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Microsoft

Microsoft Drops .NET Name For Next Windows Server 490 490

Posted by timothy
from the muddled-nomenclature dept.
metamatic writes "C|net is reporting that Microsoft is dropping the name "Windows .NET Server" and going back to "Windows Server 200x" (where x is currently expected to be 3). Other products with .NET in the name are also being evaluated for renaming. Analysts are being quoted as saying that slapping .NET on so many Microsoft products has confused people as to what .NET actually means. Or could it be that customers know what it means, but nobody wants to buy it?" Obiwan Kenobi points out a similar article at ENT News
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Microsoft Drops .NET Name For Next Windows Server

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  • buzzword compliant? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Maeryk (87865) on Friday January 10, 2003 @05:51PM (#5058733) Journal
    Is it that even Microsoft is suffering in the dot-com crash and the burst of the tech bubble? Possibly with the advent of sites like this one, Cnet, and shows like Screensavers, people are beginning to realize a buzzword is just that, and nothing more?

    I kinda thought that naming something ".net" was kinda stupid after the bad taste left in Joe Public's mouth after the whole ".com" thing..
    but Im far from a rabid Microsoft supporter anyway.

    I still think it should be "Microsoft.ownsU" for the truth in advertising requirements.

    Maeryk
  • Misunderstanding (Score:5, Interesting)

    by YellowElectricRat (637662) on Friday January 10, 2003 @05:55PM (#5058786) Journal
    There certainly is a glut of managers who think that .NET must be something to do with the little messenger icon that pops up when you install Windows XP and it asks you to register your .NET passport. And this isn't just your typical pointy-haired manager type, it's people with a reasonable amount of technical expertise, too. I've had to do plenty of explaining as to what .NET is when these managers see it in the spec document. I have to say though, that (so far) .NET is a pleasure to work with for developing those intra-extranet synergistic B2B enterprise solutions. It seems to lend itself quite well to that :)
  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday January 10, 2003 @05:59PM (#5058827)
    With so much $ in the bank, they will let go of their failures quickly. Even though the tech community still teases them about Bob and crap like that, Microsoft pretend it never happened. Slowly, this will happen with .NET. It was a horrible idea from the start, and has severely backfired. Even though their credibility is ruined, they will move on and bumble around in the dark some more until they catch on to something. In the fable, the boy who cried wolf got three chances. Microsoft seems to get a lot more credit and trust from people than that, so it doesn't really matter that this has flopped on their face. They could have just released an upgrade to VB, but they had to sound like they had a lot more up their sleeves than that. They are casting a NET for a new strategy for the company, and they keep coming back with tin cans.
  • Re:.NET slapping. (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Enzondio (110173) <jelmoreNO@SPAMlexile.com> on Friday January 10, 2003 @06:00PM (#5058831) Homepage
    Visual Studio.NET is the biggest one I can think of (and consequently VB.NET, ASP.NET, etc.)

    It is similar to Java, the big difference being that many many languages could all be compiled into the same bytecode.

    What was spiffy was you could very easily use different languages for different parts of your program. Business logic in C, interface in VB, etc.

    I know you could do this before but .NET made it much easier. It's not a bad product, it's just not the end all be all that they were hyping. And is that really all that surprising?
  • by MonTemplar (174120) <slashdot@alanralph.co.uk> on Friday January 10, 2003 @06:02PM (#5058856) Homepage Journal
    Actually, I think it's more like what they did when they changed Windows NT 5.0 to Windows 2000 - hoping to ditch all the bad news (mainly delays in getting to a working product) associated with the former name.
  • by posternutbaguk (637765) <`sparky' `at' `epenguin.zzn.com'> on Friday January 10, 2003 @06:03PM (#5058865) Homepage
    A name change may seem a small thing, but not too long ago microsoft were telling all and sundry that .NET would be the future of the computing world.

    The fact that they change the name to something NOT containing the magic term '.NET' must mean, at the least, that all the expensive PR has failed.

    microsoft need to actually demonstrate an actual use for .NET, after all, if I'm a qualified C++ programmer and I don't really know what it's 'about', how the hell is Joe Public gonna buy into this?
  • Re:Misunderstanding (Score:3, Interesting)

    by 2nd Post! (213333) <gundbear@@@pacbell...net> on Friday January 10, 2003 @06:15PM (#5058971) Homepage
    ".NET is a pleasure to work with for developing those intra-extranet synergistic B2B enterprise solutions."

