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O'Reilly Network: What Lessons do Linux Distributors have for .NET?

Feb 17, 2001, 12:09 (4 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Brian Jepson)

"All the components that make up a .NET application can be loosely coupled and may communicate using XML. ... This creates opportunities for alternative service providers. ... Who is going to help you choose the components that will make up your office application? How will you know which components suck and which ones rule? Or more importantly, which option pricing plugins have portfolio-threatening bugs?"

"This is the same challenge that faces Linux users... which shell, which C compiler, which editor, and which desktop? These are all questions that the makers of Linux distributions help you answer. Sure, a given Linux distribution may come with dozens of desktops you can choose from, but only one of those is enabled by default. Novice users are going to stick with the default - they will let the distributor decide for them."

"A .NET component aggregator would be a lot like a Linux distributor - they would provide an installation program that pulls these components together in a unified, integrated, and well-tested whole. Maybe lots of users will like the service that these aggregators provide, and we'll start seeing hundreds of Microsoft Office distributions on CD-ROM, all slightly different!"

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