Right now there are two extensions for .NET that I find very interesting.

The first one is Language INtegrated Query (LINQ) and the other one is the Atlas Toolkit.

For those looking for more information about LINQ, visit LINQ Project Overview at MSDN, and Scott Guthrie’s last post where he shares the code samples and slides from his TechEd LINQ Talk in Australia.

LINQ’s benefits

LINQ’s benefits include, most significantly, a standardised way to query not just tables in a relational database but also text files, XML files, and other data sources using identical syntax. A second benefit is the ability to use this standardised method from any .NET-compliant language such as C#, VB.NET, and others.

LINQ in action

The following snippet illustrates (in C#) a simple LINQ code block, using the Northwind database as its target. To see LINQ at work, we’ll use a simple C# 3.0 program that uses the standard query operators to process the contents of an array.

using System;
using System.Query;
using System.Collections.Generic;

class app {
  static void Main() {
    string[] names = { "Alpha", "Brian", "Connie", "David",
                       "Frank", "George",
                       "Harry", "Inigo" };

    IEnumerable<string> expr = from s in names
                               where s.Length == 5
                               orderby s
                               select s.ToUpper();

    foreach (string item in expr)

This program delivers this output:



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