The last day was all about writing Windows GUIs.
During the intro Mark Quirk listed the technologies currently available for building client apps. He gave his personal recommendation about which one to choose: “if you’re not sure which one to go for give a try to Silverlight and see if it works for you.” When he asked “show of hands, who here has written code in Silverlight?” most of the attendees in the packed room raised their hand (I didn’t).
Amazing how Silverlight has quickly moved from something that was rather niche to a mainstream Windows technology. Now it is the toolkit you use by default when you don’t have a compelling reason to use any other (a bit like MFC 15 years ago). What used to be just a cut-down version of the .NET framework for browser plug-in is now much more…
Mike Taulty went over what’s coming in Silverlight 5:
- access to low-level XNA APIs for 3D graphics
- video: playback rate control and pitch correction
- the client networking stack is faster and was moved to its own thread.
- faster app startup through multi-core JITing
- faster XAML parser
- WS-Trust support for SAML security tokens
- support for multiple top-level windows
- trusted browser application: if you sign the XAP you can run an in-browser Silverlight app in fully trusted mode and therefore be able to do nasty things such as P/Invoke…
Impressive… One by one the limitations associated with Silverlight are going away.