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Thread: Speaking of strings...

  1. #181
    Jason Guest

    Re: Speaking of strings...


    Mike Mitchell <kylix_is@yahoo.co.uk> wrote:
    ><<snip>>
    >So, complexity is a completely manufactured entity. It isn't necessary
    >for much of our everyday existence. But since we don't have any choice
    >(remember, there's that word again), we are forced to participate,
    >reluctantly, in the mindset the vendors are conning us with. Of
    >course, this is the ideal time for entrepreneurs with vision to
    >capitalise on this situation and introduce new products that are
    >resoundingly simple in concept and use, and that is, I hope, where
    >software development will also be going real soon now.
    >
    >MM


    I'll refer back to my recent "Hammer & chisel vs. Woodworking Shop" analogy.
    In the case of software, things get more complex to make them more efficient,
    ideally.

    You don't do complex software or complex systems. If you did, and you used
    VB, you would almost certainly have run into numerous chances to simplify
    your code and promote reuse between projects using custom OCXs and ActiveX
    DLLs. You don't seem to be real up on these things, so I am guessing you
    have opted not to use them. This limits the size of your projects both in
    lines of code and the number of programmers working on the project.

    The more "complex" OO features of .NET are optional. They are used by the
    framework libraries, but you don't have to use them yourself.


  2. #182
    Jason Guest

    Re: Speaking of strings...


    Mike Mitchell <kylix_is@yahoo.co.uk> wrote:
    <<snip>>

    Mike, I just want to clear something up, so I know where you are coming from.

    If Microsoft released an upgrade wizard for VB6 --> VB.NET conversion that
    was 99.9% correct, so you only had to make a few changes to your code, would
    you then be happy with .NET?

    What I am trying to get at is, do you have a problem with your perception
    that .NET is a lot harder than VB6, or is it simply the fact that Microsoft
    will not be continuing to improve VB6, and you have no upgrade path? Or
    both?

    Do you believe that .NET is total crap, or are you just angry that Microsoft
    opted not to bring you code base along?

  3. #183
    Jason Guest

    Re: Speaking of strings...


    "W.E. (Bill) Goodrich, PhD" <bgoodric@netzero.net> wrote:
    >I suppose that is possible, but I seriously doubt it. The main point
    >of the above is to draw a clear distinction between code that was
    >designed and implemented from the start as OO, and code which came
    >from a non OO design and/or implementation and was later hidden
    >behind an OO wrapper. While I have seen a lot of the latter
    >(especially in the kinds of libraries Jason cited), I have also seen
    >a lot of code which was OO from the beginning (especially in Java).


    There are good OO designs, and there are bad OO designs. Compare Xerces
    (the Java XML library) to MSXML. MSXML is much simpler to use. Xerces has
    tons of extraneous objects that serve no useful purpose other than to obscure
    useful ones. The Xerces library could be used to validate your assertion
    that MP is simpler than OO, and the MSXML library could be used to show just
    the opposite.

    >> I've always thought that the "wrapper" (interface) is a large part
    >> of what /makes/ it OO.

    >
    >There is a difference between a wrapper and an interface which was
    >part of the original design. A wrapper is an after the fact
    >intermediary, rather than an element of the original design. For
    >an example, see the OCXs that are nothing more than wrappers for
    >various API functions.


    I disagree. Windows API calls that take a handle are object oriented. You
    claim to have experience with ADA, so you know that this is the exact way
    the objects were implemented in ADA 95. The syntax is a little odd:
    functionName(dataReference, arg1, arg2...)
    instead of
    dataReference.functionName(arg1, arg2...)
    But all the same principles apply. Putting an object wrapper around an object
    implementation is actually a type of OOP design pattern.

    >> Are you saying that code doesn't qualify as "OO" unless it employs
    >> inheritance or overloading?

    >
    >No. Original OOD, deliberate and specific use of classes AS classes
    >(as opposed to incidental use of library components with OO wrappers
    >or the like), or other deliberate use of OO specific constructs would
    >be enough. But Jason's standard of "if you use even one OO wrapped
    >component, you are doing OO" is complete nonsense.


    Not complete nonsense at all. I don't think it is complete nonsense, and
    neither do some other people. You can call it that, if you want to, since
    it justifies your argument that VB6 isn't OO...


