To start off with I'd just like to say that I'm not a programmer or anything so I don't know exactly how XML or .NET works, but from what I understand XML is a new free-form language that Microsoft is developing. .Net is a framework for programs made with this language. .NET is apparently not a windows-only type architecture and is eventually supposed to be able to work on LINUX and Mac machines. What I don't understand though is, what is Microsoft getting out of all of this? They spend millions developing this new language and this new framework, but it's not something that they intend to keep for themselves--they're just giving it away. I thought about this for a while, but I just couldn't see any answer. I was hoping that someone on this forum, someone who actually knows what they are talking about, could answer this for me.