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An Overview of ASP.NET - Language Support

An Overview of ASP.NET

by John Peterson

Language Support

I stuck this close to the end so that you'd be in a good mood from all the cool stuff before you read this. It's actually a good thing, but it does have a downside.

VB (not VBScript!)

Say goodbye to VBScript! ASP is now written in full-blown VB. That's not so bad now is it? Well hold on... VB has some changes!

Major changes in VB:

  • No more Set and Let
  • No more default properties
  • Parenthesis are now required to call Subs
  • Arguments are now ByVal by default
  • Integer is now 32 bit, Long is 64 bit
  • "And" and "Or" are short-circuited

If you look at the above list... most of the changes make sense, are definite improvements, and are probably long overdue. Unfortunately that doesn't change the fact that much of your existing code isn't going to work!

C# (C Sharp)

Moving right along before the VB changes really sink in... C# is cool! Pardon the pun. (Microsoft's internal code name for it was "cool".) I was trying to come up with a good description of the language and I failed miserably so here you go... taken right from the docs:

NGWS SDK Documentation - CSharp Reference - 1. Introduction:
C# is a simple, modern, object oriented, and type-safe programming language derived from C and C++. C# (pronounced "C sharp") is firmly planted in the C and C++ family tree of languages, and will immediately be familiar to C and C++ programmers. C# aims to combine the high productivity of Visual Basic and the raw power of C++.

If you're a VB developer there's probably no reason to switch, but the C++ developers will be jumping for joy. (I don't even use C++ and at the end of the hour long presentation I was thinking about it. If you're a VB person you know that's a scary thought!)


As far as I know it's the same old JScript. It'll benefit greatly, as VB has from the NGWS runtime and the fact that it's compiled, but beyond that I'm not aware of any major language changes here.

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