Microsoft Renames Silverlight 1.1 to Silverlight 2.0, Announces Features
Microsoft has decided to rename the yet-to-be-released Silverlight 1.1 to Silverlight 2.0 and released in beta form in Q1 2008 shipping with a Go-Live license so developers can create applications immediately.
The announcement came on S. "Soma" Somasegar's (Corporate Vice President, Developer Division) weblog where he explained the reason for the change:
With all these updates, the Silverlight 1.1 versioning simply didn’t do the enhancements justice so we decided to rename the next version to “Silverlight 2.0,” instead of “Silverlight 1.1.” We are planning on delivering a beta version of Silverlight 2.0 in Q1 2008.
This new version supports .NET so developers can write Silverlight applications in C#, VB, Ruby and Python which developers had been expecting but some of the newer features include:
There will be Silverlight controls that you can add to your toolbox and drag onto your design surface, just as you do with ASP.NET. These controls will provide full support for layout management (Stack + Grid), sockets, databinding, templating, networking and much more. It will include an integrated solution for cross-domain networking and developers will be able to access resources and data from any trusted source on the Web. We are also expanding and improving our media pipeline performance and formats.
Silverlight 2.0 will ship with a cross-platform version of the .NET framework which runs on Windows, Mac and soon Linux supporting Internet Explorer, Firefox and Safari browsers and beyond.
The feature set has grown significantly from the Silverlight 1.1 alpha release and Scott Guthrie details some of the .NET specific new features:
WPF UI Framework: The current Silverlight Alpha release only includes basic controls support and a managed API for UI drawing. The next public Silverlight preview will add support for the higher level features of the WPF UI framework. These include: the extensible control framework model, layout manager support, two-way data-binding support, and control template and skinning support. The WPF UI Framework features in Silverlight will be a compatible subset of the WPF UI Framework features in last week's .NET Framework 3.5 release.
Rich Controls: Silverlight will deliver a rich set of controls that make building Rich Internet Applications much easier. The next Silverlight preview release will add support for core form controls (textbox, checkbox, radiobutton, etc), built-in layout management controls (StackPanel, Grid, etc), common functionality controls (TabControl, Slider, ScrollViewer, ProgressBar, etc) and data manipulation controls (DataGrid, etc).
Rich Networking Support: Silverlight will deliver rich networking support. The next Silverlight preview release will add support for REST, POX, RSS, and WS* communication. It will also add support for cross domain network access (so that Silverlight clients can access resources and data from any trusted source on the web).
Rich Base Class Library Support: Silverlight will include a rich .NET base class library of functionality (collections, IO, generics, threading, globalization, XML, local storage, etc). The next Silverlight preview release will also add built-in support for LINQ to XML and richer HTML DOM API integration.
it simply didn’t do the enhancements justice ..
Re: Java failure
If only LifeCycle Data Services (LCDS) was more affordable. I am involved in a project with a Flex front end and a WebSphere Application Server (WAS) business/resource tier. Integration between the two was painless. I was expecting problems getting LCDS to run on WAS (as is usually the case), but it was a breeze and has not given us a single problem.
For integration between a rich client and a J2EE back end system I'd go with Adobe any day.
Re: Java failure
I think the appeal of Silverlight, at least for me, is that it sticks to .Net languages. I can code C# everywhere from my gui front end, to my business and data layers, all they way down into my database (with SQL Server 2005/08). That's very appealing.
Re: Java failure
The only element that is missing for a good client-side experience is a better applet deployement engine, and I hope Sun will provide one in the "Consumer JRE".
(An improved GUI framework would be nice too, but it doesn't have to be included in the JRE runtime itself.)
Also I am not sure there will be high quality implementations of Silverlight on platforms other than Windows (with good performances and cross-platform consistency).
Re: Java failure
I think that the JVM is today the best VM implemented on all major OSes. Moreover it it is now open source.
What are you talking about?? JVM is the best VM, about what?? Did you really worked on a project with MS Tools or are you talking about legendary metropolitan histories??