    >OO is a specific methodology for design and implementation. Code which
    >results from deliberate use of that methodology is clearly OO. Code
    >which does not really follow the formalities but does make deliberate
    >use of OO specific constructs is marginal. Code which does not really
    >follow those formalities (as opposed to, say, the formalities of MP or
    >SSP), and which makes - at most - incidental use of predefined classes
    >or other OO artifacts, is clearly NOT OO.


    I disagree. If it looks like OO and it quacks like OO, then it is OO. The
    premise of OO is that the internal implementation is hidden. If a class
    wrapper is used to hide an internal representation, then you are doing OO.
    Clearly.

    If you use an object wrapper to group data and functions that work on that
    data, it is OO. If you create a class, and you put a bunch of methods on
    that class that get all their data through external arguments (no internal
    tie-ins), then that is not OO, and not even good programming practice. So
    it is possible to write (badly written) classes that do not use OO principles.

  4. #184
    Rune Bivrin Guest

    Re: Speaking of strings...

    "Jason" <jason@hotmail.com> wrote in news:3db05aaf$1@tnews.web.devx.com:

    >
    > You might want to avoid this topic of "discussion" as well. I've been
    > bantering back and forth with Bill for the past couple of weeks, and
    > we have yet to agree on the definition of "Object." As far as
    > "Polymorphism" goes, I wouldn't go there either (I see you skillfully
    > left that one out in your post).
    >
    > I was surprised to find out that, in the world according to Bill, VB
    > isn't an object oriented language, and although ActiveX libraries and
    > OCXs expose only object interfaces, they have nothing to do with OOP.
    > My mistake.
    >
    > I am also "tactically illiterate," whatever that means.
    >
    > In short, if you don't agree with what Bill has to say, it is best
    > just to respond with "I don't agree," and leave it at that.
    >
    >


    I went into polymorphic land, but he wouldn't follow. He didn't even mark
    that section as "snipped", which in his own terms would constitute an
    overt example of tactical illiteracy, and thus proves the fallacy of his
    expressed ethics of discussion. Do unto others what you would have them
    do unto you?

    How convenient!

    One wonders who guides the good doctor in his crusade against object
    oriented approaches. Could it be - SATAN!?

    But I'll give him this: He does provide a beautiful impersonation of the
    Church Lady in Saturday Night Live. Totally bigot, yet decidedly eloquent
    in his conviction that not only is his belief the only correct one for
    himself, but also that any other belief is the result of poisonous
    enticement from the proponents of academic "fads". And it is his task to
    exorcise the ghouls from the nether world (Tasmanian devils?) that have
    posessed our minds. Dana Carvey and Max von Sydow, all rolled into one.

    Wait! maybe it's actually Larry Ellison who writes these essays?

    Also, he has helped me improve my english vocabulary with a number of
    useful insults and diversive debate tactics, so that I'll know to avoid
    them.
    --
    Rune Bivrin
    - OOP since 1989
    - SQL Server since 1990
    - VB since 1991
    - Agnostic since 1964

  5. #185
    Jason Guest

    Re: Speaking of strings...


    "W.E. (Bill) Goodrich, PhD" <bgoodric@netzero.net> wrote:
    >The issue of a "superficial OO varnish on procedural code" becomes
    >relevant when someone (like Jason) tries to argue that the code is
    >"OO based" and therefore users of that code are "using and benefiting
    >from OOP libraries and methodologies." When the elements in those
    >libraries are older "procedural" (to use your classification) code
    >with a superficial OO varnish, then the argument is invalid. The code
    >is neither "OO based" nor a result of OOP methodologies, and the
    >primary benefit comes from the older, underlying code.
    >
    >Say I write an FFT function, without using any classes or other OO
    >specific constructs or methodologies (which I have). If someone comes
    >along and slaps that "superficial OO varnish" (in the form of a
    >wrapper) on it, Jason would be completely wrong to point to the
    >varnished version as support for his claim. The primary benefit -
    >especially to someone who is not trying to do OOP - comes from my non
    >OO code rather than the varnish.


    So let's put this theory to the test. Microsoft wrote an API called GDI.
    We all know it and love it, but it is an API, and therefore somewhat difficult
    to use.

    .NET has this library called GDI+. It is a set of wrappers that group together
    and conceptually simplify GDI. And there are a couple of extra features
    in there. But mainly it is a wrapper for GDI.

    So what you are saying is that GDI+ is not an OO library, but rather is an
    MP library with "superficial OO varnish."

