The LINQPad Challenge

If you think that you understand LINQ—or would like to—then I invite you to take the LINQPad Challenge.

The rules are simple:

  1. Locate the shortcut for SQL Management Studio on your Start Menu and move it some place else.
  2. In its place, insert a shortcut to LINQPad.
  3. For the next week, perform all your ad-hoc SQL queries using only LINQPad.

At the end of the week, you will actually think in LINQ, rather than thinking in SQL and translating to LINQ. Moreover, you'll continue to write most of your queries in LINQ, because LINQ is a better querying language.

LINQPad also allows old-fashioned SQL queries for tasks which are genuinely impossible or clumsy in LINQ.  You'll feel an unpleasant sense of failure, though, should you cheat and use this feature frivolously!

If you can write all your ad-hoc queries in LINQ, you've come a long way in mastering LINQ.  And continued use of LINQPad will keep your LINQ knowledge alive—if you're not lucky enough to be using LINQ in your current projects.