Gates to Tout Programming Tool Advances

Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates to announce new programming tool advances and outline roadmap for C#, C++.

Microsoft Corp. Chairman and Chief Software Architect Bill Gates will announce new programming tool advancements and discuss the companys standards compliance in a speech Friday.

As keynote speaker at the Object-Oriented Programming, Systems, Languages and Applications (OOPSLA) 2002 conference in Seattle, Gates will discuss new details about the upcoming version of Microsofts Visual Studio .Net development environment, code-named Everett. As part of his speech, Gates will unveil the road map for Microsofts Visual C# .Net and Visual C++ .Net programming environments and a new tool coming out of Microsoft Research that is code-named Scout, the company said.

Microsoft developer teams have used Scout to locate and address areas of weakness or susceptibility in products, the company said. Scout relies on a series of tests of each product to winnow out defects in products under development.

Gates is also slated to highlight enhancements to the two programming environments.

For Visual C++ .Net, Gates will show new features, including performance improvements for floating point operations, enhanced security as part of Microsofts trustworthy computing initiative and enhancements for Windows Form development.

For C# .Net, Microsoft is proposing new features in the language to be added to the European Computer Manufacturers Association (ECMA) public standard for C#. Among the new features are support for "generics" or templates familiar in the C++ world that make coding easier for developers, anonymous methods, "iterators" and partial types, all of which ease the burden development, the company said.

In addition, Gates is slated to tout Microsofts adherence to the International Organization for Standardizations (ISO) C++ standard. Company officials said the Everett release of Visual C++ .Net will be 98 percent compliant with the standard.

"Microsoft started out as a developer tools company, and we recognize the incredible importance of great tools that support a range of programming languages," Gates said in a statement. "Today we are delighted to announce an even deeper commitment to C++, in the form of greater ISO standard conformity and an emphasis on building standard libraries."