    It sounds like you're taking about WebObjects when you say that...

    This is the blurb from the WebObjects site:
    "A powerful rapid application development environment, backed by Web service, data access and page generation capabilities, extends the reach of developers and reduces the cost of ownership by ensuring flexible, maintainable design. WebObjects is the ideal way to develop, deploy and extend powerful web services."

    The difference being that WebObjects is 5 versions and 3 OSes old now, stable, and based on 'open' technologies, and .NET isn't :D
  • What is .NET? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by r (13067) on Friday January 10, 2003 @06:19PM (#5058994)
    i've been able to find at least three distinct meanings of the .NET tag:
    1. in the web development circles, it's used for next-generation tools and services for writing web applications. for example, ASP.NET [asp.net], SOAP RPC, and various other web- and XML-based services

    2. in the web customer services domain, it was going to be a secure roaming account scheme, a.k.a. the Passport .NET [passport.net]

    3. most interestingly, in the windows application development domain, .NET is also used to describe the .NET Framework, a new set of libraries that's meant to slowly replace the standard Win32/64 libraries (see articles at ars technica [arstechnica.com] for really detailed info). the framework is basically a cleaned-up, garbage-collected, language-agnostic version of Win32. it's great. but hardly anyone thinks about it when they hear .NET-this or .NET-that. :)

    in any case, the semantic shift of the label .NET has surely caused MS much grief. it's about time they cleaned it up.
  • Re:Confusion? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by arkhan_jg (618674) on Friday January 10, 2003 @06:19PM (#5058995)
    .NET has already been answered fairly well.

    http://www.cl.cam.ac.uk/~rja14/tcpa-faq.html is a good faq (in english, not geek ;)

    A sample ----

    2. What does TCPA / Palladium do, in ordinary English?

    It provides a computing platform on which you can't tamper with the applications, and where these applications can communicate securely with the vendor. The obvious application is digital rights management (DRM): Disney will be able to sell you DVDs that will decrypt and run on a Palladium platform, but which you won't be able to copy. The music industry will be able to sell you music downloads that you won't be able to swap. They will be able to sell you CDs that you'll only be able to play three times, or only on your birthday. All sorts of new marketing possibilities will open up.

    TCPA / Palladium will also make it much harder for you to run unlicensed software. Pirate software can be detected and deleted remotely. It will also make it easier for people to rent software rather than buying it; and if you stop paying the rent, then not only does the software stop working but so may the files it created. For years, Bill Gates has dreamed of finding a way to make the Chinese pay for software: Palladium could be the answer to his prayer.

    There are many other possibilities. Governments will be able to arrange things so that all Word documents created on civil servants' PCs are `born classified' and can't be leaked electronically to journalists. Auction sites might insist that you use trusted proxy software for bidding, so that you can't bid tactically at the auction. Cheating at computer games could be made more difficult.

    There is a downside too. There will be remote censorship: the mechanisms designed to delete pirated music under remote control may be used to delete documents that a court (or a software company) has decided are offensive - this could be anything from pornography to writings that criticise political leaders. Software companies can also make it harder for you to switch to their competitors' products; for example, Word could encrypt all your documents using keys that only Microsoft products have access to; this would mean that you could only read them using Microsoft products, not with any competing word processor.

  • Re:My theory... (Score:2, Interesting)

    by mattc58 (603979) on Friday January 10, 2003 @06:22PM (#5059012)
    Not so. They've actually frozen out on features for a while now. I'm a beta tester on the product--the new IIS 6.0 is nice.
  • Re:Confusion? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by nelsonal (549144) on Friday January 10, 2003 @06:23PM (#5059026) Journal
    One of microsoft's test sites was a shipbuilder, the .Net features allowed the managers to setup MS Project schedules, and foremen could fire up their PocketPC handhelds and see what their teams were working on that day. Other examples would be allowing you to check on flight status with your cell phone or PDA.
    Its really just a buzzword laden branding strategy, that MS is using to try to convince people that web services, are all that and a bag of chips. Web services seem to be a fancy name for using xml to provide more useful data to end users of the data.
  • by silicon_synapse (145470) on Friday January 10, 2003 @06:34PM (#5059095)
    From the article:
    Analysts are being quoted as saying that slapping .NET on so many Microsoft products has confused people as to what .NET actually means.

    Your comment:
    They are changing the name because people are getting confused about what .NET really is. It was a bad idea for Microsoft to try to add ".NET" to every single product they sell.

