The goal of C# is to provide a simple, safe, modern, object-oriented, Internet-centric, high-performance language for .NET development. C# is a new language, but it draws on the lessons learned over the past three decades. In much the way that you can see in young children the features and personalities of their parents and grandparents, you can easily see in C# the influence of Java, C++, Visual Basic (VB), and other languages.
The focus of this book is the C# language and its use as a tool for programming on the .NET platform. In my primers on C++, I advocate learning the language first, without regard to Windows or Unix programming. With C# that approach would be pointless. You learn C# specifically to create .NET applications; pretending otherwise would miss the point of the language. Thus, this book does not consider C# in a vacuum but places the language firmly in the context of Microsoft's .NET platform and in the development of desktop and Internet applications.
 See Sams Teach Yourself C++ in 21 Days, also by Jesse Liberty (Sams).
This chapter introduces both the C# language and the .NET platform, including the .NET Framework.