Silverlight 1.1

微軟日前正式發表Silverlight 1.0,並且展示了很多利用Silverlight 1.0技術的商業網站,例如MLB網站的影片,和微軟的Halo 3預覽網站HD版)、Tafiti.comMSN Podium ’08。微軟沒有忘記必須讓Silverlight跨平台、跨網頁瀏覽器,因此Silverlight的runtime不僅有Windows和Mac版本,也會有Linux版,而Mono專案團隊將會負責實作開放源碼版的Silverlight 1.0和1.1;開放源碼版本的Silverlight的專案代號是Moonlight。Mono是由Novell贊助的Linux版.NET平台,有趣的是專案代號Moonlight。如何有趣?一是銀光、一是月光;再者,把Mono的最後兩個字母調換就變成Moon了不是嗎?

Moonlight不僅能在Linux套件執行,而且將支援Firefox、Konqueror、Opera。再者,Moonlight 1.0會如同Silverlight 1.0支援JavaScript程式開發架構,而Moonlight 1.1則會向Silverlight 1.1完整支援.NET架構。

隨著1.0的推出,微軟也正加快Silverlight 1.1的開發。Silverlight 1.1將會包含跨平台版本的.NET Framework,支援WPF的UI開發架構(包括可擴充的控制項架構、版面配置的管理、資料繫結、控制項面板、更多內建的控制項)。Silverlight 1.1也包含了目前開發人員使用的完整.NET Frameworkr基底類別庫的子集,能支援集合、泛型、IO、HTML DOM、XML、本機儲存、LINQ,以及sockets、Web Services、REST等網路功能。跨平台版本的.NET Framework,意味著開發人員可以利用任何.NET語言(VB、C#、JavaScript、Python、Ruby等等)來開發Silverlight程式。

目前如果想要開發Silverlight 1.0的程式,可以利用任何的文字編輯器-_-;或者以Visual Studio 2008/Visual Web Developer Express 2008 Beta 2搭配JavaScript Intellisense for Silverlight 1.0(這比利用文字編輯器hard coding方便許多)。如果現在就已經著眼於Silverlight 1.1,可以下載Silverlight Tools for Visual Studio 2008 Alpha和Express Blend Preview

More info:
Silverlight 1.0 Released and Silverlight for Linux Announced / Scott Guthrie’s blog

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Internet Explorer Beta Sparks Frustration

When Microsoft announced the release of Internet Explorer 7 beta last week, a week earlier than previously expected, developers were quick to express frustration that this was to be a closed beta, open only to paying Microsoft Developer Network (MSDN) subscribers.

Though Microsoft never indicated which (if any) of its IE7 betas would be made public, many had assumed from the “open and honest" direction the company appeared to be going in as it approached this release that it would be. After all, why release a closed beta of what is effectively (if not actually) a free product?

As the developers who were entitled to the beta pored over it, some of the reasoning behind this decision became clear. For beta 1, the bulk of the changes appeared to be in the category of new user interface features, such as tabbed browsing and support for RSS feeds. Developers most likely to be affected by such changes would be those specifically using Microsoft technologies, who either use Internet Explorer’s proprietary features as a platform for applications or use the browser as an embedded component within desktop apps. Such developers can reasonably be expected to pay for the support that an MSDN subscription can provide.

Nevertheless, Microsoft’s release notes cited two of the most bothersome CSS bugs in IE6 as being fixed, along with support for PNG alpha channel transparency and other minor changes for which Web developers in general would certainly be able to provide valuable feedback.

These developers will likely have to wait until Beta 2 to test out these updates… and that’s assuming Microsoft fulfils public expectations of a public beta this time around. So far, it has only said that Beta 2 would be released “much more broadly".

As I’ve outlined above, there is some reason behind the closed IE7 Beta1 release, but when the company is clearly trying to put its best foot forward with Web developers and standards groups, it is frustrating to see it continue to emphasize Internet Explorer (and by extension, the Web in general) as a platform for proprietary development.