My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

Last week, Microsoft held their long awaited Build Windows (or simply "Build") conference in Anaheim CA. About 5000 people packed the convention center to discover the latest version of the Windows operation system: Windows 8.

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Print | posted on Saturday, September 17, 2011 9:32 PM

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# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by Adriano Labate at 9/17/2011 10:05 PM Gravatar
Hi Laurent,
Thank you for your post that is one of the best feedback I've seen so far.
Your analysis on Silverlight reassures me a lot over exaggerated headlines of some journalists these days.
I think it continues to be judicious for quite some time to develop large "Line-of-Business" applications in Silverlight. I hope to see more news on this topic.

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by pedro at 9/17/2011 10:44 PM Gravatar
Great post, Laurent.

Good to hear that you are already hard at work in porting MVVM to Metro.

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by Kakone at 9/17/2011 10:55 PM Gravatar
I don't share this excitement. After trying Windows 8 on a desktop PC, I think that this new interface is totally useless with this kind of PC (and not practical at all).
I understand that with a tablet, it will be a very good interface (and a good success for Microsoft).
On ARM tablet, there will not the Desktop mode (Silverlight is dead :-)). Instead of simplifying the development on Windows, Microsoft makes it difficult because there is a big problem with Windows Phone 7. Apparently, the Windows Phone 7 applications will not work on Windows 8 Metro interface. It's a pity (especially compared with the IOS development). I am very surprised by reading the various articles on Windows 8 that nobody evokes the compatibility with Windows Phone applications.
I can not wait to buy a tablet on Windows 8, but there are many problematic points that cause I can not share your enthusiasm.

Cordially,
Kakone.

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by gregg at 9/17/2011 11:52 PM Gravatar
Thanks for sharing that Kakone because with all due respect to Laurent I find his approach here although informative disingenuous in that he fails to underscore the rickroll we who trusted Microsoft to take Silverlight to alternate platforms have been put through.

I do wish Microsoft well with its in-house startup and as a consumer love the possibilities.

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by Laurent Bugnion at 9/18/2011 1:00 AM Gravatar
Kakone: Hi,

I can understand your reaction. Clearly, having to learn new frameworks is always a challenge. Keep in mind however that this is an early preview. I don't think that Microsoft has said that there would not be a way to run WP7 apps in Win8. In fact I wouldn't be surprised to see an emulator/wrapper of some kind in the future, but at this point, I do not have information about this. In any case, remember that it is very early now and it is almost impossible to say what will be added before RTM.

Cheers,
Laurent

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by Laurent Bugnion at 9/18/2011 1:12 AM Gravatar
Gregg: Fair enough. I have told multiple Microsoft employees this week that the whole messaging around Silverlight had been a disaster that led to some people losing their jobs. I will take any occasion to repeat this loud and clear, because I think that the secrecy was unneeded (at least to the extent where they took it in the past 12 months) and even harmful. Unfortunately these poor guys cannot do much about it because it is clear that the orders come from high above. I hope that this feedback will be heard.

Yes the rickroll sucked big time, however I feel that now is the time to look into the future and to see what we can build with these new bits. Again, these have been thoughts more than a thorough analysis. I will make sure to blog more about experiences in the coming weeks. Also, let's not forget that much of the rickroll was due to a few individuals taking a few poorly formulated statements and distorting them to the max in a negative manner. I do my best to keep a moderate voice but clearly some have an agenda making the situation sound worse than it actually is.

Looking forward to read the feedback from Build on your own blog (just saw that there is a post).

Cheers
Laurent

Cheers
Laurent

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by Laurent Bugnion at 9/18/2011 1:30 AM Gravatar
Just posted a comment on Gregg's blog at http://blog.tempworks.com/company-news/reflections-on-windows8-and-staffing-software/#comment-3898

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by greggd at 9/18/2011 1:52 AM Gravatar
big fan of mvvm light ... look forward to many years to come

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by Scott Barnes at 9/18/2011 3:30 AM Gravatar
Did you just call me a dumbass? ...no you are...fanboi :) hehehe


Seriously though your entire posture rests on that Silverlight is now part of Win8 therefore its not dead is sound advice in part.

The question is not what the future holds but the present? so are you willing to declare its alive and will likely have more iterations of Silverlight beyond 5.0 in order to hold the fort down for future tech upgrade such as Win8?

As the way i see it you're busy focused on Win8 and all its new pretty shiny things available and have lost sight of today, where the overall advice is going to be "Just hold tight for Windows 8"

What about situations where you have a hybrid environment a mix between Win7 and Win8? Do you optimize for plug-in or native os level usage? or both?

My point holds, Silverlight is dead ... Silverlight isn't the same as it is today in Win8, its just a way in which its abstracted inside the OS via Classic mode and not via WinRT - which requires a different approach.

.NET 4.5 isn't a fix, its a binding/UI Thread patch. There's no data that states its a perf increase unless you re-route your handling of UI Threading to accommodate the new approach.

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by Laurent at 9/18/2011 3:55 AM Gravatar
Hey Scott,

WinRT is not Silverlight. It is something else that is using similar concepts and syntaxes up to a certain point. Silverlight however runs just fine in the Desktop of Win8. And a new version is coming. I don't know if Silverlight 6 will come (it might not, and I never said it would) but by these standards, it's like saying I am already dead because one day I will die. And even if there is no SL6, existing apps will still continue to run in Windows XP, 7, 8 and more.

Scott to be honest I absolutely don't see what the big deal is. Technology is evolving, and that's part of our life. What's important right now is that existing applications will run unchanged, that the skills are portable easily to Win8, and that because of this, our investments are safe. The rest is really just wind.

Cheers,
Laurent

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by Scott Barnes at 9/18/2011 4:11 AM Gravatar
WinRT is the focal point thus my focused comment but its moot point.

Thanks for the tutorial on Silverlight - wait...oh yeah i already stated this months ago. A new version is coming? really? who's making it then? Kevin's team?...who's in that team? is there a secret team hidden from everyone in the old team?

If you don't know Silverlight 6 will be coming then how do you declare it a worthwhile bet for the future to keep skills? it comes off as a marketing engine driven echo? ... add substance behind your vision or advice at the very least.

