Today at the MIX 09 conference we announced the immediate availability of the Silverlight 3 Beta 1 SDK.
First of all here are the all important URLs:
Developers Runtime: http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?linkid=143433
Silverlight 3 Tools Beta 1 for Visual Studio 2008 SP1: http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?displaylang=en&FamilyID=11dc7151-dbd6-4e39-878f-5081863cbb5d
Silverlight 3 SDK Beta 1: http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?displaylang=en&FamilyID=d09b6ecf-9a45-4d99-b752-2a330a937bc4!
Silverlight 3 Beta 1 Documentation: http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc838158(vs.96).aspx.
Blend 3 Preview: http://www.microsoft.com/expression/blendpreview
Microsoft .NET RIA Services March '09 Preview http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=76bb3a07-3846-4564-b0c3-27972bcaabce&displayLang=en
So what is in it?
This was highly expected and there is a lot of excitement about it so I thought it may be nice to list some of the new cool features included in this release:
Support for Higher Quality Video & Audio
Rich, high quality media has always been one of the strengths of Silverlight since version 1 (hence big the number of sites that adopted it as their technology of choice for video streaming), Silverlight V3 is still another step forward in this by providing a number of additional features.
Enhanced visual experiences
We listened to what developers and designers told us they wanted to see in the next version of Silverlight to allow them creating even more exciting user experiences and among the many additions to the platform are:
Improved support for developers productivity
While Silverlight has always provided excellent support for developers via the tight integration with Visual Studio and a set of built-in controls, the new version keep adding on top of this and provides yet more features that will make designers happy:
Out of browser capabilities
You asked and we answered!!! Now it is possible to host Silverlight apps on the local machine and add a link to the desktop to launch the app outside of the browser and even if the machine is offline!
Designers, designers, designers!!!
And what about designers? While Silverlight has always been a huge success with developers who are able to work with tools familiar to them (such as Visual Studio), designers keep asking us to improve their experience in designing applications using Silverlight and so we are also providing a preview of the new Expression Blend 3 and some of its main features are:
Do you need more?
In addition to this:
We are launching a new official Silverlight blog to keep you informed and updated with what is going on in the Silverlight world: http://team.silverlight.net/
The World Wide telescope is available in Silverlight via its web client: http://www.worldwidetelescope.org/webclient. If you have never heard of the World Wide Telescope, it is a technology which allows to browse high resolution imagery taken by telescopes worldwide… if you have never seen it… you have to now!!!!
ASP.NET MVC 1.0 has been released and is available here.
Version 2 of of the Web Platform Installer beta has also been released. Microsoft Web Platform Installer 2.0 (Web PI) is a free tool that makes it simple to download, install and keep up-to-date with the latest components of the Microsoft Web Platform, including Internet Information Services (IIS), SQL Server Express, .NET Framework and Visual Web Developer. In addition, install popular open source ASP.NET and PHP web apps with the Web PI.
The Windows Live Messenger Web Toolkit has also been released on MSDN. Itenables developers to integrate and enrich their Web-based applications with Windows Live Messenger. With the Windows Live Messenger Web Toolkit, you will get instant access to:
SuperPreview is a stand-alone visual debugging tool that makes it faster and easier to migrate your sites from IE6 to IE7 or IE8. With SuperPreview, you can ensure that your Web sites work correctly in IE8 while also maintaining compatibility with earlier versions of IE.
SuperPreview shows your web pages rendered in IE6 and either IE7 or IE8, depending on which version you have installed on your machine. You can view the pages side by side or as an onion-skin overlay and use rulers, guides and zoom/pan tools to precisely identify differences in layout. You can even compare your page comp to how the targeted browsers render the page.
I really think my next few days will be REALLY busy trying out lots of this!!!! And if you are an Academic in the UK and want to learn more… there is still some time to sign up for out Silverlight Insight sessions where I will cover some of the new features too!!! Check my previous blog post for more info!!!