Harold Davis has an excellent post about Microsoft dropping standard support for VB6, and the impact of web languages on the adoption of .Net on his Googleplex Blog. He writes:
There’s a very natural sort of ecology here where the increasingly complex challenge of trying to control a platform is balanced against the almost organic evolution of software made possible by open source technologies and the legions of programmers who contribute to them. I see many authors trying to bridge this gap, either moving to open source titles, or working on books that are platform independent.
Standard weblog disclosure, Harold has long been a client of mine. His Googleplex Blog supports his forthcoming book, Building Research Tools with Google for Dummies .