| Comments

I’m a little late to the game posting information about it, but there is a plethora of Silverlight stuff to do this week in the Seattle/Redmond area this week.  Sleepless in Seattle…definitely not – Silverlight in Seattle baby!

Allow me to interpret Adam’s vector goods…

  • 14 Sep (tonight!): Jesse Liberty is presenting at the .NET DA user group meeting on .NET RIA Services.
  • 15 Sep: Nerd Dinner!!!  Just a casual gathering of people who speak in acronyms and like food.  Bellevue Crossroads food court (awesome choices for anyone).
  • 16 Sep: I’ll be presenting (thanks to David for the invite!) to the Seattle Interact group on styling/templating interfaces for Silverlight as well as some on behaviors.
  • 17 Sep: Seattle Firestarter event.  ScottGu and friends.  I’ll be doing my best to demonstrate some of the key scenarios for Silverlight and hope to inspire your thoughts.

With the exception of tonight, I’ll be at each of these events and am looking forward to spending the week in sunny Seattle with you folks.  Be sure to stop by and introduce yourself!

| Comments

U.S. Army logoJust doing some getting caught up from my holiday recently and I was reminded of a “line of business” application that was completed in Silverlight for the United States Army.  It is a bit of a supply chain management application…where the supply is soldiers!

This is a pretty cool application that was taken from a full client (Windows Forms) application and brought to Silverlight by ProModel.  They specialize in supply and demand issues.  Take a look at the interview/demo that Adam Kinney did with Dan Hickman of ProModel.  Sure, it would have been cool to have a drill sergeant do the demo, but I’m guessing they are busy right now.

What is pretty cool is that ProModel chose to use IdeaBlade’s DevForce Silverlight to implement the solution.  Using this helped them get from zero to something quickly and not worry about plumbing and integration code.  Some of the user experience for the assignments as well (as seen in the demo) was pretty cool.  Some other background behind the solution:

Hearing Dan talk about it and seeing the final product, it seems like they were really able to concentrate on the end-user interaction with the experience without re-learning a lot of data access with Silverlight.  Check out the demonstration above and also be sure to check out the solution they used, DevForce Silverlight!

(and yes, I know that Lee Ermey is a Marine, but c’mon…isn’t he *the* drill instructor?)

| Comments

i hopped on a plane at 4am this morning to head back to phoenix from seattle.  oddly enough i landed in rain.  what gives phoenix?  actually it is a welcome refresh for me.

i was in seattle for the fire starter event with my comrade mithun.  this was basically a one-day silverlight lovefest.  and the lineup of people was awesome:

it was awesome.  if you had silverlight questions, this was the place to be.  i mainly lurked in the back and twittered occasional thoughts on what i was seeing (which probably did nothing since a poll to the audience showed not many people are on twitter in that area).  i saw a lot of people ask the presenters questions which i assume is always a good sign.  i learned some new stuff myself which is always great.

adam kinney proved no smoke and mirrors on his...er...i mean...lenny's xbox live gadget built in silverlight.  after getting gamertags from the audience i think he suddenly realized that the statuses would be offline because they were all there :-) -- but yet, one person had a "1 minute ago" update and they were in the audience...hmmm...portable xboxing?

the popfly demonstration seems to always get a smile from most even if you aren't interested in mashups or anything.  i think it is because you just realize the ease of bringing information together and not having to spend a ton of time together -- and getting an interesting visualization!  adam actually whipped up a similar xbox live gadget in a few minutes using popfly (not the same features, but for not writing a lick of code and getting xbox live gamer information and a silverlight UI plus implemented in a vista sidebar gadget that was impressive).

there was a couple of things i twitter'd about that might be worth mentioning here as well (aside from my happiness to chocolate milk on campus)...

    • arturo demonstrated the desginer/developer workflow of
    • laurence's book on silverlight 1.0
    • there was a question about positioning text within elements.  although silverlight 1.0 does not have justification settings in elements explicitly, you can do it.  the code in my user controls in 1.0 sample has some code that you can look at how i used some simple functions to center the text on a button based on the text and size of the button...very simple.  hoping this will be obsolete in silverlight 2.0.
    • adam kinney talked about user control patterns and specifically called out an important createFromXaml parameter (second, optional parameter) which is createNameScope.  this boolean parameter provides a unique name to each element that you create.  this is very helpful (and required almost) when you are creating a lot of same controls in an iteration for example.
    • i learned of two tools JSLint and JSMin.  the latter is for 'crunching' javascript to reduce size of the script files (you know remove whitespace, etc.).
    • adam nathan's book on silverlight 1.0 unleashed
    • ernie had really good pointers on working with media, specifically with what attributes in playlists are supported.  i couldn't capture them all in time, but the content will be posted.
    • ernie also had a session on what silverlight might look like in the future...his message: understand WPF.

great sessions.  the content was recorded, so subscribe to this blog and i'll update a link once it is available.

| Comments

i saw over in the township of adam kinney that someone came up with a version of the sIFR concept.

for those who don't know, (scalable inman flash replacement) in simplest forms is a method for using css to annotate elements of text that you might want replaced with higher-quality/different/pick-your-word-of-choice typography.  it provided a method on sites to essentially say "hey if javascript is enabled and flash is installed, replace this plain text header with some whiz-bang custom font to make the user say ooooooooohhhh yea" or something like that.

filipe fortes, who apparently used to work on the wpf team himself, wrote a silverlight version of that methodology as a test of sorts i guess...turns out it looks pretty good.  he calls it sistr and is implemented by including one javascript file and a css class name.  looks like it is implemented using the downloader object in silverlight as well so it provides an "as needed" approach.

why should you care?  well, that's up to you.  but one thing sIFR solved (or attempts to) is those questions on accessibility with rich content.  since the text you are replacing is still there, it should present a more accessible site in the event you needed that (i.e., text readers, etc.).  of course ymmv on your particular implementation.

Sistr: Rich accessible typography in Silverlight

pretty cool.  the sample indicates that hyperlinks work, but i didn't see it working in the sample...maybe a slight bug, but great start nonetheless.