No its like saying "You're about to die" as your metaphor implies there's an uncertainty around a timeline. If you walked into a Doctor they say "Well, its not clear your going to live beyond tomorrow - all the best"... do you walk around thinking "Well, i'm gonna live that's for certain" or do you start getting your affairs in order?

Its highly relevant discussion to have, as this is exactly what put WPF / WinForms into the stall that it was in thus we produced WPF/E Silverlight to stimulate an uptake - again, something only say people whom WERE on the team would know.

I can tell you're locked into the messaging framework as your posture is "skills are still reusable!!" ... which was NEVER a contention point, the reality was C# was a skill you could re-use in WPF when WinForms hit... the reality was that XAML wasn't the issue it was always the tooling and deployment strategies that FUBAR'd that concept - that and performance.

So again, we're hitting the reset button again circa 2005 with the exact same rants like this about the future being bright, but everyone's to busy cheerleading the shiny object(s) when they instead should be focused on the road in front on how we get there.

Silverlight IS dead because as of Win8 the message is clear, do what you can until we get market ubiquity withi Windows 8 ..then...it will be disco / happy days.

I've seen that plan before... now where ...oh yeah, WPF/Silverlight! ... but this time its different right? :)

Next time dont' call people dumbasses until you've sat down and sobered up from the kool-aid drinking and focused on the reality not just the potential.

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by Martin Bennedik at 9/18/2011 4:22 AM Gravatar
I agree with Scott that Silverlight and WPF are now dead in the sense that they are legacy systems. They still run, but I don't see Microsoft putting much effort into them anymore, other than support.
I agree with Laurent and Microsoft, that our developer skilly carry over, and .NET, C#, and XAML are still very much alive.
However, I think it is not clear what the future is for line of business applications on WinRT. Microsoft hasn't said much about this, and the current sample applications for Windows 8 give no indication of this either.
Since most of us are probably business application developers, I think that is where the interesting discussions will take place in the next couple of months.

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by NoKoolAid at 9/18/2011 4:46 AM Gravatar
Hey, Laurent - I really respect all that you've accomplished, but there's a huge difference between those that find success being an evangelist, mouthpiece and/or apologist, all comfy in the ivory tower, and those with boots on the ground, getting their asses kicked and struggling to pay the mortgage because Microsoft's lost its way. It's easy to say that 'we don't know yet', etc, and remain comfortable with utter uncertainty when its not making one bloody. If the economic mess and escalating levels of outsourcing weren't already hammering many of us, now we have all kinds of added turmoil, including very real projects being cancelled, because Redmond hasn't a clue and is burning down the house, pursuing a misguided consumer play that's already doomed to failure.

Honestly, I hate the degree to which Scott's made it brutally impossible to run from the truth - hate it - but I've been on the inside in Redmond enough to know that he's right. Yes, even though it's killing me, he's right.

It's far more difficult, standing up to speak an unpopular truth, than it is to simply dismiss those knowing the Emperor's wearing no clothes as 'dumbasses', and sadly, you simply look foolish taking on Scott as above...

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by Eugene at 9/18/2011 5:17 AM Gravatar
Laurent, personally I’m agree with you but ... can you explain this “Don’t panic” thing to our enterprise customers? Look, we just released our new silverlight diagraming component library. We’ve got very positive feedback for this product during beta testing, there was a lot of customers who actually start using it in beta and wanted to buy it. And now, after the «//BUILD/» event, almost all of them told us that they don’t plan to use Silverlight anymore. This is worst moment in my entire ISV owner career. For me it’s «//DESTROY/» event.

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by Fallon at 9/18/2011 5:32 AM Gravatar
Laurent, the real problem is that we have customers TODAY! They have problems and ask us to deliver the best solutions... TODAY!

Your thoughts, while perfectly good, and I agree with almost all of your point, fall apart in your conclusions.

Guessing isn't a valid business position! If Microsoft can't lay out a coherent vision of the path forward with their technologies, quite frankly, it's time to look elsewhere.

Now, I happen to believe they know the path, but for some reason appear to be afraid to state it. MS is stronger than they know, and Win8 is quite frankly a breath of fresh air.

But they're loosing the loyalty of a lot of developers, and waiting for over a year for Win8 to ship doesn't build confidence.

BTW, you said that Win8 on ARM wouldn't have the desktop, and that's the FIRST time I've ever heard that, and it's shocking.

MS has stated that ARM should run everything, even though I don't believe that, that's what they said, and attacked Intel when the said it.

Do you have additional information?

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by Keith at 9/18/2011 5:41 AM Gravatar
Another perspective is that of folks who build "big-boy" applications. Global companies investing 10's of millions of dollars (if not more) on just a single project. For folks like us, sheer bitter honesty from folks like Scott are what keep us from making horrible mistakes.

Remember that in these scales - it can take a couple years for a company to build, test, and release a new product. Then it can take a couple years to start getting the marketplace to buy, upgrade, and deploy. Even if Microsoft "supports" Silverlight for 10 years, you're close to end of life just as customers are starting to use your application.

In the context of enterprises - Silverlight is DEAD.

Silverlight has no team. It's an organ donor for Metro and there's barely a hint of its ghost in there. It's not going past v5. Even if it is "supported" by Microsoft that still = DEAD.

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by Fooser at 9/18/2011 5:56 AM Gravatar
"Unfortunately these poor guys cannot do much about it because it is clear that the orders come from high above."

And the people sending those orders are still in charge. Problem is how they will prioritize support for the two platforms.
- All platform controls are being implemented twice- once in HTML and once in XAML
- Samples and documentation are difficult to maintain across different languages (like C# vs VB, but 10x more)
- Tooling support for XAML and HTML are independently expensive

Will both platforms get full attention? I haven't seen any evidence that the Windows management is very interested in XAML.

It feels like the XAML world is facing the equivalent of VB6->VB.Net conversion and facing years of VB-C# comparison. Only XAML is 10x more expensive for MS to support than VB was compared to C#.

