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Introducing the New Microsoft Downloads

Written by IT News on 9:24 PM

Introducing the new Microsoft Downloads... now in Silverlight and in Beta. Unlike the traditional HTML Microsoft Downloads, the Redmond company's new hotspot that permits users to access various resources from software to updates is built entirely in Silverlight. And Silverlight is "a cross-browser, cross-platform plug-in for delivering the next generation of media experiences and rich interactive applications (RIAs) for the Web. Silverlight
1.0 will auto-update to the final release," according to Microsoft.

That is of course the long definition of Silverlight. A much more simple approach would be, considering the fact that with the technology Microsoft positions itself as a direct competitor of Adobe in terms of an interactive plug-in, Silverlight is meant as a Flash killer. After making Silverlight the star of MIX 07, Microsoft is now cooking the evolution of the technology from version 1.1 to 2.0.

"Two months ago we shipped Silverlight 1.0 for Mac and Windows, and announced our plans to deliver Silverlight on Linux. Silverlight 1.0 is focused on enabling rich media scenarios in a browser, and supports a JavaScript/AJAX programming model," said Scott Guthrie, General Manager Client and Web Platform & Tools Team, Microsoft.

The new Microsoft Download Center manages to complement the rebranding of Silverlight 2.0. But at the same time it is obvious by the inconsistent user's experience delivered by the Silverlight website in comparison to its HTML brother, mainly in terms of performance, that the technology is yet to reach full maturity. Still, Silverlight 2.0, judging exclusively by the promises delivered by Microsoft, looks like a sweet deal for all web developers.

"Next year we will be releasing a major update of Silverlight that focuses on enabling rich Internet applications. This release will include a cross-platform, cross-browser version of the .NET Framework, and will enable a rich .NET development platform in the browser. Earlier this year we shipped an early Alpha containing some of the basic functionality of the release. Our next public preview will add considerably to this feature set," Guthrie added.

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