Silverlight 2 Beta 1 provides a rich set of features that enable great RIA (Rich Internet Application) application development. These include:
- WPF UI Framework: Silverlight 2 includes a rich WPF-based UI framework that makes building rich Web applications much easier. In includes a powerful graphics and animation engine, as well as rich support for higher-level UI capabilities like controls, layout management, data-binding, styles, and template skinning. The WPF UI Framework in Silverlight is a compatible subset of the WPF UI Framework features in the full .NET Framework, and enables developers to re-use skills, controls, code and content to build both rich cross browser web applications, as well as rich desktop Windows applications.
- Rich Controls: Silverlight 2 includes a rich set of built-in controls that developers and designers can use to quickly build applications. This upcoming Beta1 release includes core form controls (TextBox, CheckBox, RadioButton, etc), built-in layout management panels (StackPanel, Grid, Panel, etc), common functionality controls (Slider, ScrollViewer, Calendar, DatePicker, etc), and data manipulation controls (DataGrid, ListBox, etc). The built-in controls support a rich control templating model, which enables developers and designers to collaborate together to build highly polished solutions.
Rich Networking Support: Silverlight 2 includes rich networking support. It includes out of the box support for calling REST, WS*/SOAP, POX, RSS, and standard HTTP services. It supports cross domain network access (enabling Silverlight clients to directly access resources and data from resources on the web). Beta1 also includes built-in sockets networking support.
Silverlight 2 In Action: Building A Simple Digg Client
All of the UI in the application is built using Silverlight’s WPF framework. The application uses the Silverlight networking stack and cross-domain access support to query the Digg REST API directly, and uses LINQ and LINQ to XML to query/transform the returned data into DiggStory objects that I databind the UI against:
The entire application is implemented in about 35 lines of C# code and 75 lines of XAML page/user-control markup. It only uses controls and libraries built-into Silverlight.
- Part 1: Creating “Hello World” with Silverlight 2 and VS 2008
- Part 2: Using Layout Management
- Part 3: Using Networking to Retrieve Data and Populate a DataGrid
- Part 4: Using Style Elements to Better Encapsulate Look and Feel
- Part 5: Using the ListBox and DataBinding to Display List Data
- Part 6: Using User Controls to Implement Master/Details Scenarios
- Part 7: Using Templates to Customize Control Look and Feel
- Part 8: Creating a Digg Desktop Version of our Application using WPF