Microsoft Expands .Net With Xen

By Robyn Peterson  |  Posted 2004-01-16 Email Print this article Print
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Preview: The hot new language from Microsoft Research offers native XML and database support (in addition to the powerful punch of .Net) and possibly ushers in a new generation of programming languages.

In the professional world, most programming can be summed up in two words: data manipulation. And these days, much of the data being manipulated comes prepackaged in XML documents or SQL tables.

So why do languages like C# force programmers to use obtuse APIs to access those data structures? It would be much more convenient if C# had a notion of XML and SQL built directly into the language--and if Microsoft has its way, it soon will.

Xen, a new programming language coming out of Microsoft Research and developed in conjunction with the University of Cambridge, promises to bring together three disparate but integral components of programming, wrapping them together in .Net. Xen's creators use a geometric metaphor to illustrate this conjoining, calling the language a means to program with "circles, triangles, and rectangles..."

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Robyn Peterson

Robyn Peterson, Vice President of Product Management and CTO for Ziff Davis Media, oversees PCMag.com, GearLog.com, SmartDeviceCentral.com, TechnoRide.com, and the other consumer-oriented Ziff Davis Media websites. He also covers multiple content areas, including but not limited to consumer electronics, car techonology, software and development, and networking. Robyn is also the host of the PCMag Radio podcast (subscribe in iTunes).

Robyn has appeared on CNN, CNN Headline News, MSNBC, CBS, Fox, Fox News and the WB network representing PC Magazine, GearLog.com, and ExtremeTech. His writing appears on ABCNews.com and Yahoo in addition to PC Magazine, eWEEK, CGW, and ExtremeTech. He has also won the Chairman's Circle 2001 Award for outstanding editorial contributions to Ziff Davis Media (parent company of ExtremeTech and PC Magazine).

Robyn has a masters of science in computer science from New York University (NYU).

He can be reached at robyn_peterson (AT) ziffdavis.com.

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