Date: Fri, 30 Jan 2004 15:09:45 -0500
Reply-To: "Chang Y. Chung" <chang_y_chung@HOTMAIL.COM>
Sender: "SAS(r) Discussion" <SAS-L@LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
From: "Chang Y. Chung" <chang_y_chung@HOTMAIL.COM>
Subject: Re: SAS / OLE reference/ resources - Any tips?
On Fri, 30 Jan 2004 12:37:17 -0700, Jack Hamilton
>I admit that I haven't been keeping up with Microsoft programming
>products, but I thought that .NET was a communications platform, not a
>language. Microsoft's web pages exceed even SAS's in terms of marketing
>vagueness, but <http://www.microsoft.com/net/products/tools.asp> says
>that Visual Studio .NET includes Visual Basic. Can you explain the
>relationship between VBA, Visual Basic, and .NET? What programming tool
>will come with Excel in the future? I hope you're not saying that
>anyone who wants to control Excel programmatically will have to buy a
>separate product to do it.
I am afraid that Alan doesn't know what he is talking about.
Visual Basic for Application (VBA) is the macro language for microsoft
office products. Each of the application used to have their own, like word
basic or excel macros, but now they share one language, VBA.
There is also the Visual Basic Script, which is a scripting language you
can use for web programming or shell programming in Windows Platform.
Visual Basic proper is another language which is used to make windows
Without marketing stuff, .NET technology has three major components: .NET
Framework, Common Language Runtime, and Visual Studio. Where the CLR is
like the java virtual machine, Framework like the class libraries, and the
Visual Studio the IDE(editor and compiler). Visual Basic.NET is one of the
languages (along with C#, J++, and so forth) that visual studio can
compile into intermediate language(IL binary code). The CLR converts IL
into platform-specific(meaning windows) machine code and executes it.
Framework and CLR is free; Visual Studio is not.
Given that office applications are among the largest application software
ever-written (in C and C++), the chances are very little that MS will re-
write them using any of the .NET languages. I don't think it would be very
easy to write .NET wrapper around VBA, either.
Thus, I see no reason that MS will stop supporting VBA at all. The more
likely senario (as the current development supports this one) is that MS
will provide "bridges" between VBA and .NET, so that you can write a
program in .NET to automate office applications and you can take adventage
of .NET framework from withing office applications.
Now, will SAS support MS .NET, given SI's commitment to Sun's java? I am
sure it will, sooner or later. :-)