Wow, this has been a good discussion to read. Of course, it took me a while to get through all of the posts. It must be that I am on the West Coast, and I already have 6 pages to read. Well, my thoughts regarding CLR and TSQL. I expect TSQL will stay around for as long as we have DBMS systems. SQL Server and other DBMS systems are maintained by DBAs or there "want to be" counter-part, the Developer. DBAs are trained and skilled with planning, maintaining, designing, and tuning the database engine and tools. Developers are mainly focused on the development aspect and they try to perform the same tasks that the DBA performs, which in my opinion takes years to accomplish. Therefore, I don't expect any SQL language to disappear but further enhancements will be made to help the DBA or Database developer to work more efficiently.
When we talk about CLR and SQL Server, I believe there is a time and place for all technology. I have used a few CLR stored procedures and functions, but they are uncommon in most of the environments that I have worked in. I have created REG-EX functions, record-set based stored procedures for data collection of Operating System data that would otherwise be difficult with regular TSQL. Anyone who writes code using the sp_OA objects could potentially rewrite using CLR with greater security and flexibility. I do advocate the use of CLR objects when they are needed or are tested with greater performance for complex calculations. However, TSQL is my top choice for most logic, set based, and code reuse. Profiling CLR is not the easiest task. Monitoring performance and reviewing "Execution Plans" are an important part of the DBA Role. If these tasks are not performed, then the DBA probably isn't focused on the well-being of there environments.
Technology is awesome, and the CLR has provided more features and greater benefits to the DBA. The CLR must not be used as the default logic for the RDBMS. Experienced DBAs will carefully evaluate the technology used in the DBMS.
Thanks Steve, this is another good post.