CNET News.com: Microsoft eyes next big boom: e-commerce tools

“Windows is wildly popular with big companies as an operating
system for PCs and smaller networked servers. But as the Web
technology battleground shifts from client PCs to servers,
Microsoft finds itself once again battling Sun Microsystems’ Java
programming language.

Large corporations favor Java and the Common Object Request
Broker Architecture (CORBA) for large-scale applications by a
2-to-1 margin over Microsoft’s Component Object Model (COM)
technology, according to a report by Forrester Research.
…clearly, the adoption numbers for Java and CORBA do not please
Microsoft’s top brass. On Monday, the giant will make its first
concerted effort to both simplify its software tools message and
appeal to the dot com companies of the world that are building
e-commerce sites.”

“Analysts said Microsoft, which pioneered easy-to-use
Windows development tools with its Visual Basic product in the
early 1990s, has so far missed a huge opportunity by not following
the same strategy for the Web development market.
company’s tool lineup includes scripting, component development,
and other tools, but does not include a visually oriented tool for
overall Web site development, analysts said.”

“The additional tools and interfaces will be included in the
company’s upcoming Visual Studio 7.0 development tool set, expected
to ship next year. Microsoft will also use Monday’s announcement to
discuss how its tools will work with BizTalk Server, a planned
Extensible Markup Language (XML) server, and a new software
integration server, code-named Babylon. Both are expected to ship
next year.”

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