    And if I then wrote an object wrapper for GDI+, it would still be MP, but
    with two coats of varnish.

    So really, there is no such thing as OO. Grouping things into objects and
    presenting them in a more logical way isn't OO, because the OO constructs
    aren't doing all the work.

    Well, I guess you have a point. It is all compiled to machine language in
    the end. Thanks for setting me straight on that one. There is no such thing
    as OO! The guys at Microsoft are going to freak when they find out!

    >Which is fine, as long as you don't try to advance Jason's misguided
    >argument.


    I don't agree that I am misguided. I do agree that I wish you would write
    less words so I don't have to spend so much time reading.

    Case in point...

    >
    >> The good doctor has painted himself into a corner where every sign
    >> of functional OO has to be written off as "non-OO code in an OO
    >> wrapper".

    >
    >Not at all. Jason is the one in the corner, having built his argument
    >on the claim that the elements in question are "OO based" (rather than
    >varnished) and that their use constitutes "using and benefiting from
    >OOP libraries and methodologies." When it is well known that the
    >libraries are in fact old code with your superficial OO varnish, his
    >argument falls apart. To support his claim, he would have to
    >demonstrate that (1) the components he cites were in fact created with
    >OOD/OOP rather than "varnished", and (2) that the OO nature of the
    >components is responsible for a significant part of the value of each
    >individual component, especially to non OO programmers who simply use
    >the component. He has done neither.


    Neither have you demonstrated that VB is not OO. You keep claiming that
    components are not objects. OCXs aren't objects, and even if they are, they
    aren't based on OO principles, so it isn't "really" OO.

    Again, getting back to your argument that "nothing is OO unless I say it
    is."

    Oh, man, I am getting sucked in again!

    When will I learn, Bill, that you never lose an argument. You are always
    right, because you get to define the meaning of every term in whatever way
    you see fit.

    In your world, there is no clear definition of OO. In your world, you can
    easily see how there is nothing in VB6 that is even remotely object oriented,
    although you might admit to a little varnish here and there. But just a
    little.

    THIS IS LIKE TRYING TO EXPLAIN THE THEORY OF EVOLUTION TO A CREATIONIST.
    I'm done.


  6. #186
    Jason Guest

    Re: Speaking of strings...


    Rune Bivrin <rune@bivrin.com> wrote:
    >One wonders who guides the good doctor in his crusade against object
    >oriented approaches. Could it be - SATAN!?


    His approaches do smack of a religious fervor with a decidedly negative and
    self-righteous undertone. Could it be that he thinks he is God? I just
    wish I knew what "Bible" he was working from.

    It's pretty scary knowing that this guy is out there somewhere writing code,
    ready to strike at any time.

  7. #187
    Jason Guest

    Re: Speaking of strings...


    Rune Bivrin <rune@bivrin.com> wrote:
    >One wonders who guides the good doctor in his crusade against object
    >oriented approaches. Could it be - SATAN!?


    His approaches do smack of a religious fervor with a decidedly negative and
    self-righteous undertone. I just wish I knew what "Bible" he was working
    from.

    And Bill, if you are reading this, you have to agree that your posts are
    pretty self-righteous and generally insulting to many of the people who frequent
    this board. It is the vb.dotnet.discussion board, after all, not the bill.defines.OO.nodiscussion
    board.

  8. #188
    Rune Bivrin Guest

    Re: Speaking of strings...

    "W.E. (Bill) Goodrich, PhD" <bgoodric@netzero.net> wrote in
    news:3DB05CB4.4E9A9597@netzero.net:

    I noticed you wouldn't discuss the polymorphic attributes of Windows
    controls, with or without OO wrappers. What's the matter? Did your feet
    get wet?

    > There are three possible classifications: OO specific, OO neutral, or
    > OO antagonistic. The IF statement was in common use long before Dahl
    > and Nygaard first proposed the OO concept, so it clearly is not OO
    > specific. Nothing about it mitigates against OO, so it clearly is not
    > OO antagonistic. So it must be OO neutral. The fallacy of your
    > question lies in the attempt to cast it as an either/or.


    Once again this insidious "fallacy". I specifically pointed out - and
    which point you conveniently moved out of context to three paragraphs
    later - that I didn't care. Thus I have not expressed a position on the
    issue, but you choose to wear your thorn-tinted glasses and read
    something into this which I didn't intend.