    Where's +5 Insightfull coming from?
  • by avandesande (143899) on Friday January 10, 2003 @06:43PM (#5059155) Journal
    One thing that really differentiated the difference between .net applications and win32 ones was their appearance, which is different much like the way java apps look different. When Win XP came along with all the skins, this difference has evaporated. WinXP and .net apps have definitly taken some hints from kde/gnome world.
  • by jarnot (192253) on Friday January 10, 2003 @06:50PM (#5059198) Homepage
    Why not call it Windows XP Server? Makes more sense than calling in Windows 2003 Server.
  • by tempny (602740) on Friday January 10, 2003 @06:55PM (#5059236)
    The aspect of .net that involves application development for windows is hardly a flop. A significant evolution from the old visual studio 6 paradigm that takes a lot of clues from newer concepts (java, python), it is being widely adopted for office application development, and for good reason. Living in the real world, where not all things are all good or all bad, and where it's evident that behind the evil microsoft a lot of great engineering goes on, I will admit that .net has made windows development fun again. And for those of us that earn our living coding for win32, .net is almost a bit of salvation, being one of the most powerful RAD tools for windows I've come across.
  • by chickensdelight (639913) on Friday January 10, 2003 @07:51PM (#5059594) Journal
    I was also confused over the .NET strategy and then I read this artical on osnews.com http://www.osnews.com/story.php?news_id=686.

    To quote some of the artical for those who cant be bothered to go.

    "NET is a new way of working things out when using your computer. .NET the Framework is a collection of new APIs, programming languages and development tools that serve this "new way" of doing things. The new APIs are highly object-oriented, and the objects used are accessible by any supported language (VB.NET, ASP.NET, C/C++/C# and recently, even Java). This is a pretty revolutionary feature, having objects accessible by any language.

    With .NET's new APIs and libraries, applications are just hosts for a series of objects. Now you can load a given functionality found in any object to any .NET application. For example, if you are writing a Microsoft Word document and you insert an image, you might want to apply a certain filter to that image before finishing your document. Word, however, is not really an image manipulation application. Well, with .NET-enabled applications you can load a certain functionality from another installed application (or more importantly, through the web!), perform the specific function and save down your Word document locally or remotely. The thing is, applications are not simple applications anymore. They are hosts of a larger database of functionalities that they can be loaded at any time (for a fee or for free) through the web or locally. Similar feature-set is possible through Corba or OLE, as I said, but they are not standardized, they are difficult to integrate (a real headache for programmers), and they are not cross-platform."

    Given the posibilites ,new revenue streems to continue Microsoft growth, and the winning of OS wars (.Net for the Linux kernal) it would seem a big mistake on Microsoft's part to not fully support this way of working.

    This is a nice idea however and if Microsoft dosn't persue this new strategy some one else will e.g. IBM for example ( just go to google and type Globus).
  • Re:.NET slapping. (Score:5, Interesting)

    by ergo98 (9391) on Friday January 10, 2003 @07:58PM (#5059641) Homepage Journal
    .NET is market-speak that the marketing droids created to "synergize" the Microsoft product range. When you hear someone say ".NET is this and this and this", usually it's because they don't have a clue. Furthermore a death knell to .NET was that the term is not searchable (because every engine drops the period, and net is obviously a ubiquitous word. You end up looking for searchable nicknames like "dotnet", which thankfully MS named their newsgroups). Unsearchable terms are a frickin' nuisance in the era of Google.

    What is .NET? A marketing title. Pretty much every product and technology for a period of time, no matter how disparate and thoroughly different, got the .NET title for a period of time. The common language runtime and the framework are both gorgeous, but they have nothing to do with "Exchange Server.NET", and "Windows.NET" was XP Server edition with the framework that you can already download installed (and IIS 6).

    If you remember a couple of years ago us Windows developers were doing "DNA" development, which was the title that all the products got (SQL Server was a member of the DNA platform....imagine the outrage when it jumped ship and became a .NET product!), along with every technology (COM, MTS and MSMQ all suddenly became DNA technologies).
  • Re:Confusion? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by NineNine (235196) on Friday January 10, 2003 @08:28PM (#5059830)
    Sounds like .Net = COM objects. If that's the case, why don't people just describe .NET this way?
  • by squiggleslash (241428) on Friday January 10, 2003 @08:30PM (#5059838) Homepage Journal
    C# is analogous to the Java language. The CLR (or is it CIL? Or CLI? I can never quite remember) is analogous to the Java byte-code, etc. .NET is basically the all-encompassing name for the whole thing.

