The Microsoft.Data.Dll Brouhaha

by jmorris 3. August 2010 13:45

There has been a lot of noise in the dotnet blogasphere regarding Microsoft's latest offerings, Microsoft.Data.DLL and WebMatrix...most of it negative:

To get a feeling for the community sentiment on these two ms products, you really need to read through the comments! It seems that a lot of dotnet developers are miffed with MS for releasing these tools which, according to contemporary software architecture standards, promotes poor practices and the development of security ridden software.

Understandably, the community is upset sense they have been pushing MS (we all know MS’s record with quality software) towards the acceptance of better software development practices for some time now and releasing an API intending to promote bad practices is counter-intuitive. To Microsoft however, this is an opportunity to reduce the barriers of entry to MS offerings and provide API’s similar to some of the PHP offerings like Drupal and Wordpress, which currently have a huge market share.

If you’re wondering what Microsoft.Data API is, it’s simply a couple of wrappers over raw ADO.NET…nothing different from any of the wrappers we have all created in the past. It’s very similar to using the Enterprise Data Access Library with updated syntax and language features found in dotnet 3.0 and better. It basically allows developers to declaratively combine data access and markup on a webpage much like PHP developers do now (and PHP consultant’s en masse). An architectural Achilles’ heal with respect to maintenance, but a boon to quick n’ durty development…exactly user base MS is targeting (and largely owned by the PHP/ROR crowd).

Will I ever use Microsoft.DLL API or WebMatrix? Probably not…however I question the wisdom in a strategy that alienates one core developer group (professional) in an effort to gain another developer (amateur) which is clearly not even interested.

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