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eWeek: Tech Analysis: .Net changes rules

“The Windows platform, despite its portfolio of services for
application developers, shows a lack of attention to productivity
and usability goals that are finally addressed by Microsoft Corp.’s
forthcoming .Net initiative.
The arrival of .Net continues a
trend in the changing pressures that shape new generations of
application development tools.”

“Microsoft’s .Net platform will buffer developers from
error-prone tasks such as data type checking and memory management,
automating these services (much like Sun Microsystems Inc.’s Java)
in the .Net run-time environment
invoked by any “managed code”
module. Module interactions, including the inheritance and
specialization that make object-oriented programming so potentially
productive, will cross boundaries to and from any language
implementation that supports the features of a common
specification.”

“Compilers that target .Net will incorporate so-called metadata
in executable files, telling a program at runtime how to interact
with other resources. This mechanism should make it easier for
developers to partition code–for example, into large modules that
rarely change and small modules that are downloaded on demand to
update volatile logic, such as evolving business rules. …
Metadata in program files will resolve a chronic present-day
problem installing an application, then finding that an updated
shared file version won’t work with older applications. With .Net,
both versions remain available to applications that need one or the
other.”


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