    Remember that Java is a language, a plug-in, a virtual machine, and half a dozen other things. Ironically, Microsoft's difficulty at explaining what, exactly, .NET is, is despite the fact that they've done a better job of breaking it up into seperate, easily named, modules, unlike Sun who have generally called the whole thing "Java" (well, ok, they've called different Java bundles things like J2EE, J2SE, J2ME, Java2, JavaOne, etc..., but that's another story.)

    Maybe someone should go the extreme opposite and create a language/VM system called "*grunt*".

    "What's the VM called?" *grunt* "Well, ok, what's the language?" *grunt* "Ok, what's the marketing term for this?" *grunt* "Geez. Ok, what's the classname for a window?" *grunt*...etc... you get the idea.

  • Disturbing encounter (Score:3, Interesting)

    by djupedal (584558) on Friday January 10, 2003 @09:04PM (#5059999)
    I walked into the dimly lit room and looked around. It seemed something was trying to gain my attention, but in the darkness, everything seemed to blend into one shapeless form or another.

    As my eyes adjusted to the low light, I began to make out a scribbling on the far wall...dot not....dot nut....dot nat....dot nit....dot net??? I couldn't make it out and it worried me. Dot what?

    I walked over and traced the ragged letters with my finger tips, trying to imagine who did this...and why. The scrawl was halting and labored. The only thing I could be sure of was that, whomever wrote this message, they were clearly in pain.

    I backed out of the room and tried in vain to clear my head...what where they trying to say? Who was behind this cry? Was it a warning to stay away or a dieing request for help?

    I went on about my rounds...the day shift would be on soon, and I'd have to return to the future. I'd let them work on this one. I'd heard they had another new open source tool that was made just to analyze these. It was too early and too much for me to consider yet another message from the other side...from the past. The last one took part of my soul, and I need the few little fragments that are left...
  • Re:Confusion? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by ConceptJunkie (24823) on Friday January 10, 2003 @09:09PM (#5060029) Homepage Journal
    It provides a computing platform on which you can't tamper with the applications, and where these applications can communicate securely with the vendor.


    Sounds good so far...

    The obvious application is digital rights management (DRM):

    Which, of course, is only of value to the seller.


    Disney will be able to sell you DVDs that will decrypt and run on a Palladium platform, but which you won't be able to copy.


    Which means I have to buy new hardware to play the new media. This is consistent for a company that will only sell their old movies "for a limited time" to artificially and capriciously drive up demand.

    The music industry will be able to sell you music downloads that you won't be able to swap.


    Yeah, but I'll need a computer to play them. No listening in the car anymore... unless I buy more new, expensive, and needlessly complex hardware.

    They will be able to sell you CDs that you'll only be able
    to play three times, or only on your birthday.


    No they won't. I would never buy such a product. Of course, the analog hole still exists. I've got a video capture card that does great analog audio capture. I've used it to make nice digital copies of casette recording I made as a kid.

    All sorts of new marketing possibilities will open up.

    Especially given that companies will deceive, if not downright lie to you. All kinds of new ways to screw the consumer. Of course, all these new electronics gizmos you will _have_ to buy will be complicated to use and prone to malfunctions (at least as first, but always harder to use than their pre-DRM counterparts). You don't need a degree in UI design to play a Victrola, but how many people can use all the features of their stereos or DVD players these days? How much fun will people have when not understanding your hardware prevents you from playing your media? ("I bought this 3-use DVD from Disney (a subsudiary of Evilco) but I only watched the first 30 minutes three times, because my mother called, the power went out, one of the kids wet his pants, etc, etc. Now I can't finish it...")


    TCPA / Palladium will also make it much harder for you to run unlicensed software.


    So much for software development, one of my hobbies. So much for Open Source software. Oh you say I can become a licensed software provider? For a "nominal" annual fee? Whoopie! I'll pay for that! NOT!


    Pirate software can be detected and deleted remotely. It will also make it easier for people to rent software rather than buying it; and if you stop paying the rent, then not only does the software stop working but so may the files it created.


    So now companies can take over your computer and arbitrarily delete things. I'm sure that will _always_ work correctly and _never_ be misused, because everyone is completely competent and honest. We should always take every opportunity to give complete strangers control over us, because they know what's best.