    Bear in mind that OO may well have existed as a pattern in the world of
    programming before the Norwegian duo formalized it. Whether it existed
    before the IF statement I don't know. You are not suggesting Newton
    invented gravity, are you?

    Following your argument, if an IF statment is OO neutral, it implies that
    the constituent parts of a component/module/object has no bearing on how
    to view the item as a whole. Accordingly, it is the exposed interface of
    a unit that we will have to use to classify it.

    Ergo! an ActiveX control is an object!

    Moreover, I could make the point - but will refrain from doing so - that
    an if statment could really be seen as a method call on a boolean
    expression, taking one or two code blocks as parameters, albeit with a
    somewhat kludgy syntax.
    Looking at most assembler code that I know bears this out. First the
    outcome of the condition is established, and then the code branches
    accordingly. Hey, it's almost like a bit-sized vtable!

    I have used languages which implemented loops with code blocks, where
    these were objects in themselves.

    So either you take things for being what they appear to be, in which case
    an IF statement is OO antagonistic (no inheritance, no polymorphism and
    no encapsulation), or you take them for being what they might be, given
    your particular preferred world view, in which case the answer will vary.

    Nothing in this world is ever truly neutral. Even absolutely pure water
    contains both acid and its counterpart (whatever that is termed in
    english), although they will cancel each other out on a large scale.
    >
    > The issue of a "superficial OO varnish on procedural code" becomes
    > relevant when someone (like Jason) tries to argue that the code is
    > "OO based" and therefore users of that code are "using and benefiting
    > from OOP libraries and methodologies." When the elements in those
    > libraries are older "procedural" (to use your classification) code
    > with a superficial OO varnish, then the argument is invalid. The code
    > is neither "OO based" nor a result of OOP methodologies, and the
    > primary benefit comes from the older, underlying code.
    >
    > Say I write an FFT function, without using any classes or other OO
    > specific constructs or methodologies (which I have). If someone comes
    > along and slaps that "superficial OO varnish" (in the form of a
    > wrapper) on it, Jason would be completely wrong to point to the
    > varnished version as support for his claim. The primary benefit -
    > especially to someone who is not trying to do OOP - comes from my non
    > OO code rather than the varnish.
    >

    Of course. The cost/benefit aspect of this was never in question. To
    someone who doesn't like quacking ducks, earplugs will be a good
    investment.
    But I contend, your honor, that if an FFT function is carefully wrapped
    in a warming blanket of object oriented concepts, I will be using object
    oriented mechanisms whilst invoking said functionality.
    The fallacy of your argument lies in the strategical inability to
    recognize that OO might have other aspects to it than what the ulterior
    design motives bring to the table. Hence the established distinction
    between Object Oriented Design and Object Oriented Programming.

    I like (*not*) the way you use the word "slaps" to create an illusion
    that all wrappers are hastily and sloppily concocted by an army of
    chimps, whereas your FFT function dwells on the pinnacles of engineering.

    >> I don't know - and frankly, my dear, I don't give a ****!

    >
    > Which is fine, as long as you don't try to advance Jason's misguided
    > argument.
    >

    Misguided. Hmmm, ain't that special! Bill, this is not a court of law,
    and there is no jury of your peers present. Just because you're right
    doesn't mean everybody who disagrees with you is wrong. You should
    consult a specialist about that condition.

    >> The good doctor has painted himself into a corner where every sign
    >> of functional OO has to be written off as "non-OO code in an OO
    >> wrapper".

    >
    > Not at all. Jason is the one in the corner, having built his argument
    > on the claim that the elements in question are "OO based" (rather than
    > varnished) and that their use constitutes "using and benefiting from
    > OOP libraries and methodologies." When it is well known that the
    > libraries are in fact old code with your superficial OO varnish, his
    > argument falls apart. To support his claim, he would have to
    > demonstrate that (1) the components he cites were in fact created with
    > OOD/OOP rather than "varnished", and (2) that the OO nature of the
    > components is responsible for a significant part of the value of each
    > individual component, especially to non OO programmers who simply use
    > the component. He has done neither.
    >

    I see this as a impromptu boxing ring, and we're all in some corner right
    now. However, I pointed out the fallacy of your statement that windows
    controls are not implemented using OO techniques. Something which you
    conveniently chose to snip, thus getting egg on your high browed self.

    >> If possible, any evidence to the contrary should be attributed to
    >> "fallacies".

