Are you a startup?
Get BizSpark cloud access
Get up to $3,700 of cloud benefits
Don’t have MSDN?
Here’s cloud access
The release candidate for Silverlight 5 is now available to developers on the Silverlight developer site. You can get the release itself and additional details on Silverlight Downloads.
Silverlight delivers the richest set of capabilities available to developers today through a Web‐browser plug‐in. Announced last December and shipping later this year, Silverlight 5 makes further advances in media, application development and user experience, adding over 40 new features.
The Silverlight 5 RC provides developers their first opportunity to start exploring these new capabilities. More information on the Silverlight 5 announcements is available at http://www.microsoft.com/silverlight/future .
Multiple Window Support. Multiple window support enables a trusted application to dynamically create additional top level windows.
Ancestor RelativeSource Binding. Ancestor RelativeSource Binding enables a DataTemplate to bind to a property on the control that contains it, equivalent to FindAncestor and AncestorType, AncestorLevel bindings in WPF.
Implicit DataTemplates. This feature enables the following capabilities:
Click Count. Enables Multi‐click input on left and right mouse button.
Binding on Style Setter. Binding in style setters allows bindings to be used within styles to reference other properties.
Realtime Sound (low‐latency Audio). Enables pre‐loading of an audio source for precision timing of playback. Multiple playback instances are supported through creation of SoundEffectInstance objects.
Variable Speed Playback (“Trick Play”). This API enables development of fundamental player experiences such as fast‐forward and rewind and variable speed playback at common speeds (1.2x, 1.4x) – a very common scenario for enterprise training content.
Linked Text Containers. Enables RichTextBox controls to be associated and text to overflow from one into the next. multiple RichTextBoxOverflows can be chained (from an initial RichTextBox) to automatically spread text across a pre‐defined free‐form layout or multiple column layout.
Custom Markup Extensions. Custom markup extensions allow you to run custom code from XAML. Markup extensions allow code to be run at XAML parse time for both properties and event handlers, enabling cutting‐edge MVVM support.
XAML Binding Debugging. Data binding debugging allows breakpoints to be set in XAML binding expressions so developer can step through binding issues, examine the Locals window, and create conditional breakpoints.
3D Graphics API. Silverlight 5 now has a built in XNA 3D graphics API to enable you to build rich, GPU accelerated visualizations and rich user experiences. This includes a new 3D drawing surface control as well as immediate mode GPU access, shaders, and effects for 2D and 3D use.
Hardware video decode for H.264 playback.
Multi‐core background JIT support for improved startup performance.
ComboBox type ahead with text searching.
Full keyboard support in full‐screen for trusted in‐browser applications, enables richer kiosk and media viewing applications in‐browser.
Default filename in SaveFileDialog. Specify a default filename when you launch the SaveFileDialog.
Unrestricted filesystem access. Trusted applications can Read write to files in any directory on the filesystem.
Improved Graphics stack.The graphics stack has been re‐architected to bring over improvements from WP7, such as Independent Animations.
Bruce D. Kyle ISV Architect Evangelist | Microsoft Corporation
"Unrestricted filesystem access. Trusted applications can Read write to files in any directory on
Hrm, might want to be careful with that one. Might come back to bite you the same way that Java has been bitten. It will be hard to keep a balance between security and functionality.