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Introduction to Silverlight. By Alan Cobb 2008-Jan-10 Sacramento, CA www.alancobb.com. About Alan Cobb. Independent consultant since mid-80s on Microsoft platforms C#, WinForms, WPF, .NET One of directors of the SacDotNet U.G. http://www.alancobb.com. Presentation Overview.

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introduction to silverlight

Introduction to Silverlight

By Alan Cobb

2008-Jan-10

Sacramento, CA

www.alancobb.com

about alan cobb
About Alan Cobb
  • Independent consultant since mid-80s on Microsoft platforms
  • C#, WinForms, WPF, .NET
  • One of directors of the SacDotNet U.G.
  • http://www.alancobb.com
presentation overview
Presentation Overview
  • What is Silverlight?
  • How does it relate to other client-side technologies?
  • How important is it?
  • Silverlight app development walk-through
what is silverlight
What is Silverlight?
  • One word definition: Flash
    • Browser plug-in: cross-browser, cross-platform
    • Use case today: Animated ads, Video
    • Use case tomorrow: Applications (Flex)
    • Benefits: Adds functionality + write-once-run-everywhere
  • Why Silverlight not Flash?
  • More words: Flash + .NET
  • More words: WPF-subset + .NET-subset
this is a big deal
This is a big deal
  • Once-every-20-years event
  • Existing client-side web technology has reached the peak of its life-cycle
  • Fresh start of a new client GUI technology
  • Web is where the action is
    • The network is the computer
comparing client platforms
Comparing client platforms

Desktop:

Web:

Win16

Win32WinForms

HTML / CSS / JavaScript / AJAX

WPF

Silverlight

Flash /

Flex

competing technologies
Competing technologies
  • Desktop based “smart clients”
    • WPF on high end
      • 3D, Hardware acceleration
    • WinForms: (Mature, proven)
  • Web-based:
    • ASP.NET - HTML + CSS
    • ASP.NET - HTML + CSS + AJAX
    • Adobe Flash / Flex
  • Desktop-web hybrid (?):
    • Adobe AIR
wpf silverlight positives
WPF / Silverlight – Positives:
  • Vector based vs. pixel based
    • Scalable – Looks good at multiple resolutions
  • XAML – Similar to HTML
    • Declarative
    • Designers and programmers work in parallel
  • Rich customization is possible in a well-designed way
wpf negatives
WPF - Negatives
  • Windows only
  • Requires 50 / 200 MB .NET 3.x runtime
  • Steep learning curve
versions of silverlight
Versions of Silverlight
  • 1.0
    • RTM in Sept. 2007
    • Code behind – JavaScript only
  • 1.1 / 2.0
    • Alpha introduced in Spring 2007.
    • Beta at MIX08 in March 2008.
    • RTM maybe Q3-2008.
    • Code behind - .NET languages C#, etc.
    • Partial .NET class library
silverlight positives
Silverlight - Positives
  • Lightweight at 4-6 MB, quick download
  • .NET based
    • Write in C# or VB.NET
    • Use familiar class libraries
  • Rich state-of-the-art GUI
    • Vector based
    • All types of content handled uniformly
  • Secure - sandboxed
silverlight negatives
Silverlight - Negatives
  • Not quite here yet
    • “Pig in a poke”
  • Sandboxing limits functionality
  • Conflicting products within Microsoft?
silverlight 2 0 features
Silverlight 2.0 Features:
  • Won’t know details until March 2008
  • Controls:
  • Data:
  • Communications:
silverlight 2 0 features1
Silverlight 2.0 Features:
  • Controls:
    • Extensible control base classes
    • Common controls:
      • Textbox, Checkbox, Radiobutton, etc
      • TabControl, Slider, ScrollViewer, ProgressBar, etc
    • Layout controls:
      • Grid, StackPanel
    • Data controls:
      • DataGrid, etc
silverlight 2 0 features2
Silverlight 2.0 Features:
  • Data:
    • 2-way data binding
    • More LINQ support: LINQ to XML
silverlight 2 0 features3
Silverlight 2.0 Features:
  • Communications:
    • REST, POX, RSS, and WS-* communication
    • Cross domain network access
    • Sockets
feature unknowns
Feature Unknowns (?)
  • Local client integration?
    • Read and write local files?
    • Read local mic and webcam?
  • WCF?
  • Depth of class libraries?
    • Pay-for-play
silverlight tools
Silverlight Tools
  • Expression Blend:
    • GUI builder
    • Graphic designers
  • Visual Studio 2008:
    • Includes a more limited GUI builder
    • Programmers
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