Do you believe them?
Take for instance the item in there about building block experiences. Their login piece already has been described. They call it Hailstorm. Now to hear them talk about it, it is going to be the best thing since sliced bread.
However this is the company that does its best to wipe out everyone else by fair or foul means. It has repeatedly wound up in anti-trust court, generally for good reason. As the old saying goes, fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.
I do not trust Microsoft.
In fact here are my thoughts on what Hailstorm is intended to accomplish. This is not a company that is known for doing a good job on keeping data secure or private. Its track record is, in fact, abysmal. I would be willing to lay money that if its strategy takes off that in a few years everyone will be complaining about its abuses of the power that it grabbed with .NET.
Besides which, Microsoft's claims to portability notwithstanding, their strategy has always been to make their own platform the first among equals. .NET will, promises notwithstanding, be a Microsoft first platform. Given how Microsoft has abused every other standard to achieve lock-in, what makes us think that they will do differently this time?
And when it comes to portability, well .NET is a new VM, and Perl on .NET will have new and different bugs from the current. Glancing at what ActiveState has to say, their initial idea of compiling Perl in the .NET runtime was too slow. (Perl is a VM, on a VM?) Instead they have a cryptic comment about a native implementation having to wait for progress on Perl 6.
Given the design of Perl 6 into a front and back end, I suspect that this means that they are intending to try to map Perl opcodes as much as possible onto .NET primitives and get their own .NET implementation. I am sure that such an implementation will turn out to have behaviour differences from the usual. This is on top of the usual bugginess that I expect from Microsoft products.
Oh well. At least ActiveState gets some money for this work. And Microsoft's hopes notwithstanding, my belief is that Microsoft is not in the same position that they used to be to force things down the throats of industry. Unless they do something interesting, fast, they will lose hope of locking down the embedded industry, and I think that networked devices (which are rapidly heading towards Linux) are going to be a lot bigger area of growth than PCs...