This post has been a long time coming. I've said it before and I'll say it again: The whole issue people have with WinFX being renamed to .NET 3.0 is absolutely ridiculous. Mark Treadwell made a comment that the .NET Framework should be the same version as the CLR. This is just ignorant. I'm sorry, but that's not how it works. They are completely different animals. I will say that keeping the versions inline would make it easier to understand, but it doesn't make sense when you take versioning practices into account. I don't mean to pick on Mark; his is just one of the many complaining about the change. If I would've been in control of the .NET 3.0 release, I'd have included other features besides WinFX, but I'm not. The fact that these additional features were the only thing added seems to be part of the confusion, as far as I can tell.
While I completely agree with the naming of the release, I don't necessarily agree with the tactics Microsoft used in getting it out. In my personal opinion, it seems as tho the release is based on timing. .NET 3.0 is part of Windows Vista, therefore, it needed to be completed by the time of the Vista RTM. If Vista wasn't a factor, I think we'd have seen it wrapped up with the next version of Visual Studio. And guess what! It would've been called .NET 3.0! Wow, imagine that. A major release of new functionality to the framework and they up the major version number? That's unimaginable.
Beyond .NET 3.0, there are a lot of references to .NET "3.5." I think people need to understand that "3.5" is not the version it will be released as. Instead, it's an identifier or a variable, if you will. The exact version number is not known at this point and Microsoft gave the release that monicker in an effort to discuss it. In my mind, I see this as Microsoft acknowledging that there might be an interim update. For instance, there may be changes wrapped up into a 3.1 release with the .NET "3.5" release with AJAX and LINQ being 3.2. Who knows what'll happen. I honestly doubt there will be an interim release, but I don't think Microsoft wanted to commit to that at the time it was originally used. We'll see. Either way, I think people are getting all bent out of shape for no reason. Microsoft has done a very good job at versioning its tools appropriately, if you ask me.