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MCP TechMentor, Day One: More Details of .NET Revealed

Microsoft's Program Lead of Rapid Deployment Program, Ty Carlson, outlines a few more details on Microsoft's .NET initiative at keynote speech.

"Until I sat down and read the [Microsoft.NET] specs, I didn't get it," admitted Ty Carlson, Microsoft's Manager of the Rapid Deployment Program. The irony of such an admission is that Carlson was recently named to head the .NET group. It wasn't until a meeting just days prior to the conference that he had a revelation and "it became clearer to me." The Microsoft.NET initiative is a "fundamental shift" from PC-centric development to Internet-centric development that has taken place within Microsoft, with technologies like XML and SOAP (Simple Object Access Protocol) to glue Internet-based apps together. Essentially, Microsoft has externalized to us its internal mandate, and they've revealed new tools, like the recently announced Microsoft C# (pronounced "c sharp"), to exemplify this shift.

Carlson also touched on the long-term revs of Windows (Whistler and Blackcomb) and their impact on MCPs. Clarifying Whistler's positioning in the marketplace, he conceded that "it's not necessarily an enterprise upgrade." It's "about integrating the issues from Windows Millennium Edition into Windows 2000, plus a few enterprise features like the Enterprise Event Log Manager. Whistler is focused on [integrating] the consumer products into Windows 2000." Learn Win2K and the impact of learning Whistler will be minimal, he said.

Blackcomb, which likely will follow Whistler in late 2002/early 2003, becomes closer to Microsoft's .NET vision. Carlson says that the software lifecycle for them starts with a common code base and then splits into two parallel tracks for Whistler and Blackcomb. The similarities will end there, but Carlson didn't mention what features would differentiate it from Whistler. It remains to be seen whether Blackcomb follows suit with upcoming .NET products (like Visual Studio.NET) and becomes Windows.NET.

More details on the .NET strategy come at the end of his keynote presentation, of which you can get the audio version of it at http://www.mcpmag.com/audio/Carlson.asf (or right click the link and "Save As"). You'll need Windows Media Player 4.0 for the audio and, at 22MB, we recommend a high-bandwidth connection for the download. There's also a slide presentation available at http://www.mcpmag.com/audio/Carlson/index.htm, in case you want to follow along with the audio.

You can find more information on Microsoft.NET at http://www.microsoft.com/net/default.asp.

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