Wednesday, July 22, 2009

INETA Silverlight 3 User Group Starter Kit

I got sucked into this cool off hours project with Ariel and David Silverlight todo this Silverlight 3 starter kit. Ariels design has been well received and I got the UI built out over the weekend and last night. From a design standpoint its simple and elegant and with the AnimatingCloud panel fun to play with. Screen shots can be found at:

The project is on codeplex but still in the process of wiring up the backend RIA Services, this is a fun engaging project that we hope to see on our home page for our user group shortly.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Silverlight 3 Out of Browser Quicky

One would think that being on the silverlight insiders list and being a silverlight mvp etc one would know when something changes but amoung all the meetings, and conferences and the like I missed a tiny change in the Silverlight OOB - from the initial beta and the release of Silverlight 3. That weekend that the release happened I went to go and upgrade all my projects to the latest bits and everything feel a part. I found when I removed all the out of browser stuff it all seemed fine. it didn't take long to realize the API's changed but took me a whole fraking (BSG lingo) week before I realized what happened to editing the application manifest. That being all the case let me recap how to build an OOB Silverlight 3 application.

Step 1, build a Silverlight application of some kind.

Step 2, right click on the properties of your Silverlight Project (the actual app project not a class library or something). Normally you should get the Silverlight tab of the properties pain.

Step 3, 'Click' the check box for 'Enable running application out of the browser.'

Optional step 4 would be to click the 'Out-of-Browser' Settings button and then to set icons and details as desired.

Optional Step 5 would be to customize the UI with an install button. In the case of Simon, in the page constructor that is using the Simon control we add some code like this to see if we should show the install button:

if (Application.Current.InstallState == InstallState.Installed)
installbutton.Visibility = Visibility.Collapsed;

then in the install Simon button event handler we use this line to trigger an install


from there you can pretty much do what ever you like. its easy simple and better then editing the raw manifest like we did with the beta, but to be honest I kind of like raw XML... Now those settings are not in the manifest but a seperate file called 'OutOfBrowserSettings.xml' which seems to contain everything that was in the manifest.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Popfly is dead

Popfly is dead... going a way on August 24, 2009

With much sadness Popfly is going away.

Popfly was a IDE for hobbiest and non programmers for building online Silverlight mashups. Something like legos you could pick the popfly blocks you wanted and drag them on to a surface and then connect them and for the most part that was it. A cool technology but targeted towards a very narrow market and they couldn't get it to work with Silverlight 2 or newer so I'm guessing that this and more is the cause of pulling the plug. Moving forward I expect to see more mashup developement technologies in the future.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Silverlight 3 - Whats Next?

of course all the latest bits for Silverlight can be downloaded off of but a few other sites have changed that might be important to check out. This site if your familiar with Silverlight you might know of:

rumor has it Dr. WPF might have helped? maybe? but in any case the guys from IdentityMine, Inc. built the silverlight part.

Another good resource is the new IM syncated blog site that aggregates the sites of the best and brightest at IM:.

you'll find rock starts like Smitty, Laurent, Kurt, Jobi, Devin, me and more.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Silverlight? what about the hard ware geeks?

So Silverlight is cool, and working around here where everything is WPFish, or Surface-ish or Win 7-ish or Silverlight etc. or even stuff I can't talk about, I tend to forget about the geeky side of the hard ware we use. At IM there are lots of super cool, super smart poeple. Its a company of rock stars, that being the case however that turns out is true even of our IT guys. I finally got turned on to our IT guys blog... very geeky... :)

very geeky. One idea we had for the office is he likes this skelton case that looks like its out of a borg movie or something. we thought we could have one floor that has these cases and their uber cooling fans and other either steam punk or borgs sorts of things and then have all the cables drug up to the next floor so we don't hear the cooling fans...

Anyway if your in to hardware geekyness his blog is the bomb...

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Azure Simon

Davide Zordan posted a version of Silverlight Simon up in the cloud at

Davide had also added multi touch support to the WPF version. You can check out the code on the codeplex project

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Silverlight MVP

about a year ago I was at TechEd 08 taking to a friend (Peter) and he asked me if I was an MVP and I had no idea what that was. Granted I had heard it but never spent enough time to put 2 and 2 together. Well over the course of the next year and half or so I did find my self more involved in user groups such as the Seattle Designer Developer Interaction Group and Silverlight Insiders Group and of course I was already going to all the cool events such as MIX. I got a tweet from Suzanne at Microsoft Tuesday evening that I had been awarded Silverlight MVP.

For many years now I have been scoofing at things like MCP etc as I found that certifications like this tend to be something students do but the guys that are really good were the ones that can whip out the stack of experience and code. So for the most part I didn't care about that. I guess why I'm so proud of the MVP award is that it is not something you can just take a test. It is awarded based on contribution to the community and on the work you do professionally. As I understand it other MVPs or MS employees are the only ones that can nominate you and to be recognized like that for the hard work (albeit doing things like Silverlight Simon I have a hard time calling 'work') by others that are generally smarter then me is something I'm really proud of. Of all the silly certifications from school or other industry related stuff the only one that matters to me is Silverlight MVP.

In any case here is my MVP Profile: