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This paper presents an overview and comparison of three major industrial-strength enterprise application development (and deployment) platforms. The platforms are Microsoft.Net, Java 2 Enterprise Edition, and WebObjects. The comparison includes discussion of the presentation tier, application tier, persistence tier, deployment, and tools. Although not a complete survey and somewhat subjective in its final recommendations, the paper should provide a general understanding of these three major platforms and how they compare. The choice of development platform is a significant one for developers and organisations (because they generally have a significant learning curve) and should not be made without a good understanding of the alternatives.