D'Arcy from Winnipeg
Solution Architecture, Business & Entrepreneurship, Microsoft, and Adoption

You Can’t Do Silverlight Without Blend

Wednesday, April 22, 2009 11:02 PM

I got back the comments from my TCCC talk, and I appreciated all of them. One stuck out though:

I was hoping for more help building Silverlight as a developer without using expression blend. I would have liked to see more of making a business-line application without worrying about massive silverlight graphics and using blend.

I want to make this point very clear:

You will not be able to develop a Silverlight application without Expression Blend.

Visual Studio only lets you interact with the XAML, not directly with the design surface. For simple interfaces this may not be an issue, but for anything complex you’ll go crazy trying to implement it by hand-bombing XAML.

However, I also think I understand what the commenter was trying to get across: Enough with the whiz-bang demos…how do I architect my application, how do I connect to services and data, how do I manage state, etc.

That’s something I know I need to be more cautious of…showing more real-world demos and scenarios in my presentations instead of just high-level examples. It definitely seems to be where people are at and what they want to know.

But even with more complex scenarios and end-to-end examples, until the functionality of the designer is implemented in visual studio, expect to see Blend be part of Silverlight demos for the near future.

D




Feedback

# re: You Can’t Do Silverlight Without Blend

I understand completely! You can't even drag and drop Silverlight controls in Visual Studio. They need to fix that for developers. Blend is okay but I don't having to go back and forth between 2 programs to do my development. 4/23/2009 9:13 AM | Josh

# re: You Can’t Do Silverlight Without Blend

Does anyone know specifics of the WPF/Silverlight designer support in VS 2010? Is MS walking a fine line in adding features to the designer, i.e. undercutting argument for a separate product. In my mind, you could move a ton of stuff int VStudio designer, coming down to single product for devs and Blend would still have a place for stuff like animations and fancier graphics..

But this was also a major epiphany for me. At least right now, if you're working in WPF or Silverlight, you MUST Blend. Unless you're a blutton for experimenting with XAML, add code, render, repeat, ad infinitum..

http://stuff.seans.com/2008/09/26/i-wpf-therefore-i-blend/

http://stuff.seans.com/2009/01/16/why-cant-i-drag-silverlight-controls-into-the-designer/ 4/29/2009 7:41 AM | Sean Sexton

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