You are clearly a VB programmer, through and through! (if that)! C/C++ is why languages like C# even exist.
C/C++ will always be maintained by Microsoft, as it would be in their best interest for many reasons...
Don't forget, that Windows itself, Visual Studio, MFC, Win32 API, C#, VB6 & VB.NET, UNIX, Linux, MAC, DSPAM, ODBC, OLE and SQL Server (just to name a few), are ALL written in C/C++.
VB, VB.NET and C# are also ALL written in C++ (reiteration required for SecretSoftware). Doesn't that already tell you something. Thinking from this perspective lets you realise why C/C++ should always be supported.
VC++ is the most powerful language when coding in Visual Studio and coding for .NET or non-.NET programs on any platform!!! C/C++ Syntax is eligant and to the point. It does what you want it to, when you want it to and how you want it to.
The only reason that the people complaining about the language open their mouths against C/C++, is because you'll usually find that they are ammatures, un-professionals, or simply not smart enough to understand what's under the hood of computers. Can I also just say, "I HATE", the fact that people like you (SecretSoftware) are amongst us real programmers, trying to blend in.
Don't get me wrong VB saves you time, and C# is a good language, Java is excellent too. But C++ is the best!!! I can mix C++ with Assembly Language, in a hybrid Win32+MFC app, then call upon .NET modules, whilst utilising STL, ATL, COM. This little scenario is just..... well..... simply; on the otherside of a blackhole-wormhole, compared to what C#/VB can fathom!
Until next time,
The old song that goes..... 'we built this city, we built this city,we built this city on rock, and, roll ......' etc.. Should be more like: 'we built this world, we built this world,we built this world using C++.