I think it all started with this post from Tim Mallalieu reporting some directions for LINQ to SQL and the ADO.NET Entity Framework. Ayende and others have had some strong reactions (LINQ to SQL is dead) and there's now a StackOverflow thread you can use to follow the discussion.
It will be interesting to track over the next few days what other responses pop up. A few things that come to my mind:
1. This is an opening for people using Linq to SQL to migrate to SubSonic or NHibernate. I've been using SubSonic lately and enjoying myself quite a bit.
2. A big disappointment for people like Benjamin Day who I saw speak at VSLive and who have incoprorated LINQ to SQL into their development projects. Next time wait for Microsoft to 2.0 something before spending too much time working it into your dev cycle.
3. I wonder if Microsoft hasn't thought of spinning off some of the tool makers as different companies. Perhaps there is an MBA out there who could draw some charts and convince management to have ADO.NET Entity Framework and the LINQ to SQL folks compete/copy in the same space. If the team isn't fully formed, why not make one? And then how cool would that be: profit centers that encourage developers to use Microsoft tools and competition to get the best ideas out the door. The trade off of Balkanization versus One True Product is that the former will mean that cool new ideas belong to you - the company won't have to get the ideas from outside sources.
4. I wonder if we aren't moving towards a tipping point of Microsoft developers "getting" open source and shifting their tool/framework usage outside of Microsoft. I know lots of people who won't use __anything__ unless it has a Microsoft logo because it feels safer and more commoditized. Moves like this seem to go against that since open source projects tend to live a longer time and technologies / frameworks from companies become "obsolete" (how many versions of ADO can you count?) because of a product cycle that requires new purchases every 2 years or so. I would argue with my boss on a new project that it's safer to use NHibernate than ADO.NET Entity Framework if this indicates a chance that the Entity Framework could be the next LINQ to SQL project.