C#: a kinder and gentler tune from Microsoft?

TR reader Stephen Barash sends in this article from InfoWorld.
Microsoft developed the C# (C Sharp) language. It created just-in-time C# compilers and a rich layer of standard data types and services it calls the Common Language Infrastructure (CLI). The combination of C# and the CLI, as packaged in June's beta 2 release of the .NET software developer's kit, supports the creation of text and graphical applications, server-side Web apps, components, and Web services. Most of this functionality has been submitted to the European Computer Manufacturers Association (ECMA) for standards consideration, effectively granting everyone the right to come up with C# compilers and CLI implementations of their own.
Mr. Barash asks: "Is Microsoft actually doing something beneficial for the computer world here, or is this really an attempt to bury Java (ie. Microsoft is willing to risk control of the .NET market as long as any result kills Java)?"
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