popfly 

In last week’s post I covered a bit on the Rugby world cup going on and my prediction for SA vs England was good, so now I’ll put in a score, 20 to 10 in favor of the Springboks. If you want to get more than the score, I recommend building a mash-up. It’s easy for anyone and we just announced the open beta of the Web tool to do it – it’s called Popfly. Simple example here -- we can use Popfly to build a simple News Reader gadget that pulls RSS feeds from Rucku and use that same gadget and add it as a Windows Vista Sidebar Gadget to keep up with the latest news and analysis in the world of Rugby.

This tool is a great example of the bridge between software and services which I discussed a couple of weeks ago . While Popfly doesn’t fit cleanly into our taxonomy, it does represent the first of a new generation of web tools that enables users of all skill levels to create or edit their own mash-ups for use within applications or to simply spice up their web sites. More than that, Popfly is a concrete example that delivers Software (using Silverlight) + Services (using Windows Live among others) to build a compelling, interactive experience for end users that want to create without writing code.

On a related note, the Silverlight 1.0 momentum since launch continues to be high. In fact, to accommodate the growing number of customer applications from around the world and the various scenarios they serve, ranging from digital marketing to gadgets to entertainment to news/information, we had to redesign the Silverlight community site showcase to allow it to scale. Now, that’s a great problem to have!

Since the Silverlight launch just 45 days ago, more than 40 customers from around the world have delivered over 60 amazing applications. Partners are acting too! Enrollment in the Silverlight Partner Initiative has grown to more than 50!

For bloggers that want to see more examples of gadgets and widgets you can add to spice up your Web site, check out Dan Fernandez’s blog for an assortment of example Popfly projects you can take and reuse.