As my colleague Willem mentioned, Microsoft has finally released Silverlight 1.0. I find it amazing how fast this technology has gone. A year ago nobody heard of Silverlight, and now there is a first release. Although I’m quite impressed by the features of Silverlight 1.0, I think that Silverlight 1.1 has far more potential. Having the power of C# inside the browser, that must be awesome. It is going to open up a lot of possibilities for a richer end-user experience, while a lot of the advantages of web applications are still there.
What makes the release of Silverlight even more interesting is the announcement of a cooperation between Microsoft and Novell to get Silverlight to Linux. This is apparently the first contribution by Microsoft to open source desktop software. And although there is still a long way to go, I think it will benefit both sides. As a Linux user myself, I’ve always been a bit split between both sides. Developing ASP.Net applications and running them on Linux is quite possible these days, thanks to the efforts of the Mono project. But I was always running into a brick wall trying to do this, because some of the nifty features from ASP.Net weren’t available. Of course, Microsoft will only support the Mono project in getting Silverlight up and running (they already have an implementation, but it’s not feature complete and I couldn’t even get it to work on my machine), but if this cooperation goes well, maybe we’ll see some more developments in this direction. And wouldn’t being able to run your .NET applications anywhere, independent of the underlying platform, be great?