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by Ray at 9/18/2011 7:50 AM Gravatar
What happens in Build in my SL-biased eyes is not a Win8 event. No. It will go down the history infamously as the public execution of SL. SL is dead. It's dead at least until these Win/IE team Prima Donna backstabbers get pushed aside.

SL is dead when MSFT announces they have "shifted" their cross-platform strategy to embrace H5/JS, a platform Google is abandoning. Comical but sad & real.

SL is dead when three VPs came out with a lip stick statement on why it's important to skip SL and embrace standard aka H5/JS, a platform Google is abandoning. Comical but sad & real.

SL is dead when the RC-ready SL5 cannot even find a session in the annual biggest dev event at Build b/c Prima Donna Sinofsky decides to go with H5/JS, a platform Google is abandoning. Comical but sad & real.

SL is dead when ScottGu is forced out of the SL RIA department and his team gets shredded and scattered around b/c WinDiv prefers H5/JS, a platform Google is abandoning. Comical but sad & real.

SL is dead when you see even Google - the once biggest JS-apologist - is now calling a spade a spade and JS a piece of crap and working on their own SL solution to replace JS, and yet MSFT is killing SL to jump on the Javascript Titanic and declaring it a joy ride. Comical but sad & real.

RIP SilverLight. A good fight for us Web developers nonetheless.

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by Laurent Bugnion at 9/18/2011 8:58 AM Gravatar
@Scott, believe it or not but the dumbass comment was not directed at you (i hope you remember that we met in person (was in in 2007? Where did time go...) and shook hands, and I do have respect for you even if i disagree with you on certain things). I don't have much respect however for people who spread FUD out of hatred for Microsoft, like we see every do often on Twitter, without taking the time to think about what is going on. Most of the Silverlight is Dead shitstorm is due to people who would hate MSFT even if it solved world hunger.

Regarding the rest of your post, I do understand your point of view, I just don't agree with the analysis nor the choice of words. Maybe it's about semantics of the word 'dead', I don't know. I just don't see how technologies that we use every day and that are working as is on Windows 8 can be qualified as dead. It annoys me even more because I know that for every post with 'dead' in the title, people's jobs get threatened and their lives made harder.

As you know, I try to stay balanced though positive, and there might be a bit of over-enthusiasm due in part, no doubts, to the 'conference effect'. I just don't see the picture as a grim one. I feel that it is an amazing time to be a developer.

Cheers
Laurent

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by Scott Barnes at 9/18/2011 9:28 AM Gravatar
No offence taken, i've been called worse :) I was just shocked the most as I'm like "hang on, i'm probably the most vocal in this dept...did he just call me a dumbass???"

:D

Dead is a fair word, it has different meanings to others. I prefer End of Life to be honest but in the end the same thing occurs. You get a technology and then its quiet. Microsoft will NEVER come out and declare a technology they produce dead not simply because its a legal issue around support but its dangerous to run around doing it as it confirms distrust.

WinForms is dead?
WPF is dead?
FoxPro Is dead?
IronPython is Dead?
etc..

When they often abandon a tech its when Marketing goes quiet.. or it doesn't get mentioned or when you ask a question you get a patronising response ... At times I find that more frustrating than the end of a product as in the end it shows how staff disrespect the customers like they are idiots / children who are willing to buy anything that is pitched.

You have to instead rely on 1:1 close encounters with the staff - maybe in a bar setting before you get the real truth and that ultimately in my opinion is whats killing Microsoft culture slowly...

Having said that. Microsoft can declare anything they want dead, they can even discontinue their development on a product but if one thing Winforms/WPF has shown us, the community in general don't mind telling Microsoft through adoption and not blogs/forums that they can shove their agenda as it doesn't fit with ours.

Silverlight 5 is the last release, fine, we now have to deal with that and make necessary arrangements to absorb the deprecation. It's not ideal, but information is power and so now people have it.

I get cursed / abused and have smart ass remarks made both professional and personally from Microsoft staffers who have something to lose by my blatent disregard for politeness about this subject. I'm at peace with that as in the end, I don't lie (the moment you start telling lies in this area, you're done, your goose is cooked and fast) and I tell people upfront and to the point. They in turn will always be a douche who just don't get it and often were the ones I'd run rings around during my time in Microsoft.

Example - Brandon Watson (Director of Prod Mgmt) for example is the poster child for that posture. He no longer gets what it is he has in front him (I don't think he ever did to be openly honest), he's to busy chasing the Career carrot for #wp7 and has lost sight of why #wp7 is failing ...including Silverlight. To him it appears Silverlight's demise is a non-event... that's a mistake.

Anyway, nobody should burst the high folks get out of conferences like //BUILD/ ... i had moments of that excitement myself, I think I'll enjoy Win8 more so over time but right now its years away from reality and I just can't support a "please hold until further messages" approach to the platform marketing.

Lead or get out of the way as I was once told.

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by Laurent Bugnion at 9/18/2011 9:39 AM Gravatar
@ all, I hear you. Agreed that I might be bit over enthusiastic after a pretty amazing conference. That will probably go back to normal in a few days. As I was mentioning to a friend, we need months to digest that huge new thing, and of course everyone wants answers to tomorrow.

All in all, i am not sure I understand why there is such an angst around a technology, angst that is often fuelled by the community itself. During the conference, I took the occasion to talk to a few employees and execs and to express my strong unhappiness at the PR disaster that has plagued us all last year. Even though I am usually an optimist, I don't think that cheerleader is very accurate. But everyone is entitled to his opinions, so let's move on. I have a series of posts about WinRT coding coming up, MVVM Light to maintain and extend, a few ideas about stuff to write and try out, and more. I hope that my posts continue to help the community, and I am also committed to continue bringing the community's message to Microsoft, which IMHO is really th main valu of the mvp program. Anyway, I should get some sleep now :)

cheers
laurent

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by Laurent Bugnion at 9/18/2011 9:45 AM Gravatar
@Fallon, where have i said that ARM wouldn't get the desktop? If it sounded this way, it was a mistake, the truth is that nothing about this particular fact was said at Build. The truth is, I do not know if i will or not.

