Meet looks at .Net nuts and bolts

Why .Net? That's the question that will be addressed at a technical briefing to the Auckland branch of the New Zealand Computer Society next Tuesday

Why .Net? That’s the question that will be addressed at a technical briefing to the Auckland branch of the New Zealand Computer Society next Tuesday.

Freelance IT project manager Gerard Dunne and Adriaan Grobler, development consultant for systems integrator Axon, will discuss the technical merits of Microsoft's .Net platform and examine a case study from Axon.

Axon used the beta of Visual Studio.Net to rewrite its CADE content management system. Visual Studio.Net, which was launched in February, is Microsoft's toolbox for building web services.

Grobler says Axon has been in the web content management business for the three years, releasing CMC V1.0 in December 2000.

“The first version was based on an XML/XSL [extensible stylesheet language] platform that allowed content administrators to create new content using the web-based XML editor. The editor allowed the user to create an XML document based on a standard XML schema that can be rendered using a standard set of XSL style sheets. The engine delivered the content as HTML to the web client after converting the XML and XSL to HTML.”

However, last year Axon decided to rewrite the product so that it would be more powerful, have a better security model, improved user interface, navigation system and systems integration, and run more efficiently. A comparison was made between using the existing ASP/VBScript/VS 6.0 environment or developing in .Net/C#/VS.Net.

Axon chose .Net because it was a development platform that could deliver an integrated developers environment to allow multiple developers to work on the same module; rapid development tools; existing modules that could be used to decrease the amount of code needed to deliver the product; and seamless deployment.

Grobler says despite having to deal with a new development platform, new language and a product that was still in beta, the rewrite was done in six months.

The briefing will take place at the Auckland Club at 5.30pm on July 9.

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