I'm new to automated trading and need some advice to get started. First off, I have extensive c# and .NET experience so my first preference would be a platform that allows me to code in c#. I've looked at tradelink and it looks reasonable. Question #1: Are there any other free or low-cost platforms based on .NET? I'd also like to test my strategies without too much initial investment. Question #2: Do I have to open a brokerage account and fund it even before I'm ready to make real trades, so I can test my strategies? So far, with my limited exposure, I'm leaning toward IB (broker) and tradelink (platform). Question #3: Any other suggestions to get help started and going in the right direction? Thanks in advance.