    For years, Bill Gates has dreamed of finding a way to make the Chinese pay for software: Palladium could be the answer to his prayer.


    Not if they keep using Windows 2000 on existing hardware. Recall that these days the primary driving force for selling the latest and greatest hardware is 1.) Microsoft's (and others) increasingly bloated and inefficient software, and 2.) gaming. I use c. 400 MHz processors and don't feel like I'm missing out for 90% of what I do.


    There are many other possibilities. Governments will be able to arrange things so that all Word documents created on civil servants' PCs are `born classified' and can't be leaked electronically to journalists.


    Remember that joke about the dumb blonde photocopying her monitor to print out her document?


    Auction sites might insist that you use trusted proxy software for bidding, so that you can't bid tactically at the auction. Cheating at computer games could be made more difficult.


    And that will _never_ be compromised, because it's never happened in the past.


    There is a downside too.


    No, really?

    Sure, there will be some benefits, but as with everything in modern life, the trade-off will be much more complexity and hassle to do things that were formerly simple, and still more aspects of your life will be subject to being screwed up by the ineptness or malice of a complete stranger.

    Sign me up!

  • by JWSmythe (446288) <jwsmythe@NOsPAm.jwsmythe.com> on Friday January 10, 2003 @09:32PM (#5060149) Homepage Journal
    Imagine that. If you're using say an OS called Microsoft Server 0.1 for your servers, and Microsoft Workstation 0.1 for your workstations.. Then if you saw that MS Server 0.2 was available, you'd know it was the next logical step in the upgrade path..

    I'm still a wee-bit confused by the currently available OS's..

    Windows 2000 (Professional|Server|Advanced Server|DataCenter Server)

    Windows ME

    Windows CE (CE||.NET)

    Windows XP (Professional|Home Edition|Media Center|Tablet|Embedded)

    Imagine if they just had workstation and server, with nice numbers. I'm still not sure what I'd be running all my servers on, if I went to MS.. Luckly, I don't have to decide. I put the same version of Slackware on everything, and just install the parts I need.. Funny, it all fits on one CD, and I don't even have to pay outragous licensing fees for each version, or packages I add on. :)

    I'm just sad that Slackware hasn't released a distribution for handhelds.. But lucky, "familiar" works on my iPaq.

    Every software I've seen uses logical version numbers, except Microsoft.. And they used to even do it.. Well, kinda..

    Win3.0
    Win3.1
    Win3.11
    Win95
    Win98
    Win2000

    The jumps in numbers are just too big.. Forget the subrevisions. Build numbers. SP numbers.. I feel sorry for the Microsoft techs who have to take tech calls from people who only know "I use Windows." When friends of friends call me and tell me that, it's like pulling teeth to find out if it's Win98 or XP.. "It came on the computer, how am I suppose to know?"
  • by agentbuzz (640132) on Friday January 10, 2003 @09:35PM (#5060161)
    We know that Microsoot wants to destroy the IETF, and that they seldom write RFC-compliant software (witness their implementations of Kerberos, DNS, and just about any other Internet protocol that you care to name).

    Remember that Microsoot's marketing efforts eclipse everything else that they are supposed to be doing...

    The first time I saw the expression ".net" in print with reference to an MS API, I thought,"These bastards think they are going to appropriate a TLD that is given only to elements of the Internet's backbone!"...

    ".NET is symbolic of the oracular "insight" of ownership of the Internet envisioned by MS employees who've done too much of the Brown Acid(tm)!"

    I still suspect that ".NET" was a symptom of a form of blindnes afflicting those who sincerely believe that they are God.
  • What's in a name? (Score:2, Interesting)

    by benjiboo (640195) on Friday January 10, 2003 @09:47PM (#5060225)
    The thing is, none of the last round of server products were .NET in anything other than name anyway. They were developed in the DNA world - pre-2000 (e.g last versions of Commerce, Biztalk and SQL Server's 2000) which was before MS even began this .NET rebranding excercise. Repackaging them all as .NET only served to confuse people at the time so reverting these guys could be a good thing.... But it sounds like they are dropping the names in the next generation of servers... which are more likeley to have a .NET flavour - Go figure!
  • Finally (Score:2, Interesting)

    by miketang16 (585602) on Friday January 10, 2003 @09:57PM (#5060270) Journal
    This may be considered redundant, but ever since MS came up with this whole .NET thing.. i've been thinking.. OK.. sounds waaayy too much like they're trying to do the whole 'Synapse' thing. (Antitrust) About time they wised up.
  • by t0ny (590331) on Saturday January 11, 2003 @12:03AM (#5060738)
    yes, MS is kind of confusing people already with XP.


