Microsoft Silverlight what is it?
While working on the Internet, we often find references to Microsoft Silverlight, so necessary for the operation of any player or control on the page of interest to us. So what is it and what is it for.
Microsoft Silverlight along with the well-known Adobe Flash is a software base or a so-called platform, with the help of which it becomes possible to place audio and video recordings, animated graphics and various interactive RIA (Rich Internet Application) applications on Internet services. Support for this software platform is implemented both in the Windows environment (starting with Windows 2000) and MacOS, Linux and Symbian. Silverlight has a browser plugin that allows you to work with Internet applications in the most popular browsers such as Opera, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome, Safari and Internet Explorer. At the moment, most browsers for mobile devices also support this technology. Thanks to the introduction and widespread use of Silverlight, colorfully designed and fully interactive Internet resources of the Web 2.0 standard have appeared. In other words, we have practically full-fledged programs that are not inferior in functionality to regular applications on our computer, but run directly from the window of your favorite browser.
The benefits of Microsoft Silverlight include:
- the ability to install the plug-in on any of the systems Windows, MacOS or Linux;
- the plugin is completely free;
- installs in just 10 seconds and weighs only 4 megabytes;
- support for playing high-definition video;
- support for playing video and audio in popular formats in a browser window without using Windows Media Player;
- programs running in a browser window do not need to be installed;
- access to your favorite application can be obtained from any computer connected to the network;
- a program that is not installed on a computer is much more difficult to hit with a virus;
- favorite applications no longer need to be updated, it is done automatically by the developer.
And one more advantage for developers: any text written in Silverlight-based applications can be indexed and will be accessible to search engines. Adobe Flash could not.
But not everything is as simple and smooth as we would like. There are a number of shortcomings that hinder the applications written on this platform to completely replace the programs we are used to.
Among these shortcomings can be noted:
- program features are still very limited,because they cannot get full access to computer resources (web applications are launched in a special so-called sandbox, that is, a strictly isolated secure environment);
- when you first start, Silverlight places its engine in the browser's cache, so the application can open for a long time, especially on weak computers;
- It is impossible to start the application on a computer that is not connected to the Internet;
- With each new version, the complexity of programming in the Silverlight environment increases.
In the end I would like to give a few examples of websites and Internet applications created using Silverlight technology:
Joe Rassic - a fighting game where dinosaurs act as fighters;
- A virtual museum in which each exhibit can be considered in detail;
Warstory - tactical strategy about the Second World War;
In addition, the well-known sidebar widgets for Windows Vista and the Windows 7 desktop are also written using Microsoft Silverlight technology.