Open Source: More than free
Though merong mga mobile devices powered with Windows Mobile still it’s too expensive to match up with these devices. Considering prices drop every month and new devices are being brought up in the market.
Second thing is the Web. ASP.net is pretty elegant and fast however, a combination of open source tools such as PHP, Perl, GWT(Google Web Tool Kit-uses java to create ajax application) and more are creating a lot of attention these days. Plus Adobe is doing a good job in helping designers to keep up with the developers.
The third is the Systems. VS.net is indeed one tough tools that is unmatched by any open source tools. However, not all developers are happy with it due to its limitations particularly the express edition but beyond express developers are very much satisfied with it.
Alternative tools that are free like Eclipse which supports any programming languages or NetBeans which supports drag and drop objects are being considered.
In Eclipse, tools like the test driven development using scrap book and JUnit test is being used to assure critical projects to be solid and consistent. Another is the auto generation of fields, methods and constructors to speed up development.
Netbeans is pretty much similar with how Visual Studio drag and drop object does. Still the swing GUI sucks big time. SWT(Standard Widget Tool) is the way to go.
Now, by combining Eclipse and Netbeans capabilities 80 percent of what VS.net can do is attainable.
The fourth and last advantage is the source code. Any great project that will allow its code to be viewed and modified will help any developer to be motivated and improve his skills.
Overall, time and effort is required when investing in opensource tools however, the price in the long run is priceless. Mastery, support and backward compatibility are being inherited by any developer who takes this chance.