    >
    > Not at all. But I will not hesitate to point out such fallacies when
    > they are advanced as arguments. Such as the false dichotomy I
    > addressed above. Unfortunately, certain of the posters here seem to
    > use such fallacies as their primary mode of argument.
    >

    Arguments of what, Bill? Could you please state your view of the relation
    between modular programming and object orientation?
    Without using the words "fallacy", "dichotomy", "fad" or other derogatory
    samples of your vast vocabulary. Remember, he is not always right who
    cries the loudest or longest.


    --
    Rune Bivrin
    - OOP since 1989
    - SQL Server since 1990
    - VB since 1991

  9. #189
    Phil Weber Guest

    Re: Speaking of strings...

    > If it looks like OO and it quacks like OO, then it is OO.

    Jason: Would that make it a GUIduck? (har, har!)
    Sorry, couldn't resist. ;-)
    --
    Phil Weber



  10. #190
    Dave Keighan Guest

    Re: Speaking of strings...

    Hi Phil

    > Mike: Boo friggin' hoo.

    ROFL - Didn't expect that, not from you. I don't 'usually' have a roaring
    laugh at the monitor (my 5 year old thinks I've lost it) but that post did
    it.

    Thanks Phil
    --
    Dave

  11. #191
    Jason Guest

    Re: Speaking of strings...


    Rune Bivrin <rune@bivrin.com> wrote:
    >Following your argument, if an IF statment is OO neutral, it implies that


    >the constituent parts of a component/module/object has no bearing on how


    >to view the item as a whole. Accordingly, it is the exposed interface of


    >a unit that we will have to use to classify it.
    >
    >Ergo! an ActiveX control is an object!


    Cool. Someone who can "out-Bill" Bill (but with the key difference that
    the arguments have some base in reality as defined in this universe). I
    haven't seen Bill use the word "ergo" yet, so Rune must be smarter than Bill.


    ----------------
    Jason

    "If it looks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, it must be a modular program
    because ducks don't actually exist."

  12. #192
    Mike Mitchell Guest

    Re: Speaking of strings...

    On 18 Oct 2002 11:13:36 -0700, "elliferg" <fergusej@agedwards.com>
    wrote:

    >just like if someone really wants to continue write vb6 code, they could
    >write it, and use the interop to call it from the "required" .net shell...


    Ugh, that sounds like a truly messy kludge, suitable only as an
    interim stopgap solution until the bean counters have worked out a
    proper strategy for the future.

    MM

  13. #193
    Mike Mitchell Guest

    Re: Speaking of strings...

    On Fri, 18 Oct 2002 09:38:51 -0700, "Phil Weber"
    <pweber@nospam.fawcette.com> wrote:

    >Mike: Boo friggin' hoo. I can't find a new necktie in the same shade of red as
    >my favorite, worn-out one. And I wish they were still making new episodes of
    >"Seinfeld." We can't always get what we want. Deal with it.


    But a necktie or an episode of Seinfeld is just trivia compared with a
    major software development product, which many thousands of companies
    depend upon for their livelihoods. And "Deal with it" means "Bend
    over", doesn't it? How many times have you bent over? We don't do that
    so willingly over here.

    MM

  14. #194
    Mike Mitchell Guest

    Re: Speaking of strings...

    On 18 Oct 2002 12:26:52 -0700, "Jason" <jason@hotmail.com> wrote:

    >Mike, I just want to clear something up, so I know where you are coming from.
    >
    >If Microsoft released an upgrade wizard for VB6 --> VB.NET conversion that
    >was 99.9% correct, so you only had to make a few changes to your code, would
    >you then be happy with .NET?


    I don't know about "happy", but I *certainly* would be much more
    willing to give it a go. I probably would have already.

    >What I am trying to get at is, do you have a problem with your perception
    >that .NET is a lot harder than VB6


    It is not just a perception; it is fact. .Net *is* harder. There is a
    lot more to it for a start and it totally mandates an OOP approach,
    which is harder per se. (See that interview with Alan Cooper.)

    >, or is it simply the fact that Microsoft
    >will not be continuing to improve VB6, and you have no upgrade path? Or
    >both?


    Yes, there is no upgrade path, and that is a huge obstacle for many
    thousands of companies. Suddenly, the apps they thought they had
    tested, debugged, optimised, rolled out and stable have the Sword of
    Damocles hanging over them. Not this month, nor even this year. But
    the guys in forward planning will soon need to start asking, when do
    we replace the VB6 apps our company depends on as mission-critical to
    the business?