    I wish I had a dollar every time I was talking about Office XP and someone thought I meant Windows XP.


    I think one of the problem is that, honestly, most people DONT know what .NET is. Its really pretty cool, IMO. But as with all technical things, there is a ton of misinformation amongst the tinkerers and charlatans.


    Thats ok, because it all just makes me look good when some doofus cant get it to work!

  • Re:Confusion? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Malcontent (40834) on Saturday January 11, 2003 @02:02AM (#5061097)
    "Some .NET programs already run on other platforms - namely Mono enabled *nix."

    Yes trivial hello world ones and maybe other non gui apps which don't connect to a database. I guess that maybe somewhere around .001% of apps run on mono. I guess that means some to you. Mono is not even close being a mature product what is it's version number? .17. You point to a version .17 CLR and say that it runs some windows apps and expect me to take you seriously?

    ".NET runs in a virtual machine; its entire standard library is documentated, and it uses standardized plain text formats for communication. "

    Documented and open are different things.

    " Apparently working at MS makes one very adept at wordplay.

    You never quit do you? Are you this rude to all total strangers?

    1. Some .NET programs already run on other platforms - namely Mono enabled *nix.

    2. .NET runs in a virtual machine; its entire standard library is documentated, and it uses standardized plain text formats for communication.

    3. There are no technical barriers that are impossible to overcome which prevent .NET apps from running cross-platform.

    "4. The only barriers that exisit are in fact legal. We will have to see how they turn out."

    Given the past behaviour or MS I think we can take a fair guess at how this is going to turn out.

    "Satisified now? Or are you just going to continue to be an asshole?"

    I think I will continue to be an asshole as long as MS trolls like you get modded up so high here on slashdot.

    Listen cross platform languages are hard but they are not rocket science. Open source developers have written PERL, PHP, Python, Ruby, and a ton of other languages and toolkits that allow you to write cross platform applications. Of course somehow Sun managed to write java which does the same thing too.

    Either MS programmers are very very stupid and can't manage to write a cross platform CLR or MS does not want to. My guess is the latter.

  • Difference is... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by SuperKendall (25149) on Saturday January 11, 2003 @03:42AM (#5061375)
    C# is Java with the capitalization Gone Wrong.

    C++ is C++.

    C++ under .Net is C++ with "crippled" syntax - no templates, for example.

    I'm not saying that .Net and C# are nessicarily all bad, mind you. What I am saying is that in .Net, all roads lead to C# and other languages under .Net are really C# training wheels. You can choose to use the training wheels as long as you like, but if you want to really do anything you have to take them off someday...

    Part of that is because .Net is, like Java, very heavily library based (in that most anything you want to do involves a number of library calls from a fairly rich library) - and those lbraries are most naturally accessed in C#. When using other languages, they will have varying ranges of ease to access these libraries but C# is always there at the end of the curve beckoning you closer.

    For perhaps something more like what you were looking for, you might want to read Ten Top Traps in C# for C++ Programmers [ondotnet.com].
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday January 11, 2003 @06:19AM (#5061693)
    If it takes that long to explain it, then it's not going to sell.

    You also don't address the *use* .NET was put to. It was used as a marketing gimmick, and to justify getting people locked in to the system to pay for new versions and upgrade their systems.

    What is the problem that .NET as you describe is supposed to fix? It's success cannot be measured until that happens (I suspect it's unofficial goal is to get people to spend loads more money).

    My interpretation is basically that they've gotten a new language, and they are changing all their other languages to be like it. IMHO, NOT a good idea. Why use perl.NET if the only difference between it and VB.NET is the way you for a "for" loop? I would've been better impressed if .NET was a new language to be used in the Windows system (basically, like a more integrated shell script, with bells on). VB.NET would not exist, but you would have VB *bindings* to .NET. In this case, you'd get interoperability between languages bu sing the .NET bindings as a mediator. You would not have to learn the perl/C++ API for interoperation, just the .NET interop API, and MS would produce a .NET API for both perl and C++. .NET as the system API would be used like POSIX is currently for perl and C++ (MS could, and IMO *should* implement 99.9% of the POSIX requirements in windows, then use that as their basis for .NET).

    Ta.

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