There is a lot of discussion around Microsoft’s object-relational efforts right now. There are a couple of key issues:
- Is Microsoft really committed to Linq to SQL, or is it shifting its attention to Entity Framework?
- Is Entity Framework being pushed out before it is ready? A “vote of no confidence” open letter along those lines has been signed by over 300 including more than a dozen MVPs (Most Valued Professionals), experts in Microsoft data technologies.
Now a post from MVP Ian Cooper makes the frightening suggestion that Microsoft is ignoring the lessons of Java’s problems with EJB:
The .NET community had a huge amount to gain from this experience. Ports of Hibernate and Spring offered the community the chance to avoid the mistakes of the past. However, seemingly unaware of the lessons of history the EF team embarked on a project to produce a complex framework, of which persistence is just one aspect, reminiscent of the EJB initiative. So the reaction against the EF comes from its failure to learn lessons that another community has struggled with around complexity and ambition.
Microsoft’s success with .NET has been partly enabled by over-complexity in the Java world. Microsoft’s secret sauce is enabling developers to build stuff that works quickly and easily – which, incidentally, is why I am really disappointed that Visual Studio 2008 is still such a mess for quick database applications.
My own knowledge of the Entity Framework is rather thin. I’ve treated it as a layer that you have to generate in order to use ADO.NET Data Services, a REST API that I really like. It has to be said though – Microsoft’s data story is getting confusing. Roger Jennings is doing a great job of tracking developments.