Hope that this clarifies things.
Cheers,
Laurent

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by Senkwe at 9/18/2011 10:08 AM Gravatar
Ugh, Laurent, you're being far too polite :-)

While I don't believe SL is dead by any stretch of the imagination, lets humor Scott and say it is. My question then is...so what?

What kind of a developer are you that you can't take your programming skills to a different plaform...like iOS for example?

I'm a SL developer, but I also write WinForms apps, WPF, ASP.NET/MVC, javascript and yes even Objective C apps!

We need to stop babying developers. Either learn something new or get out of the software development industry because the one constant in this field is CHANGE.

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by Basarat at 9/18/2011 10:18 AM Gravatar
Its simple. Silverlight will only run in "legacy" portion of windows + Mac. I would rather brush up on my JavaScript + HTML than bother with keeping my xaml skills up to date :)

Flash however runs on windows / Mac / Linux / android and natively(air) on these platforms + ios. And concepts and skills from xaml are a great help with flex. Parts and states and commands (using robotlegs) and item renderers (xaml datatemplates) ... And a whole lot more. Not to mention that adobe is not depreciating flash in any way. And JavaScript is easy if you do actionscript. So you only really miss c# and not silverlight.

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by Rene Schulte at 9/18/2011 10:32 AM Gravatar
Here are my Andi-FUD thoughts and the technical background it's based on:
http://kodierer.blogspot.com/2011/09/welcome-to-zombieland-metro-style-land.html

BTW, you made a mistake in the description of the programming stacks as you call it. The C++ projection layer is still there and the Dev11 C++ templates use it by default, so those are not direct calls. This makes it easier to use WinRT, since all the ugly COM handling is implemented in the projection layer and you get the class instances directly. However, with a bit of fiddling around you can still call WinRT COM components through the good ol' COM interface model.

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by Ian Smith at 9/18/2011 10:56 AM Gravatar
Heh! If I agree not to call you a 'shill' do you agree not to call me a 'dumbass'? ;-)

There's one point you make which seems to contradict what I've heard elsewhere: that of choice of stack. The biggest problem (and the reason for a 'new OS') Microsoft face in the tablet marketplace is battery life (cf Apple's iPad). There were early reports that for these reasons using C++ for components and Javascript for the UI (cf C# for components and XAML for the UI) would be a better approach as they use less power.

I wasn't at Build so can't comment on where this information came from or its veracity but it kinda makes sense.

Even ignoring the above, even though we're in the usual world of Microsoft 'our HTML/CSS/Javascript isn't the same as everyone else's - it's proprietary' there is an argument that says better to go with a more 'open' platform that has some chance of life outside the Microsoft eco-system, rather than put all your efforts into learning something that ONLY benefits Microsoft and which, based on past performance, they are quite likely to abandon (but never announce they are abandoning) at the drop of a hat.

Whatever you or I think about the relative strengths of one 'stack' over another, the reality is it's not really down to us. It's down to Microsoft. They have been universally acknowledged to be at fault here. Their story on Silverlight has changed, almost from mone minute to the next. "It's our strategic UI". "We've changed direction". "We're showing you HTML/CSS/Javascript in February and refuse to even discuss whether XAML has any relevance until September" has killed more potential Silverlight projects (and work for those who bought into the Microsoft hype 3-4 years ago) than any "dumbass" could have done.

To pretend otherwise, that everything is fine (I see no Silverlight 6) is, frankly, disingenious and insulting.

There are plenty of reports on the web of big Silverlight/WPF projects being cancelled on the basis of what's happened at Build. More decisions made by 'dumbasses' no doubt. Funny thing is a manager I admire, who was a huge Silverlight evangelist, made the decision to drop Silverlight and go HTML/CSS/Javascript a year ago, for a project due for delivery in two years time, based on all the 'FUD' about Silverlight is being dead. It's very clear to me now, as it was a year ago, that he made the right decision. But I guess he's a 'dumbass' too!

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by Scott Barnes at 9/18/2011 11:21 AM Gravatar
Sorry about the cheerleading comment :) it was rude.

Also to add, when you all talk to Microsoft staffers first question you all need to ask yourselves. Does this person have the authority to make change.

If that answer is no, all you're doing is probably stating the same things they themeslves are frustrated of.

I've watched personally customers come up to me and say "Barnes, man whats with XYZ" and my response is to listen and then figure out mid-conversation how I can dump this info into the right persons lap. Many whom knew me on campus will testify that I made a point of dragging someone from the team(s) that had authority into the conversation kicking and screaming.

I used to think i was the rising star for that. In reality all i did was annoy both parties as in the end there is usually one person in a team that can make or break the discussion....usually ends "President".

Its a very top-down culture and it was always good to have Scott Guthrie behind a product. I disagreed with Scott often, but he did listen and he did act.

Steve Sinofsky? ..... jackass comes to mind.

Thats why you all need to go public and aggregate your voice more. its to deafening to ignore.

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by Georg Begerow at 9/18/2011 1:00 PM Gravatar
IMHO WinRT/Metro is a whole new plattform which happens to be more or less integrated into the windows we know. I realy like the Metro look and feel for either consumer apps or specialized information worker. I can see a preconfigured start screen with tailored applications used e.g. by an insurance person working very well.

Making applications for this plattform is so similar to Windows Phone Mango, maybe even using the Layout for the phone as layout for the snapview. This means it is realy a shame that we cannot easily share code between those two plattforms. (MSFT *Hint*Hint*)

The classic windows part is just what to expect from win7++. Bigger, better, faster. Will work as good or better as used to. WPF got new features in .Net 4.5, Silverlight 5 is coming even before Win8 I guess. They are both not Winforms. You can't use them to develop Metro Apps. But you can't use them to develop iPhone or Android Apps either.

On the integration part I see a lot of work needed but it is a first preview in the moment.

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by Kakone at 9/18/2011 1:15 PM Gravatar
Laurent said : "i am not sure I understand why there is such an angst around a technology"

I don't think there is an angst around this technology. There is no problem to learn a new thing (especially with C # and XAML that we master). The problem is what technology must I choose for a new big business application. For the moment, the future is not very clear. If I want to develop an application on phone and tablet, is a good choice to code with Silverlight in Windows Phone and with other technology on Windows 8 ? I don't think, so I will choose IPhone/IPad.
If I want to start a LOB application for desktop PC, must I use Silverlight ? Silverlight seems abandoned (or the Microsoft speech must be very clear), so I will choose another technology.

