In June 2000, Microsoft announced the .NET initiative—a major shift in the technical direction for Microsoft and a major shift for those engaged in developing software based on Microsoft tools and technologies.
The label .NET has been applied to three distinct entities. They are:
A vision of how software will evolve to take advantage of the Internet and encompass the increasing variety of computing devices that are joining the PC in customers' offices, pockets, and homes.
A software platform to help developers build such applications and also to address some long-time shortcomings of Windows.
An application-hosting business that will deliver applications as services over the Internet.
In the rest of the chapter, we examine these three ...