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Microsoft Rallies Developers to Build Next-Generation Applications

Microsoft releases the .NET Framework 3.0, Visual Studio 2005 Tools for Office for the 2007 Microsoft Office system, ASP.NET AJA

LAS VEGAS, Nov. 6 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Microsoft Corp. today unveiled new technologies that enable developers to build next- generation interactive applications for Windows Vista(TM), the 2007 Microsoft(R) Office system and the Web. The new technologies are designed to help developers build Web services and connected, service-oriented applications that deliver the levels of security, reliability and differentiation that business and consumers expect.

(Logo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20000822/MSFTLOGO )

"With the release of Windows Vista and the 2007 Microsoft Office system, the sky is really the limit on what developers can build -- from applications that deliver advanced data visualization to highly connected line-of-business solutions," said Scott Guthrie, general manager of the Developer Division at Microsoft, during his keynote speech at the Visual Studio(R) Connections event. "By embracing trends such as AJAX and delivering new technologies for Windows(R) and Microsoft Office, we are opening the door to entirely new levels of innovation in the software industry while still allowing developers to use their existing skill sets."

With easy-to-use tools and APIs designed to ensure immediate productivity and a superior user experience, developers can now begin building and testing their applications in advance of the broad availability of Windows Vista and the 2007 Microsoft Office system. The technologies announced today include the following:

-- The release to manufacturing of Microsoft .NET Framework 3.0, which provides advances for building rich, interactive client applications (Windows Presentation Foundation), communication and workflow (Windows Communication Foundation and Windows Workflow Foundation) and online identity management (Windows CardSpace).

-- The availability to MSDN(R) Premium subscribers of Windows Vista and the 2007 Microsoft Office system on release to manufacturing.

-- The availability of Visual Studio 2005 extensions for the .NET Framework 3.0, a series of plug-ins and project templates that enable developers to use Visual Studio 2005 to build .NET Framework 3.0 solutions.

-- The release to manufacturing of Visual Studio 2005 Tools for Office for the 2007 Microsoft Office system to build solutions for the six major applications in the 2007 Microsoft Office system: Office Word, Office Excel(R), Office Outlook(R), Office PowerPoint(R), Office Visio(R) and Office InfoPath(R). Visual Studio 2005 Tools for Office for the 2007 Microsoft Office system enables developers to build scalable, robust line-of-business applications that leverage the functionality of the 2007 Microsoft Office system.

-- Beta 2 of ASP.NET AJAX Extensions and the Microsoft Asynchronous JavaScript and XML (AJAX) Library (collectively called ASP.NET AJAX), formerly codenamed "Atlas," is a free framework that allows developers to quickly create a new generation of more-efficient, more-interactive and highly personalized Web experiences that work across the most popular browsers.

-- The release candidate of Microsoft SQL Server(TM) 2005 Compact Edition, a new offering for essential relational database functionality in a compact footprint. By sharing a familiar SQL Server syntax and common ADO.NET programming model with other editions of SQL Server, SQL Server Compact Edition allows developers and administrators to apply their existing skills and be immediately productive. The release candidate is available via download at http://www.microsoft.com/sql/compact .

Customers Begin to Ship Solutions Now

Customers have already begun to deliver solutions using the innovative new features in Windows Vista and the .NET Framework 3.0. Mail order and online consumer purchasing leader OTTO uses the power of the .NET Framework 3.0 to create a new shopping experience for more than 10 million retail customers. Consequently, OTTO is able to position itself as a thought leader and innovator in a highly competitive market.

"The OTTO Store is the next-generation shopping experience -- fun, personal, confident and secure," said Thomas Schnieders, vice president of New Media at OTTO. "We could not have delivered this exciting new user experience without the advantages that Windows Presentation Foundation and CardSpace provide."

These latest technologies have already enabled companies to build compelling Web solutions and realize immediate gains in developer productivity and end-user experience.

"Burton Web site visitors are generally young, tech-savvy kids with extremely high expectations for the content on burton.com," said Bryan Johnston, vice president of Global Marketing at Burton Snowboards. "We need to give our customers the information and features they want so they come back to our Web site over and over again. Microsoft technologies such as ASP.NET AJAX help us deliver the optimal user experience our customers demand."

Learning and Training Resources Available Now

To enable successful deployment and use of Microsoft products and technologies, Microsoft Learning extends the customer readiness promise to the next generation of Microsoft technologies and offers the latest training products for developers. Along with the upcoming release of the .NET Framework 3.0, training for ASP.NET 2.0 AJAX is now available, with additional offerings for the .NET Framework 3.0 and Visual Studio 2005 Tools for Office for the 2007 Microsoft Office system, shipping in the next few months. Information on the latest learning and training resources from Microsoft is online at http://www.microsoft.com/learning.

Product Information and Availability

The .NET Framework 3.0, Visual Studio 2005 Tools for Office for the 2007 Microsoft Office system, ASP.NET AJAX and Visual Studio 2005 extensions for the .NET Framework 3.0 are available for immediate download on http://msdn.microsoft.com/vstudio .

Founded in 1975, Microsoft is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.

Microsoft Corp.

CONTACT: Rapid Response Team of Waggener Edstrom Worldwide,
+1-503-443-7070, or rrt@waggeneredstrom.com, for Microsoft Corp.

Web site: http://www.microsoft.com/

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