Skype hiring both C# and HTML5 devs for Windows 8 Metro app

It looks like if you can’t make your mind up about building a Windows 8 Metro-style application using either C# or HTML5, Skype seems to think you should just hire to build for both and let them fight it out. In either case, Skype seems to be readying a Windows 8 app for launch day.

The two Skype Jobs listings titled “Software Development Engineer – Skype for Windows Metro”(1)(2) are almost identical. They both start off teasing a fantastic opportunity. “The Consumer Engineering team at Skype is looking for passionate, team-oriented and self-motivated developers to help us build Skype client software for new Windows 8 platform.

Although most of the two listings are word-for-word, the difference is in just a few simple keywords. One states,

You will have a chance to build new Skype client software from the ground up using latest Microsoft technologies focusing on C#

And the other,

You will have a chance to build new Skype client software from the ground up using latest Microsoft technologies focusing on JavaScript/HTML5.

Even though I’m quite confident Skype is just diversifying their developer base, I would like to propose an unlikely but humorous scenario where the two teams are kept secret from one another for the duration of the development cycle, only to be forced into a life-or-death rivalry just before the software is launched.

With the reward of “…your work will be used by hundreds millions of thankful users worldwide” on the line, I’m sure both C# and HTML5 developers can put up quite a noble fight. Of course Skype’s Windows Phone developers will be watching with popcorn.

18 insightful thoughts

  1. More interesting is the name “Windows Metro”. Maybe this is the name for the ARM version of Windows 8 without desktop support? Would make a lot of sense. They can’t name it Windows 8, that would confuse customers when there are two very different versions of Windows 8 with and without support for legacy software.

    Windows Metro. Like Windows Phone. Sounds good to me :)

  2. This doesn’t necessarily mean that they don’t know which technology is better suited!
    In fact, with Win8 and WinRT you can author your own WinRT components in C#/VB/C++ and use those from all supported WinRT-languages: C#, C++, VB and even JavaScript. This effectively means that you can have your core logic written in C# and have a Metro-UI based on HTML and JavaScript. This absolutely makes sense, so I think Skype is exactly going this way. Though a C#/JS-battle would be fun 😉

  3. Windows Metro definitely sounds better than Windows 8. Anything for flashy names over meaningless and incorrect names such as Windows 7.

    1. I couldn’t agree more with you! 😉

      Now that you have suggested the name “Windows Metro”, the name “Windows 8” sounds really generic and boring in comparison! :(

  4. Call me old but I still prefer “native” (e.g. C/C++) applications because they perform better, use less memory.

    1. Performance likely won’t be an issue. This is the Metro experience we’re talking about, not the Desktop experience. It’s possible the Metro experience doesn’t suffer from such performance issues, just like Windows Phone doesn’t.

  5. Since WinRT components made from C# can be consumed by Javascript and vice versa this isn’t much of a problem. Question is why aren’t they taking the C++ route.

  6. In December 1981 I was living with the current Mr H, and one night, close to xmas, we went to sleep as per usual. Around 2am, I woke him up, screaming my head off, and trying to find the light switch in the dark room (Was a new flat we’d not long moved into). I told him about the dream I’d had which had been so terrifying, it had woke me up screaming, and that desperate search for the light switch. In the dream, I found myself in the sea, in a storm, with men panicking in the water all round, and the wreckage of a boat. There was this very calm, middle aged man who was trying to help people and he turned to me and said words along the lines of “It’s OK, you’re like me, you’re not really here. Hold on to the wreckage, and you’ll be alright.” And I remember even in the dream, thinking “I’d never think of that for myself.” And I looked around, and saw the shoreline and all these xmas lights along the shore. Even though I knew i wasn;t going to drown, the thing was very vivid, and terrifying.

    I was busy all the next day and it wasn’t til the evening news, we saw about the Penlee lifeboat disaster on the news. Mr H looked at me, and I looked at him – and he knew my account of the night before, and the details of the men in the water, the calm middle aged man, and the xmas lights.

    I think it is a coincidence. The statistical odds of dreaming something might happen- and it happening at the same time – are probably not as long odds as you’d think. It was the xmas lights that got me but even so – well it was xmas.

    Mr H remembers it as well as I do, to this day. Both of us did not see or hear the news til the following day and had heard or seen none that evening (I rarely watch the news at all, but he’s a fan).

    The thing that did strike me was, there were women and children also in the water that night and in my dream, I only saw men.

    Years later, doing my family tree, I discovered I had an ancestor who in the 19thC was one of only 3 survivors of an accident where 11 people drowned. I read the inquest reports (of my middle aged ancestor giving evidence) and he remarked that he survived because he held onto something in the water – and a man on the shore shouted “Hold thy hold, lad!” This is in black and white and in a newspaper from over 180 years ago – an account I had no way of reading til the 2000s. Mr H also was shaken when he first read this – one of the first things that came to his mind was the dream I had, back in 1981.

    Still, despite this, I think it was a statistical probability that I might be the descendant of a survivor of drowning, who survived by holding onto something, and dreamt of a lot of people drowning, but was told to hold on to something!

    It is creepy but thankfully I only had one similar bad dream after that and then none since.

    ETA: Looking back, I think I was more nonplussed at the time by the fact there were women in the accident but none in my dream, and also I kept wondering who that man was, and why ‘he’ wasn’t on the news! It was the xmas lights along the shore that really freaked me out. To this day I find xmas lights creepy and horrible.

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