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The Microsoft .NET initiative offers a powerful set of services that help to usher in the third generation of the Internet—Web Services, or the programmable Web. The .NET platform enables developers to create applications and Web Services that function independently of programming language and platform. The result is a powerful, loosely coupled Web development solution that may possibly unite the Internet, programming languages, and the difficulty of data translation as we know it today. Making use of a Common Language Runtime, unified programming classes, and ASP.NET, .NET leverages the power of XML and SOAP so that Web processes and data are available anywhere, anytime, and on any platform.

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