Although VB.NET has in the past missed out on some fairly crucial language features such as anonymous methods and iterators (both absent from VB2005 which shipped with .NET FX 2.0) it seems that it is going to edge C# out in the race for the most obscure operators. Mitch posted about the C# implementation of the “because” or “justification” operator. The VB.net equivalent will looks something like:
1 + 1 = 2 because 2 – 1 = 1
1 + 1 = 3 because true
1 + 1 = 3 justbecause
Although the implementation is a little more wordy (literally) they extended this concept by adding the “why” operator. For example
why 1 + 1 = 2
The real question would be what does the why operator return and where could you use it. Well in the simplest terms the why operator allows the framework to expose any previously defined truths. For example in Mitch’s case where he defined the truth 1 + 1 = 3, you could write the query why 3 + 3 = 9 which would return a proof which includes the truths (1 + 1 = 3, 1 x 3 = 3) as well as an execution plan in the form of a proof tree indicating the order that these truths are applied.
You would think this would be something that C# could easily add into their syntax, allowing you to write:
¿ (1 + 1 == 2)
But unfortunately I have it on good authority that C# will not get this feature as they deem it to be too productive and is a security hole as it allows the developer to query the logic of the .NET Framework developers at Microsoft.