Ok, well I finally got around to downloading all 6 GB worth of Visual Studio Orcas. I opted to do the regular install as opposed to the VPC image. As I have said in the past, I have used beta versions of previous Visual Studios and have never ran into any issues with compatibility or getting them uninstalled. Then again, some people aren't as daring as I am.

The only part I have really checked out so far is Web Applications. For the most part things are the same. After all there aren't any major changes in this version of the framework for ASP.NET aside from them adding AJAX natively. There are some minor differences in the IDE however. First thing that you will notice is when a page opens up, it is in the new Split View. This gives the ability to edit in either HTML mode or design mode at the same time. It automatically syncs up changes in either view as you are making them (although sometimes it doesn't and it wants you to click something). This I think is pretty neat. There is also a lot of new stuff for CSS but I have yet to really figure it out.

Another thing I had to try was the JavaScript IntelliSense. It works and it seems to work pretty well. This by far is a long awaited feature. This next feature may have been around in VS2005 but maybe not to this extent. You can now highlight a block of code and generate code metrics for just that block.

The last thing I want to point out is that when you create a new project/solution, there is now a dropdownlist where you select which version of the Framework to target (i.e.: 2.0, 3.0, or 3.5). This is very cool because you can take advantage of the new Orcas IDE feaures on your existing 2.0 projects.

I have just begun to take a look at the new features in the project. I will talk about more of them as I explore the product further.

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