back to article Silverlight's star shines in Microsoft's HTML5 show

Microsoft has announced that the beta of Silverlight 5 is now available. That announcement, made by Redmond's corporate developer division VP Scott Guthrie during his MIX conference keynote on Wednesday, won the .NET faithful's biggest applause – more than the news of multitasking or access to smartphones' cameras in the next …


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Lazy .NET developers

Maybe Silverlight is so favoured by .NET developers because they can't be arsed to learn the full array of web standards technologies.

Personally, I can't be arsed to learn how to develop for a plugin technology that offers little more than an increased threat window to your online browsing activities


Knowledge is a good thing

Silverlight is favoured by .NET developers as it firmly integrates with the MS stack and is actually a great engine for RIAs. Blanketing a whole development community with negative childish, irrelevant and baseless accusations shows a very narrow closed view.

Silverlight is not meant to be an open standard and it never pretended to be. It is MS proprietary to deliver RIA solutions quickly at a low cost across the vast majority of PCs.

Most Silverlight developers (or at least the dozens I have met) have come from web development (MS and non-MS based) and ALL agree web standards are a good thing. Browser implementations of the standards however are not. This is just one of many issues surrounding the issues with standard HTML pages I will not get into here.

I will admit I prefer Silverlight in terms of RIA. It is the best out there. But when developing open, public web sites that have to be available for everyone you would use something much more suitable.

Silverlight is just another tool for a particular job that HTML will not fill for many years. Anyone thinking HTML5 will be an all unifying all conquering is deluding themselves. Those of us old enough to remember have seen and heard this debacle all before, and it will most certainly happen again.

You scoff at the "lazy .NET developers" but in the same paragraph admit you cannot be bothered to learn about a tech before you comment on it. The oxygen must be very thin being up so high on that very big horse of yours.


Contrarian perspective

I'm currently developing a prototype which spans desktop (WPF), web browser (ASP.NET MVC 3), RIA (Silverlight4), and mobile clients (MonoTouch for iOS, MonoDroid for Android and WP7/SL4).

Personally, I can't be arsed developing all of those in different code bases so it would be nice if there was a platform and IDE which could make this happen without having to (unnecessarily) duplicate code, and which could be consistent as possible (shared resources, assets, etc.) across all of those platforms.

btw, how many security exploits have been published for Silverlight and for .NET?

On the flip side, for a platform built around asynchronous operations, it's appalling that Microsoft aren't implementing the TPL in Silverlight5. It's already in Mono!

Gold badge

You see.....

....a Kinect controlled armchair.

I see the bastard offspring of a dodgem car and a lard chariot.

Gates Horns

Same old Microsoft

>>> COM automation in the browser tying Silverlight further into Windows

Saw that coming. Oh no, wait, because Silverlight is available for other platforms.

>> Silverlight 5 didn't get the biggest overall applause of the event, however. That honor went to Microsoft's decision to give every single MIX attendee a free Kinect hands-free controller for Xbox.

Heh, it's still selling well, then...


The problem with HTML5...

Is javascript. Having had the recent misfortune to have to write significant chunks of javascript I can't say I'm enamoured with the HTML5 future, as a language frankly C# blows it away in every significant regard.

The inventors of jQuery deserve significant kudos for making things remarkably less painful than before, and maybe "strict" ECMAScript 5 will improve things, but it would be much nicer if there was a CLR-type standard for client side scripting and you could pick a language suitable for your task.


Hmmm - I wonder...

Is the computer industry leading the end user down a dead end?

If we push all applications into being dependent on a browser and browsers dwindle down to just 3 say; IE, Chrome and Safari, then there is not much choice for the end user.

Also, if we developers are herded into a 'Cloud' only type environment, we are then dependent on Microsoft, Google and Chrome to ensure that our applications work, perform and are secure. To me that is a worrying position to be in.

At the moment I can write in any language I want to and deliver it on Windows, Linux (Redhat, Suse, Centos etc), Solaris, HP-UX, AIX, BSD and OSX.

Silver badge

Who actually uses it??

Not to be insulting or anything, but the only places I've ever seen Silverlight used in on sites owned by Microsoft. Is it actually being used by anyone else and I'm just missing it?


A fair question

There is a heavy adoption of Silverlight by businesses that have internal (non-public) facing websites. If you go take a look on JobServe or other good IT recruitment sites the Silverlight list is not a small one.

This goes hand in hand with my reply to an earlier post as it reflects that Silverlight is not suitable for public facing websites where you must maximise your WWW footprint. If a rich user experience is what you are going for, Silverlight is the weapon of choice.

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