01 December 2002
.NET making connections
.NET is coming to the plant floor real soon.
"If there's one word that describes Microsoft's .NET [pronounced dot-net] technology, it's connected,' " said Ron Sielinski of Microsoft's Industry Solu tions Group. ".NET is all about connected experiences, connected development, and connected systems. .NET includes clients, servers, services, and experiences and solutions."
One .NET flavor is of interest to plant floor managers and engineering professionals: .NET for Manu facturing, rolling out in January. But don't expect to use it for real-time control, Sielinski said. ".NET for Manu facturing is not deterministic," he said.
Data monitoring and updating is what .NET for Manufacturing is designed for: feeding information throughout an enterprise to planners, sales, and marketing personnel and all along the supply chain, for example.
In a data monitoring environment, "it's the best of both rich and thin client worlds," Sielinski said, adding .NET will allow applications to be easily installed while preserving existing Microsoft COM technology investments; support industry standards such as OPC and XML; and provide "broad support for devices."
During a .NET technical conference, Steven L. Weygandt, P.E., Dave Hardin, P.E., of Invensys Production Management, and Ron Sielinski of Microsoft wove a tapestry of automation, service, and familiarity in a Technical Conference tutorial on .NET.
-Jim Strothman and Nick Sheble