In your hands, you are holding a special issue full of details on new software development “toys.” These toys are known as Whidbey and Yukon. Whidbey is the next generation of Visual Studio .NET and Yukon is the next generation of SQL Server. From what I have seen in the few brief weeks that I have had these toys, I am impressed. You see, to me, installing and playing with a new software tool is like being a kid in a toy store. I love looking through the “What's New” section to see what new toys I can go play with. Let me say that Microsoft didn't disappoint me.

For instance: with Yukon, you can now integrate your .NET code into Triggers and Stored Procedures. Along with this, you can create your own data types. I was so excited about this last feature that I wrote a brief article on creating your own data type. And that's just touching the tip of the iceberg with Yukon.

Whidbey doesn't disappoint either. Visual Basic .NET now has “edit and continue.” I'm gonna have to remind myself that this is there now, after missing it in the current version of Visual Studio .NET.

There are also tons of changes to ASP.NET, The .NET Framework (we now have a browser control <YES!>), Windows Forms, C#, C++, J#, and others. Take a look at the overview written by Alan Griver of Microsoft. Make sure to read the articles by Michael Lane Thomas, who wrote about Windows Forms and .NET Framework changes. Ken Getz and Paul Sheriff wrote about the next generation of ASP.NET, and Markus Egger wrote about changes to C#.

I hope you like this issue as much as I did. Now go play!!!!!!