To my mind, the angst come from this difficult choice to do. .Net developers are lost and the Build Conference didn't improve things.

Cheers,
Kakone.

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by meni at 9/18/2011 1:29 PM Gravatar
Hi all,

I believe the "dumbass" remark was for me, sorry for all the confusion :-)

Just check my tweets @menitaub! Starting with my first:
"Google: developes a human body app to promote the OPEN WebGL, Microsoft: BillG buys the Feynman lectures to promote Silverlight"

Anyway, my question is for you guys, why don't you call for Microsoft to open-source Silverlight/dotnet/clr, or much more importantly call for Microsft to declare unambiguously it has 0 intent to sue anyone with the patents it holds up and down the dotnet stack? Would you rather see your house burn-down then admit open-source's got the answer?

BTW, Scott, I hold you responsible for putting the delicate open web in jeopardy with releasing such an abomination as Silverlight for the web. Couldn't you raise your hand and simply ask: "IS THIS AN OPEN TECHNOLOGY?"?

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by notboss at 9/18/2011 2:58 PM Gravatar
I think everyone has missed the point. You cannot use Microsoft's stack to develop for the over-all mobile market place. You can go native on Android and iOS or you can use cross-platform tools. Microsoft offers nothing in that context and has not announced plans to offer anything.

Microsoft is drawing its wagons into a circle around Windows: Windows in the cloud, in your server room, on your desktop, tablet, whatever. When it comes to cross-platform on mobile or elsewhere the story from MS will be something, maybe one day, around HTML5/JavaScript/CSS.

If you are developing .Net client-side applications for businesses that have standardized on Windows you might be ok. But if the enterprise expects your apps to run on the CEO's iPad you have a problem.

Silverlight is dead as a cross-platform runtime and has been for a while. You can learn HTML5/JavaScript/CSS/etc or a non-Microsoft cross-platform system but SL isn't going to help you in the mobile marketplace any time soon.

So go and learn HTML5/CSS/JavaScript. Do something outside your comfort zone. Do what MIcrosoft is basically telling you to do. Stop pretending nothing has changed.

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by Laurent Bugnion at 9/18/2011 5:22 PM Gravatar
@Ian, I explained who the dumbass comment was for, i.e. the haters. I have been involved on enough long projects to know that choosing a technology is hard. Did your friend do the right choice going HTML? Obviously it depends on the type of project, but where would he be if he had chosen Silverlight? Well he would have chosen a technology which works on Windows 8. I understand why he made that choice (and, again, I have voiced loud and clear that I am unhappy with the messaging and the secrecy, and I will take every occasion to do so again), but as Build showed (much too late I agree), Silverlight projects are safe for the next generation of PCs. I am not being a naive little girl afraid of learning something new when I say that, it is just what it is, Silverlight applications run unchanged on the new generation of PCs. For that matter he could have gone with Win32 and it would work just the same. I personally think he will spend more time developing the same application in JavaScript, and that it will be harder to maintain, debug and all that. I have been tech lead on a couple of very long and large HTML/CSS/JS projects, and I have a very large experience with JavaScript (just check comp.lang.javascript archives for my name, starting ~1998 and you'll see many discussions I had with Crockford and others. We practically invented back then what today people refer to as "modern JavaScript", i.e. object-oriented, namespaces, private vs public members etc. So I know how it is, and I didn't come to Silverlight just drifting through the wind, but because I was in a position where I could appreciate the advantages. That said, it is a free world, and I have in the past (and will continue to do so) encouraged people to rather go HTML on certain projects, simply because Silverlight was not suited.

Metro-style applications are something completely different. Georg has it exactly right in his comment. This is a new class of application, much closer to a Windows Phone app than to a Windows application. And it happens to be developed with a technology that allows you to select what works best for your skills. It happens to allow you to use what you know and love, with a minimal learning curve. At this point, we are just talking about a brand here (Silverlight vs WinRT), the XAML/C# stack is close enough that if you know Silverlight, you pretty much know metro-style apps. I am not hung up on a brand at this point, if they don't want to call it Silverlight, I don't care much as long as I know how to develop for that platform. Now if being happy about that particular fact makes me a cheerleader, then you're just being grumpy (which we both know you are ;) I hope we finally get a chance to get that lunch together and talk about it in person (I feel cramped in that comment space), but seriously, all that drama last year was a lot of noise around nothing much (and yes it was started by MSFT and yes it was fuelled by a lot of haters, and yes it confused the hell out of honest clever and hard working project managers, whom I feel very sorry for).

@notboss, HTML/CSS/JS was my comfort zone for many many years and I was in charge of tech lead for a few projects, one of them a 3 years long project that we did ship and was very successful, so moving to .NET was a huge move out of my comfort zone indeed. That has never frightened me and still does not. If cross-compatibility among mobile platforms is needed, we explore various ways. HTML is one for sure. Mono is another possibility which sometimes works. Honestly we have to do this choice less often than you might think. We already do HTML5 apps and are fine with that, but we don't choose it just because it's the new shiny object. Every project must be analyzed with care, and not based on what Twitter says.

Cheers,
Laurent

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by Karol Sotomski at 9/18/2011 6:56 PM Gravatar
Hey,

First of all, Laurent, thank you for developing MVVM Light! I use it in almost all my projects and love the separation it provides as well as blendability:) Can't wait for the Win8 version.

