One of the best ways to understand your own culture is to study the cultures of others. I like travelling to different parts of my country to see how other folks live. Yes, in the United States people in Austin, TX, live much differently than people in Seattle, WA, and people in Philadelphia, PA. Heck people live differently in Dallas, TX, and Austin, TX. Along with understanding my own country I like to understand how people live around the world. I have been fortunate enough make friends in many different countries and I find our discussions of how they live to be fascinating. We discuss life, business, family, and trivial, but important to this author, movies and pop culture. Through these discussions I like to learn how people REALLY live. A lot of people like to take their cues from the media, politicians, or friends. I prefer unfiltered, unbiased education. And this is something we are going to do here at Code Magazine.

As you will see in this issue of Code, we have included content from a number of different development platforms. We have a great article on PHP and how you can use it to build web applications. Ruby on Rails is a great web development stack and in this issue we have an introductory article written by yours truly. And in case you haven't heard, Windows 8 is going to support HTML5 as a development option and it just so happens we have great overview of HTML5 in this issue as well.

Why would you as a .NET developer care about these “other” platforms? If you look closely you will learn a lot about what you are doing from a different perspective. Long before ASP MVC existed there was Ruby on Rails. A lot of inspiration for that framework came from Ruby on Rails. The biggest blogging engine in the world is WordPress; it is written in PHP. Umbraco and Orchard both take inspiration from WordPress and other blogging engines. A first-class citizen in Microsoft's WebMatrix is the installer for WordPress. If you decide to host your WordPress blog on your IIS server, how will you be able to tweak it if you don't have at least a minimal understanding of the tools it is built in.

As you can see, a lot of what you use as a “Microsoft Developer” takes inspiration from other technologies. Having a good understanding of these other technologies will help you in your day to day with technology choices that may or may not be your own. Don't fear, we are still going to be addressing our core focus. We will still be providing the best content for the .NET Developer. We will still have great content on tools and techniques you love: Visual Studio, SQL Server, ASP.NET, ASP.NET MVC, and others.

I hope you will like what we are doing in our upcoming issues as well. Next issue we are doing a study of the different mobile platforms. We have authors creating native applications in three major mobile platforms. We have an IOS application built with Objective C, an Android application built with Java, and a Windows Phone 7 application built with C#. The nice thing is we are building the same application across the platforms so you will be able to compare and contrast them. As a fellow software developer I am really looking forward to that issue.

This is not the only change we are making in this issue. Last issue was the final column for our long running series: The Doc Detective. I want to give a big THANK YOU to Steve Hoag who has been the Doc Detective for many years. We are replacing that column with a new Visual Studio Tips column to be written by Zain Naboulis. Welcome aboard Zain!

I'm not done there. We are bringing back what we call the MVP corner, which is our guest editorial column. Chris Williams is starting that column off with something that may prove to be controversial. We will be having guest editorials in every issue.

One thing we could use some help with from you, the reader, is in the Post Mortem department. Post Mortems are articles about real-world projects. They follow a structured format: five things that went right and five things that went wrong. If you are interested in writing an article for that series please contact us.

We are excited about all of our changes and I hope you are too. Until then keep on coding!