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April 16, 2007


John Dowdell

"a new cross-browser, cross-platform plug-in for delivering the next generation of media experiences and Rich Interactive Applications (RIAs) for the Web."

Hi Don, "RIA" actually stands for "Rich Internet Applications". The term was created five years ago last month. I'm not sure why there are so many typos across the web on this acronym today.

(The "next generation" line here is intended to refer to "next generation of MS tech", rather than "next generation of web tech", right?)


Don Dodge

John, Thanks for link to the RIA definition. I have seen RIA used both ways with the "I" sometimes "Internet" and other times "Interactive". Sort of like RSS...Rich Site Summary or Really Simple Syndication. There are probably others.

Jeremy Allaire is a smart guy, and a friend, so I will go with his definition. Rich Internet Applications it is.

As for the "next generation" statement...it could be both the next generation of Microsoft technology, and the next generation of RIA. Web video technology is far from complete...there will be several more generations.

I do get your meaning and I did chuckle when I read it. Point for you. :-)


Does cross-platform mean just windows and mac?

Don Dodge

Greg, Yes Silverlight supports Windows and Mac on the desktop. It also suppports IE, Firefox, and Safari browsers.

From Tim Sneath's blog: Silverlight is both client- and server-agnostic. There's no difference between the Macintosh and PC runtimes; you don't need any Microsoft software on the server if you don't want to - you can deliver a great Silverlight experience from an Apache / Linux server to a Mac OS 10.4 client.

Does Linux have meaningful market share on the desktop? My guess is around 2% but I really don't know. Server share is another matter of course. But, when releasing desktop software companies need to think about support costs for multiple OS...and market share.

Ian Smith


For sure Silverlight is exciting. The key to success for Microsoft will be their ability to build a creative design social network around this platform and draw the Adobe (Flex) followers with them. And Silverlight so much better than its IT-centric name of WPF/e.

I'm building a consumer-aided design platform using this technology - I think this might be the start of CAD 2.0!


I develop using everything from c# to js but will never use any MS specific web technology on the client. I don’t use their themes, master pages, nor ide for web graphic design content (only backend code). I use Dreamweaver, VS2005, & Textpad for each of what they are good at. MS seems incapable of producing products that are intelligent in their final implementation. Take a peek at the html source that .net produces… You would think it was done w/FrontPage 98… Instead of having a master stylesheet, it embeds each tag w/specific style info: how poor.

Also, if ms expects users to install some sort of activeX (activeSilverWeb or whatever) that it produced, it is missing the point. JS, Ajax, etc… allows users to expand capabilities w/o plug-ins. I hate Flash, and don’t use it. Who in their right mind would install any ms plug-in into a browser giving hackers yet another avenue to hack your box?

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