I think Win8 is really great! I love the WP7 experience and couldn't wait to have it on the PC. The problem is, most people expected MS to follow Apple path - one PC OS, one tablet/phone OS. Microsoft did something different - one PC/tablet OS, one phone OS.
As a WP7 dev, I'm a bit dissapointed because it will require more effort to release my apps to Win8 tablets. But in the end, I think they will have a better user experience and people will love them. And isn't that what it's all about?
There is just one thing that really bothers me: XNA. MS says it's still a primary game platform for WP7. But it's not available for Win8. That means, (correctly if I'm wrong) I have to develop a game for XNA (phone) and C++/WinRT for the tablet. Those two are different animals and so, in my opinion, it would be much harder to release a mobile game for phone and tablet in Windows that it is for Apple products. That's something MS didn't think through very well. But, since MS (as well as Apple) is clearly merging mobile and PC platforms into a single experience, I hope it won't be that big of an issue in the future.
Last but not least, people are complaining that metro isn't mouse friendly. I think most Win8 PCs (especially notebooks) will be touch-enabled and thus won't need mouse that much. Furthermore, it's very unlikely that people with Win7 PCs to upgrade their OS. They'll simply buy a new PC. All this makes me think Metro will actually be an improvement in the standard (non technical) user experience and might change the way we interact with computers.

All in all, we have a future full of possibilities ahead of us! :)

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by Bill C at 9/18/2011 6:57 PM Gravatar
I think to say Silverlight is dead is to say the Desktop is dead. I think the Metro style app is exciting, and new, and addresses a need for a rich, less cluttered, touch friendly user experience. I also applaud the the idea (based upon Laurent's description) that the Desktop will be more touch friendly as well. However, the Desktop will be mouse/keyboard first for some time and Metro will be touch first. I think Jensen Harris' presentation makes the case well, and he touches upon this point using PhotoShop as an example.

I hope investment and innovation in the Windows Desktop will continue, that communication between the Desktop apps and Metro apps will be possible where it makes sense, and that a strong case will become apparent to refute anyone calling the Desktop or Silverlight legacy or even traditional.

The thought that Metro completely replaces the Desktop, and that the Desktop (and Silverlight) are dead, is completely unfounded at this time. I find ad hominem arguments and exhaltations based upon "personal contacts", and "understanding of the politics", weak analogies to past events, prior experience in the organization, and other generally unqualified remarks troubling, distasteful, and likely disruptive to the market. Sadly, these folks seem to have nothing but time to spew their nonsense endlessly and at the top of their lungs. Scott B should be more thoughtful before indulging in such rants, and the community should demand it. Scott's "brutal honesty" is nothing but premature, wild-eyed speculation.

To say that Silverlight is dead is to say that the Desktop is dead. To say the Desktop is dead is ludicrous on its face. It is not. Enterprise and productivity apps will continue to be developed for the Desktop for at least the next 20 years. Despite all its success, I do not think the iPad has become the productivity tool that Apple at some point showed some interest in it becoming.

One more thought that I think worth sharing. I routinely Remote Desktop to my Windows XP home server using my iPad in order to use the more powerful Web browser on that machine. I found a good RDP client that lets me have a perfectly fine touch experience to do that. I am excited about someday using Windows 8 in the same way - but locally and with a far more enhanced / integrated Desktop, to use certain apps that are implemented better on the Desktop, but which I may have an occasional need to use with just my slate while waiting on line at the airport.

I am excited. I like what I have seen. I think the vision *and investment* are there. I just hope Microsoft and the community shut down the haters - and the merely over zealous - and fast. Scott B may be a nice enough guy, I don't know, I have never met him - but I can tell you this, I am not inclined to have lunch with him or others pundit like him any time soon.

Laurent, thanks for your good work with MVVM Light and I look forward to further releases and posts, and perhaps having lunch someday. :)

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by Tad Anderson at 9/18/2011 7:08 PM Gravatar
One other note. I have had some time to experiment. I ported WPF apps over with no issues. Silverlight had issues in Visual Studio 2011. Too many for me to figure out with the time I had.

Silverlight apps are available in VS 2011 and I played with the 4.5 versions with no issues.

One thing (among a ton of others) MS did not make clear is that there are 2 separate browsers. All my SL apps run the desktop version. Too be MS gave such a poorly delivered message. All could be better than well right now. They screwed the pooch though, in a big way.

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by Jesse at 9/18/2011 7:45 PM Gravatar
Very intersting post, I like where WinRt is going. Seems it will be one platform/eco system across all device forms. Very exciting!

As for all the technology is dead talk, it just makes me laugh. Technlogy moves so fast it all changes in some form ever year or two. The things we use JS/HTML to interact with change constantly just as the things we use c#/Xaml with.

I use silverlight because it is fast to develop for and works very well on both PC and MAC right now, which is perfect for many situations. I use JS and HTML when I need to hit a broader audience. I use c++ when I need to directly access the OS, etc.. Tech doesn't die, it just merges and blurs into other techs and we have to adapt. It is the nature of the beast.

Bottom line is that regardless of your skills they should adapt very well to WinRt.

Also to an earlier post about Windows Phone 7 apps on WinRt, I actually think it will be the other way around. WinRt will be the phone runtime very soon from the looks of it. One runtime for all device types, and I love it.

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by std_wout at 9/19/2011 8:55 AM Gravatar
What Laurent said
"Every project must be analyzed with care, and not based on what Twitter says."

And at our company we do what Jesse said.
SL for LoB internal apps
HTML for external apps
C++ when you need the power

Is it really a surprise that MS tries to reach out to C++ devs who can now easily port their iOS or Android NDK stuff on one hand? And to webdevelopers of which surely there are a lot on the other hand?

Personally I am glad that I will be able to reuse the M maybe not the VVM. For the VVM we should be able to leverage a lot of our C#/XAML and UX skills.

And I am curious about XNA. :)

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by Francesco De Vittori at 9/19/2011 9:33 AM Gravatar
Bill C is right on the money. Silverlight (and WPF even more so) are not dead for the very simple reason that Desktop Win8 is still very important -if not MORE important than Metro Win8.

Right now everybody is focused (excited or in panic-mode) for Metro because it's the new shiny thing, but don't miss the point, it's still the "small brother" and will probably ever be. Metro Win8 is to Desktop Win8 what iOS is to MacOS.

Have you tried Metro apps? They are simple, less cluttered, touch oriented, they target an entirely different use case than standard Desktop applications.
Complex business applications are a good match for Desktop win8 and what should you write them in? WPF/Silverlight or Win32. It's not a legacy platform, it's *the* platform.

