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Mike Downey

Mike Downey mikedowney Mike Downey's mugshot

Niner since 2010

Mike is a Principal Evangelist at Microsoft working on Silverlight. He joined Microsoft in mid-2009 after nine years working on Flash at Macromedia/Adobe.
  • Silverlight TV Episode 2: Perspectives on Flash and Silverlight

    > bragging SL's file size is less than Flash (say flash+air is like 20MB) is not an important point.

     

    Not true at all. It is a very important point. AIR is a very large runtime and that has a huge effect on downloads. Even though broadband is fairly prevalent today, any "plugin" downloads larger than a few MBs have huge drop-off rates. 

     

    My meta point is that in SL4 you get most of what both Flash Player and AIR give you - all in a single runtime that is much smaller than the combination of Flash & AIR - and you only have to ask your visitor to install a single piece of software. Plus, Silverlight is already far more prevalent than AIR so you'll have a smaller percentage of visitors who need to install anything at all. Silverlight is in the 45-50% penetration range and AIR is between 10-25% depending on who's numbers you look at. That matters.

     

    > Plus, consider SL isn't really as small as you say when you include the rather large patches that user's get via auto-update.

     

    I don't know what you mean by this. Silverlight doesn't install updates any differently than Flash Player does. And I don't believe we push updates as often either.

  • Silverlight TV Episode 2: Perspectives on Flash and Silverlight

    Good points. It was a short interview and I didn't have time to get into much detail. I intend to do a comprehensive blog post comparing the two platforms (which is sure to be controversial).

     

    I plan to go into details about things like Silverlight being multi-threaded, the CLR being faster than AVM2, better data management, better tool chain, and the advantages of the Silverlight SDK vs Flex framework. I just need to free up some time...

     

    Regarding Flex, I meant that it's geared towards a Java back-end. The Flex framework is written in ActionScript 3.0 but the IDE (Flash Builder) is built in Java (Eclipse), the original Flex 1.0 server was built in Java, and the LiveCycle Data Services ES - a server that enables binary communications with Flash Player using a proprietary protocol called AMF (Remoting) - is also written in Java. I do believe the Flex compiler is written in C++ though.

     

    Mike Downey

    miked@microsoft.com

     

     

  • Silverlight TV Episode 2: Perspectives on Flash and Silverlight

    I also felt that Silverlight was trailing the Flash Player in capabilities until I learned of the features in Silverlight 4. While there are still a few small gaps, Silverlight 4 really catches up to FP10 and surpasses it in some significant ways - like having most of the AIR 2.0 functionality built into the runtime itself (instead of requiring a separate install).

     

    Here's a good guide to the SL4 features:

    http://timheuer.com/blog/archive/2009/11/18/whats-new-in-silverlight-4-complete-guide-new-features.aspx

     

    It's also important to recognize that Silverlight was only first introduced about 2.5 yrs ago. The pace of development is quite remarkable.

     

    At some point I intend to write a blog post on http://richplatform.com about SL4 features vs FP10.1. As soon as I get some free time...

     

    Mike Downey

    miked@microsoft.com

  • Silverlight TV Episode 2: Perspectives on Flash and Silverlight

    508 Accessibility is actually an area where Silverlight beats Flash Player. Do a few *Bing* searches and you should fine some great info.

     

    Mike Downey

    miked@microsoft.com

  • Silverlight TV Episode 2: Perspectives on Flash and Silverlight

    Google Chrome is not officially supported by Silverlight 3 but it is supported by Silverlight 4. This is purely due to release timing for each of the products.

     

    Regarding the Victoria's Secret Fashion Show site (vsallaccess.com) it gave you an error because I asked the developers to present that error to anyone trying to view the site with Chrome as we did not want to test the site against an unsupported browser.

  • Silverlight TV Episode 2: Perspectives on Flash and Silverlight

    I also felt that Silverlight was trailing the Flash Player in capabilities until I learned of the features in Silverlight 4. While there are still a few small gaps, Silverlight 4 really catches up to FP10 and surpasses it in some significant ways - like having most of the AIR 2.0 functionality built into the runtime itself (instead of requiring a separate install).

     

    Here's a good guide to the SL4 features:

    http://timheuer.com/blog/archive/2009/11/18/whats-new-in-silverlight-4-complete-guide-new-features.aspx

     

    It's also important to recognize that Silverlight was only first introduced about 2.5 yrs ago. The pace of development is quite remarkable.

     

    At some point I intend to write a blog post on http://richplatform.com about SL4 features vs FP10.1. As soon as I get some free time...

     

    Mike Downey

    miked@microsoft.com

  • Silverlight TV Episode 2: Perspectives on Flash and Silverlight

    If you have any example files please send them to me so I can give them to the product team. I want to make sure these types of issues are dealt with right away.

     

    miked@microsoft.com

  • Silverlight TV Episode 2: Perspectives on Flash and Silverlight

    You shouldn't be experiencing cross platform issues with Silverlight. Please DM me with specifics and I'll make sure your feedback gets back to the product team.

     

    miked@microsoft.com