In today's world where the average machine has at least 2 Processor cores (Dual-Core) and the higher-end workstations are now releasing with 4 Processor cores (Quad-Core), we as .NET Developers have an opportunity to have our applications take advantage of this ever increasingly powerful desktop/servers. The problem has been that it's very difficult to do Multi-Core development in anything other than C/C++, and most .NET Developers favor VB.NET and C#.
Microsoft is working on a set of Extensions for the .NET Framework 3.5 (Visual Studio 2008) that will make it dramatically easier for Developers to build "managed code" parallel process applications.
Here's the overview of the framework
Parallel Extensions to the .NET Framework is a managed programming model for data parallelism, task parallelism, and coordination on parallel hardware unified by a common work scheduler. Parallel Extensions makes it easier for developers to write programs that scale to take advantage of parallel hardware by providing improved performance as the numbers of cores and processors increase without having to deal with many of the complexities of today’s concurrent programming models.
Here's the download link for the Customer Technology Preview (CTP): Click here
~ Robert Shelton