One Runtime to Bind Them All

by Volker Weber

The Common Language Runtime is being sold as a libertarian technology that levels the playing field for minority languages. The CLR would offer to all languages a neutral typesystem, a state-of-the-art back-end compiler, runtime and set of enterprise-class frameworks. VisualStudio.NET makes this complete with a first-rate IDE that can be extended to support any language. It would almost zero the barrier to entry for new languages.

The reality looks much darker instead. The CLR is not truly language-neutral, and it will ostensibly favor languages that look a lot like C#. Those not in this group will be severely bastardized, producing dialects which are really "C# with another syntax"; look at ISE's Eiffel# (or even Microsoft's own VB.NET and J#) for great examples. (via Hugh)

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