    But, yes, the fact that Microsoft could suddenly, arbitrarily,
    discontinue a perfectly valid and viable product, used by millions,
    and just so they could "persuade" those thousands of companies to move
    en masse to .Net and hopefully surpass Java and conquer it and
    metaphorically give the finger to Scott McNealy because Sun wouldn't
    play ball with Microsoft's plans to embrace and extend its own version
    of Java, well, that is playing politics and oneupmanship with people's
    livelihoods, and it sucks real bad.

    >Do you believe that .NET is total crap, or are you just angry that Microsoft
    >opted not to bring you code base along?


    I think .Net is utterly superfluous. Everything and anything that
    businesses want to do can be done in other, simpler ways without this
    massive, proprietary solution in search of a problem. Pundits in
    computer journals are forever asking the question: Web services -
    what's it all about, then? Like so many technology bandwagons of the
    past few years, .Net is suddenly supposed to be *the* solution to all
    our computing problems. Yet Microsoft, despite trying since January to
    supply trustworthy computing, continues to issue frequent warnings
    about virus attacks on its software. Those are the real problems most
    companies are threatened with daily, along with unreliability and
    massive increases in licensing costs (up to 107% more, I believe
    Gartner said). I believe that this is all fundamentally due to the ad
    hoc way Microsoft have grown the business, practically since Bill
    dropped out of Harvard. It's been a seat-of-the-pants adventure for
    most of the time since, with products being churned out over and over
    again. How many different versions of Office? How many different
    versions of Windows? (To name just two.) And now .Net. Next year or
    the year after, there will doubtless be another newer version of .Net,
    and yet another after that. There'll be service packs or upgrade packs
    comprising mega- or gigabytes of "stuff" to be off loaded onto
    millions of PCs that already work totally fine. And all the time, .Net
    is just another proprietary layer on top of proprietary Windows. By
    now, the OS - any OS - should fit inside a chip the size of a
    matchbox, not require a DVD's worth of files to be set up first! I'm
    still using Windows 95. This PC is runnng 98SE, a slightly more
    advanced version of 95. But with it I can do all that I need. Why
    should I be interested in 2000, ME, XP, NT? Why should I be interested
    next year or the year after in Longhorn, Everett, Big Job, or whatever
    other moniker they come up with?

    The problem that companies like Microsoft have with software provision
    is that there comes a point where market saturation is reached. Unlike
    the cornflakes market, where the contents of the packet get eaten
    throughout the week and a new packet has to be purchased, thus
    guaranteeing a continuous supply of willing customers, software
    doesn't wear out, doesn't break, doesn't need maintenance (like oil
    and filter changes), and simply exists, like The Sphinx, for all
    eternity. Once the software has been brought to a state where it is
    stable, you will not be able to fool the people any longer into buying
    more of the same. It just won't work any more. This is .Net. It is, as
    I already said, a solution in search of a problem. There is no
    problem, but one *has* to be found, otherwise how can the punters be
    persuaded to part with their dosh? Well, one way would be to try and
    convince consumers that they need to "consume" web services and pay by
    the byte or the minute. Will this work? Will the public (who
    ultimately have to pay for all this crap) "buy" it? Or will they see
    through it for the gigantic scam that it is? Software isn't like
    electricity or water that one *consumes* and pays a monthly bill for,
    no matter how much software vendors want it to be so.

    MM

  15. #195
    Mike Mitchell Guest

    Re: Speaking of strings...

    On 18 Oct 2002 12:26:52 -0700, "Jason" <jason@hotmail.com> wrote:

    >What I am trying to get at is, do you have a problem with your perception
    >that .NET is a lot harder than VB6, or is it simply the fact that Microsoft
    >will not be continuing to improve VB6, and you have no upgrade path? Or
    >both?


    Further to my other reply, this report here
    http://zdnet.com.com/2100-1104-962381.html reinforces a lot of what I
    am saying. In particular, it states about the company, Microsoft:

    "Once again, the company is betting that customers will happily pay
    for more technology even if they haven't fully digested the last
    generation of Windows--a perilous assumption at a time when businesses
    are re-evaluating every penny of spending to survive the industry
    recession."

    Kind of what I've been saying - that .Net is a solution in search of a
    problem, but businesses are going to need a lot of convincing that
    they *have* a problem.

    MM

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