IT HAS BEEN SAID THAT SIR ISAAC NEWTON was the last person to know everything. He was an accomplished physicist (his three laws of motion were the basis of classical mechanics, which defined astrophysics for three centuries), mathematician (he was one of the inventors of calculus and developed Newton’s Method for finding roots of equations), astronomer, natural philosopher, and alchemist (okay, maybe the last one was a mistake). He invented the reflecting telescope, a theory of color, and a law of cooling, and he studied the speed of sound.
Just as important, he was born before relativity, quantum mechanics, gene sequencing, thermodynamics, parallel computation, and a swarm of other extremely difficult branches of science.
If you ever used Visual Basic 3, you too could have known everything. Visual Basic 3 was a reasonably small but powerful language. Visual Basic 4 added classes to the language and made Visual Basic much more complicated. Versions 4, 5, and 6 added more support for database programming and other topics such as custom controls, but Visual Basic was still a fairly understandable language, and if you took the time you could become an expert in just about all of it.
Visual Basic .NET changed the language in much more fundamental ways and made it much harder to understand every last detail of Visual Basic. The .NET Framework added powerful new tools to Visual Basic, but those tools came at the cost of increased complexity. Associated technologies have ...