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[.net] what exactly is .NET?

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.NET is Microsoft's implementation of the Common Language Infrastructure. Mono is another implementation of the CLI, and it is cross-platform.

Roughly, the CLI is an abstract model for an application compilation and execution platform that supports multiple interoperating languages. It achieves this interoperability by specifying a single underlying static type system and by specifying an intermediate language to which all CLI languages will compile. The CLI then provides runtime components that execute the intermediate code using just-in-time compilation with optimization relative to the architecture on which the software is being run.

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A friend of mine once described it as Microsoft's answer to Java! .NET programs compile into a form of bytecode that is then interpreted by a number of runtime libraries specific to the platform... reminds me of the old days of Visual Basic...

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Original post by WaterCrane
A friend of mine once described it as Microsoft's answer to Java! .NET programs compile into a form of bytecode that is then interpreted by a number of runtime libraries specific to the platform... reminds me of the old days of Visual Basic...


When first launched, C# could roughly be thought of as Microsoft's answer to Java in terms of syntax, but C# has come to depart quite significantly from the design philosophies of Java. In particular, recent versions of C# have derived much inspiration from functional languages, introducing such components as LINQ and lambda expressions.

.NET in general is not comparable to Java because one of the ultimate goals of the CLI is to achieve natural and seamless language interoperability.

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Original post by WaterCrane
A friend of mine once described it as Microsoft's answer to Java! .NET programs compile into a form of bytecode that is then interpreted by a number of runtime libraries specific to the platform... reminds me of the old days of Visual Basic...


I'd just like to point out that Microsoft's implementation is not interpreted. It uses JIT compilation.

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Original post by Tape_Worm
Quote:
Original post by WaterCrane
A friend of mine once described it as Microsoft's answer to Java! .NET programs compile into a form of bytecode that is then interpreted by a number of runtime libraries specific to the platform... reminds me of the old days of Visual Basic...


I'd just like to point out that Microsoft's implementation is not interpreted. It uses JIT compilation.

I stand corrected.

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Original post by nilkn
.NET is Microsoft's implementation of the Common Language Infrastructure. Mono is another implementation of the CLI, and it is cross-platform.

Roughly, the CLI is an abstract model for an application compilation and execution platform that supports multiple interoperating languages. It achieves this interoperability by specifying a single underlying static type system and by specifying an intermediate language to which all CLI languages will compile. The CLI then provides runtime components that execute the intermediate code using just-in-time compilation with optimization relative to the architecture on which the software is being run.


.Net also refers to the huge library, parts of wich (i.e. winform IIRC) were not standardized. In this regard, mono is more than 'just another implementation', it was specifically designed to run .net applications (even the non standard libraries).

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