The thing is, WPF and Silverlight will continue to run for an indefinite number of years to come, so current investments are safe, no need to panic. If you already started a project it makes no sense to change strategy now. If you are starting something new in the coming times then it makes sense to consider the new options, but it's not like tomorrow Silverlight will be switched off.

If on the other hand you are scared because at some point you'll have to learn something entirely new, sorry to bear bad news but you'll have to do it anyways regardless of WPF/WinRT/WinWhatever.

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by Philippe Monteil at 9/19/2011 11:45 AM Gravatar
WinRT is indeed very interesting, but given that, as an answer to iOS, it is so _late_, I don't understand that it introduces even more fragmentation to the Windows UI technology stack,
making the life of the developers even more difficult and complicated.
- WPF, SL and WP7 are not consistent, as illustrated, among others, by the different ways 3D is integrated:
- XNA for SL and WP7 are very different
- there is no XNA for WPF
- speaking of XNA:
- there is no evidence that the OSX version of SL5 will ever offer a similar support for 3D
- it seems that W8/Metro won't support it
- on W8, C++ and C# are supposed to equal first class citizens: will Direct2D and DirectX be available in a clean, managed form, besides the unmanaged one?
- how about SL for XBox?

My question is: how come such a powerful company as MS has not been able to have provided years ago a technology like WPF/SL in a consistent manner on all the
plateforms it supports?
How come W8 will make this situation even worse?

I have another question I have not been able to answer, despite hours of browsing:
IE10/Metro won't support plugins, but:
- will it be able to host Metro applications the way SL does?
- will there be ways to extend it at all?

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by Kabuto at 9/19/2011 1:20 PM Gravatar
"Silverlight (and WPF even more so) are not dead for the very simple reason that Desktop Win8 is still very important -if not MORE important than Metro Win8."

Silverligh IS dead, simply because nobody will invest in new SL projects. Yes there's a new version. But if you want to start a LOB projcect that entails more than a trivial amount of effort, and you have to invest a decent amount of money in it, you're most definitely not going to be SL.

Just the fact that Win8 will be able to run SL apps in the other browser doesn't help. You can also still run VB6 or FoxPro apps.

But as far as new projects are concerned, neither VB6 not Foxpro nor SL will be in the running any more.

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by Derek at 9/19/2011 4:38 PM Gravatar
"Nobody" is a pretty broad generalization. I'm working on new Silverlight development now, so it's (nobody - 1) I guess. It's really not a big deal if you take care in developing your apps so it's easy to use different presentations vehicles. My Silverlight views are dumb, it wouldn't be difficult to slap a different face on the "core" of the application.

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by Leo at 9/19/2011 7:05 PM Gravatar
@Derek Agree, so with me we are nobody-2

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by RobertWG at 9/19/2011 11:26 PM Gravatar
At BUILD, I was pretty excited by WinRT and the new XAML stack--right up to the point I realized it couldn't be used from Desktop apps. As a developer working on a very large mixed WinForms/WPF app with, this was very depressing. Metro is totally inappropriate for our application (especially without a way to distribute apps that doesn't involve the app store), and we would never be able to rewrite the whole thing anyway. What we really needed was either massive improvements to WPF performance, or a way of hosting a WinRT XAML control in our existing WinForms/WPF app. We'd prefer the WPF improvements anyway, as we need to run on Win7 for years to come. Oh well, at least we got the airspace issues fixed, so we can at least work around some of the performance problems by using Direct2D now.

From a tablet perspective, I'm quite happy--since I don't have a massive existing codebase, I can start from scratch in Metro XAML. I'm sure we'll find uses for Metro there, but we'll still be crippled by the lack of support for enterprise private clouds (ie Notification doesn't work without internet access, no way to deploy, etc).

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by John A at 9/20/2011 7:58 PM Gravatar
Laurent,

I think it is a real shame that no one from Microsoft is prepared to discuss Silverlight and that developers take it out on you - which by no means is fair. You have given an open and informative view on the situation which is very interesting.

One question concerning MVVM - why is it still an add on rather than a core part of the software supported and developed by Microsoft? - I hoped that this would have been the case in Silverlight 5 or 6.

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by marc joop at 9/21/2011 1:59 AM Gravatar
OT : Its interesting how various different comments from different authors all the have same grammatical fingerprint in their writing.

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by Lixin at 9/21/2011 4:40 AM Gravatar
While I've already planned a light-weight business application in Metro, I've decided to use WPF in another application.

Metro styled application won't have multi-window support, which mean it won't meet requirements of some heavy duty business applications.

Lucky Microsoft still works very hard on the .NET Framework and will bring in some many improvements in .NET Framework 4.5

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by Graeme at 9/21/2011 11:21 PM Gravatar
I just want to ask a question here. I'm just an amateur developer, but the whole silverlight thing does really concern me. Oh, and can I start by saying thanks to Laurent as it is the first piece of useful information I've managed to find on the internet about silverlight and windows 8.

So if I develop an internet site in SL, then anyone pulling up IE from Metro will just get some sort of unsupported message. And likewise if that site was developed in WinRT and they pulled it up in desktop mode, internet explorer will also give them some sort of unsupported message. So going forward all sites will have to be developed in both Silverlight and WinRT (or with hugely complicated #if sections) in order to work on Windows 8. Surely this can't be the case, it would be really FU'd if so?

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by Seamus at 10/21/2011 6:50 PM Gravatar
First, thanks for the post Laurent. Clearest description I've found of WinRT.

I find the discussion of WPF/Silverlight's death amusing to say the least. My wild-ass guess is that Metro will improve and gain capabilities over time and eventually replace the desktop we've known since WINNT.

I think what Scott is getting at, is what are developer customers supposed to do with regards to planning? I think your answer is, change and obsolescence are inevitable no matter the technology you use, just use what is available now.

Personally, I've been riding the Microsoft change train for close to 20 years beginning with Windows 3.0. In 2000 I would have quit the industry, (burned out by COM), except for the job I got at MS on a little team that eventually became known as the .Net Framework team. I've been happy with .Net since.

