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Summary Q & A

The following question and answer list summarizes some key points to remember about .NET when considering its impact on you, your clients, or your customers:

In one sentence, what is .NET?

.NET is Microsoft's strategy to deliver software as a service.

What are the main benefits that .NET provides to developers?

.NET allows developers to focus on solving business problems and eliminates a lot of the low-level plumbing code required of some of today's complex systems. In .NET, programming language advantages are eliminated. Developers can choose a language based on their proficiency and corresponding productivity and not on the language's capabilities.

What are the main benefits that .NET provides to project managers?

.NET offers project managers shorter schedules, lower costs, and more focus on solving business problems. .NET also helps project managers ensure that the systems they are responsible for are reliable and robust.

What is the rough timeline for the rollout of the different elements of .NET?

You can expect the software development tools targeted at .NET to debut in their initial form sometime late in 2001. The .NET Enterprise Servers are available now; subsequent revisions over the years will only enhance and tighten their affinity to the .NET world.

What aspects of .NET are likely to prove most challenging to new users of the technology?

For software developers, .NET will initially force them to challenge their current best practices and start designing loosely coupled systems that leverage the building block services we discussed. Managers will need to fully understand where .NET can help them and where it can't: It's not a panacea, but it can be a powerful tool and paradigm when deployed in the right situations.

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