Microsoft Loses Top C # Developer

Eric Lippert was a key part of the Roslyn compiler-as-a-service project.

The defections of top-level people in Microsoft's developer division continued recently when a key C# manager announced his imminent departure.

At the end of November, Eric Lippert, a longtime Microsoft employee and the principal developer on the C# compiler team, announced that he was moving on from Microsoft. Lippert is joining Coverity to work on its static analysis tools.

Many developers were caught off guard by Lippert's departure. In particular, what it means for the future of C# and the compiler as a service project (codenamed Roslyn). Lippert had served as the visible lead of the Roslyn Project. The third Roslyn CTP, which can be used on Visual Studio 2012, was released in September.

The former MSDN Fabulous Adventures in Coding blogger is now blogging at He addressed some of the concerns in response to a reader comment on his new blog on Thursday:

 "I am just one of dozens of people working on Roslyn; I'm just the most visible of them. We have heavyweight architects like Neal Gafter and Matt Warren working on this thing and a whole team of smart compiler and IDE people. I am leaving it in extremely good hands and extremely good shape."

In the same response, Lippert said:

"C# will continue to be influenced by me, just less directly. I'm hoping to maintain close ties to the C# team."

Several high profile people have left the Visual Studio and .NET teams of late, including the former head of Visual Studio, Jason Zander, who moved to the Server and Tools Business (STB) at Microsoft immediately after the Visual Studio 2012 launch in September. He is now the corporate vice president of the Windows Azure development team. 

People often switch jobs but it's hard not to wonder, what these changes could mean for Visual Studio and its related frameworks. 

About the Author

Kathleen Richards is the editor of and executive editor of Visual Studio Magazine.

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