But I'm now burned out on desktop apps and I'm doing iOS and WinPhone. The only reason I'm doing WinPhone is I love .Net and I love Silverlight and I love the WinPhone platform, (Which I expect will be replaced by some form of WinRT). Believe you me, MS' ecosystem for WinPhone blows away iOS and Android dev environments.

I'm just glad my skill and experience with .Net and XAML will continue to be useful on WinRT. At this point in my life I'm only interested and passionate about mobile applications and look forward to doing some WinRT applications. At the moment I see WinRT as a tablet OS, not something to be seriously used on the desktop.

I just don't see folks switching back and forth between modes to use different applications and this kind of inconsistent behavior is risky for MS, imho, and could drive more people to Mac OSX, (which by the way isn't all rainbows and ponies).

Anyway, thanks for this post and the wonderful work you've done with MVVMLight. The future is, as always in this industry, exciting.

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by Steve Murch at 1/1/2012 10:29 PM Gravatar
Laurent,

Bravo! This is by far the most thorough and accurate (IMO) overview of what Windows 8 offers in terms of opportunities, development environments, and challenges for developers.

I'm an ex-MSFT employee and also someone who now writes in C#/XAML/Objective-C/Java, and I feel your overview is very good and accurate. The story doesn't lend itself well to soundbites.

One question -- were you able to have success with Expression Blend: XAML/C# in the Windows 8 developer preview? I see lots of Expression Blend support for HTML/Javascript in the preview but cannot seem to get a XAML app built using it. Is Expression Blend 4 the recommended tool for XAML/C# at this time?

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by Laurent at 1/2/2012 5:28 PM Gravatar
Hi!

Thanks for the comment. I am glad that you also think this way.

Regarding Blend, I have not yet experimented much since Expression Blend 5 for XAML is still missing (hopefully we will see a version with Windows 8 beta), and while Blend 4 works somehow with the WinRT XAML (it is the same XAML after all), you need to comment out all the unknown new controls such as GridView and ListView. At this point, I prefer to edit the XAML and use the Visual Studio designer though it is only supporting a fraction of Blend's awesomeness (and even though the designer in VS11 is based on Blend's code, not on Cider anymore!).

Hopefully we will hear more about the Blend 5 XAML story soon!

Cheers,
Laurent

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by Eric Worrall at 1/18/2012 9:38 PM Gravatar
Hi Laurent,
Nice post and some great discussion in the thread above. WinRT does sound exciting from an *Intel* based device point of view.

However, my main concern is with the adoption of ARM CPUs and whether MS will give us a full .net 4.5 Runtime on the ARM versions of Windows 8. I’m currently highlighting ARM based devices as a market risk as we don’t know if Windows 8 will support the parts of the .Net runtime that we use.

If WPF and SL are EOL (using less emotive language than dead) then there has to be a phase where we can migrate over to the new platform. On Windows 8 *Intel* devices I can see how to migrate gracefully but on the Windows 8 ARM based devices our EOL could be instant (assuming only access to WinRT and no .Net 4.5). This leads to some uncomfortable conversations with marketing and c-level types. It gets worse when you tell them that you don’t know what is planned and it could all be OK.

I am excited about the future (after all messing about with new tech is why I became an engineer) but I could do without the market uncertainty being created by MS.

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by Mike McAllister at 2/5/2012 11:56 PM Gravatar
Intel vs. ARM. In your discussions above I don't see any mention of UI threads. On ARM how many UI threads are there going to be?

Why does this relate to the discussion above? It's because if you only have one UI thread all the programming has to be asynchronous. This means libraries and languages have to change to support that single UI thread.

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by AndyB at 2/6/2012 4:36 PM Gravatar
UI Threads? who cares. Windows is single threaded U, no-ones really complained about that only having 1 thread, so why would we care if win mobile has 1 thread? You don't need to suddenly start async coding (proof: no-one does currently, except in odd cases).

anyway, on topic, so SL is EOL big deal... except to all the people who spent a lot of time learning it and writing code in it. I find these people are the ones who also say its great and everyone else must learn new stuff all the time, only now it's bitten them they've got to take their own advice and learn something new. C++ perhaps.

I don't mind new stuff coming along, what I do object to is the massively increased pace of new from MS, no-one really had time to sit down and code up long-term supported applications (maybe that's old fashioned) and no-one really managed to discover what the long-term skills would be, MS kept on chopping and changing and strangely enough it's annoyed us all.

What MS needs to do it spell out a serious future roadmap, not one where DevDiv and WinDiv squabbles with each other. The trouble is, if MS did this, we simply wouldn't believe them, not again. We also wouldn't believe them when they spell out why (as its always hyped beyond reason, and then 'cool tech x that fixes everything' becomes 'obsolete old crap' when the next new thing comes along to replace it. sigh).

But I think they have to really try, or we might as well all go code mobile apps and Linux.

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by Radu Vunvulea at 3/29/2012 11:43 AM Gravatar
Great post.
Ping back: http://vunvulearadu.blogspot.com/2012/03/what-is-html5-for-native-windows-8.html

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by dress shop at 7/24/2012 6:54 PM Gravatar
how can i move from Windows 7 to window 8. Any one here can tell me?

# re: My thoughts about Build, Windows 8, WinRT, XAML and Silverlight

left by sina at 9/5/2012 4:04 AM Gravatar
hahaha andy .. haha .. you say learn c++... i've learned C++ long before using all version of C# and it's a long way from being a modern language..
I would learn F#, Scala LONG BEFORE GOING BACK to c++ pointers hehehe

The fact that the c# underlying layer that communicated with c++ win32 core that Microsoft created in the past suck doesn't mean the language or past UI SDKS suck in itself... Sucky people from Microsoft used the fact that they developed a bad layer and instead of fixing it for win7 and win8, they decided to create another API althogheter with totally different namespace making sharing codebase harder.. just to sell their NEW pills and at the same time make 30/100 out of those.. all this while making a poor quality UI application management inside the desktop mode of windows 8.. The funny thing in all this is nobody will use metro on the desktop the way it is now.. NOBODY.. so long live Silverlight and WPF...

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