Many of us are old enough to remember the early-1970's television commercials featuring jazz singer Ella Fitzgerald with a wine glass, a recording studio, and the brand new Memorex recordable audio cassettes. The idea was intriguing: could an audio recording of Ella's powerful voice actually break the wine glass, or was it possible only with her live (and amplified) voice?

No doubt, the consumer-recordable audio cassette was a breakthrough technology and the advertising campaign was a smashing success.

Just a few years before, Memorex had begun life as a company with another interesting product: data backup tapes for the emerging computer industry. This was in 1961, before the personal computer revolution had begun, and computer professionals of that era knew that if the data was going to stay live, it had better be on Memorex.

The interesting thing about Memorex is that the company has continued to change with the times and pursue innovative new technologies. A quick look at their website ( reveals that they have progressed from audio cassettes through video cassettes, recordable CDs, flash media for digital cameras, and last year, a 3-inch pocket CD-R. Now, they're moving into recordable DVD and they promise to keep innovating for the next 40 years.

Visual Studio goes live

In recent years, we have all watched Bill Gates and friends literally turn the entire company in a different direction, once the implications of the rapidly-emerging Internet and distributed technology came into focus. They did the browser thing, the DCOM thing, the XML thing, and now they're working on the Web Services and CLR things. Who knows what's next? Nobody knows for sure, but you can bet the company won't be standing still or simply resting on its laurels.

So now, the faithful, the skeptical and the curious have gathered in mid-February 2002 at the VS-Live Conference, eagerly awaiting the official launch announcement and watching to see if this .NET thing really flies. We knew Visual Studio .NET was partly vaporware this time last year, but is it really ready now? Is it live or is it jive?

You can find out for yourself at any of the Microsoft district launch events planned in over 60 cities this Spring. For more details on a Visual Studio .NET launch near you, check the Microsoft website at

Some say, “It's one-dot-zero, for crying out loud! It can't possibly be ready!” Others, who have actually used the later Release Candidates, say, “I'm jazzed. You can't believe how simple it is to create a Web Service or create your own controls!” Some of the believers, thankfully, have written down their experiences in this and recent issues of CODE, and you can put their insights to use right away by reading and re-reading these reference-quality articles.

Reaching for your CODE Magazine is almost like playing that audio cassette of Ella over and over again. As you dive into your live copy of Visual Studio .NET, our hope for you is that your wine glass will break and your programs will run bug-free. Stay with us this year and we'll help you get there!

Available soon at your favorite newsstand

We told you that Component Developer Magazine was on a roll, and we have some great news to announce. As of this issue, we are officially in the pipeline for newsstand distribution in the United States, so you will soon be able to find us in bookstores and other locations near you.

Of course, we prefer that you bite the bullet and subscribe for one, two or 40 years (which is quite a bargain, now that we've increased frequency to 6 issues per year). However, for those of you who prefer the experience of buying off the shelf, we'll be at your favorite magazine racks in the near future.

We will not be at full newsstand numbers until the next issue, but the process has begun and orders are rolling in. If you can't find us soon at your local newsstand, please ask them to order us through Ingram Periodicals, Inc.

Find us on DEVX

Another exciting development we are now able to announce is that you will soon find the content of CODE Magazine on the DEVX online site (, a popular destination for over one million developers each month. Our most recent articles will appear there for a period of time as each issue is released, and will be found in the various categories, such as .NET, UML, and so forth. Articles from back issues will also be available soon to those who sign up for the DEVX Premier Club membership.

We are really stoked about this new partnership, as it increases the reach of our authors (whom we consider to be among the best in the business) and also will introduce many more developers and managers to what we hope is now your favorite magazine.

A Developer's Life

Due to a change in publication schedule, we are skipping one of our usual features, A Developer's Life, which will return in the next issue. We welcome your insights into the struggles and joys of balancing life and logic, for possible inclusion on that page.

The next issue's topic is, "What interesting non-business travel have you experienced recently?" Send your brief comments by March 10 to:

See you next time!