and announcements about upcoming releases of the on-premises tools (Visual Studio IDE and Team Foundation Server) that we all know and love. Check out all the news and announcements from Connect(); //2015 for details!

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